The main programme involves a series of high profile speakers. On 28th January, Brian Blake, MBE presents a talk on ‘The do’s and don’ts of getting a licence.’ Blake has been responsible for the technical aspects of public entertainment licensing within Westminster for 27 years, and has covered a wide range of events, including outdoor concerts in Hyde Park, and the Queen’s Jubilee, where he was responsible for public safety and contingency planning.
On the 29th January, the focus is ‘Spotlight on Local Authorities.’ Sponsored by NOEA, the seminars cover a variety of practical issues such as police support, licensing and booking procedures, as well as more intuitive ideas such as the long-term visions of London County Council. Andy Cotton of TAO Productions will present a session on ‘The Key things you need to know’ when organizing an event and offer advice on ‘What we want from suppliers.’ Cotton comes with impressive qualifications after working in the live music industry for 15 years and outdoor event management for 12 years, prior to which he managed The Commitments. Cotton has produced a diverse portfolio of events ranging from Bristol City Football Club Stadium Gig, to the Abbey’s Classical Proms and Fox fm’s Party in the Park for 80,000 people.
Other sessions of interest cover topics such as Lasers (Keith Flunder) and Fireworks (Dr Tom Smith, the Official Adjudicator for the British Firework Championships). Professional speaker Gerald Toms, former Chief Superintendent of Police for the City of Cardiff, covers Policing & Stewarding. Richard Limb, Chair of The Event Services Association and Director of Leisure Safety, speaks about common issues arising with insurance.