§ Mr. Peter Ainsworth
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport if he will make a statement on the Government's policy on proposals to establish an alternative to the National Lottery. 
§ Mr. Chris Smith
[holding answer 15 January 2001]: The Government are happy for organisations or individuals to operate lotteries providing they comply with the provisions of the existing legislation. Under section 5 of the National Lottery etc. Act 1993 there can be only one operator of the National Lottery, although other organisations can run individual games with the agreement of the section 5 operator (which must act reasonably in its dealings with a section 6 applicant). The Lotteries and Amusements Act 1976 allows for four distinct types of lottery; society lotteries, local lotteries, private lotteries and small lotteries incidental to exempt entertainments. The larger society lotteries run by charities, sports clubs and local authorities must register with the Gaming Board for Great Britain. The maximum sale value of the tickets which may be sold in a single 135W lottery is £1 million. The top prize which may be offered is £25,000 or 10 per cent. of its proceeds, whichever is the higher, and each lottery may sell no more than £5 million worth of tickets in a single year.