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Event organisers urged to seek safety advice

Event organisers in Tendring are being urged to seek valuable safety and management advice to ensure their big day ends up being a big success.

There are hundreds of events staged around the District every year – and most go off without a hitch. But Tendring District Council (TDC) and the Emergency Services are keen to offer help to ensure all eventualities are covered. Together they run a Safety Advisory Group (SAG) which meets when necessary with organisers of the events with more than 500 people attending to ensure a proper plan is in place before the event day.

Lynda McWilliams, TDC’s Cabinet Member for Leisure and Partnerships, said it is an important part of staging any significant event. “This is not about the Council and Police playing Big Brother and saying what can and can’t take place in Tendring,” she said. “It is aimed at helping event organisers to cover all the bases – crowd control, traffic management, parking, safety and other issues – to make sure everyone has a good time.”

She added: “We want all events in our area to be successful and discussing them with the SAG can be a big help to anyone. Everyone should have an event plan so that if anything does go wrong they are able to show that all the necessary steps and precautions had been taken in advance.”

Event plans are drawn up for all TDC events and those held on TDC land and they go before the SAG. However, there are others that are staged on private land that do not. SAGs were first established after the Hillsborough disaster but equally apply to smaller scale events. “This is all about helping us to help you,” said Cllr McWilliams. “We can assist in making a good event even better and ensure that is professionally run.”

Acting Chief Insp Darren Deex of Essex Police said it is also important that the emergency services are aware of events taking place and how many people are likely to turn up. “We can build this into our own planning for a day and then know if there is an event in the District that we might need to attend,” he said. “At the current time particularly, security around larger events is also an important issue to take into consideration and we can give specialist advice in that area. It is better to be safe than sorry afterwards.”

The SAG meets to discuss larger events but if anyone is unsure whether their event applies they should contact John Fox on 01255 686746.