Pubs have always been a centre for drinking but also for gambling. As far back as the fourteenth century, drinkers were playing “Shoffe Groat”, an early version of “Shove Ha’penny”or “Shovel Board”, where a coin was hit with the flat of the hand to slide it along a board with the aim of stopping it between, rather than on, horizontal line-markings.
Government legislation has played a big part in the history of pub gambling, with multiple changes of law to control or limit it. The 2005 Gambling Act limiting pub gambling essentially made all pub based gambling illegal unless it could be proven that the game involved a high element of skill and was not simply based on luck. Exempt games must therefore ensure that all players have an equal chance of winning. There are also strict rules regarding the sizes of stakes and the winning pots.
With such strict limitations on gambling in pubs, the continued public demand for commercial gambling moved to purpose-built casinos under different government legislation. However, much of the gambling industry has since moved again. Gambling has moved to the internet, where online casinos like mFortune UK allow gamblers to visit any time of day or night without leaving their armchairs.
Online casinos have picked up many popular pub games such as bingo, slots and poker and offer these alongside roulette and blackjack. You’ll also find a host of other games you may or may not know, such as baccarat, craps, keno or sic bo.