You can apply for a provisional statement for a gambling premises that has not yet been built, or for an existing building that is going to be altered, or if you are waiting for rights to occupy the premises.
The purpose of a provisional statement is to allow you to make an application and find out whether residents or other interested parties are happy or not with a premises being licensed for gambling. If there are problems or issues which can be resolved informally or formally, through a hearing being held, a provisional statement will be issued. There will possibly be some conditions attached to it.
Before a provisional statement expires, you should apply for an identical premises licence. A premises licence will be granted, so long as no issues are raised that could have been raised and resolved as part of the provisional statement.
You can apply for a provisional statement without holding an operating licence from the Gambling Commission (external link). But when you make application for a provisional statement you should apply for an operating licence.