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Fundraising and Lotteries

This page provides some guidance to people or organisations who want to run an event to raise money for charity or other good causes.

Lotteries, Raffles and Tombola 

These are an excellent way of raising money for charity at very little cost.

A raffle, or prize draw where tickets are printed and sold in advance requires a lottery registration with the council.  This is a straightforward process, requiring the completion of a form and the payment of fee.  Organisers must complete a “lottery return” within three months of the draw which lays out how much money was raised, how much used for expenses and how much paid to the charity.

An incidental non-commercial lottery is a raffle where tickets are sold and drawn on the same day.  This is the kind of raffle that uses cloakroom tickets and is usually held at an event such as a school fetes, or a quiz night.  Prizes are often donated.  Provided the raffle is drawn on the same day, it does not require a licence or a registration.

A tombola would be considered an incidental non-commercial lottery and does not need a registration, however organisers should be aware that children should not be allowed to play if alcohol is included in the prizes.

House to house collections

A house to house collection is where collectors go from door to door collecting money or goods.  This could mean posting a bag through the door and collecting the filled bag later, or by knocking on the door and requesting a donation.  Any collection made in this way for charity must be registered with the council and collectors should wear identification.

Street collections

A street collection is where people stand in the street with collecting tins or sealed buckets collecting money for charity.  They could give a flag or wristband in return for the donation but their main purpose is to collect cash for charity, not sell goods.  This kind of collection requires a permit from the council.

Direct debit collectors are not required to be licensed either for door to door or street collections.  However this may change when the relevant part of the Charities Act 2006 is commenced.  If in doubt please contact us.

Busking

Generally busking does not require a licence.  Under the Licensing Act 2003 busking is considered to be incidental.  However anyone who collects money for charity in the street needs a street collection permit.

Street parties

With the Royal Wedding in 2011 and the Diamond Jubilee in 2012 street parties are becoming increasingly popular way of celebrating.  In addition some charities have organised national street parties such as “The Big Lunch”. 

If you are looking to hold a street party it is recommended that you obtain advice on whether you require any form of licence from us.  As a general rule you will not require any form of licence if your event fits the following criteria:

  • For residents/neighbours only
  • No publicity outside the neighbourhood
  • Entertainment is incidental to the gathering such as background music (ie the entertainment is not the prime attraction – e.g. no advertisement of a disco / bands)
  • No sale of alcohol

If you are thinking of selling alcohol, providing entertainment other to that which is incidental and/or or selling tickets, then you can apply to us for a Temporary Event Notice. If the sale of alcohol is involved then the application will have to be made by a Personal Licence Holder. The fee for a Temporary Event Notice is £21.

The department for communities and local government has produced the document "Your Guide to Providing a Street Party or Fete" which contains other useful information such as insurance policies.

It may well be you also require a road closure. Further information may be obtained from the our highways team.

Use of personal data

We are under a duty to protect the public funds we administer and to this end may use the information you provide in your application for the prevention and detection of fraud.  We may also share this information with other bodies responsible for auditing or administering public funds for these purposes. and Lotteries

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