Small Society Lotteries

The Gambling Act 2005 creates two broad classes of lottery. If you sell more than £20,000 of tickets in a single event or you raise more than £250,000 in a year then you need a lottery operating licence issued by the Gambling Commission (external link).

Small societies based in Carlisle that run lotteries need to be registered with Carlisle City Council.

Registration will only be granted if the society is established and conducted wholly or mainly for one or more of the following:

  • Charitable purposes
  • Participation in, or support of, athletic sports or games or cultural activities
  • Other "not for profit or personal gain" causes. 

Reasons to refuse or revoke registration are listed in the guidance notes, GG04(below). The society has a right to appeal to the Crown Court, except where the Gambling Commission have refused or revoked the registration.

Running the lottery

Before holding the first lottery, the society must:

  • Nominate a member of the society as the lottery promoter
  • Approve its own lottery scheme
  • Notify the Council in writing

The society may employ an external lottery manager to undertake the running of a lottery on its behalf. The persons who may manage a society's lottery are:

  • a member  or employee of the society
  • a company that is wholly owned by the society
  • a person certificated as a lottery manager by the Gambling Commission
  • an employee of a certificated lottery manager

Applications for certification of lottery managers should be made to the Gambling Commission (external link).

Downloadable Documents

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File name


Approximate Download time

Adobe PDF format - download the viewer(GA19) Application Form for registration of Non-commercial Society Lottery in PDF format43 Kb6 secs @ 56k, 0 secs @ 2mb
Adobe PDF format - download the viewer(GG04) Guidance for small society lotteries in PDF format36 Kb5 secs @ 56k, 0 secs @ 2mb

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