Gambling Act 2005 - Permits and prize gaming

The Gambling Act 2005 introduces a range of permits for gambling that are granted by the licensing authority. Permits are required when premises provide a gambling facility but either the stakes and prizes are very low or gambling is not the main function of the premises. 

Applications for permits can only be made by a person who occupies, or plans to occupy the premises. Applicants must be aged 18 or over.

Applications for permits cannot be made if a premise licence is in effect for the same premises.

Licensing authorities are responsible for issuing the following permits:

  • unlicensed Family Entertainment Centre
  • club gaming and club machine permits
  • alcohol licensed premises gaming machine permits
  • prize gaming.

Information on clubs and alcohol premises can be found under separate cover on the website.

The Family Entertainment Centre Gaming Machine Permit (FEC) will apply only to unlicensed FECs. The unlicensed FECs will only be able to provide Category D gaming machines, but there is no set limit to the number they can supply. Unlicensed Family Entertainment Centres are most commonly located at seaside resorts, in airports and motorway service stations.

View Statement of Principles for Unlicensed Family Entertainment Centres and Prize Gaming Permits.

Prize gaming permits cover for gaming as prize gaming if the nature and size of the prize is not determined by the number of people playing or the amount paid for or raised by the gaming. The prizes will be determined by the operator before play commences. A permit authorises the provision of facilities for gaming with prizes on specified premises.

FECs and prize gaming permits if granted will have effect for 10 years, unless it ceases to have effect due to the permit being surrendered or lapses or is renewed. There is no annual fee.

A licensing authority cannot add conditions to these permits, though Coventry City Council have adopted a statement of principles that will apply when considering applications for these types of permits.

There is no minimum age to playing these types of machines and young persons may participate in equal chance prize gaming.

Licensing team

Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday: 8.30am - 5pm Friday: 8.30am - 4.30pm

Address: PO Box 15
Council House
Earl Street

Telephone: 024 7697 5496