Terms of play

Company Information

Make a smile lottery exists solely to raise funds for good causes. We are owned and operated by St Helena Hospice, and we are working with other good causes to raise funds to support people in need of charitable services. By working in this way, costs and overheads of running a fundraising lottery are kept to a minimum.

St Helena Hospice is the promoter of the lottery, trading as make a smile lottery.

St Helena Hospice is a company limited by guarantee registered in England and Wales Number 01511841. Registered Charity Number 280919. Registered Office: Myland Hall, Barncroft Close, Highwoods, Colchester, CO4 9JU.

Make a smile lottery Office: 6 The Atrium, Phoenix Square, Colchester, Essex, CO4 9AS.

The draw takes place at the StarVale Head Office (make a smile lottery, PO BOX 653, Galgate, Lancaster, LA2 0XB). StarVale (DrawAccess), is a registered External Lottery Manager licensed and regulated in Great Britain by the Gambling Commission under account number 3273.

St Helena Hospice Limited is licensed and regulated in Great Britain by the Gambling Commission under account number 4685.

Charities supported by make a smile lottery

Make a smile lottery provides funds for good causes throughout different parts of Great Britain. Please visit our charity partners tab here. The application completed by players as a request to join this subscription lottery will be used to identify the charity that the player wishes to support.

How does it work?

  • Each entry to the draw costs £1, but you can play more.
  • The draw takes place each and every Friday. In the event of public holidays, it will take place on the next available working day.
  • When you play, you choose which charity you want to support.

Lottery number allocation

Unfortunately, you cannot choose your lottery play number. When you join you will receive the same lottery play number for all draws.

All lottery play numbers are generated by the StarVale (DrawAccess) lottery software.

Joining the lottery

A player must be at least 18 years old and resident in Great Britain to join and play the make a smile lottery. On receipt of a request to join this subscription lottery, the make a smile lottery office will send the player a welcome letter advising of the player’s unique game number (or numbers); a subscriber card for easy reference; and further information about make a smile lottery and how the player’s support benefits charities. This information will clearly identify the charity the player has chosen. The player’s unique game number will be generated randomly by StarVale (DrawAccess) lottery software during the process of setting the player up as a new subscriber.

Make a smile lottery Ltd (the Promoter) may reject an application, or later suspend or cancel an existing subscription, at their discretion, if they consider they have sufficient reason to do so in pursuance of meeting the terms of their licences with the Gambling Commission or any other legal obligations. The applicant or subscriber would have the right to appeal against such a decision. Any unused credits held by make a smile lottery Ltd would be refunded to the applicant or subscriber in these circumstances upon their request.

Age Verification

The requirements of the Gambling Act 2005 mean that make a smile lottery has a statutory duty to verify that all players are at least 16 years old. It is an offence for anyone under the age of 16 to participate in a lottery. However, make a smile lottery, as part of its commitment to responsible gambling, has set a higher minimum age of 18 years for all new players joining since January 2020.

Discovery of underage participation will result in the refunding of all subscription credits and, if applicable, the withholding or reclaiming of any prizes won in the weekly draw. By submitting the player’s request to join this lottery, the player is agreeing to make a smile lottery being able to carry out checks in any way it deems appropriate.

Lottery subscriptions

In return for the player’s subscription payment the player’s unique game number will be entered into the weekly draw, which will normally be carried out every Friday (with the exception of Bank Holidays where the draw will take place on the next working day). The cost of entry is £1 per entry per draw, payable in advance. Make a smile lottery is required by law to collect payments in advance of all of our draws. ‘Back payments’ cannot be accepted. Payments can be made by regular standing order, direct debit, cheque, or debit card (we do not accept credit cards). See the ‘Standing Order, Direct Debit and Regular Debit Card Payments‘ section for more details about payment options. Make a smile lottery cannot accept liability for the loss of, delays in, or theft of any communication sent either by post or email, or for any delays in the banking system.

Maximum number of weekly entries to the draw

To deter problem gambling, the maximum number of lottery subscription entries per player per week is 5. Of these, a maximum of 2 can be via face to face sign up, 3 via our telesales fundraising team or 5 via website sign up. Anyone wanting to purchase more than 5, will need to be approved by the Head of Lottery.

