Motor Vehicle Events on Madeira Drive

Date of Meeting:

19th November, 2020

Report of:

Executive Director, Economy, Environment & Culture

Contact Officer:


Ian Taylor

Ian Shurrock


07717 303344



Ward(s) affected:









1.1         The TECC committee of 24th September agreed for officers to bring forward a report outlining the proposed motor vehicle events requested for 2021. These events take place either solely on Madeira Drive e.g. Speed Trials or end on Madeira Drive to enable public viewing e.g. Veteran Car Run.


1.2         A separate report is before this committee seeking Landlord’s Consent, and the associated Madeira Drive road closures, for ALL the events requesting the use of Madeira Drive in 2021.




2.1      That the committee notes the contents of this report.




3.1         Madeira Drive has traditionally hosted motoring events for many years. The oldest, the Veteran Car Run, will be celebrating its’ 125th year in 2021.


3.2         There are 9 requests listed in Appendix 1.  All the events have taken place on Madeira Drive before, with the newest of them, Incarnation (a custom car show) starting in 2008. The requests at the moment presume being permitted under whatever Covid restrictions are in force at the time of staging.


3.3         The Council has already committed, through an amendment made and approved to last year’s committee paper on Outdoor Events Programme at Madeira Drive presented  on 21st November 2021, not to accept any further events focused on vehicles with Internal Combustion Engines without coming before this committee to seek Landlord’s Consent.


3.4         A Notice of Motion was considered at the Special Full Council Meeting in August 2020 on Historic Vehicle Events in Madeira Drive which resolved to:

·         Recognise the huge financial and cultural contribution to the local tourist economy of the many motoring events that take place in the city and on Madeira Drive in particular;


·         Recommend to ETS Committee that any post-Covid changes to the layout of Madeira Drive do not prevent historic motoring events from taking place; and


·         Recommend to TECC Committee that urgent confirmation is given that historic motoring events will be given permission to take place.


3.5         With the proposed new operational design of Madeira Drive, both through creating Safer Streets during Covid and the new layout as part of Valley Gardens Stage 3, some events, whether motoring, running, cycling or parading, will require the temporary closure of the newly widened cycle lane between the Pier and Black Rock.


3.6         This has been the case for several years. Since the closure of the Madeira Terraces space on Madeira Drive has been at a premium.  Officers have worked very closely with external event organisers to move as much infrastructure onto the beach or wider areas of the promenade (Brighton Marathon, London to Brighton Bike Ride, Half Marathon) allowing for as much of the cycle lane to be open for as long as possible.


3.7         The arrangements in 3.6 are not without their own disadvantages;


-           They disrupt the operation of the Volks Railway

-           They cost the organisers considerable amounts of money laying trackway

-           They are a disruption to beach users in the area, notably beach chalet users.



3.8         An Economic Impact Assessment, undertaken by the University of Sussex, estimated the value of the Veteran Can Run alone to be £1.1 million to the city. With an estimated spend of £50 per head for day visitors and £200 per head for those staying overnight, the financial loss of these events to the city would be considerable.  Equally, there can be negative impacts for residents and visitors caused by noise, vehicle emissions and the health implications associated with this.






4.1         At present there are no viable alternatives to staging / finishing these major events on Madeira Drive.  Madeira Drive, and its’ ability to close for up to 28 days per calendar year (through Byelaw:The East Sussex Act) is the envy of many Local Authorities events-wise.


4.2         Officers from the Events Team are working closely with the project teams for the developments of Valley Gardens Stage 3 and Black Rock where it may be possible to host some of the activity / infrastructure needed for the staging of major events at the easternmost end of Madeira Drive, at a newly created events space at Black Rock at some stage in the future.






5.1         Officers from the Outdoor Events Team are working with colleagues from Transport and Economic Development to ensure that highway schemes implemented on Madeira Drive can continue to accommodate events.




6.         CONCLUSION


6.1         Events in general, including motoring events, bring a variety of benefits to the City – social, economic, cultural and reputational.  The continued use of Madeira Drive for the list of events in Appendix 1 should be supported.   In future years the annual Outdoor Events on Madeira Drive report will provide a more detailed briefing on motor vehicle events.






Financial Implications


7.1         There are no direct financial implications of this report which is a for information report outlining proposed motor vehicle events on Madeira Drive for 2021.


7.2         Events taking place on Madeira Drive pay a fee to the Council. These fees are divided into commercial use, charity use and community use and are determined each year by the TECC committee. If the events listed in Appendix 1 do not take place this would result in an estimated loss of around £50,000 income from the Events revenue budget.


            Finance Officer Consulted:     Name Jess Laing                         Date: 23/10/2020


Legal Implications:



7.3       There are no legal implications arising directly from this report which is for noting. Legal implications relating to the events are set out in the report seeking landlord’s consent which is also in front of this committee.                                                  


            Lawyer Consulted:                   Alice Rowland                               Date: 21/10/20



            Equalities Implications:


7.4      Equalities Impact Assessments will be undertaken for all events using Madeira

Drive as part of the newly introduced Environment Impact Assessments and Action Plans.


            Sustainability Implications:


7.5      Environmental Impact Assessments and Action Plans will be undertaken, by the

event organisers, for all events taking place on Madeira Drive.


Brexit Implications:


7.6       There are no implications identified.


Any Other Significant Implications:


7.7      Permissions are sought on the presumption of Landlord’s Consent still being

applicable given whatever Covid restrictions are in force, nationally or locally, at the time of staging.


            Crime & Disorder Implications:


7.8       All major events present their detailed plans to the city Safety Advisory Group,

            which includes Sussex Police


            Risk and Opportunity Management Implications:


7.9     Every event taking place in Brighton and Hove on Council land, is required to

            complete a site-specific Risk Assessment.


            Public Health Implications


7.10    Outdoor events have a positive impact on the health and well-being of participants and spectators. However, the operation of outdoor events will require the implementation of covid safe requirements according to national guidelines. In addition, there can be negative impacts from noise and from vehicle emissions for residents and visitors.








1.     List of proposed motor vehicle events on Madeira Drive in 2021      



Background Documents


1.     None