How to host your own beer festival – health and safety advice

Preparation is always key to the success of any event in respect of health and safety. The level of detail in your planning should be proportionate to the scale of the event and the degree of risk. Here Martin Wallsworth, Group Health and Safety Manager of Charles Wells, offers some points to consider when running a beer festival.

  • If you decide to hold your event outdoors make sure you have a marquee or sheltered area to ensure your event can go ahead if the weather is bad. Alternatively also plan for the event indoors as a contingency.
  • Consider the increase in electrical loads and ensure electrical points are protected.
  • Consider the possible increase in noise and the impact to your neighbours; if you’re having live music consider your staff.
  • Consider your stillage and ensure it is safe and stable. There are specialist companies that hire out complete cooling and dispense kits for festivals.
  • With the added increase in sales consider the additional movement of your casks; it is a good idea to conduct some refresher manual handling with your staff.
  • Consider the adequacy for access and egress for both customers and emergency vehicles.
  • Ensure you have adequate sanitary arrangements.
  • Check the contents of first aid kits as you may need to add more items.
  • Ensure your staff fully understand any special arrangements – emergency, fire, first aid for example.
  • If offering food consider your food safety arrangements including refrigeration and storage.

Get these right and you are well on your way to staging a safe, successful and stress-free event.

If you have a Health and Safety manual you should refer to this and complete additional risk assessments where necessary. Make sure you are up to date with the latest health and safety legislation. Remember when it comes to safety you must get your preparation right.

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