Council lotteries raise millions for local causes

People celebrating starting a community lottery

With the recent addition of North Kersteven Council, over 100 local authorities across the UK are now raising community funds with a lottery provided by Gatherwell, the UK’s only council lottery specialists. Since 2015 local authority lotteries have been acknowledged as a solution to the ever increasing pressures on councils to maintain community grant funding levels.  Many discretionary community budgets were redirected to deal with the pandemic response, which in turn, has caused many small local organisations and groups to struggle financially. This makes the new, unrestricted income stream generated by a council lottery invaluable to councils and community groups alike.

Benefits of a council lottery:

  • Innovative, low-cost source of new unrestricted income
  • Local community groups promote the lottery and raise funds through it
  • Operated online through a platform with full council oversight
  • A massive 60p in the pound goes directly to local causes and the council
  • Safe, ethical and fun*

New unrestricted income stream

Gatherwell has years of experience in designing lotteries that help councils and the third sector gain access to new funding streams. Local community groups can join the lottery and sell tickets to raise income directly. Most councils also establish a central pot or ‘community fund’ that they distribute as they wish. Gatherwell lottery platforms are built to give the council oversight and control over which local charities and good causes can benefit from the funds raised.

North Kesteven Council Leader, Richard Wright talked about why their local authority is launching a community lottery: “We’re excited to be launching this Community Lottery. It’s a significant moment to be doing so, as the pandemic has made it tougher for local groups to raise much-needed funds. It’s literally a win-win, with players and good causes both benefitting! As a Council, we want to do all we can to support efforts to help others in our District and this is a truly tangible way to do that. We hope North Kesteven’s residents will support this charitable endeavour and invite any groups that qualify to apply to register as a good cause.”

Gatherwell lotteries are run exclusively online, meaning community groups can raise money easily at a time when face-to-face fundraising events are not possible. A massive 60p in the £1 ticket goes directly back to local good causes and the council. This is almost double the amount other national lottery providers give back. As this is a recurring weekly lottery, once supporters sign up to play, they generally carry on giving to charity and good causes on a regular basis which is the absolute goal for all fundraising initiatives.

Buckinghamshire Council (formerly Aylesbury Vale District Council) has been running a community lottery with Gatherwell since 2015. Caroline Wheller, Buckinghamshire Council’s Head of Service for Business Development and Commercial Operations said “Since its successful launch, the lottery has grown from providing additional fundraising from 40 charities and good causes to now supporting over 300 in the Buckinghamshire area.  It has now raised £670K for good causes from £1.1m in ticket sales. We look forward to our ongoing relationship with Gatherwell and the additional growth opportunities.”

Gatherwell is the current Lottery Provider of the Year, awarded by the Lotteries Council, meaning that you can trust us to provide ethical, secure and reliable lottery services. For more information about starting a lottery with Gatherwell, contact us today.



*Council lotteries are classed as a ‘low risk’ form of gambling by the Gambling Commission. Gatherwell operates strict safeguards to ensure that those who purchase tickets are playing for the right reasons. 


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