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Guidance to licensing authorities

The Gambling Commission's guidance for licensing authorities.


2 - Fundamental principles

6.7. Licensing authorities have a duty to pursue the licensing objectives and all policy statements should begin by stating the three licensing objectives (s.1 of the Act), which the policy will promote:

  • preventing gambling from being a source of crime or disorder, being associated with crime or disorder, or being used to support crime
  • ensuring that gambling is conducted in a fair and open way
  • protecting children and other vulnerable persons from being harmed or exploited by gambling9.

6.8. The statement should also state that the licensing authority shall aim to permit the use of premises for gambling as set out in s.153 of the Act.

6.9. It is expected that licensing authorities will regulate gambling in the public interest which will be reflected in the policy statement.

6.10. While the policy statement may set out a general approach to the exercise of functions under the Act, it should not override the right of any person to make an application and to have that application considered on its merits. The exception to this is where the licensing authority has passed a ‘no casino’ resolution under s.166(1) of the Act, detailed in Part 17 of this guidance. Additionally, the policy statement must not undermine the right of any person to make representations on an application or to seek a review of a licence where provision has been made for them to do so.


9 In furtherance of this objective licensing authorities are encouraged to consider the National Strategy to Reduce Gambling Harms which was delivered between 2019 and 2022.

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