APPLICATION FOR A TEMPORARY EVENT NOTICE:
Honeycrock Farm, Axes Lane, Salfords, REDHILL
In attendance and speaking at the hearing:
Applicant: Mrs L Fidler
Representative for the
applicant: Mr R Fidler
Making representations: Jenny Billin, Licensing Officer, Surrey Police
Sergeant Olly Smith, Surrey Police
The Sub Committee was asked to determine a request for a Temporary Events Licence.
The report before the Sub Committee set out the request and included details of the objections received from Surrey Police, which were supported by a witness statement from PC Peter Hawkins, Eastern Surrey Casualty Reduction Officer.
The Sub Committee invited the Reigate & Banstead Borough Council Licensing Officer to introduce the report.
The Licensing Officer advised that the Temporary Event Notice concerned a school leavers party, for approximately 100 to 150 people, to take place from 23:30 on Friday 30 June until 6:00am on Saturday 1 July at Honeycrock Farm, Axes Lane, Salfords, Redhill (as shown in the plan annexed to the report). It was intended that regulated entertainment would be provided at the event.
The Licensing Officer reminded those present that the Sub Committee was required to determine the application, having regard to all representations, based upon the four licensing objectives.
Following the Licensing Officer’s introduction, the Chairman invited the Surrey Police representatives to make submissions in support of their written objections to the Temporary Event Notice.
During the course of the representations the following points were noted:
• The Surrey Police Licensing Officer indicated that the Child Protection Officer had contacted the applicant to raise concerns regarding the safety measures proposed.
• A significant concern had been the risk of accident because of the access from Axes Lane, which was an unlit road with no footpath and had been identified as a priority 2 road due to collisions and identified high vehicle speeds.
• Surrey Police were not seeking to prevent events and emphasised that their approach was proactive and based upon the information provided in the Temporary Event Notice (“TEN”). Surrey Police were required to raise any formal objections by the end of the third working day following receipt of the notice. In this instance their concern related to safety particularly in respect of the proximity of the lake, which could not be resolved by dialogue within that time period they were obliged to issue formal objections.
The Chairman invited the applicant’s representative (“the applicant”) to make representations to the Sub Committee in response to the objections that had been raised by Surrey Police.
During the course of the representations the following points were noted:
• The concerns of the Police for the children’s safety were shared by the applicant and this was the reason for them seeking to offer the children an event that would be in a location that could be supervised;
• There were toilets available on the site.
• The site was enclosed by hedges on one side and fencing on the other, with the only access monitored by an adult at all times to control entry (which was determined by wristband).
• Children would be transported to and from the event by parents or taxis.
• The applicant provided a map marked with the location of toilet facilities and the means of access to the event.
• This was a private party for which 60 tickets had been sold by direct invitation and it was anticipated that 100 tickets would be sold by the time of the event.
• Tickets were £10 and all money received was to cover the costs of the entertainment and soft drink refreshments. No alcohol would be provided or permitted to be brought to the event.
• The event was being held at a location in close proximity to East Surrey Hospital in the event that medical attention was required.
• Supervising the event and children there would be ten adults as well as any other parents that chose to attend. The Deputy Head of Oakwood School in Horley would be amongst those adults attending as well as former members of the Army.
The Chairman thanked the applicant for his representations.
The Chairman thanked everyone for their oral submissions and opened the floor to questions, during the course of which the following points were noted:
« When asked about the number of toilets that would be provided:
The applicant advised that there was a facilities building with two toilets and a shower. These were of a permanent and not temporary nature.
« When asked about the first aid credentials of the supervising adults:
The applicant responded that he was not aware of formal qualifications held by the supervising adults although he assumed that Mr Eastwick of Oakwood School would have formal training
« In response to being asked how it could be ensured that the children would not have access to the lake:
The applicant explained that the field in which the event was being held was two fields away from the lake and was enclosed by fencing on one side and hedges on the other. The Sub Committee was reassured that it was not possible for children to exit the field by scrambling beneath the hedges;
« When asked how it would be ensured that children did not smuggle alcohol into the event:
The applicant said that children would be checked for alcohol upon entry – it was conceded that whilst a small amount might be missed, it would not be possible to bring large quantities into the event. The applicant offered to engage professional security personnel holding Security Industry Authority licences in addition to the parent monitors;
« In response to a question about seeking Security Industry Authority licensed security and St Johns Ambulance first aid, which the Sub Committee considered desirable irrespective of the proximity of the event to East Surrey Hospital:
The applicant responded that they would be happy to engage two licensed SIA personnel and to make enquiries with St Johns Ambulance.
« In response to a question about how invitations had been offered:
The applicant advised that only students in year 10 at Reigate School had been invited, by way of direct approach by Harry Fidler. Invitations were specific and known trouble makers had not been invited. It was not open to those invited to bring guests. A closed/private Facebook group, accessible only by those invited, had been created for the purposes of providing directions.
« In response to a question about how gate crashers would be dealt with:
The applicant advised that at a previous event for his granddaughter’s 18th birthday party they had successfully prevented 50 gate crashers from gaining entry to the site.
The Chairman ascertained that everyone had had an opportunity to put questions or seek clarifications and then invited the parties to make closing remarks.
The applicant made no further comments.
The Sub Committee adjourned to deliberate at 11.17 amand resumed at 12.17 pm to give its decision.
The Chairman apologised for the delay in reconvening. The Chairman noted that during the course of their deliberations a message was delivered to the Councillors to the effect that Mr Fidler had booked two SIAs to provide security and supervision for the proposed event.
Whilst recognising that this was outside the Sub Committee’s usual procedure the Sub Committee felt that it would have been unreasonable not to take this information into account as evidence, given that it was volunteered and addressed at least in part some of the concerns that Councillors expressed during the hearing. This therefore formed part of the basis for the decision.
RESOLVED that the Temporary Event Notice be GRANTED.
Reasons for the decision
1. The Licensing & Regulatory Sub Committee carefully reviewed all the papers before it and had close regard to the submissions made at the hearing.
2. The reasons for the decision are that, based upon the evidence heard by the Sub-Committee:
a. the proposed site for the regulated entertainment is sufficiently large and located in a rural area;
b. Adequate provision has been made for the supervision and safety of those attending the event and the security of the site; and
c. The site is enclosed with controlled access.
3. The Sub Committee had regard to the Licensing Objectives, and in particular Public Nuisance, Section 182 Licensing Act 2003 statutory guidance and its own Statement of Licensing Policy, in particular Section 8.
4. The Licensing Sub Committee had given due regard to the individual merits of the application, s149 Equality Act 2010, Human Rights/ECHR legislation in particular article 8 and article 1 First Protocol and the rules of natural justice.
Councillor Mrs Bramhall, recognising that conditions could not be imposed upon a TEN, expressed the desirability of St Johns ambulance or a qualified first aider attending the site throughout the event. Cllr Mrs Bramhall recognised that this did not constitute a legal obligation under the Licensing Act 2003.