History of Gambling in the UK


Casino gambling has always been a part of British culture. From the Victorian era to the technology-driven 21st-century world, casino gambling has continued to fascinate people of all ages. But have you ever wondered how did it all start? And how it evolved? Stick with us as we explore the history of gambling in the UK in complete detail.

Early modern era

Gambling is a form of recreational activity in the UK since the Roman era. Before the advent of online casino UK and other internet-based casino platforms, wagering on pub games and visiting gambling houses were the go-to choices for most gamblers in the country.

While gambling was legal during the early modern era, some specific periods saw the introduction of laws against casino gambling. For instance, in 1338, Richard II introduced a rule restricting spending on dice-based casino games. It followed by the Unlawful Games Act of 1541, which threatened to make casino gambling illegal. Interestingly, these acts were hardly ever enforced.

This was also when the first lottery was conducted in the United Kingdom. In 1566, Queen Elizabeth wanted to secure funds to repair harbours. For that, she announced the UK’s first lottery with a prize pool of £5,000 and offered protection from trivial crimes. However, with just a few thousand tickets sold, the lottery failed to garner much success. But after that, lotteries steadily became one of the forms of casino gambling in the UK.

The commercialisation of horse racing and gambling houses

In the 16th century, the sport of Horse Racing was gaining popularity among the Brits. The year 1512 saw the UK organising its first thoroughbred race in the form of the Chester Cup. It was followed by another horse racing competition held in Doncaster in 1513. Back then, horse racing competitions usually involved two horses. So, bettors had to confine themselves to the match betting option when wagering on these events. By the mid-18th century, horse racing events were held in 122 different towns and cities in the UK, leading to the increased growth of horse race betting.

The 17th century in the UK also saw the commercialisation of gambling houses. Casino gambling,exclusively reserved for the Royal Court before that, was now accessible to the UK’s upper class. This was also the time when several casino classics went on garner immense popularity in the UK and other parts of the world. The virtual versions of these casino games, which come with the same basics and traditional gameplay rules, can easily be found when playing at the best mobile casino like ours.

The Victorian era

The Victorian era, that lasted between the year 1837 to 1901, was a defining period for the UK’s casino gambling world. This was the time when the first gambling venues appeared on the scene. Also, this was the time when Roulette, Blackjack, horse racing and sports betting first became accessible to both the rich and the poor.

With the advent of trains helped people travel to a racecourse from almost every part of the country. Also, the invention of the telegraph made it possible for bookies to transfer odds and other betting-related information. So, even if a bettor couldn’t travel to a racecourse, they still had the chance to enjoy sports betting.

Casino gambling in the 20th and 21st century

The 20th century brought many new opportunities for casino gambling in the UK. After the end of World War II, casino games like Housie and Poker found several new players in the country. The Gaming Act was enacted in the 1968 to legalise casino gambling and sports betting in the UK. This resulted in development of over 13,000 betting shops in just a few months.

The internet boom of the 1990s completely changed the way Brits enjoy casino gaming. Today, it’s possible for players to enjoy online Blackjack, Slots, Roulette and other casino games from the comfort of their homes. Also, live casinos allows players to play casino games against a human dealer in real time. What’s more, the advent of mobile casinos means UK players can access casino gaming whenever and wherever they want. Indeed, casino gambling has come a very long way!

A Simple Explanation of Blackjack Side Bets


Featuring straightforward rules and being easy to get started with, Blackjack is a casino staple at both land-based casinos and online gambling sites. The game of Blackjack comes with several standard betting options and many Blackjack variations allow you to place additional side wagers as well. In this article, we offer a comprehensive overview of the most popular side bets in Blackjack. Read on!

What are side bets in Blackjack?

As their name implies, side bets are additional wagers that can be placed in the game of Blackjack. While each Blackjack side wager is different, the basic premise behind most of them is to guess what cards you or the dealer will have.

Unlike other betting options such as the Blackjack split, side bets need to be placed before the dealing of the cards takes place. As such, there’s no skill involved and they are completely based on the element of chance.

A look at the most common Blackjack side bets

When playing Blackjack online, you’ll find several different types of Blackjack games. And all of them feature a different set of side betting options. But still, you can expect your side bets to be from


This is arguably the most common Blackjack side betting option. The insurance wager covers you if the dealer’s up-card happens to be an Ace. To place the insurance bet, you need to wager an amount that’s half your initial stake for that gameplay round.

The Insurance bet pays 2:1 if the dealer’s second card leads to him having a Blackjack. While this betting option reduces the overall house edge, experienced players don’t use it as often considering the risk and the payout offered.

