The Gambling Act 2005 introduces a range of permits for gambling which are granted by licensing authorities. 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. The permits regulate gambling and the use of gaming machines in a specific premises.

Holders of permits for gaming machines (except unlicensed family entertainment centres) will be required to comply with codes of practice, drawn up by the Gambling Commission on the location and operation of machines.  Information on these codes can be found on the Gambling Commission’s website –

In addition, licensing authorities will be responsible for receiving, from owners of alcohol licensed premises, notifications that they intend to exercise their automatic entitlement to two gaming machines in their premises under section 282 of the Act.

Licensing authorities may only grant or reject an application for a permit. No conditions may be attached to a permit.

The types of permits that may be granted are as follows:

  • Unlicensed family entertainment centre permits;
  • Club gaming permits and club machine permits;
  • Licensed premises gaming machine permits;
  • Prize gaming permits.

In respect of alcohol licensed premises who intend to provide no more than two gaming machines, the Act provides for an automatic entitlement to two gaming machines by way of notification to the Licensing Authority.

From the links below, the relevant application forms and associated guidance notes can be downloaded. If you have any queries on permits, please contact the licensing office on 023 9283 4073 or email: