The Gambling Act received Royal Assent on 7 April 2005 and has modernised old laws on gambling. It has transferred the responsibility for the licensing of gambling premises from magistrates' courts to local councils and has introduced for the first time, a unified regulator for gambling, the Gambling Commission
The Act contains three licensing objectives, which underpin the functions that the Gambling Commission and Councils acting in their capacity as licensing authorities will perform. These objectives are central to the new regulatory regime created in the Act and are:
- preventing gambling from being a source of crime and 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
Three types of licence are required by the Act:
- Operators licence - concerned with the management and conduct of gambling
- Personal licence - for persons with key operational functions connected with the gambling business
- Premises licence - for the property where the gambling takes place
Responsibility for the licensing of gambling premises is given to local authorities. These include premises licences for casinos, bingo halls, betting offices, adult gaming centres and licensed family entertainment centres and permits for gaming machines in pubs and other alcohol licensed premises. Authorities will also register small lotteries. Operators and Personal licences will be issued and regulated by the Gambling Commission.
The Act became fully operational from September 2007
Statement of Licensing Policy
On the 21 November 2012 Tonbridge and Malling Borough Council approved its revised Statement of Licensing Policy as required under section 349(1) of the Act. The current policy is in force from the 14 January 2016 until 14 January 2019
Consultation on Statement of Licensing Policy
The Council's current Statement of Principles for the Gambling Act 2005 took effect from 14 January 2016 and will run until 14 January 2019.
In preparing a statement, the Council will have regard to guidance issued by the Gambling Commission. The Commission has just completed consultation on the 5th edition of the guidance, and intend to publish their response in late September/early October 2015. Unfortunately, due to the proposed timing of publication, it will not be possible to prepare and consult on a revised version of our policy in order to ensure both that it reflects the amended guidance and is in force by January 2016.
Given the above, it is therefore intended to re-instate the existing version of the policy with effect from January 2016, subject only to minimal changes to ensure accuracy (change of contact details etc.).
On publication of the revised guidance from the Gambling Commission a further review of the statement will take place to determine whether any modifications are required. It is anticipated this further review will take place early in 2016.
The consultation period on existing version of the policy with minimal changes will run for four weeks from the 23 September 2015 until the 23 October 2015.
The Department for Culture Media and Sport (DCMS) set the maximum premises licence fees for premises used for gambling.