Getting your club ready for Easter and the Bank Holidays

It may seem as though the second bank holiday of the year (Good Friday) is a long way off, but that doesn’t mean you can put off thinking about your insurance commitments.

Bank Holidays can be fantastic for business. More customers drinking at your venues for longer can only be good news for your bottom lines. But more customers also means more risk.

And more potential claimants.

A large claim could ruin your bank holiday, and in the worst case scenarios, bring trade at your club to a halt.

So in this article, we’re going to look at the insurance and legislation considerations that you must take into account to keep your club claim free over Easter.

Contact Club Insure

First things first, if you’re a Club Insure customer and you’re planning on hosting an Easter or Bank Holiday event that causes substantial changes to the normal running of the club (e.g considerable extra customer numbers, use of temporary bars, extra caterers or contractors) you must let us know.

There’s every chance that your insurance policy is already tailored to cover the event, but it’s definitely better to be safe than sorry.  In our 20 years in the club insurance industry, we’ve seen too many examples of clubs falling foul of claims purely because they hadn’t checked whether they were covered or not.

We’re experts in understanding the fine print of an insurance policy and can therefore offer you the best advice.

Contractors and Equipment

At this time of year, it’s common for clubs to hire extra entertainment to help draw the crowds. Bouncy castles, rock-climbing walls, clay pigeon shooting; we’ve seen hundreds of examples of clubs making the most of their outdoor spaces.

But the majority of these attractions are hazardous and bring about risks that won’t be covered under your usual policy.

If you are hiring hazardous equipment or attractions, it’s imperative that you make sure that all equipment has a full check and service history carried out by a qualified professional. It’s also important that the equipment, and anyone tasked with running it on the day, has its/their own insurance.

You should request a copy of the public liability certificate from the contractor. If you’re unsure whether it’s valid or the liability limit is adequate, we’d be happy to take a look for you.

Risk Assessments and Health and Safety

All entertainment events are classed as work, as are most activities associated with them, so your event will be subject to the Health & Safety at Work act. This covers any staff working the event, or volunteers, who are classed as employees for the purposes of Employers Liability and Health & Safety legislation.

Risk assessments and proper risk management are vital in the avoidance of any claims – especially considering changes to the sentencing for gross negligence manslaughter claims.

The event organiser (your club) has a duty to ensure that all areas of your premises and any equipment on it, is safe and won’t cause harm to any staff or visitor.

We mentioned risk assessments and risk management in the same breath, as both are virtually null and void without the other.

Again, Club Insure are experts in Risk Management, so if you need any help in devising a risk management strategy for your event, we’re happy to help.

As far as legislation is concerned, it’s also worth checking whether you need a Temporary Event Notice from the local licensing authority.

Other Points to Consider:

  • Have you alerted the local Fire Prevention Officer to make sure that any increase in customers or the use of new equipment isn’t causing a fire hazard?
  • Are buildings large enough to accommodate the number of visitors you’re anticipating?
  • Are your evacuation plans still applicable for the event?
  • Is there space for emergency vehicles to enter and park?
  • Are there plenty of fire extinguishers?
  • What additional equipment are contractors bringing that may cause fire or slip and trip hazards?

Drunkenness

Hopefully, your event will go swimmingly and your customers will spend lots of money at your bar. Please remember however, that while drunkenness is expected, it is illegal for bar staff to purposely supply alcohol to anyone who is obviously drunk or disorderly.

In the best case scenario, your club will get a telling off and a fine. In the worst cases, you could have your license investigated.

If you’re concerned that you haven’t considered every risk management and legislative possibility, you can contact Club Insure today. Our friendly staff will talk you through your obligations and help to ensure that your bank holiday runs smoothly.

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Sam Humphrey

Sam Humphrey

Sam is Club Insure's Digital Communications Manager. It's his job to make sure that our readers are getting the information they want in the ways they want it. You can contact him on Twitter (@itssamhumphrey) with requests for content.