Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council

Big plans for great experiences

Step 2 - Plan, plan, plan

.Once you have decided on the fundamental objectives behind the activities, you can then start to organise the event in detail. Remember to write things down as you go and to keep the event plan up to date.

Establish a committee Identify specific responsibilities for all committee members. One person should be identified as the Event Manager and be responsible for liaison with other organisations such as the council, the local police force and other emergency services. One person, with suitable experience, should be given overall responsibility for health and safety and another person co-ordination and supervision of stewards.
Permissions As organiser of the event you need to obtain consent from the Landowner to hold the event regardless of whether this is Council land or private land.


Special permissions

The Licensing Act 2003 came into force during 2005 and changed the existing laws relating to public entertainment, indoor sporting events, indoor or outdoor boxing or wrestling events, late night refreshments and the sale of alcohol.

When you are organising an event it is always a good idea to contact the Licensing Team to discuss your event and the planned activities in order to establish whether or not licences are required.

It is advisable to make contact early in the planning stages, ideally six months before the licence is required, to be sure the license is granted before spending anything. Please see contact details at the back of this handbook for appropriate local authority officers and departments.

The following licences are now needed:

A Premises Licence will be required where the following activities are taking place at your event:

  • The sale or supply of alcohol

  • NB: Where alcohol is to be sold in connection with a Premises Licence there must be a Designated Premises Supervisor (DPS) named on the licence.

  • The supply of alcohol to a club member, or the sale of alcohol to a guest of a club member

  • The sale of late night refreshment (hot food and/or drink between 11pm and 5am)
  • The provision of regulated entertainment:

1. Plays

2. Film exhibitions

3. Indoor sporting events

4. Boxing or wrestling exhibitions

5. Live music (karaoke included)

6. Recorded music

7. Performance of dance

8. Any entertainment similar to that described in 5, 6 or 7 above


Temporary Event Notice (TEN)

The exception to the Premises Licence rule is for small events which last no more than 168 hours and have no more than 499 people attending at any one time. A TEN can be given by the applicant to the Licensing Authority in these cases.There are limits on the number of TENs that can be applied for. Advice should be sought from the licensing department.

A TEN notice requires the naming of a Premises User, and supplies of alcohol must be made ‘by or under the authority of a premises user’.

A Personal Licence will be needed by anyone who wants to authorise the sale of alcohol as part of his or her business or event. The Designated Premises Supervisor must be a personal licence holder. If the event takes place under a TEN then a personal licence is not required.

The following are exempt from licensing under the Act:

  • Genuinely private functions

  • Live television and radio broadcasts.

  • Garden fetes and similar “not for profit” activities*.

  • Music or plays associated with religious services or meetings.

  • Morris dancing or similar

  • Entertainment on a moving vehicle.

  • Any entertainment exempt under the Live Music Act 2012

    *The sale of alcohol at a private event, or at a garden fete will always require a licence, unless it's a prize in an exempted raffle.


For all events and event organisers it is essential you have appropriate insurance to cover all aspects of your event. This should include:

  •  Public Liability Insurance – We require at least £5m
  • Employers Liability – This covers employees and volunteers

  • Event Cancellation Cover - This helps you cover costs you have already incurred if your event has to be cancelled.

You will then need to ensure that anyone else working on site or participating in the event also have their own relevant insurances. This certification should be verified by the event organiser and a copy filed with the Event Management Plan, this is usually in the form of matrix listing all contractors, traders, concessions and entertainers, the date their insurance expires and that it covers the equipment/activity they are bringing to site.

 Set out the proposed timescale and give yourself as much time as possible to organise the event. You may need as much as 9 to 12 months planning. Some specialist advice may be required, and special permission could take time. Do not forget the summer can be a busy time with hundreds of events taking place within the area.

Event plan

Once your event has been accepted by the Event Board and put into the programme you will be contacted with a date for the submission of your Event Safety Manual and all your supporting documentation and a date where these will be considered by the Safety Advisory Group. You will also be invited to attend the meeting so you can present your plan to the group and answer any questions raised.

Your event plan should include details about all the following areas:

Communication Plan Contact List
Crowd Management Plan Counter Terrorism Measures
Event build and dismantle schedule Event Description
Fire Risk Assessments Noise Management Plan
Risk Assessments Stewarding & Security Information
Temporary Demountable structures Traffic Management Plan
Weather Management Plan Welfare Facilities

Details regarding what should be considered in each of the above areas are available in the form of guidance notes available via the links below:

Contingency Planning Crowd Management
Event Risk Assessment Fire Risk Assessment
First Aid and Medical Cover Food
Insurance Licensing
Lost children and vulnerable persons Nuisance
Roles and Responsibilities  Stewarding
Temporary Structures Traffic Management