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Guidance to licensing authorities

The Gambling Commission's guidance for licensing authorities.


1 - Territorial application of the Gambling Act 2005

32.1. By virtue of the Gambling (Licensing and Advertising) Act 2014 (opens in new tab), the Act applies to all operators who provide facilities for gambling to consumers in Great Britain (England, Wales and Scotland) except for two areas which also apply to Northern Ireland. These are:

The offence of advertising unlicensed remote gambling is also applicable to Northern Ireland (see section 5 of the 2014 Act).


32.2. Vessels such as cruise ships, ferries, boats and hovercrafts are required to have a premises licence if commercial gambling is provided at them. However if a vessel is engaged on a journey into or from international waters then no premises licence is required. Further information is available at Part 7 of this guidance, paragraphs 7.12 to 7.17.


32.3. No premises licences can be issued in respect of a vehicle. In addition to a car, lorry or coach, the Act also provides that ‘vehicle’ includes a train, aircraft, seaplane and any amphibious vehicle other than a hovercraft. There is no exemption for international travel. Whilst this is ultimately a matter for the courts it is the Commission’s view that a vehicle remains a vehicle not only when stationary but also if located permanently at a particular site, perhaps with its wheels removed but capable of being re-instated.


32.4. No offence occurs if gambling is conducted on an aircraft which is in international space. As an aircraft is a vehicle, no premises licences can be granted to aircraft for gambling in domestic airspace.

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