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national lottery

The DCMS has responsibility within Government for National Lottery policy, and sets the policy and financial framework within which the distributing bodies operate, but does not award Lottery grants. Applying for Lottery grants. The Minister for the Arts, Estelle Morris, has day to day responsibility for the National Lottery.

The Department also sponsors the National Lottery Commission. The National Lottery Commission has responsibility for regulating the National Lottery game and the game operator. The Commission's duties are to protect players' interests, to ensure that the Lottery is run properly, and to maximise the amount raised for the good causes.

Details of all the grants awarded to date can be accessed via the National Lottery Awards Search Database.


Hundreds of Lottery funded projects will open their doors for free for a day as part of plans to celebrate the National Lottery's 10th Birthday, Tessa Jowell has announced  in a speech at the Lottery Monitor Conference. [24 June 2004]


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facts and figures

The first national lottery in Britain was run in 1569.

The first ever National Lottery draw took place on Saturday 19 November 1994.

Funds for the building of the British Museum were raised from the National Lottery.

Total ticket sales since the launch of the National Lottery is 35.9 billion till end of January 2002.

As at December 2003, 159775 Lottery grants have been awarded totalling over 14 billion.

The average size of a lottery grant during 2000/2001 is around 50,000, down from a peak of more than 270,000 in 1995/1996, which means that many more groups are able to benefit from lottery awards.

A survey has revealed that two of the most popular places for jackpot winners to keep their tickets is 'in their Bibles' and 'in their underwear'.

The longest celebration by winners of the National Lottery was by a pub syndicate from London who celebrated for almost two weeks