Event Safety Advisory Group (ESAG)
Guidance for organising an event during COVID-19
Please see the important information and guidance regarding organising an event during COVID-19 on our Licensing Act 2003 overview page.
Wiltshire Council has established an Event Safety Advisory Group (ESAG) to help event organisers ensure that public events take place safely and successfully. It provides independent advice to event organisers who retain the legal responsibility for ensuring a safe event.
The ESAG group is a multi-agency group, which provides advice and guidance to event organisers, particularly for events that have the potential to pose a significant risk to the safety and wellbeing of participants, spectators and the general public.
- Wiltshire Council Licensing
- Environmental Health & Emergency Planning teams
- Wiltshire Police
- South West Ambulance Service
- Dorset & Wilts Fire & Rescue
- Wiltshire Council Highways and Highways England
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 that are planning a public event form 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 in place.
- Make recommendations for future safety improvements following an event.
- To produce a set of minutes following the ESAG meeting outlining the discussions that have taken place and any actions and advice discussed at the meeting.
- Through consultation and joint working between the council and its partners its aim is to standardise the approach to all organised large scale events staged in a public place, on a highway and on land open to the public in Wiltshire.
- Organise events
- Approve or refuse events - the group's role is to advise event organisers during the event-planning process and provide responses to consultations, detailing any recommendations, advice and comments to confirm any specific advice.
- The ESAG 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 ESAG may have powers to require event organisers comply with legal obligations.
When large groups of people gather for events, it can become dangerous, whilst large sports grounds are covered by comprehensive safety legislation, many public events are not covered by specific safety controls.
Event organisers must make sure that they comply with the various legal requirements relating to events attended by the public.
Wiltshire's ESAG wants to help event organisers to independently organise safe and successful events. See more about the ESAG in the Terms of Reference.
Depending on the nature and scale of your event when booking on council land, it may be a condition to attend an ESAG meeting prior to your event. Refusal to attend an ESAG meeting could result in your event application being denied.
Event organisers should make sure that they allow themselves enough time to fully plan the proposed event for which a request for a temporary road closure order is to be made.