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Club gaming and club machine permits

If you gamble within your club there are two types of permit that you may need:

  • a club gaming permit (part II registration)
  • a club gaming machine permit (part III registration)

Existing part II and part III registrations under the Gaming Act 1968, unless expired, will be automatically treated as the relevant permits unless:

  • your club no longer meets the statutory requirements
  • your activities change to those that are not permitted under the Gambling Act 2005

All gambling activities will be subject to any conditions or restrictions arising from the Act and regulations made under it.


Under the Gambling Act 2005 clubs can offer bingo and other equal chance gaming without a permit or licence provided that:

  • the club abides by limits set in regulations for the amounts (see appendix 1)
  • the participation fee is no more than £1 per person per day. £3 where a club gaming permit is held
  • games are held on the premises
  • games are not linked with games held on other premises
  • games are only open to club members and guests (unless your club is a commercial club)
  • the total stakes or prizes for bingo games played in any seven day period does not exceed £2,000 more than once in 12 months.

You will need to apply for a bingo operating licence if you operate bingo on your club premises with total stakes or prizes that go above £2,000 a week and you plan to do so again at any time during the following twelve months. After the first week of high turnover bingo the club will commit an offence if high turnover bingo is played again in the following twelve months, unless a bingo operating licence has been obtained.

If your total stakes or prizes for bingo reach £2,000 in any seven day period without an operating licence you must notify the Gambling Commission.

Card Games

There is a code of practice for gaming in clubs. Under certain conditions, clubs will be entitled to provide equal chance gaming without a permit or licence. This will include poker with restricted stakes and prizes (see appendix 1).

If you hold a club gaming permit you will also be permitted to offer other specific games.

Clubs will not need an operating licence for card games from the Gambling Commission unless there are exceptional circumstances. For example, the main purpose of the club is gaming.

Gaming Machines

If you hold a club gaming or club machine permit you are entitled to have up to three gaming machines. One of these machines may be a lottery machine (B3A) with a maximum payout of £500 (members’ club or a miners’ welfare institute only).

The other machines (B4, C or D) can have a maximum jackpot of £250.

Category of Machine Maximum Stake Maximum Prize
– Lottery Machine
£1 £500
B4 £1 £250
C 50p £35

10p or 30p when

non-monetary prize

£5 cash or £8

Non-monetary prize

Unless there are exceptional circumstances, clubs will not need an operating licence from the Gambling Commission or a premises licence from the Council.

Apply for a permit

If you are a members’ club or a miners’ welfare institute with an existing part II and/or part III registration you must apply to Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole Council for your new permit before your current registration expires.

If you are operating a club for the first time you should contact us.

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