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Here you'll find an overview of what you need to consider when planning and hosting church events and activities.

What is my responsibility when organising and hosting an event?

All entertainment events are subject to the Health and Safety at Work Act and the regulations passed under it. There is a duty of care to ensure the safety of visitors to the church, hall or grounds. In addition:

tick image Licensing legislation may apply
tick image You may require a Temporary Event Notice from the local licensing authority.

The church can be involved at the following three levels:

  • Beneficiary


    This is the lowest level of involvement in an event where the PCC has no control over its organisation and merely benefits from the proceeds raised. For example:

    • An individual holding a coffee morning in their home for the benefit of the church.

    Any individuals who organise such an event should check with their household insurers to ensure that their public liability cover would apply should anyone be injured on their premises.

    Most insurers are likely to accept such an activity if they are notified of it.

  • Facilitator


    Here the PCC arranges an event but uses the services of a specialist independent provider to manage all or part of the event. This would normally be the case where the event is of a hazardous nature. For example:

    • A large fireworks display

    We would expect the PCC to use a competent specialist provider in these circumstances and also to check that they have adequate public liability insurance in place.

  • Organiser


    In this situation, the PCC has total control of the event including all activities.

    This is likely to be the case where the activities are of a non-hazardous nature and normally associated with a church setting, such as a fête or coffee morning, and where specialist skills or knowledge are not required.

What am I covered for and when do I need to contact you?

  • Events away from the church premises

    If you are planning on holding a church event away from your church premises, Public liability and Employers’ liability cover applies across the UK.

    There is also cover under your policy for portable items taken away from your premises.

    Check your policy for the limits applicable.

  • Out of the ordinary church events

    We expect many churches to regularly run fêtes and coffee mornings, and your policy will provide cover for these. However, occasionally churches will run unusual or hazardous activities such as fireworks displays, abseiling or tower tours.

    If you are planning any events like these, please let us know as soon as you know the event will be happening.

Other things to consider

A more detailed events checklist can be found here , but these are the main areas to consider.

  • What is happening?

    • Are the activities hazardous?
    • Will there be food and drink?
    • Will you be selling any second-hand goods?
    • Will there be money on site?
    • Have you thought about cash handling?
    • Before the event, think about the security of those involved in collecting and banking money.
  • Who is attending?

    • What is the age profile of attendees?
    • What is the number of attendees?
  • Where is the event happening?

    • Is the venue suitable for the types of activity and attendee?
    • Are pathways and walkways clear?
    • Are there any dangerous areas that could be accessed?
    • Is it away from the church?
  • Who is running the event?

    • Is the church the organiser? 
    • What will volunteers be doing?
    • Are you using a third party? 
    • Do they have their own public liability insurance?
Responsbility for church organised events guide  
Ecclesiastical Insurance Group plc (EIG) Reg No 1718196. Ecclesiastical Insurance Office plc (EIO) Reg No 24869. Ecclesiastical Life Ltd (ELL) Reg No 243111. Ecclesiastical Financial Advisory Services Ltd (EFAS) Reg No 2046087. Ecclesiastical Underwriting Management Ltd (EUML) Reg No 2368571. E.I.O. Trustees Ltd Reg No 941199. EdenTree Investment Management Ltd (EIM) Reg No 2519319. All companies are registered in England at Beaufort House, Brunswick Road, Gloucester GL1 1JZ. EIO and ELL are authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority. Firm Reference Number 113848 (EIO) and 110318 (ELL). EFAS and EIM are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Firm Reference Number 126123 (EFAS) and 527473 (EIM). EUML is an appointed representative of EIO who is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority. Firm Reference Number 402228.