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The Responsible Event Booking and Venue Hire Policy

Nottingham City Council reserves the right in its absolute discretion not to hire its venues –

  1. To any organisation or individuals that do not conform to the values (Equality, Fairness and Inclusivity) of the Council, or that are banned or proscribed by law;
  2. Or, for political rallies, or for demonstrations which incite hatred or violence or any breach of criminal law and/or spread hatred and intolerance;

Furthermore, the Council reserves the right to refuse to grant, or cancel, Permission with immediate effect:

  1. If any or all parts of the event are considered by the Council, in its reasonable opinion, to be dangerous, offensive, noxious, illegal or which may become a nuisance to the Council or any other occupiers in the areas (or any neighbouring property) where the event is held;
  2. If the organisers are found to have falsely represented the event at the time of booking, but are subsequently found to breach the principles set out here.  
  3. Or, if the Council is not satisfied that the safety of the buildings and the public can be ensured.  

No individuals or groups will be denied the opportunity for access to LA managed properties unless there is a justifiable reason to do so within the spirit of this policy.

The main legislation/guidance governing this issue is:

Statutory guidance issued under s29 of the Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015 makes explicit reference to the `Use of local authority resources’ and outlines expectations of partnership working and that `, local authorities should ensure that publicly-owned venues and resources do not provide a platform for extremists and are not used to disseminate extremist views’ through the establishment of a responsible booking policy for public venues.

As a responsible authority under the Crime and Disorder Act 1998, NCC also has a statutory duty to work in partnership with other agencies to reduce and prevent crime. Maintaining public order is a priority for the Local Authority and the Police, therefore when an event poses a risk to the general public, there are grounds to review and reconsider venue hire. Where the property is not under Local Authority control, they can provide advice to the property owners/occupiers.

The Human Rights Act 1998 sets out the fundamental rights and freedoms that everyone in the UK is entitled to. In some limited situations, certain freedoms are qualified meaning that public authorities may interfere with them. This is only possible where the authority can show that its action has a proper basis in law, and is necessary and ‘proportionate’ in order to protect Public safety, Public order, Health or morals, the rights and freedoms of other people.

The Equality Act 2010 requires public bodies to have due regard to the need to eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment, victimisation and any other conduct prohibited by the Act as well as advance equality of opportunity and foster good relations between people who share a protected characteristic and people who do not. The latter relates to the need to tackle prejudice and promote understanding.