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Health and safety

Risk assessment forms

The Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999, require employers to make a suitable and sufficient assessment of the health and safety risks to employees and non-employees arising from their work activities, and this includes events.

Risk assessment is now a common requirement of all health and safety legislation; the emphasis is to prevent accidents, rather than just reacting to incidents and making improvements after the event. A full risk assessment must be completed as soon as definite decisions have been made about the format of the event and before the event is advertised.

For more information, templates and advice on health and safety visit the Health and Safety website risk assessment web page.


The University is insured to meet employer's and public liability, however, certain high risk activities may not be included and a special premium may be required. Visit the Insurance Office website for more information. Providers of services or contractors should also be requested to confirm their insurance details to prove that they are adequately covered.


An Event Safety Controller should be allocated for each event. They have specific responsibility to ensure that the following are adhered to:

  • Exits are available and unlocked
  • Means of escape are clear and free from obstruction
  • Fire door self closers operate properly and fire doors are not wedged open
  • Fire fighting equipment is available and readily accessible
  • Signage is maintained and illuminated
  • Staff are adequately trained in fire prevention and evacuation procedures
  • The agreed numbers of people attending the event is adhered to

Ensure that you have adequate staffing for your event. Generally, you should have two members of staff for 100 people. Event staff must:

  • Must have a complete understanding of all of the fire/safety procedures and communications
  • Ensure no overcrowding occurs
  • Keep all gangways and exits clear

First aid

Adequate fist aid provision must be provided. Ensure you have designated first aider(s) at your event. All accidents involving staff, students or the public, must be reported. You should make sure that an accident book is completed and the tear out sheet given to the event safety controller. Significant near misses should also be reported.

Fire prevention

Every reasonable means must be taken to prevent a fire occurring, to provide warning, and to provide a safe means of escape should a fire occur. If there are going to be alterations to fire safety precautions e.g. the blocking of a fire exit or change to an evacuation route or room configuration, the Fire Safety Advisor must be contacted on in advance of the event.


To provide alcohol or regulated entertainment e.g. live music or a play, the venue must be covered by a premises licence (this includes outdoor spaces. Should you be providing the above, not through the University, please contact the University Health and Safety Services to discuss further.


Excessive environmental noise may affect neighbouring premises, in particular residential, non-University premises. Please contact Health and Safety Services for further advice on monitoring noise and notifying residents.

It would be prudent to warn attendees in advance of an event, should loud noise feature in an event and it is not obvious that this would be the case.

To contact someone from University Health and Safety Services email or call 0118 378 8888.

Useful contacts

Health and Safety

Insurance Office

Fire Safety Advisor

Events Team

+44 (0) 118 378 6718

Venue Reading

+44 (0) 118 378 5657

Henley Business School Events

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