Charity lotteries get green light to raise ten times more

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The UK government has announced plans to increase the ticket sales limit on charity lotteries from £10m to £100m

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29th June 2018 by Susan Smith 0 Comments

Charity lotteries in the UK are set to grow tenfold after the UK Government proposed to remove a £10m legal limit on their annual turnover.

The limit was set to prevent private lotteries like the People’s Postcode Lottery or the Health Lottery from competing with the National Lottery.

However, in recent years the People’s Postcode Lottery has lobbied to remove the limit, which it says stops it from raising more money for charity.

The organisation, which was set up in 2005 and gives 40% of ticket sales to charity, welcomed the new plans to increase annual turnover limit to £100m.

Managing director Clara Govier said it will help direct millions more to charities at no cost to government or the taxpayer. However, she also urged ministers to be more ambitious in their plans for the charity lottery draw limit.

The draw limit – the limit on the value of tickets in a single charity lottery draw – was originally set at £2 million in 2005 and then four years later in 2009 it was raised to £4 million. Nine years on ministers are proposing to raise it again but only to £5 million – despite charity lottery proceeds more than tripling in the same period.

Govier said: “People’s Postcode Lottery warmly welcomes the proposals to increase the charity lottery annual turnover limit to £100 million. This proposal will help reduce administration costs and ensure millions more goes to local and national good causes. Ministers Matt Hancock and Tracey Crouch deserve praise for this move which will benefit local and national charities for years to come.

 “However, we urge ministers to be more ambitious in regards to the draw limit and we will make that point in the consultation period”.

She added: “Unless the draw limit is future proofed by being raised further than ministers propose, People’s Postcode Lottery expects that additional administration costs will occur over the coming years – stopping charities getting vital funding.”

The People's Postcode Lottery, which now employs 300 staff at its Charlotte Square headquarters in Edinburgh, has given more than £300 million to good causes since it launched in 2005.

Tracey Crouch, UK minister for sport and civil society said: “Society lotteries make a vital difference to communities up and down the country. They raise hundreds of millions of pounds every year, supporting our veterans, lifeboats, hospices, air ambulances and many other great causes.

“They are an important fundraising tool for charities and we want to ensure that both society lotteries and the National Lottery are able to thrive now and in the future.”