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Licensing gaming machines

Only premises which are wholly or mainly used for making gaming machines available for use, such as small arcades in holiday parks, theme parks and seaside resorts, may hold a family entertainment centre (FEC) gaming machine permit.

Permits cannot be issued to vessels or vehicles. Family entertainment centres that do not hold a premises licence under the Gambling Act 2005 can only offer Category D machines under this permit.

A permit allows any number of Category D machines. These are the lowest category of gaming machines available, and the only type that children and young people are allowed to play.

Category C machines

If a family entertainment centre operator wants to make Category C machines available, they will need to apply for an operating licence from the Gambling Commission and then a gambling premises licence from the The Royal Borough of Greenwich.

Holders of a gambling premises licence may not apply for a family entertainment centre gaming machine permit.

Applying for a family entertainment centre permit

Applicants for a family entertainment centre permit will need to provide the following:

  • a plan showing the layout of the premises
  • evidence that criminal records bureau (CRB) checks are carried out for staff
  • evidence that appropriate measures and training are in place for staff to enable them to deal with suspected truant schoolchildren on the premises, unsupervised very young children on the premises, and have a full understanding of the maximum stakes and prizes permissible in unlicensed family entertainment centres
  • evidence of how the applicant would deal with children causing perceived problems on or around the premises
  • evidence that the applicant is able to demonstrate a full understanding of the maximum stakes and prizes of the gambling that is permissible in unlicensed family entertainment centres
  • evidence that the applicant has no relevant convictions (those set out in Schedule 7 of the Gambling Act 2005).

Download premises licences forms and guidance