Planning an Event

If you are thinking of organising an event you will need to take into account the legalities and responsibilities that are associated with being an event organiser.

About the Safety Advisory Group

Mid Suffolk and Babergh’s Safety Advisory Group (SAG) aims to enable event organisers to safely host events taking place in the District. This is whilst safeguarding the well-being of all residents and visitors at those public events and ensuring that, as far as reasonably practicable, any inconvenience to residents, businesses and the general public arising from such events is minimised. 

To assist with planning any event, we have also produced an event checklist:

Download Event Checklist

The SAG is formed of various partner agencies offering specialist advice on issues related to public safety.

Events we would expect to see at the SAG include:

  • Street carnivals and processions
  • Sporting events
  • Music festivals/concerts/open air entertainment
  • Trade shows
  • Religious events
  • Fetes and fairs
  • Raft races and other water borne events
  • Christmas lights switch on events
  • Firework displays

If you're planning an event, we suggest you do so early - ideally at least 6 months in advance. Please carefully read the Event Guidance Documents, Templates and Process information on this page before contacting us. 

Babergh Mid Suffolk District Council SAG strongly recommends that an event organiser engages with residents or the communities affected by the particular event, however, we suggest that in general this should take place outside of the SAG.

Large events involving licensable activities will need a premises.

SAG members

  • East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust
  • BMSDC Food and Safety Team (chair)
  • BMSDC Licensing Team
  • BMSDC Environmental Protection Team
  • Suffolk Constabulary
  • Suffolk Police Licensing Team
  • Suffolk County Council Highways Team
  • Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service
  • Suffolk Joint Emergency Planning Unit

Invited Members of the Safety Advisory Group

  • Event Organiser including any representatives
  • Other local authorities (cross-border)
  • Suffolk County Council Public Health Team
  • Other specialist advisors, as appropriate

Role of the Safety Advisory Group

An important role of the SAG is to bring all relevant partners together to plan and prepare for the event in a co-ordinated way. The SAG is there in an advisory capacity to provide independent advice to event organisers. Alongside this the group will aim to:

  • Advise on minimising any inconvenience to local residents, businesses and the general public
  • Encourage wellbeing (Local Government Act 2000 Health and welfare of community)
  • Focus resources using risk assessment and facilitating proportionate advice and regulation
  • Enable effective planning to facilitate less intensive monitoring and inspection
  • Promote safer events as contributing to safer and stronger communities
  • Support businesses and organisers through having a single point of contact for the Event and consistent professional advice and support
  • Increase good publicity and encourage more business and visitor engagement through safer events
  • Share good practice

The SAG members will review the documents submitted by the Event Organiser. Ideally, this will include:

  • an Event Management Plan
  • an Event Map
  • an Event Timetable
  • Risk assessments
  • a Traffic Management Plan
  • a Fire Safety Plan
  • a First Aid Plan
  •  Insurance cover
  • Licenses
  • a contingency plan for dealing with major incidents or unexpected events
  • a Statement of Intent. This sets out the responsibilities of the relevant individuals and organisations involved in the event
  • Food Safety and Hygiene arrangements
  • Waste management arrangements
  • WC's & Hand Washing facilities

When a SAG is needed

SAG requirements will vary depending on the proposed event. Please contact us at the earliest opportunity by emailing
You will be invited to a meeting if it is felt necessary.

Event Guidance Documents, Templates and Process

Much of the guidance linked here is from the Health and Safety Executive website. However, the Purple Guide is the industry standard for events management and you should consult this wherever possible.

For any event being organised, it is expected that a competent (appropriately trained, skilled and experienced) event organiser should ensure the relevant arrangements are planned for.

If event organisers do not personally have the knowledge, skills and experience to complete tasks, it is expected that they employ competent companies to undertake them on their behalf.

Once you have a draft EMP completed, please email it to

This document and any appendices will be circulated to the SAG members for review. They will offer feedback and guidance during a SAG meeting or via email.

SAG meetings are held monthly. Once you've contacted us, we will arrange for you to attend a meeting if necessary.

During the lead up to your event, the SAG group will continue to work with you through various drafts of your EMP. This will ensure a final version is complete at least 1 week before your event takes place.

If you are organising a demonstration or a protest march you are required by law to notify the police at least 6 days before the event occurs. This must include the date, time, proposed route, name and address of the event organiser. You can do this via the Suffolk Constabulary website: Notification of Event, Procession or Filming | Suffolk Constabulary