Application for Permits
The following permits are now processed and issued by the Council:
Licensed premises gaming machine permits
Club gaming permits and club machine permits
Prize gaming permits
Unlicensed family entertainment centre permits
In addition, licensing authorities will be responsible for receiving, from holders of licensed premises under the Licensing Act 2003, notifications that they intend to exercise their automatic entitlement to two gaming machines of category C or D in their premises.
Holders of licensed premises gaming machine permits and club permits will be required to comply with the codes of practice drawn up by the gambling Commission. These codes of practice provide information on the location and operation of gaming machines. See the links on the right of this article for the codes of practice and a table of machine categories.
Licensed Premises Gaming Machine Permits
Following the introduction of the Gambling Act 2005 gaming machines in places licensed to sell alcohol are dealt with under this act. One application form covers all types of applications.
The procedure for premises which hold a premises licence under the Licensing Act 2003 and have existing Section 34 permits (amusements with prizes machines) is split into two sections.
Automatic entitlement notification
For premises that have up to two Category C or D gaming machines there will be an automatic entitlement to this number of machines and the procedure is a simple notification to the licensing authority when the existing Section 34 permit expires.
There is a one off payment of £50. A permit has no expiry date and will continue in force for so long as the premises continues to have an alcohol licence and the holder of the permit continues to hold that licence. N.B. This notification is not transferable and if a premises licence is transferred then a new notification must be made in the current holder's name.
New applications for Gaming Machines in Licensed Premises and applications to vary/transfer/convert
For those licensed premises that require more than two Category C or D machines they will need to apply for the required number of machines when their existing Section 34 permit expires but charges are made for the application together with an annual fee.
For premises that currently have more than two machines when their current permit expires the charge is £100, plus an annual fee of £50. For new applicants the charge is £150 plus an annual fee of £50. The charge to vary the licence is £100 and £25 to transfer the permit to another licence holder. A permit has no expiry date and will continue in force for so long as the premises continues to have an alcohol licence and the holder of the permit continues to hold that licence.
Club Gaming Permits and Club Machine Permits
A club gaming permit is issued to members' clubs and miners' welfare institutes (but not commercial clubs) that already offer gaming machines under Part II of the Gaming Act 1968. This permit will entitle the club to up to three Category B3A, B4, C or D machines, equal chance gaming subject to certain limits and games of chance such as pontoon and chemin de fer. This is in addition to the exempt gaming authorisation under section 269 of the act.
A club machine permit is issued to members' clubs, miners' welfare institutes and commercial clubs that already offer gaming machines under Part III of the Gaming Act 1968. This permit will entitle the club to up to three Category B3A, B4, C or D machines if it does not wish to have the full range of facilities permitted by a club gaming permit.
For premises that currently hold Part II and III registrations there is a fast track procedure available when their current permit expires. The charge is £100 plus an annual fee of £50. For new applicants the charge is £200, plus an annual fee of £50. The charge to vary or convert the licence is £100 with an annual fee of £50. Club gaming and club machine permits are both valid for ten years.
Prize Gaming Permits
The Gambling Act 2005 defines gaming as prize gaming where 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 prize for which the game is played must not exceed the amount set out in regulations (if a money prize), or the prescribed value (if non-monetary). It is, therefore, gaming where the organiser puts up the prizes in advance, as distinct from gaming where the stakes of the participants make up the winnings
A prize gaming permit is issued by the licensing authority to authorise the provision of facilities for gaming with prizes on specified premises. Prize gaming is intended to permit low level gaming for small participation fees and modest prizes. Bingo played at seaside amusement arcades, airports and motorway service areas that cater for families with young children is typical of this type of gaming. It can only be permitted on premises that offer Category D gaming machines.
The charge for the conversion of an existing section 16 permit Lotteries & Amusements Act 1976 permit is £100. New applications and renewals will cost £300. A change of name will cost £25. A permit is valid for 10 years and there is no annual fee for this type of permit.
Unlicensed Family Entertainment Centre Permits
Unlicensed Family Entertainment Centre permits replace Section 34(1) permits which were issued under the 1968 Gaming Act. These permits are issued to premises which are mainly used by families, young people and unaccompanied children to play on gaming machines, such as small arcades in holiday parks, theme parks and seaside resorts. But, by holding a UFEC permit, a premises will only be able to operate Category D machines.
If the FEC permit holder decides that they want to have Category C machines, in addition to Category D machines, they will have to apply for an Operating Licence from the Gambling Commission and then a gambling premises licence from the Council. A person will not be able to have both a FEC permit and a gambling premises licence so will have to make a choice over which machines they want to make available at their premises.
New applications and renewals will cost £300. A change of name will cost £25. A permit is valid for 10 years and there is no annual fee for this type of permit.