The Evolution of UK Gambling Leading to Mobile Casinos
History perhaps suggests why mobile casinos are so popular in the UK. While it used to be legally confined to only aristocrats, over time all facets of society have been allowed to participate legally. Queen Elizabeth I created the first national lottery in 1569 in order to raise tax money. Companies used lotteries to fund enterprises. The Virginia Company was allowed to raise money using lotteries and courtiers of King Charles I were allowed to fund London's water supply through lotteries.
As time went on, lotteries came to have a dubious reputation. Although during the Industrial Revolution horse racing among aristocrats was accepted-it was still prohibited for those without wealth-during the 1800's some major gambling fraud scandals and writings about amoral nature of gambling made people turn against it. In the mid-1800's the Gaming Act and the Betting Act were passed which essentially banned most means of commercial advertising for gambling.
In the 1900's two Royal Commissions were established to study how gambling could be used to increase tax revenue but also regulated to reduce crime. The result was the opening of gaming shops in the 1960's that were government regulated. In the 2005 the Gaming Act, seemly a reversal of the 1800's legislation, allowed advertising of gambling establishments as long as they provided a means to deal with problem gambling in their businesses.
Currently, gambling is popular throughout the UK. Casinos are regulated by the Gambling Commission, a government body that oversees gambling law in the UK and regulates gambling organizations.
Since the 2005 Gambling Act, it has been easier for casinos to advertise. Therefore, they are able to reach new and existing customer more easily. Additionally, there is a two-tiered age limit system in the country where residents aged 16 can participate in lotteries, the National Lottery, and football pools and as well as other activities like prizes gambling. Those aged 18 and over can gamble at casinos, bingo halls, betting shops, online gambling and racetracks, and other gambling establishments.
Mobile gambling is now the most popular form of the past-time. Seventeen percent of people, in fact, play at casinos online and nearly half the population of the UK has participated in gambling, with men gambling more than women (68% men to 61% women according to a 2012 Health Survey). Perhaps due to its accessibility, the lower age limit for gamblers in the UK (in the US you generally have to be at least 21 years old to gamble in a casino), along with the gambling tradition in some parts of the country like in Wimbledon Stadium with its greyhound racing history, helps to explain why casinos continue to be built in the area.
While online gambling is currently the most popular form of gambling in the UK, since most gambling companies targeting customers are from outside the country, regulating such activity is difficult. But it appears that gambling will continue to be a popular past-time in the UK now and into the future.