People's Postcode Lottery urges government to raise lottery cap

A report by nfpSynergy says the trusts that award PPL funds to good causes have had to turn down applications totalling almost £45m over the past two years because of the rules limiting sales

The nfpSynergy report
The nfpSynergy report

The People’s Postcode Lottery has reiterated calls for the government to increase the limit for charity lottery sales, saying the cap means it has been forced to turn down applications for grants totalling almost £45m over the past two years.

A report produced by the research consultancy nfpSynergy says the three trusts that award PPL funds to good causes have had to turn down 3,740 applications totalling almost £45m over the past two years because of the rules limiting society lottery sales.

Society lotteries have been campaigning for years for an increase in the annual limit of charity lottery sales from £10m to £100m per lottery.

In a consultation published last year, the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport said its "preferred option" was to increase the annual limit to £100m, but it has yet to announce any plans to implement this. The consultation closed on 7 September.

The nfpSynergy report says the value of applications made by good causes to the PPL increased from £5.9m in 2012 to £58.3m last year.

The sales cap has meant that only three in every 10 applications have been awarded funding over the past two years, the report says.

Joe Saxton, co-author of the report, said the existing charity lottery limits were a "regulatory straitjacket on charity fundraising".

He said: "There is rarely such a good example of a change in the law that would result in a ‘win/win/win’ solution.

"Raising the charity lottery limit is a win for funding for small and large charities, a win for reducing unnecessary costs and administration, which the public so dislike, and a win for the people that charities exist to help."

Carolyn Harris, the Labour MP for Swansea East, says in her foreword to the report that it highlights the "the significant impact the current outdated limits are having on small charities – one that should make every MP sit up and take notice because it is impacting on local charities and community groups in virtually every constituency".

She urged the government to increase the annual limit to £100m immediately.

Clara Govier, managing director of the PPL, called on the government to update the rules as soon as possible.

"The government can unlock millions of pounds in extra funding at the stroke of a pen by raising the current caps on charity lottery fundraising, which are holding back organisations from improving the lives of people up and down the country," she said.

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