Lotteries and prize draws 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 small society 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.