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United Kingdom

A Guide to the Live Casinos in the UK

The United Kingdom has enjoyed very liberal gambling laws for many decades. Casinos can be found in just about every city though out the country. There is a law which means you have to register as a member of these venues before you can play, otherwise anyone over 18 can enter. What the UK lacks is the big ‘resort casinos’ that you will find in other countries. Instead you get smaller outfits, with between 10 and 30 tables, and a selection of slots covering the country. London does have somewhat bigger venues.

This article covers live casinos in the UK in some depth. First of all, I have covered the different regions or the country, starting with London, and described your choices there. Next you will find some information on the types of games to expect in UK live casinos. After that I look at online casinos that can be access from the UK – including the many gambling companies listed on the London Stock Exchange.

Live Casinos in the UK

Many of the casinos you will find in the UK are part of major chains of operators, for example Gala or Grosvenor. They are generally smaller in size than the casinos you will find elsewhere, though they do somewhat make up for this with the sheer numbers. In addition to the casinos listed here, you will have opportunities to bet on electronic casino type games in high-street bookmakers in just about every town and city in the country. You can also find a small selection of slot machines in bars.

London Casinos: There are 30 casinos in London, ranging from large venues like the Empire at Leicester square to many smaller venues dotted around the different suburbs. Among the working-class casino venues there are some very exclusive venues designed to attract the international high rollers. These include The Clermont Club, The Ritz and Crockfords. If you want to enjoy casino gambling with millions of British Pounds, these are the venues for you. Many of the casinos in London include poker rooms, the Victoria is famous for hosting poker tournaments like the EPT and World Series. You’ll find many venues which are dedicated to poker too, including the highly regarded Dusk Till Dawn. While London is far from the only UK city with casino coverage, you will not find venues of the size and quality anywhere else in this country.

Birmingham Casinos: This is the UK’s second largest city, and has a selection of casino venues. These are smaller casinos and are part of two of the national chains which cover the country. The midlands region where Birmingham is situated has many more options, with the city of Nottingham home to some of the bigger national poker tournament series.

Other Regions: Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland all have their casino venues. These follow the same pattern as all of the venues outside of London. There are a lot of them, however they are mid-sized at best.

One area of the UK of note is the seaside resort town of Blackpool. Over the years there has been a lot of discussion at a government level of turning this resort into a ‘Las Vegas Style’ destination with big hotels and casinos. Nothing has happened to make this a reality as yet.

Casino Games at UK Live Venues

The games follow the usual pattern of Roulette and Blackjack taking up the majority of casino floor space, with casino poker games, Baccarat and Pai-Gow. Craps is not as common in the UK, though you will find this offered at some of the larger London casinos.

This country has its own taste in slots, which are often referred to as ‘Fruit Machines’, after the fruit symbols on the reels. These are similar to the international video-slots games, and have mini-games and feature rounds. You’ll find a small number of these machines in just about every bar in the country with limited jackpot payouts. For the bigger payouts you’ll need to play them in casinos instead.

UK Online Casinos

Many of the biggest casino brands in the UK are listed on the London Stock Exchange. Several also have headquarters in the UK too, and are licensed and operated from the British-administered Gibraltar. Recent licensing laws have come in to ensure that the UK government collects more tax from online casino operators. The general situation is that players in the UK are absolutely free to gamble online wherever they would like. The legal framework for casino operators gives them the freedom to advertise, as long as licensing requirements are met.

This gambling-friendly environment means that many UK casinos lead the way in online gambling worldwide – serving customers from all over the world and not just the UK with casino, poker, betting and many other gambling options.