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New Code of Conduct for Land-Based Gambling Venues

We have a new Code of Conduct for land-based gambling businesses.

Building on the Industry Code for the Display of Safer Gambling Information, which launched in 2020 and centred primarily on UK gambling apps and websites, the new guidance will focus on land-based gambling venues and ensure resources and support services are more accessible for those who need them.  

Key updates that are involved as part of the new Code include: 

  • Improved signposting and pathways into support organisations for customers, including a QR code directing people through to GamCare’s website. 
  • Guidance on the most impactful location of placement for safer gambling information within venues. 
  • Introduction of discreet resources in venues allowing more customers to access information and signposting to support. 
  • Key principles for the consistent language and effective design of safer gambling messaging. 

According to data from the Gambling Commission, the participation rate of in-person gambling increased from 23% to 26% last year, with the rise being driven by the reopening of land-based gambling activities including lotteries, sports betting, fruit and slot machines, horses and bingo. 

Matt Burgiss, Industry Codes Project Manager at GamCare, commented:

“At GamCare, we know that callers to the National Gambling Helpline regularly cite issues from land-based gambling and that more can be done to support people within the land-based gambling sector. We hope this new Code of Conduct will improve the consistency of safer gambling messaging whilst also signposting into relevant support organisations, so that those at-risk of gambling harm are comfortable coming forward and seeking help.” 

We have consulted with members of Betting and Gaming Council (BGC), the Bingo Association (BA) and the British Amusement Catering Trade Association (BACTA) to create the Code of Conduct, as well as consulting with people who have used GamCare’s services and have lived experience of gambling harms. 

Michael Dugher, CEO of the Betting and Gaming Council, said:

“The BGC is proud to welcome this new GamCare Code which will guarantee prominent, visible and easily accessible signposting to safer gambling information on help and support in all our members’ land-based gaming venues. This vital Code is concrete evidence of this industry’s determination to drive up safer gambling standards for millions of customers, wherever they bet in the UK, and follows similar work from our online members.  

“These measures ensure safer gambling information is consistently displayed in all BGC member’s venues so customers find it easy to view the National Gambling Helpline and access further guidance on support, including individual operator’s own safer gambling tools.  

“The BGC was established to drive up standards, and our members were proud to collaborate with GamCare to deliver this Code, which is another step on our combined journey to protect those vulnerable to harm, and champion safer betting and gaming.” 

Miles Baron, Chief Executive Officer at Bingo Association, commented:

The land-based Industry Code for the display of safer gambling information in land-based gambling venues is important because it ensures a consistent approach to messaging across all land-based gambling premises. The Bingo Association in conjunction with BACTA and the BGC supports any initiative that makes safer gambling tools and customer support to stay in control more visible and accessible.” 

Russell Edge, Membership, Social Responsibility and Compliance Manager at BACTA, commented:

“The GamCare Industry Code provides a ‘go-to’ for all operators regarding the display of safer gambling messaging in the land-based sector. Social Responsibility is at the heart of everything we do and the support GamCare’s code provides is invaluable.“