Cadw is the historic environment service for Wales, and one of our roles is to conserve the historic places in our care, which includes both prehistoric and historic monuments.
Our sites are often located at the heart of communities across Wales and are therefore ideal locations for local events.
A variety of local and small-scale community events take place at our historic sites throughout the year. They are typically small in scale, non-commercial/not-for-profit and produce minimal impact on the visitor experience.
What is a Community Event?
Community events that happen at our monuments are typically activities like choir and music recitals, religious services or one-off small-scale events that:
- are organised externally to Cadw, by and for the community local to the monument in question
- take place during normal site opening hours without adversely impacting the visitor experience
- generally, are on site no more than one day, but could be a repeat/annual activity
- are open to visitors spectating during the course of the event
- take up minimal space
- do not require additional staffing on Cadw’s behalf
- do not cause damage to the historic site or its amenities
- do not include a ticketed/commercial/fundraising aspect
- do not pose risks to staff, visitors or event participants.
Events which do not fall within this description may need additional event infrastructure, staffing costs or extended opening hours. Events that would have a higher impact on our sites should instead be considered for Cadw Site Hire and require submission of the Cadw Site Hire application form.
Examples of community events are as follows:
- religious services (or a special occasion)
- local choir/musicians’ practice/recitals
- Scouts/Guides community ceremonies
- Remembrance Day events
- anniversary of significant local event
- local historical society talks/tours
- local school projects
- college/student projects
- celebration of significant local figure
- presentation of memorial gift.
We will require all community groups to use our online application form to request the use of any Cadw monument, which will enable the team to decide whether the event is appropriate for the site in question. This also notifies us of any special requirements the applicant may have and allows us to advise the community group of any concerns.
The form should be submitted a minimum of five weeks in advance of the event, and earlier if possible.
It will be necessary to submit with the application a proposed event plan, risk assessment and confirmation that public liability insurance will be in place to cover the event.
We will assess events on the following criteria:
- is the event suitable for the site?
- will the event interfere with visitors’ enjoyment of the site?
- will the event clash with other bookings?
- will the conditions at the time of year be suitable for the event?
- has the organiser liaised with the local authority over any required licences?
- if the monument is a joint management site, has the organiser liaised with the landowner over permission to use the site?
- are the management arrangements satisfactory?
- has enough time been given between submission of application and the event for appropriate procedures to be followed?
It may be necessary for the applicant/community group and a member of the Cadw Events Team to meet to discuss the event, most likely at the site.
This is because many of our sites are Scheduled Monuments and are protected by law under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979. As long as the planned event meets the above criteria to a satisfactory degree, Scheduled Monument Consent should not be required, or may be fast-tracked.
All applications will be assessed following the criteria above. A decision will then be made as to whether the event can go ahead and/or whether we would wish to see changes to what is proposed in order to be able to provide agreement.
Once all arrangements are in place, we will issue a copy of the Cadw Terms & Conditions of Hire. No later than 14 calendar days prior to the event, you will also need to provide:
Final event plan
This will detail what the event will entail, the proposed number of attendees, the proposed safety and security measures, the past experience of the event organisers in undertaking similar events and any other permissions required. The plan should clearly identify what is specifically to happen on the land in the ownership of Cadw.
Appropriate full and final risk assessments
Risk assessments help ensure the safety of visitors to the event, visitors to the site and volunteers or staff holding the event, as well as complying with relevant health and safety legislation.
It is not required to eliminate all risk but the organiser should take steps that are ‘reasonably practicable’. There must be clear evidence within the assessment identifying good safety management systems. More advice and standard templates are available from the Health and Safety Executive or Purple Guide.
If the risk assessment is deemed as satisfactory the event will be given clearance to proceed.
Proof of appropriate public liability insurance
For the vast majority of events that require permission, it is expected that the organiser will hold adequate PLI for at least £5 million.
The PLI must provide cover for injuries suffered by members of the public or Cadw staff and any damage done to the property that arises due to event activity or lack of diligence on the organiser’s part.
It is important to remember that our community event service is to support and facilitate the free use of our monuments in care, for the enjoyment of local communities. Some activities that might damage the fabric of our sites are therefore not eligible under the community event application system. These include:
- fireworks or pyrotechnics
- naked flames (such as candles or burning torches)
- balloon/lantern releases
- hot food, catering or traders
- the sale and/or consumption of alcohol
- marquees or temporary structures that require fixing to the ground (although weighted/freestanding structures such as gazebos may be permitted with risk assessment).
Occasionally, we will facilitate royal, military or ministerial activities at particular sites. As a public body, we are unable to accommodate requests for activities of a political nature such as campaigning or canvassing.
A large number of places we care for are scheduled monuments which means they would require additional consent for some event activities.
We will also require that:
- all electrical equipment brought on site is pre-agreed and has a current Portable Appliance Test (PAT) certificate, issued by a qualified electrician.
- all hard items to be used on internal floors are fitted with appropriate rubber bottoms or matting to prevent damage.
- power cables have appropriate cable covers over them and, where in contact with historic fabric, under them as well.
- no tent pegs are hammered into the ground, and no ground penetration is completed without appropriate Scheduled Monument Consent, as described above.
In order to start the community event application process, please complete our