by Renee Israel
Camelot, operator of the National Lottery, has lost in its appeal against its
rival, the Health Lottery.
Despite the fact that Camelot considers the Health Lottery as "unlawful and a
blatant example of an attempt to commercialise a society lottery on an
industrial scale that cuts across the spirit and letter of statute and
regulation," the High Court was not convinced and ruled in favour of the
Gambling Commission, which will continue to allow the Health Lottery to operate.
The Health Lottery essentially manages and promotes draws on behalf of over
50 local charities (society lotteries).
Camelot has always maintained that the Health Lottery directly contradicts
the wording of the National Lottery Act of 1993 which makes provision for only
one national lottery.
It has failed to convince the High Court, however, of its opinion and
Camelot lost the Health Lottery appeal this week.
Camelot to Appeal High Court Decision
Soon after the High Court ruled that the Health Lottery and the National
Lottery are able to operate side by side in the UK industry, Camelot said that
it was disappointed with the ruling and intended to launch an appeal.
Camelot said that it would "lodge papers with the Court of Appeal" over a
"legally flawed and unfair decision by the court."
Richard Desmond, whose Northern and Shell set up the Health Lottery last
year, said that the case triggered by Camelot had been "a waste of time."
He said that the funds raised by the Health Lottery (around £500K a week) was
for people "who really need the money".
Desmond stressed in a BBC interview that the services offered by the Health
Lottery were "not at all similar" to the National Lottery and that they were in
fact "two very different things."
The Health Lottery has raised over £22 million for the 51 organisations it
represents since it was launched in October 2011. It offers a top prize of
Camelot Calls for Government Intervention
Camelot has now called on the government to intervene in the decision and try
and resolve the ongoing dispute between the two lotteries.
"It is now imperative that the government acts to close this loophole and to
ensure that the law mirrors the intention and will of parliament that there
should only one National Lottery," noted Camelot's Chief Executive, Dianne