Small Society Lotteries

Small Society Lotteries

A Small Society Lottery is a lottery that is promoted on behalf of a non-commercial society (such a charity or similar non-profit making organisation) to raise funds for any of the purposes for which the society or organisation is set up.

The Gambling Act 2005 will replace The Lotteries and Amusement Act 1976. The Act sets out a definition of a Lottery and provides that promoting of and facilitating a lottery is illegal, unless it falls into one of two categories of permitted lotteries, that is:

  • Licensed Lotteries; and

  • Exempt lotteries

Licensed Lotteries are large society lotteries. There are four types of exempt lotteries including those smaller society lotteries.

Small Society Lottery Registration

A Society must be non-commercial. A society is defined as non-commercial if it is established and conducted:

  • For charitable purposes

  • For the purpose of enabling participation in, or of supporting, sport, athletics or a cultural activity

  • For any other non-commercial purpose other than that of private gain.

To remain a Small Society the total value of tickets sold must not exceed £20.000 or tickets in separate lotteries in one calendar year must not exceed £250.000 if you exceed these amounts you will be classed as a Large Lottery and will need a licence issued by the Gambling Commission.

An Small Society Registration can be found online on the Gambling Commission's website. (Opens in a New Window)


Registration of a Small Society Lottery - £40.00

Renew a Registration - £20.00

New Small Society Lottery Registrations run for a year from the date of issue, you will be notified before the expiry date inviting you to continue the registration.

Once you have held the Lottery/Draw you will need to compete a Returns Form and submit it to the Licensing Section. The following documentation is available to download.

  • Application to Register Small Society Lottery

  • Lottery return Form

  • Guidance for societies promoting lotteries

tel: 0115 917 3241