If you would like more, please contact us, we may allow you up to 10 provided we are satisfied that you are gambling responsibly.

The maximum number of single tickets that can be purchased per player per week is limited to 100.

Direct Debit Payments

When you join us, you are able to select your preferred Direct Debit date from these dates: 1st, 8th, 15th, 23rd, 28th of every month.

Once we have received your application, we will enter you into the next available draw after your first Direct Debit payment is taken.

We will email you (or write to you if you have opted for postal communication) with your Direct Debit details and when your first payment will be taken.

Payment will continue to be paid from your bank account on your behalf until you notify us differently. The lottery number/s will be sent to you as part of the welcome email/letter.

Card Payments

We accept card payments via the website only.

The Head of Lottery will take all reasonable steps to ensure payments received into its bank account are considered as a stake in the draw. Payment must be made in advance before you can be entered into the draw. Only entries for which payment has been received in full are eligible to win a prize. In the event of ambiguous credits into the bank account, the Head of Lottery will take reasonable steps to confirm with the sender, the sender’s intentions in relation to the credits of these monies, and the Head of Lottery will act as appropriate thereafter.

The member must be the cardholder. The Head of Lottery will not take any further card payments without permission from the cardholder. The Head of Lottery will hold a record of all transactions.

A member will be informed where a card transaction has succeeded or failed, and if card payments decline, we will inform the member and request another form of payment.

If you pay quarterly, biannually or annually, and your credit is running low, we will contact you and let you know your membership is due for renewal.

Where does the money go

For more information please visit About Us page here.

Weekly prizes

There are 282 guaranteed weekly prizes to be won: 1 x £1000, 1 x £200, 10 x £10, 270 x £5. Plus a rollover prize of £500, that rolls over each week should it not be won, up to a maximum of £25,000.

All prizes are guaranteed to be won each week, with exception of the £500 roll over prize, which has a 5% chance of being won. If the £500 prize is not won, it will roll over to the next regular weekly draw and accumulate to a maximum value of £25,000. Once a year, on the last Friday before Christmas, a Super Draw takes place with a guaranteed prize of £5,000 on top of the standard weekly prizes from the regular weekly draw.

The purchased and processed entries for any draws including the Super Draw are non-refundable. Exceptions to this will be at the Head of Lottery’s discretion and only made in exceptional circumstances.

Chances of winning

For more information please visit How to play page here.

How do the winners get drawn

Winning game numbers are selected from the unique game numbers of all players entering the draw by using Random Number Generator (RNG) software supplied by a company licensed by the Gambling Commission.

The weekly prizes are set prior to the draw in order of the highest value prize to the lowest. Winning numbers are drawn and allocated to the prizes that have been set. i.e. the first number picked at random will win the highest prize (including the £5,000 when the Super Draw takes place), second number picked will win the second highest prize etc. When a number is allocated a prize, it will not be able to win a second prize within the same draw.

The lottery software that we use (the StarVale DrawAccess lottery software) is fully licensed and regulated by the Gambling Commission and uses a random number generator, which has been independently tested, using a variety of industry-standard statistical tests carried out by a Gambling Commission approved test house.

Rollovers involve a two-step process - 1. The system decides randomly whether it will be won or not (set at a 5% chance of winning each week); 2. The system decides the prize is to be won, it randomly picks a winner. If the prize is not to be won, it will increase by £500. This will repeat each week until the rollover prize stands at £25,000, where we will manually set the chance of the prize being won to 100%.

Publication of Prize Results

The player will be notified in writing (by email or post) of any prize that the player wins within seven days of the draw.

