Southend-on-Sea Safety Advisory Group

Successful, safely managed events are the lifeblood of our visitor economy. Indeed, over 6m visitors a year visit the Borough, many drawn by the active and varied events calendar. The council actively welcome and support events in the Borough that add to the rich cultural offering for residents and visitors alike.

The Southend-on-Sea Safety Advisory Group brings together local organisations, local authorities and businesses with an interest in public safety and the group jointly help to ensure the safety of all events held in the Borough, however large or small.

It is the aim of the group to work with event organisers to make our Borough a safe and welcoming place for all who attend public events.

Background

The Southend-on-Sea Safety Advisory Group was founded in 2014 in order to ensure public events held in the borough are safely managed.

It comprises representatives of the following bodies, who all have an interest in maintaining public safety:

  • Southend-on-Sea Borough Council – Traffic Management and Highways Network
  • Southend-on-Sea Borough Council – Emergency Planning
  • Southend-on-Sea Borough Council – Parks Management
  • Southend-on-Sea Borough Council – Regulatory Services
  • Southend-on-Sea Borough Council - Town Centre Management
  • Southend-on-Sea Borough Council – Waste & Environmental Care
  • Southend-on-Sea Borough Council - Pier and Foreshore
  • Essex Police
  • Essex Fire and Rescue Service
  • Maritime & Coastguard Agency
  • East of England Ambulance Service

What does the group do?

The  groups role is to review event applications and offer independent advice on public safety to ensure, so far as is practicable, that risk to public safety is minimised.

  • Provides advice to individuals and organisations who are planning a public event – from street parties to festivals.
  • Work together to give consistent safety advice and share learning from previously held events.
  • Provide a forum for discussion between the Council, emergency services and other relevant groups to develop best practice for the safe management of events.
  • Advise event organisers on any licensing and permit requirements for their events and check that these are in place.
  • Make recommendations for future safety improvements following an event.

What the group doesn't do

  • Organise events.
  • Approve or refuse events – the groups role is to advise event organisers during the event-planning process and provide responses to consultations, detailing any recommendations, advice, comments and to confirm any specific conditions that may need to be attached to an approval during the Event Permit Application process.
  • The SAG does not have legal powers or responsibilities: it exists to provide independent advice to event organisers, who retain the legal responsibility for ensuring a safe event. However, individual members of the SAG may have powers to require event organisers comply with legal obligations.

Governance

The group hold regular (usually monthly) meetings to discuss the safety arrangements of events that they are made aware of.

The meeting is chaired by a representative of Southend-on-Sea Borough Council and event organisers may be invited to attend to discuss their plans with SAG members.

As the meeting deals with large amounts of commercially sensitive information, the minutes are not published. However, the Council shares the group’s feedback on individual applications with the relevant event organisers.

Working with event organisers

Whilst the group are pleased to offer advice on any event the group are particularly interested in events that are likely to have safety implications.

The group ask for between eight weeks and six months’ notice of events held on Council land, but timescales may vary depending on risk and scale.

Further information

If you are planning an event held on Council land, please refer to the council's hosting an event information on the website:

To contact the SAG, please email SAG@southend.gov.uk

Page last updated: 16/11/2017