Perfect Pairs

This Blackjack side bet is based on the player’s cards only. Perfect pairs offer a payout if your initial two cards form a pair. The payouts for different Blackjack pairs are as follows:

  • Mixed Pair – Two cards of the same value but different colour and suit forms a mixed pair in Blackjack. This Blackjack side bet pays 5:1.
  • Coloured Pair – A coloured pair is made up of two cards of the same value and the same colour. The payout for getting a coloured pair right is 12:1.
  • Perfect Pair – A perfect pair consists of two cards that have the same value, are from the same suit and have the same colour. A perfect pair in Blackjack pays 25:1.

While the payouts that we’ve mentioned above are pretty standard, they can vary slightly at different online and mobile casinos. So, be sure to check the paytable of your chosen Blackjack game.


This is one of the most popular side wagers you’ll come across in the game of Blackjack. 21+3 involves your initial two cards and the dealer’s face-up card. This side bet pays differently for having different card combinations, as follows:

  • Flush – As with other card-based casino games, cards of the same suit make a flush here. The payout for having a flush combination is 5:1.
  • Straight – A straight combination consists of cards with consecutive values. The payout for this card combination is 10:1.
  • Three of a Kind – The 21+3 Blackjack side wager pays 30:1 if you have three cards of the same kind.
  • Straight Flush – A straight flush is made up of cards that are in sequence and are of the same suit. When playing Blackjack online, the payout for getting a straight flush is usually 40:1.
  • Suited Triple – A suited triple consists of three identical cards. As for the payout, it’s 100:1 here.

Some other Blackjack side bets explained

Along with the standard betting options like double down in Blackjack, you can find some lesser-known side wagers at selected Blackjack tables. They include:

Royal Match

– This is one of the oldest side wagers in Blackjack. With royal match, you receive a 5:2 payout on a same-suited pair. Here, the payout is 25:1 for having a suited king and queen.

Lucky Ladies

– This side bet pays 200:1 if you manage to get two queens of hearts. And if it happens that you have two queens of hearts and the dealer has a Blackjack at the same time, you can receive a whopping 1000:1 payout.

Super Sevens

– As the name implies, the Blackjack side wager focuses on the number seven card. Here, the payout ranges between 3:1 and 5000:1, based on the number of suited cards you have.

Summing Up

For many players, Blackjack side bets are wagers that add an extra bit of thrill and complexity to your gameplay. When opting to play Blackjack games that come with side betting options, make sure you know the basics and payout rules of side wagers available in your chosen game. Also, it’s important for you to remember that many side bets can result in increased house edge.

Tips to Ensure Safety When Playing Live Casino Games


The thrills of casino gambling aren’t confined to a few casino gaming venues and a handful of gambling meccas anymore. Today, casino players can easily access and play their favourite live casino classics whenever and wherever they want.

Of course, being able to enjoy casino gaming in real-time on the top live casino platforms is pretty enjoyable. But there exist a small number of rogue live casino operators that may try to dupe and cheat players. As such, here are the things to check for when playing at a new live casino gaming platform.

Check casino licensing

This is one of the most critical aspects of live casino safety. To verify the casino license, you just need to navigate to the bottom section of your chosen live casino’s homepage and check whether they’ve listed The top live casino gambling platforms, which hold licenses from reputable gambling authorities such as the United Kingdom Gambling Commission (UKGC) and the Malta Gaming Authority (MGA), usually feature the seals of their licensing provider in the bottom section of the screen.

What are the benefits of having a casino license? Well, a gambling platform needs to go through stringent quality and security checks to obtain a casino license. As an operator, not following the licensing requirements can result in their license getting cancelled and the platform being banned from offering its services. And this is something that the top mobile casinos and the most reputable live gambling platforms would never want to happen. All in all, having a valid casino license will ensure that you always have a completely safe and secure casino gaming experience.

SSL encryption is a requirement

When playing casino games at a live casino, you’ll have to share your personal and financial details with the platform to verify your identity and make deposits.

And you’d never want any third party to have access to all of that sensitive information. So, make sure that your selected live casino platform has SSL encryption technology in place. If you’re unaware, SSL encryption encrypts all your details into a special format that can be accessed only by you and the casino.

Also, you must always set a strong and complicated password for your casino account. Furthermore, you can use the two-factor authentication feature if your gambling platform has it.

Use reliable payment options

Another critical element of live casino safety is the payment methods available. This is because you’ll use those payment options to transact real money. So, they need to be completely secure and risk-free. Most players tend to choose payment options that suit their preferences (which is also critical), but you must also take safety and reliability factors into account when doing so.

If your chosen platform has several different payment options from reliable providers, it’s usually a positive sign. The top payment companies employ top-notch security measures to ensure that all payments on their platforms are completely secure.

