Gambling Licences and Permits

West Lothian Licensing Board has a range of functions under the Gambling Act 2005

The impact of the Coronavirus (COVID -19) continues to have a significant impact on the processing of licence applications.

If you need to get in touch with the Licensing Team, please do so by email to the following address:

Email enquiries will be prioritised and responded to on a priority/urgent basis. We cannot accept phone calls at present.

In the meantime, applications for licences and permits (with the exception of hire car applications, please refer to the hire car webpages for details of how to make these) should be posted to the

Licensing Team,
West Lothian Council,
Civic Centre,
EH54 6FF

along with cheques or postal orders for payment of any fee required and copies of all required supporting documentation. 

If you are unable to post your application and fee please contact the Licensing Team by email.

Please be aware that there will likely be delays in the processing of applications due to changes in working conditions at present. 

If you are an event organiser you should note that when possible applicants will be able to email amended applications for events which have been postponed due to Covid-19 as long as the details of the event remain exactly the same and only the event date is changing, any other changes to event details will require a new application to be submitted in the usual manner.   

The 2005 Act contains 3 licensing objectives which are central to the Board's exercise of its legal functions and in particular its decision making;

  • preventing gambling from being a source of crime and disorder, being associated with crime and disorder or being used to support crime
  • ensuring that gambling is conducted in a fair and open way
  • protecting children and other vulnerable persons from being harmed or exploited by gambling

Gambling Statement of Principles

In accordance with the requirements of section 349 of the Gambling Act 2005, the Board is required to prepare and publish a statement of the principles it proposes to apply in exercising its functions under the Gambling Act 2005 every three years and a copy is available to download here Icon for pdf Statement of Gambling Principles from 31 January 2019-30 January 2022 [508.98KB]

What types of gambling applications can I apply for?

You can apply to the Board for a premises licence for any of the following activities:

  • adult entertainment centre
  • betting shop
  • bingo
  • family entertainment centre
  • track

and you can also apply for any of the following types of permit:

  • unlicensed family entertainment centres
  • prize gaming
  • licensed premises gaming machine
  • club gaming
  • club machine
  • registration of a small society lottery

Please note that the Board does not issue gambling operating and personal licences as, by law, these are issued by the Gambling Commission. More information is available on the Gambling Commission's website Gambling Commission

Under the 2005 Act promoting or facilitating a lottery is illegal unless it is either (1) a licensed lottery, licensed by way of an operating licence from the Gambling Commission or (2) an exempt lottery under Schedule 11 of the 2005 Act, which includes "small society lotteries".
West Lothian Licensing Board is responsible for the administration of the Gambling Act 2005 in West Lothian which includes issuing different categories of premises licences.
If you operate from a premises within West Lothian and you require a gaming permit then you will need to make an application to West Lothian Licensing Board.
Find out how to make complaints about gambling activity for gambling licences, permit holders or small society lotteries.