It is now over a decade since the 1994 launch of the National Lottery. It is a credit to the last Conservative Government which introduced the Lottery that it is thriving, and that the framework underwhich it operates is still largely intact.
It has not however been, without its critics or scandals. The large pay rises awarded to Camelot’s board, the unsavouriness of some of the lottery jackpot winners and bruising competition for the 2002 licence between Richard Branson’s Virgin Group and the exisiting licence holder, Camelot have all tarnised the image of the Lottery.
In addition, there has, since 1997, been a shift in the use and application of lottery funds; the “good causes” have become politicised and used increasingly to fund matters that should be funded by the taxpayer. In addition for those seeking a grant, a vast bureaucracy has emerged with a voracious appetite for their own salaries, form-filling and a penchant for the politically correct.
Ruth Lea investigates the uses of the Loteery Fund and its operation, and whether or not it has become unfit for purpose.
With a preface by former British Prime Minister, Sir John Major