How to claim your winnings

If you have regular membership with us or purchased single tickets via the website:

  • We notify winners shortly after the draw via email. We may even call you if it’s a big win!
  • If we hold an email address for you, your winning cash amount will be transferred into your online member account where you can request to withdraw it to your bank account. Please go to ‘My Account - My Funds – Withdraw Funds’ and then withdraw funds to make a request to our admin team. We will pick this up for you and process this within 10 working days. With the exception of bank holidays, we aim to process prize withdrawals on a Monday and transfer funds by the following Wednesday. Any withdrawal requests after Monday pm will be processed the following week.
  • If we hold an email address for you, but you do not want to withdraw your winnings from an online account. Please contact us and we will send your winning cheques out to you shortly after the draw, payable in the member’s name and the address we have on our system.
  • If you do not have an email address, we will send your winning cheques out to you shortly after the draw, payable in the member’s name and the address we have on our system.
  • If you wish to donate your prize back to your chosen charity, please email hello@makeasmilelottery.org.uk with your name, unique lottery number and postcode.
  • Winning numbers can also be checked here, on our social media channels and posters at partner locations.

It is the player’s responsibility to keep us up to date with any changes of address as cheques will be sent to the address given upon sign up. Address changes can be made in your online account or by calling 0300 303 4500.

If your address is out of date and your cheque is returned, we will make every reasonable effort to get in touch with you and get your cheque to you.

Our winning numbers are published weekly on our website and you can check them here and can be searched for at any time showing all lottery numbers. Please search by draw number under the Results Tab or log into your online account to see your specific wins. If you purchased your ticket in a retail shop:

  • You DO need to claim your prize.
  • Winning numbers can be checked here, on our social media channels and posters at charity locations and charity shops.
  • For wins of £10 or under: take the original lottery ticket/receipt back to the charity retailer where it was purchased to receive your cash prize. No copies accepted.
  • For wins of £11 or more (up to £25,000): contact make a smile lottery in the first instance to confirm the win. Players will be asked to send the following items to make a smile lottery (recorded delivery is recommended):
  • A completed claims form (can be downloaded here, collected from a retail shop or by contacting us).
  • Your winning ticket/receipt.
  • Proof of ID and age (copy of the photo page of a passport or photo driving license).
  • Proof of address (accepted documents - copy of a utility bill or current UK driving license).

All documentation should be sent to: make a smile lottery, PO BOX 653, Galgate, Lancaster, LA2 0XB. It is recommended that you send this via recorded delivery, as make a smile lottery are not responsible for any losses incurred. Upon approval of the documentation and original ticket, a cheque will be sent to the winner within 7 days. Players may present their ticket and all the documents in person (by appointment only) at the make a smile lottery office.

Uncashed or unclaimed prizes

In the event of prize winnings in your online account being unclaimed, cheques remaining un-cashed, and shop tickets remaining unclaimed, after a period of 6 months, the promoter reserves the right to donate the value of the wining fund to the charity you are supporting with your lottery membership. It is the responsibility of all lottery players to keep us up to date with their contact details.

Customer Funds

Make a smile lottery is required by its Operating Licence to inform customers about what happens to funds which are held on account in the unlikely event of make a smile lottery becoming insolvent. (www.gamblingcommission.gov.uk/for-the-public/Your-rights/Protection-of-customer-funds.aspx).

Customer funds are held by make a smile lottery in a separate UK bank account with Natwest and are subject to financial management controls which ensure that the balance on the account always remains above the total value of customer funds held. These funds are not protected in the unlikely event of insolvency, and the customer will not be able to access any such funds in this eventuality. This meets the Gambling Commission’s requirements for the segregation of customer funds in the category of “Not protected (with segregation of customer funds)”. For more information, see the Gambling Commission site.

Gift Aid/Donations

Unfortunately, subscriptions to the lottery cannot attract Gift Aid. However, should you wish to donate all or part of your winnings to the good cause you are supporting, please note that you can add gift aid to this donation. Prizes left on your account which are donated after a period of 6 months automatically will not have gift aid added. Please see Uncashed or unclaimed prizes in point 6 for more information.


Make a smile lottery complies with the data protection legislation requirements to protect the player’s personal data for the purposes of administering the player’s participation in the weekly draw and communicating with the player about the player’s subscription. Make a smile lottery will also keep the player updated on existing lottery products that the player may be interested in, including the Super Draws, as well as new products and services by post, email or phone. Make a smile lottery will not share the player’s data with third parties for marketing purposes, except with the charity of the player’s choice. Depending upon their expressed/indicated communication preferences, the player’s chosen charity may occasionally keep the player up to date with the work that the player’s contributions help to fund.

