When the Hall committee arranges an event, it is important to establish with your insurers whether or not the policy’s Public Liability cover automatically applies or whether you need to set up a separate policy. This will normally be determined by the type and size of the event you are staging.
Smaller events, such as table-top sales, will often be covered automatically, particularly where the expected number of people attending will be 100 or fewer.
There are certain activities for which insurers will usually require additional premium or even refuse to provide the cover. These include fireworks displays, perhaps for obvious reasons. The additional premium will vary dependent upon the number of people involved and whether the staging of the display is being contracted out to a professional firm or whether the Hall committee are handling it.
It is also important to check whether your insurers have any specific requirements relating to bouncy castles. They may, for example, require that the castle be supervised at all times and that younger children must not use it at the same time as children.
If you are planning to hold a tug of war, this can cause insurance problems. Because of the number of injuries which arise from such events, insurers will usually exclude injury to participants. It is imperative that this be communicated to the people involved.
Dog shows also raise issues. It is likely that injury caused by dogs will be excluded – as will injury to the dogs themselves. This should be pointed out to the owners and you should check that they hold their own liability insurance.
If your event is to be opened by a celebrity, you may wish to insure against their failure to arrive. You may also want cover for cancellation of the event due to storm, snow or heavy rain. These covers are readily available but at additional cost to the standard Public Liability insurance.
Employers’ Liability cover may be relevant too – even though you may be using unpaid volunteers. Such volunteers may fall under your insurers’ definition of employees.
The majority of Village Hall policies include Hirers’ Liability cover – but if an event is being held at your Hall which is being organised by someone other than the Hall committee, then it may not be possible for you to arrange the insurance on their behalf. This is best discussed with your insurers at an early stage.
As always, it is very important that you should notify your insurers at the planning stage so that you can find out whether all aspects of the event can be insured and whether there is going to be a charge involved.