‘Events can help the development of strong communities, they can bring
in visitors and create a positive economic impact locally.
A good and varied events programme will enhance the reputation
of Croydon making it a more attractive place for people
to live, visit and invest.’
This is what Croydon’s Cabinet is being told in a report to its meeting on Monday 20 February Croydon Council’s Cabinet will consider adopting a new Events Policy.
The major issue is whether it will enable and facilitate existing and future events or strangle them with red-tape and costs. Only event organisers will be able to make this judgement.
The Cabinet will approve the draft which will be followed by ‘engagement’ ‘with various external stakeholders and internal teams including the Food and Safety, Licensing, Highways and Parks teams and external partners including the Metropolitan Police, British Transport Police, London Fire Brigade and London Ambulance Service.’ This partners sit on the Safety Advisory Group (SAG) ‘and are directly involved in assessing and working on events.’ (para. 3.10). The final draft will be delegated to the Director of Place to approve.
No mention is made of consulting existing community
and cultural events organisers.
It is this therefore important that if event organisers have any concerns it is important that they flag them up to Councillors before the meeting along with a request that a decision be taken to be clear that consultation will take place with them, and to ask whether the Scrutiny Committee could consider the final draft before approval by the Director of Place.
‘The proposed draft Event Policy which includes revised processes and procedures simplifies our current system with a single point of contact for all event enquiries, which will allow ease of access for event organisers, within the Council and with partners. The council will be aligning all of its event co-ordination processes behind this principle to improve its customer service, cost control and income maximisation. (Para. 3.3) ‘The new process will also ensure consistency and allow a better overview of all events happening… (Para 3.4) The council will develop a clear online guide.
The council will develop a clear online guide. It is ‘developing proposals to license certain outdoor locations, which will make it easier and cheaper for events to take place in them such as Lloyd Park, Park Hill Recreation Ground, Queens Gardens, College Green and Wandle Park. (para. 3.6)
The report states: ‘There is no statutory duty to consult on the Events Policy. Whether to consult will therefore depend on the issues, the nature and the impact of the decision and whether interested groups have already been engaged in the policy making process. The Cabinet Office Principles cite as examples of circumstances in which consultation may not be appropriate “for minor or technical amendments. (Para. 5.1)
The draft policy document attached to the report has the following sections: Purpose and Background, Benefits, Objectives, Definition of Events, The application and consultation process, Safety Advisory Group, Approval and Promotion, Events not normally granted, Fees and Charges, General, General Conditions, Cancellations, Legislation, Equalities and Diversities and Review.
The report can be seen here: