Merton Council

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The Gambling Act 2005 has created a new system of licensing and regulation. It repeals the Betting, Gaming & Lotteries Act 1963, the Gambling Act 1968 and the Lotteries and Amusements Act 1976.

Gambling is unlawful in Great Britain unless permitted by:

  • The measures contained within the Act: or
  • The measures contained within the National Lottery Act 1993; or pursuant to the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000.

Two comprehensive offences are established by the Act:

  • Providing facilities for gambling or
  • Using the same without permission

The Act has introduced a unified regulator for gambling in Great Britain - the Gambling Commission website, and a new licensing regime for gambling (to be conducted by the Commission or by Licensing Authorities, depending upon the matter to be licensed). The Gambling Commission can be contacted for advice via the link above.

The Commission are responsible for granting operating and personal licences for commercial gambling operators, personnel working in the industry and some larger scale gaming.

Licensing authorities have new powers to license gambling premises within their area, as well as undertaking functions in relation to lower stake gaming and compliance with The Act within their area.

The Act sets out three licensing objectives, which underpin the functions that the Commission and Licensing authorities will perform. These objectives are central to the new regulatory regime. They are:

  • 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; and
  • protecting children and other vulnerable persons from being harmed or exploited by gambling.

It must be noted that public nuisance and public safety are not included in these objectives and the Council cannot take these into account in any representations that may be received when licences are applied for.


Please contact the licensing team if you require more information, clarification or application forms to be sent by post.

Merton's gambling policy statement

Merton’s Statement of Gambling Policy is currently being renewed. More information.

Contact us

London Borough of Merton
1st Floor Annexe
Merton Civic Centre
London Road

Telephone: 020 8545 3969


This page was last updated on Friday 10 July 2015

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