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Charities given society lottery jackpot boost

Charities given society lottery jackpot boost

DEPARTMENT FOR CULTURE, MEDIA AND SPORT News Release (074\2008) issued by The Government News Network on 16 July 2008

Plans to double jackpot and proceeds limits for charity lotteries were announced by Minister for Sport Gerry Sutcliffe today.

The proposal, announced in a written statement to Parliament, will see the maximum jackpot for individual draws increased from £200,000 to £400,000 and the maximum amount raised for charity from each draw increased from £2m to £4m.

The move, designed to help charities raise more money, will now go to consultation and should come into force early next year.

Mr Sutcliffe said:

"Many people already enter charity lottery draws to support a good cause like local hospices, air ambulances and local sports clubs. Indeed, these kind of lotteries helped raise around £100 million for good causes in the last year alone.

"But even more can be done to raise more money if the lotteries are made more attractive. That's why I have decided to allow this unprecedented increase in overall jackpots and limits on amounts raised.

"This will not only benefit around 630 charity lotteries already licensed to run draws, but I hope will provide some encouragement for other charities to set up lotteries too. "

Garth Caswell, Chairman of the Hospice Lotteries Association (HLA) said:

"All hospice lotteries and particularly the HLA are extremely grateful to both the Minister and the MPs who have supported us in agreeing this increase. This will enable hospice lotteries to combine their skills and raise even more money through lotteries for the hospice movement in the UK."

The Department today launched a three month consultation on the proposals. If Ministers then decide to proceed, necessary Orders will be put forward which will need to be approved by Parliament. This will require a debate, and potentially a vote, in both Houses.

Notes to editors

1. Society lotteries are typically national and local charities, sporting and social clubs that run lottery draws in order to raise funds for local good causes such as hospices or air ambulances.

2. There are two types of society lottery, large and small. Large society lotteries are defined as those that raise more than £20,000 in a single draw or over £250,000 in a year. 630 groups are presently licensed by the Gambling Commission as large society lotteries.

3. There will be no increase to the annual maximum proceeds per society lottery of £10 million as no society lotteries currently reach that limit.

4. The last time society lottery limits were increased was 2002 when the Government doubled proceed limits to their present level of £2 million. The current prize limit for an individual draw is £200,000.

5. Small society lotteries, whose proceeds are below £250,000 and are not regulated by the Gambling Commission, will keep their current maximum £25,000 prize limit.

6. Provisional figures for 2007/08 are:
Proceeds raised by societies' lotteries licensed by the Gambling Commission in 2007/08 were £169.9 million with around £100.5 million going to good causes. £29.8 million went on prizes and the remaining £39.6m million on expenses.

Proceeds raised by societies' lotteries licensed by the Gambling Commission in 2006/07 were £163.8 million with around £90.5 million (55%) going to good causes. £33 million (20%) went on prizes and the remaining £40.3m million (25%) on expenses.

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