Cookies on the Gambling Commission website

The Gambling Commission website uses cookies to make the site work better for you. Some of these cookies are essential to how the site functions and others are optional. Optional cookies help us remember your settings, measure your use of the site and personalise how we communicate with you. Any data collected is anonymised and we do not set optional cookies unless you consent.

Set cookie preferences

You've accepted all cookies. You can change your cookie settings at any time.

Skip to main content

Bingo using a club gaming permit

Where it can take place

In the following places:

  • members’ clubs - such as working men’s clubs, branches of the Royal British Legion clubs and with political ties, or
  • miners’ welfare institutes.

You do not need a licence for this kind of gaming. However, you'll need to apply for a club gaming permit with your local authority.

What you must do

You must make sure:

  • the game is played as an equal chance game (essentially all players must have the same chance of winning)
  • the gaming is not the main purpose of the club – it can only be an additional activity
  • every player is a member of the club, or, a guest of a member
  • children and young people under 18 are not allowed in the area of the club where the gaming is taking place
  • total stakes and prizes for the game do not exceed £2,000 in a 7 day period. Otherwise, this will be classed as ‘high turnover’ bingo. If this happens, you’ll need to tell us. If it happens more than once, then you’ll need a licence
  • you charge a maximum of £3 in participation fees, per person and per day.

What you can’t do

You can’t:

  • run ‘linked’ games with players on other premises. For example, you cannot run a linked game between two branches of the Royal British Legion based in two locations
  • deduct from or ‘levy’ on money staked or won by players in the game. It doesn’t matter if the charge is voluntary or compulsory
  • play the bingo virtually, or online in any way.


A local branch of a political club want to run a bingo night. Usually, the club meet to discuss environmental issues. Everyone taking part in the bingo night will be a member of the club, or a registered guest.

There will be no under 18s taking part, and no children or young people will be allowed in the function room where the bingo will take place. The total stakes and prizes will be less than £2,000. The club applies for a club gaming permit and their request for the permit is granted.

Gaming machines

A club gaming permit also allows you to provide a maximum of 3 gaming machines from categories B3A (with agreement), B4, C or D.

You can read more about club gaming permits.

Previous page
Online bingo
Next page
Exempt gaming in clubs and miners' welfare institutes
Is this page useful?
Back to top