If you’d like to know more about what we do with your personal information, please read our privacy policy.

You can update your preference, or stop communications at any time by contacting us on 0300 303 4500, or by amending the communication preferences via the My Account tab.

We promise to comply with all Data Protection Act and GDPR requirements and protect your personal data and will store your information securely. We cannot accept liability for the loss of or delays in or theft of any communication. We promise to protect all personal data and not to misuse it. We will not share this information with any third party other than for the purposes of operating the Lottery, and then only with third parties required to protect your personal data as we do. By completing the application form, you consent to the data on it being held and used by make a smile lottery.

It is the responsibility of the member to advise us of any change of that member’s address or any other membership details deemed necessary.

Personal Data

When you originally create a make a smile lottery account or join the lottery with us, we will ask you your preference of whether you would like to hear from make a smile lottery and your chosen charity by the following methods: post, email, or SMS.

Your data goes to your supporting cause if you select to hear from them when creating your account. You can opt in to receive email, direct mail, SMS, and phone communication.

Your chosen charity is responsible for your information once we pass it to them and they will have their own privacy notices that you should read. They may get in touch by post about other ways you can help them.

If you wish to change your preferences at any time, please contact your chosen charity and make changes within your make a smile lottery online account or call us on 0300 303 4500 to ensure the changes can be made.

Your online account

Within your account there is a section called ‘My settings,’ where you can update your details and change your password. Within your account you can view the tickets you have purchased; draws you have entered and prizes you have won. You can easily purchase more tickets, check upcoming draws, and withdraw winning funds, see Section 6 for more information.

Payment Subscriptions

Direct debits can be set up in writing, on-line, with one of our agents or third party agents or via the telephone and subject to the Direct Debit Guarantee. The player can also set-up a recurring debit card payment when the player joins the lottery via make a smile lottery’s website. We cannot accept credit card payments. Whilst we do not accept new standing order subscriptions, some of our long-standing players may continue to pay via this method. The player’s standing order, debit card or direct debit record will be retained for a period of at least three years following the player’s final payment.

Players on a monthly subscription will pay £5 per month per game number. For months with only four lottery draws in them, the player’s extra £1 will be accumulated to ensure a credit remains for months that contain a fifth draw. After this credit is built up, the extra £1 per month will give the player an entry into the Christmas Super Draw which will take place on the last Friday before Christmas each year (providing the lottery membership is active at the time of running the Super Draw). It is also possible to pay a quarterly subscription of £15, a bi-annual subscription of £30 or an annual payment of £60 per game number.

Over a calendar year, providing that the player makes all scheduled payments that year, the player will accrue seven or eight extra entries into the Christmas Super Draw, depending on how many Friday draws take place in that year. If the player joins part-way through a calendar year, this will affect how many Christmas Super Draw entries the player accumulates.

If a payment is missed, any accumulated funds will be used to ensure entry into the next draw and will impact on the number of entries the player accrues for the Christmas Super Draw. If the player cancels their subscription before funds are allocated to the Christmas Super Draw in December, any additional funds they have accrued throughout that year will be entered into subsequent weekly draws, and will not be used to provide additional entries into the Christmas Super Draw.

Players whose first payment was received by make a smile lottery before 19 April 2024

Up until 19 April 2024, make a smile lottery operated a subscription of £4.34 per game number per month. This included 34p which accumulated and funded the extra weeks in 5-week months. Any players that remain with a £4.34 per game number monthly payment (or equivalent other frequency payment) will not accrue additional entries in the annual Christmas Super Draw.

Players who transfer from another Charity Lottery to make a smile lottery after 19 April 2024

From time to time an independent Charity may choose to cease their own lottery and benefit from the higher amounts that can be raised by make a smile lottery for their local community. In these instances, existing players in these lotteries can be ‘transferred’ to make a smile lottery. All transferring players will have the option to remain with their existing payment subscription and details on the transfer process will be provided in advance.

