Suggested timeline for planning an event

An event can take 12 months to put together. This list gives you an idea of when to complete certain actions.

One year before the event


  • Identify:
    • the main event organiser - someone to be the lead on the event
    • the event team - a group of people that will help to plan and deliver the event
    • the Safety Officer - someone to lead on the health and safety elements of the event
  • Share out job roles and responsibilities, thinking about people's skills and time

Outline plan

  • Agree an outline of your event plan. Think about:
    • why you are holding the event
    • what the main aims are
    • what the event concept is
    • venue, insurance, licensing, permissions, dates, timings
    • numbers of people likely to attend the event
    • the budget you will need to put the event on


  • Investigate suitability of the venue:
    • assess size, facilities and accessibility
    • consider the impact your event will have on traffic in local area, parking, public transport and any road closures or diversions you might need
  • Start to think about your risk assessment - read our Risk Assessment Guidance to help you
  • If you've organised this event before, look at the plans you made for previous events and think about any changes you might want to make. Do you need to do anything differently? 

9 months before the event


  • Look at insurance cover:
    • Public liability (minimum of £5 million)
    • Employers liability 
    • Cancellation cover  
    • Equipment
  • Think about medical cover for your event and recruit an organisation

Management Plan

Register your event

Contractors and equipment

  • Think about any contractors and equipment you will need for your event, and provisionally book them

6 months before the event

Risk Assessment

  • Start writing your event risk assessment. read our Risk Assessment advice first
  • Break the assessment down into components of your event



  • Think about whether you need any road closures, and apply for them if you do. In most cases 12 weeks’ notice is required for a road closure. Agree all access, exit and public transport arrangements.
  • Apply for any Parking Suspensions  
    Suspension requests for on-street parking bays   
    Suspension requests for off-street parking (liaise with car park operators)   
    Application for these is usually done via completion of the event notification form


  • Confirm any bookings with:
    • artists
    • entertainers
    • stall-holders
    • equipment hire
    • security


  • Think about how you are advertising your event and if you need planning permission 
  • Think about how you will communicate during your event with your staff and volunteers 
  • Put your Communications Plans into your Event Management Plan

3 months before the event


  • If you haven't already done so, submit your Event Management Plan, Risk Assessment and Site Plan to us


  • Check the progress of any licence applications

Event staff

  • Recruit any stewards or marshals that you need
  • Develop your stewards and marshals handbook where necessary
  • Confirm the roles and responsibilities of your team and circulate this information


  • Check that your contractors have the right insurance and risk assessments in place
  • Any contractors you use should provide you with a separate event plan

6 weeks before the event

  • Review your event Risk Assessment
  • Review Event Management Plan, Site Plan and other plans that are deemed necessary
  • Check the progress of any licence applications

1 month before the event

  • Finalise your Event Risk Assessment 
  • Finalise your Event Management Plan, your evacuation procedures and fire points
  • Finalise your contingency plans as identified in the risk assessments
  • Final booking checks on your artists, entertainers, stall-holders, insurance, catering, equipment and security
  • Organise clean up teams for during and after the event
  • Train your team, covering crowd control, traffic control, emergency procedures, general information, basic fire fighting 
  • Distribute your steward and marshal handbook once staff have been trained

Day before the event

  • Check the site. It's your responsibility to make sure that everything is set up properly and there are no hazards to the public
  • Establish Event Control
  • Ensure you have team members on site to manage the site build
  • Make sure you have security in place to monitor any equipment overnight
  • Put up any temporary structures and position concessions on your site
  • Hold a briefing for your Event Team

Day of the event

  • Hold a final team briefing to include stewards, marshals and security staff
  • Continue to monitor what is happening at your event and also anything external that may affect your event 
  • Put up any temporary road signage in accordance with your traffic management plan, and remove it at the end of the event
  • Make sure you dispose of any waste at the site. Remember that litter left by the people that come along is your responsibility
  • Have a debrief to look at any lessons learned or amendments to be made to any future Event Management Plans

Day after the event

  • Make sure that all waste has been removed, including any local advertising
  • Remove any temporary signs and structures
  • Make sure that the event site is left in good condition

Week after the event

  • Advise us of any issues you had with the event
  • Advise us of any future events you plan to hold