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Poker and Bingo

The 2005 Gambling Act does not require pubs to apply for permission to allow poker as was the case under the 1968 Act. It is possible for poker to be played on the premises without any additional permission from the licensing authority, but subject to certain conditions. These conditions include:

  • no amount to be deducted or levied from sums staked or won (eg. by way of a percentage or a "cut" for the premises);
  • no participation fees;
  • no linking of games between premises;
  • children and young persons to be excluded from the gaming;
  • a limit of £5 stake per game per person;
  • a daily limit on the total amounts that may be staked or won at poker on individual premises, ie. £100 per day (in total stakes or prizes)

The Gambling Act 2005 also permits low level bingo to be played in pubs, for stakes and prizes up to £2000 over a period of seven days. Where the aggregate figure for a premises exceeds this amount, the Gambling Commission must be informed, and any further bingo games in the next 12 months on that premises must be below the threshold, otherwise a Commission operating license will be required.
Poker and Bingo also is subject to the Gambling Commission Code of Practice for Gaming in Clubs and Alcohol Licensed Premises.

Dominoes and cribbage can continue to be played in pubs, on a low stakes basis.


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