For players that pay £5 per month or equivalent, they will accrue up to eight additional entries in the Christmas Super Draw (as described above). Any players that remain with a lower monthly subscription (or equivalent other frequency) will not accrue additional entries in the annual Christmas Super Draw. For the avoidance of doubt, irrespective of the chosen subscription amount, all players must pay £1 per entry per draw, payable in advance.

Debit Card or Cheque Payments

It is also possible for players to pay for entries without setting up a regular payment. We accept payments by non-recurring debit card or cheque. Where they have opted into making payments in this way, we will send them a reminder when their next payment is due. They can find out more about how to make these payments by calling 0300 303 4500.

If clearance fails on any card or cheque payment, make a smile lottery will retract these credits from the player’s game number(s), and will seek to recover from the player subscriptions to draws already run. Pending this recovery, make a smile lottery will withhold or cancel any prizes won by the player in these draws.



If you wish to cancel a membership, you can do this via your online account, or please contact us. We appreciate the support you have given us.

If you pay by regular Direct Debit/recurring payment on a debit card.

Any credit or advanced payment at the time of cancelling will be used as entries into the draw until the amount becomes less than £1. Any pence credit that remains on your account will, after a period of 12 weeks, be treated as a general donation to the good cause that you have been supporting (as detailed in that member’s application form or account).

Any refunds will be at the Head of Lottery’s discretion and only made in exceptional circumstances.

Deceased players

Please contact us to cancel a play for a deceased player, we will require a death certificate to process amendments to the lottery account.

The lottery numbers will remain in the draw until the member's credit expires.

We can stop Direct Debits from our side but standing orders need to be cancelled with the bank.

If you wish to cancel a membership, please contact us. We appreciate the support you have given us.

Termination of Partnership with a Charity Partner


i) the chosen partner transfers its lottery services to an alternative provider with those new lottery service commencing at the expiry of our arrangement with them (i.e. no break or pause in lottery services provision by the chosen provider how), and ii) the chosen partner has notified us of the new service provider, and

iii) the chosen partner has requested us to transfer your lottery play to that new provider in line with the requirements of our partnership with them, we will do everything we can to facilitate that transfer such that your outstanding credit transfers to the new provider and you are able to receive lottery services in an uninterrupted fashion as seamlessly as possible.

In this case, the new lottery provider will be responsible for ensuring that you have all the information that you need to ensure that any banking arrangement you have with us is cancelled by you, and your new arrangements set up accordingly. In this case we would recommend to you check no further payments are made to us as we are unable to confirm this to your bank on your behalf.

Where the chosen partner terminates our partnership but does not transfer its lottery services in the manner outlined above, you will have the option to request a refund of any outstanding credit within 28 days of being notified of the decision by the chosen partner to terminate the lottery service provision with us, howsoever that notice is reasonably given and by any authorised party. Where you do not confirm your intention to have any outstanding credit refunded to you within that 28-day period your outstanding balance will be treated as a donation in the value of the support that the chosen partner would usually have received from your lottery play had the services not terminated.


It is the policy of make a smile lottery not to give refunds once the payment has been processed onto the lottery software. Any exceptions might be dealt with the Head of Lottery in exceptional circumstances.

In the case of Standing Order payments where the player’s bank makes an error in relation to the amount or frequency of payment requested by the player, and over-subscribes as a result, players might be entitled to a refund. It is the player’s responsibility to contact make a smile lottery to request such a refund. In the case such refund is not requested (or a subscription is cancelled but a supporter continues to pay through their standing order) the excess funds will be treated as a donation to supported good casue after a period of twelve weeks. During this period make a smile lottery will make a reasonable attempt to contact the supporter, however, cannot be held responsible if contact details held on file are not up to date.

Entry into Draws

A player’s lottery number(s) will be automatically entered into each draw as long as their account is in credit. For the Super Draws, all extra tickets purchased are also included in that Draw. Should they at any time wish to confirm that they have been, or will be, entered into a draw, please contact the make a smile lottery team on 0300 303 4500 or email us at hello@makeasmilelottery.org.uk.

Complaints & Disputes

Please do contact us if you have any cause for complaint and we will help in any way to resolve this quickly.