Furthermore, ensure that your chosen casino gambling platform doesn’t prolong cash-out times. Certain casinos may take up to a few days to verify your identity and process your withdrawals. But if it takes several weeks or months to cash out your winnings, it’s better to stay away from such sites.

Never share personal details in live chat

Whether you want to play the game of Blackjack or wish to try your hands at the live Baccarat game, you’ll have the option to interact with the croupier and other players via the live chat feature. The ability to chat in real time is great because it allows you to ask questions and share your thoughts about the game.

But when using the live chat facility, it’s imperative to be mindful of what you’re sharing. As a player, you must never share your personal info and financial details in live chat. This is because the information can be used against you if a rogue player sees it.

Summing Up

When playing at any reliable live casino, you’ll usually find roulette games and other titles from renowned live software providers such as Evolution, Playtech and NetEnt. Along with the casino platform, all of these top game providers have state-of-the-art streaming and security technologies in place. However, it is crucial to check the security aspects of a new and less-known live casino before playing. By following the tips mentioned in our article, you can expect to have a safe, fair and reliable live casino gaming experience.

Progressive Slots: What Are They and How Do They Work?


Featuring jackpot prizes that can be significant or even life-changing, progressive jackpots are fascinating slot games to play online. In this article, we delve deep into the basics and other fundamentals of progressive slot games. We also explain how progressive slot machines can trigger the jackpot prize. Read on!

A look at the basics and the workings of progressive jackpots

Progressive slots are online slot games that come with progressive jackpots attached. A progressive slot game’s top payout increases until it is won by a player, unlike other slot games with a fixed payout.

Depending on your chosen progressive slot game, the jackpot prize can start at a few hundred dollars and go all the way up to millions of dollars. To offer such huge prizes, a part of each player’s wager is added to the final jackpot amount. Also, keep in mind that the regular prizes in many progressive slot games aren’t always substantial.

When playing progressive jackpot slots, players need to wager the maximum number of coins on each to be eligible for the jackpot prize. If you don’t, you may not be able to claim the progressive jackpot even after lining up the required combination of slot machine symbols.

The working of progressive slots is quite straightforward to understand. In progressive slots, the jackpot amount keeps increasing until someone wins it. Jackpots rise by adding a percentage of each wager to the total jackpot. After winning, the jackpot amount is reset to a predetermined level and rises again.

The different types of progressive jackpot slots explained

In the world of online slots, there are three main types of progressive slot games. And each of these progressive slot types differs in terms of payouts offered and the number of players taking part. Below we’ve explained these progressive slot types in more detail:

Standalone progressives

As the name suggests, this progressive jackpot type is limited to just a single slot machine. Here, a percentage of each player’s bet on that slot machine is added to the final jackpot amount. As standalone jackpots aren’t linked to a wider network, the amount offered is usually lower than the other two types.

Local progressives

Also referred to as “in-house jackpots”, local progressives are linked between several machines within a short distance. Due to their nature, land-based gambling venues usually offer local progressive slots. As wagers from multiple machines contribute to the final jackpot amount here, these machines have bigger jackpot rewards than standalone machines.

Network progressives

Also referred to as wide-area progressives, these machines come with some of the biggest jackpot prizes. This is because network progressives are usually linked across multiple online or mobile casinos. The chances of grabbing the final prize in network slots are slim, but the amount can be life-changing if won.

How are progressive jackpots triggered?

As with other online slot types, the way progressive jackpots get triggered varies from one software provider to another. While certain progressive jackpots can only be won during specific bonus rounds, others require you to line up specific symbols on slots paylines. Here are some of the most common ways to trigger jackpots in these slots:

Jackpot wheel mode

Some progressive slots with high slot machine volatility come with a jackpot wheel mode that can be activated by lining up specific symbols on the reels. Upon triggering, players are transferred to a different screen and offered the chance to spin the reels.

The different jackpot amounts that can be claimed on the progressive wheel are listed. As a player, you just need to click on ‘Spin’ to initiate the spinning of the wheel. The jackpot prize is then awarded to you as the final prize. After this, the jackpot amount reverts to its initial level again.

Matching symbols

Matching symbols is another way to trigger the jackpot prize in progressive slots. Just as in regular online slot games, there must be a winning combination to win. The number of symbols players need to match to trigger the bonus feature depends on your chosen progressive slot game.

Collect 3 symbols

This jackpot-triggering option is simple to understand. Here, you need to collect 3 symbols to claim the jackpot prize. While this may seem like an easy thing to do, lining up the three symbols that trigger the jackpot prize is the most difficult task to do in progressive slots.