Government urged to raise charity lottery sales limit to £100m a year

The government is being urged to continue its progress on charity lottery reform by doubling the annual sales limit to £100m.

Ian Murray, the Labour MP for Edinburgh South MP, asked the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport if the government had any plans to increase the charity lottery sales limit from £50m to £100m a year.

In response, charities minister Nigel Huddleston said a review of charity lottery reforms was underway.

Huddleston, the MP for Mid Worcestershire, said: “The government increased the annual sales limit for society lotteries from £10m to £50m in July 2020, as part of a package of reforms designed to enable both the National Lottery and society lotteries to thrive, and consequently to grow overall returns to good causes.”

“We have committed to reviewing these reforms, and that is now under way.

“We want to understand the impact of these changes, before we consider looking again at the case for a £100m lottery licence and any additional conditions that may accompany that.”

Tony Vick, chair of the Lotteries Council, said the membership body was pleased the government was committed to reviewing the impact of the 2020 changes to charity lottery sales limits.

“A little over a year following their introduction, these changes have proven hugely positive, freeing up more funding for supported charities, while lowering costs and cutting bureaucracy for operators – just as the government intended," he said. 

“We urge ministers to continue progress on charity lottery reform, particularly given that a £100m annual sales limit remains favoured by the sector and was the government’s own ‘preferred option’ following extensive consultation on the matter.”

The People’s Postcode Lottery made a similar call in April 2019 after a report found that thousands of grants totalling almost £45m had been rejected over the two years previous because of the rules limiting society lottery sales.

In January 2019, research revealed that around two-thirds of people thought there was no need for rules that stop charity lotteries from competing with the National Lottery.

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