All complaints and disputes will be dealt with in accordance with our Complaints and Disputes Policy. You can see our complaints policy here.

In the event that a complaint or dispute cannot be resolved by these means, then it may be referred to the Fundraising Regulator or arbitration. As a member of the Hospice Lotteries Association and the Lotteries Council, dependent on the nature of the complaint, this may be conducted by The Independent Betting Adjudication Service Ltd (IBAS).

Right to amend

The make a smile lottery generally reserves the right to amend or modify these terms and conditions without notice. It is the responsibility of the player to advise us of any change of address or of any other change to their details, as appropriate. Upon receipt of this advice, and any necessary verifications, make a smile lottery shall amend the player’s details in accordance with data protection legislation.

Responsible Gambling

Make a smile lottery is a member of the Hospice Lotteries Association and the Lotteries Council, who on behalf of their members make financial contributions to GambleAware, an independent charity tasked to fund research, education and treatment services to help to reduce gambling-related harms in Great Britain. Further support can be found on our website here and on the GambleAware website www.begambleaware.org.


Self-exclusion allows the player to exclude from future draws to accommodate particular circumstances, which might include wishing to maintain responsible gambling levels. When a request is made to be excluded from future draws, we will ensure a supporter does not play the make a smile lottery for the period of own choosing, which must be at least 6 months, but may be up to 5 years.

Any requests to be self-excluded from make a smile lottery – either by telephone, in writing, by email or completion of our website self-exclusion form– will be actioned within one working day. Anyone wishing to use this facility will not then be able to participate in the make a smile lottery for a minimum of six months thereafter. The required period should be stipulated within the request or will be verified by make a smile lottery as part of actioning the request. The self-exclusion will also be notified to the supported charity, to avoid any inappropriate contact being made by them.

Help and support

Make a smile lottery is wholly owned by St Helena Hospice, which is a member of the Hospice Lotteries Association, who on behalf of their members makes a financial contribution towards the Responsible Gambling Trust (RGT), a leading charity in Britain committed to minimising gambling-related harm. As an independent national charity funded by donations from the gambling industry, RGT funds education, prevention and treatment services and commissions research to broaden public understanding of gambling-related harm. The aim is to stop people getting into problems with their gambling and ensure those that do develop problems receive fast and effective treatment and support.

If you have problems with gambling, or know someone who does, the following organisations may help.

National Gambling Helpline - Call freephone 0808 8020 133 (open 8am to midnight, 7 days a week).

BeGambleAware aims to promote responsibility in gambling. It provides information to help people make informed decisions about their gambling. It will help you to find out more about gambling and what responsible gambling means, to understand and recognise problem gambling, and show you where to go for further information, help and support should you need it.

Site blockers- If you are worried about online gambling then you can download a ‘site blocker’ such as Gamblock or Netnanny, which can block access to online gambling sites. There is likely to be a cost for these services.

GamCare provides information, advice, support and free counselling for the prevention and treatment of problem gambling. GamCare aims to make it less likely for people to become problem gamblers, and easier for those who do experience problems to get the help they need. This is done by funding treatment services, by commissioning and supporting research on problem gambling, and through education and awareness programmes.

Responsible Gambling

Make a smile lottery are committed to raising vital funds via this lottery in a responsible way.

We have a responsibility to provide a secure, safe and fair service and to endorse responsible gambling amongst people playing our lottery or who may be exposed to the marketing of our lottery. We are committed to the three main objectives of the Gambling Act 2005: 1. To prevent gambling from being a source of crime and disorder, being associated with crime and disorder, or being used to support crime. 2. Ensure that gambling is conducted in a fair and open way. 3. Protect children and other vulnerable persons from being harmed or exploited by gambling.

As such, we abide by the Licensing Conditions and Codes of Practice, a condition which we have been granted a license by the Gambling Commission.

Our Terms and Conditions and rules of play are set out clearly, all questions you have should be covered in this document.

We are very clear about where your money goes, how our lottery works and the chances of winning.

The results of the draw are published weekly.


If you have any questions about anything in these Terms of play, please contact us.

0300 303 4500