Outdoor Events - Madeira Drive Closures 2021

Date of Meeting:

19th November, 2021

Report of:

Executive Director, Economy, Environment & Culture 

Contact Officer:


Ian Shurrock, Ian Taylor, Daniel Watson 


07717 303344



Ward(s) affected:









1.1         To seek approval from members for landlord’s consent for each of the proposed events on Madeira Drive in 2021 and the associated road closures. Members are reminded that they can grant consent for each event request individually and not only the whole programme.


1.2         A separate report relating to motor vehicle events in the city is also before this committee. 


2.            RECOMMENDATIONS:    


2.1         That the committee grants landlord’s consent (subject to the execution of a formal agreement) for each of the proposed events on Madeira Drive and the associated road closures as listed in Appendix 1.


2.2         That the committee authorises officers to enter into formal agreements with event organisers to determine conditions, fees and levels of support as appropriate.


2.3         That the committee authorises the Executive Director, Economy, Environment & Culture, after consultation with the Chair of the committee and opposition spokespersons, to make any alterations to the events programme as necessary including approving new applications in accordance with the Outdoor Events Policy and cancelling events if required.




3.1         Madeira Drive is a very important venue for events in the city. The long heritage of events on Madeira Drive is reflected by most of the events listed in Appendix 1 having taken place at this location previously. The events programme draws residents and visitors to Madeira Drive which extends the Seafront offer both geographically - away from the main tourism area between the piers - and seasonally, by holding events throughout the year.


3.2         The closure of the Madeira Terraces has not currently resulted in a reduction in proposals for events on Madeira Drive. However, the safety fence adjacent to the Terraces has impacted upon the operational requirements of some events. The council is seeking a long-term solution to restore the Madeira Terraces.  It will be important that this solution enhances Madeira Drive as an events venue and assists with the economic sustainability of the area.


3.3      Mass participation sports events have been particularly badly impacted by the effects of Coronavirus regulations.  Brighton and Hove Half Marathon was fortunate in 2020 to take place before lockdown was introduced.  Since this time 100% of the events in this sector in the city were cancelled. The loss of the economic, charitable and community benefits these bring to the city is incalculable.


3.4      The city’s Safety Advisory Group including representation from Public Health will review on an on-going basis the potential implications of the covid pandemic on the operation of outdoor events.


3.5      The key date changes for those events wishing to take place later in the year than normal are:


Half Marathon                                       To 27th June 2021

Brighton Marathon Weekend                To 11th / 12th September 2021            





4.1         Not applicable





5.1      Consultation is taking place with Ward Councillors, Sussex Police, East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service, South East Coast Ambulance Service, NHS Trust, Environmental Health & Licensing, City Parks, Civil Contingencies, Sustainability and Highways. Detailed consultation will also follow as the events are developed between the respective event organiser and our partner agencies.


5.2       As this report is being considered well in advance of next year’s programme to assist organisers, it has not been possible to include consultation responses in the report.  A verbal update on the consultation responses will be given at the committee meeting.



6.         CONCLUSION


6.1         Landlord’s consent is required for the staging of all major outdoor events on council land in Brighton and Hove.


6.2       Events form a significant part of the council’s overall tourism strategy. As well as bringing substantial economic benefits to the city, people experience civic pride when major recreational, sporting and entertainment events take place in their locality. These help to bring regional and national recognition to the city as well as bringing significant economic benefits.


6.3       Granting Landlord’s Consent for the 2021/22 events programme on Madeira Drive provides support for a sector that has been devastated by the Covid-19 pandemic over the course of 2020.  The support of the City Council for the events sector has never been more important.




Financial Implications:


7.1       In accordance with the existing Outdoor Events policy, fees are charged for commercial events and any costs incurred are the responsibility of the organiser. In addition, a reinstatement deposit is usually held, and evidence of adequate insurance cover is required. The fees charged are determined by negotiation based on a number of factors including capacity, whether a new or established event, whether an admission fee is to be charged and infrastructure required; all of these are subject to agreement by officers as per the recommendations of this report.


7.2       The income generated from fees charged for commercial events on Madeira Drive contribute to the costs of the Outdoor Events Team and has, in a normal financial year, enabled charitable and community events and free public entertainments to be supported at reduced rates across the city.   As set out elsewhere in this report, it will also be financially beneficial for the local economy/events sector if events can plan to go ahead in 2021/22.


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


Legal Implications:


7.3       The Council is empowered under the East Sussex Act 1981 to use Madeira Drive for up to 28 days a year in order to facilitate the staging of major outdoor events.


7.4      The proposals in this report are made in accordance with the Outdoor Events Policy.


7.5       The terms of the agreements with the event organisers will allow the Council to withdraw consent on public health grounds if the Council does not feel the event should go ahead.                                                     


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







            Equalities Implications:



7.6      The Events Programme caters for people from all sectors of the community as there are a diverse range of events that are staged in the city each year. Issues such as physical access to an event and designated viewing areas are developed and detailed in event plans where applicable. Equalities Impact assessments will be required of major event organisers.


            Sustainability Implications:


7.7      All events are planned and staged in accordance with the statutory powers and planning obligations as set out in the Outdoor Events Policy.


7.8       The nature of outdoor events means that they often involve a range of potential sustainability impacts (both positive and negative) from travel, energy and water use, food, local economic and social impacts, use of outdoor spaces and production of waste. Through the Sustainable Events Programme, event organisers are supported to improve sustainability at their events, focusing on the areas with the highest potential impact. The programme is certified to the international standard for environmental management ISO 14001.


7.9       The Sustainable Events Programme gained certification to the International Standard for Sustainable Events ISO 20121 in October 2013. The programme helps deliver visible sustainability initiatives, particularly around event waste recycling and encouraging people to use public transport. The Sustainable Events Programme contributes to the culture and community principle of the One Planet Sustainability Action Plan.


7.10   New for 2021, Environmental Impact Assessment and Action plans will be

          required to be undertaken by organisers wishing to stage their events in the city.


Brexit Implications:


7.11    There are no implications identified.



8.0      Any Other Significant Implications



            Crime & Disorder Implications:


8.1       Sussex Police are involved in both the consultation and planning of all major events.


            Risk and Opportunity Management Implications:


8.2      The City’s Safety Advisory Group has an overview of all the events that take place in Brighton and Hove that have the potential to attract significantly large numbers of people. A protocol and good working partnerships between the council and emergency services are in place in the city and close agency working will be integral to both the planning and delivery of these events.


8.4      Event specific Safety Advisory Groups can be convened for all major outdoor events taking place in Brighton and Hove.


            Public Health Implications:


8.5       Outdoor events have a positive impact on the health and well-being of participants and spectators. However, events will need to meet covid safe requirements if they are able to take place.








1.         Appendix 1 – Proposed Madeira Drive road closures 2021


Documents in Members’ Rooms


1.         None


Background Documents


1.         None