We’ve set out the basic details of the legal requirements below, but for in depth information contact your local authority and/or the Gambling Commission.

When organising your lottery, you’ll need to think about the following steps:

  • Let us know what you’re planning - we might be able to help with some materials
  • Printing tickets or buying ticket books
  • Finding prizes
  • Promoting the lottery and selling tickets
  • Running the lottery

You can have your lottery with friends, at an existing fundraising event, at work … the possibilities are endless. 

Securing prizes

  • If you need one, we can write you a letter to confirm you’re fundraising for Teenage Cancer Trust
  • Don’t be afraid to ask local businesses for prizes - they’re often eager to support fundraising and might surprise you with a free meal for two, a free haircut …
  • Speak to local sports teams – a signed t-shirt or football can go a long way and really generate interest in your activity.
  • Write a letter first and then back up with a visit or a call – if you don’t hear back don’t assume it’s a no
  • Don’t be afraid to offer to use company’s logos on your advertising materials – if a company is willing to give you a very large prize, it may be a deal clincher
  • If you have an event coming up for the draw – think about inviting the business to have a stall to promote their activity.
     

The legal stuff

Lotteries and raffles have important legal regulations which you must abide by:

  • Lotteries, raffles and some prize draws are regulated under the Lotteries and Amusements Act 1976 and the Lotteries Regulations 1993.
  • Tickets can only be sold to people who are 16 and over.
  • For any raffle or lottery, you must inform your local authority who will be able to provide detailed information on the legal requirements of running a raffle and obtaining licences.
  • Only sell tickets and books of tickets for the price printed on the actual ticket (e.g. you cannot discount 10 tickets for the price of 8).
  • Each ticket should have a unique reference number which can be seen clearly.
  • Every ticket should have the same chance of winning the prize.
  • Ticket sales must be logged (in particular how many sold and where) – as the lottery promoter you will held responsible for how it is run, and must ensure that records are kept.
  • If your raffle required a licence from your local authority, you must submit a return to them within the time limit required. The details required will depend on the council and you should check this when you are requesting your licence.
  • For further information please visit the Gambling Commission’s website.
     

The draw

  • If your lottery or raffle is related to your event, you must hold the draw at that event. You should notify the winners immediately and give them their prize at the event.
  • If it is a larger, independent lottery or raffle, you must notify winners immediately and send out prizes once their address details are confirmed. The names of the winners should be publicised, however not any contact details.
  • If you have a newsworthy prize, think about asking a local celebrity or speak to the local press to see if you can get it in the local paper!