Are you a Fair Organiser

Information on the duties of fair organisers in ensuring their fairs run safely and do not expose workers or the public to uncontrolled risks to their health and safety.

What you must do:

The organiser must ensure that the overall safety of the site is maintained so that people setting up, breaking down and attending the fair can do so without risks to their health and safety. The organiser's responsibilities in this respect can be broken down into two categories:

Managing the site

The organiser has duties to plan, manage and monitor the fairground site to ensure that workers and the visiting public are not exposed to health and safety risks. These duties include:


  • setting out rides so they can run safely, don't affect other rides and the public can get to and from them safely
  • making sure there are enough easily-identifiable, trained people on site to deal with emergencies
  • ensuring ride controllers know who the deputy organiser is, if the organiser has to leave the site
  • making sure all ride controllers know who the organiser and their deputy are, and what the emergency procedures are
  • marking escape routes and assembly areas clearly, and making sure all people working on the fair know where they are
  • having an emergency plan in place to deal with foreseeable things such as:
    • fire
    • overcrowding
    • major ride collapse
    • severe weather


  • making yourself (the organiser) or your deputy available, if needed
  • making sure a robust means of communication is in place
  • identifying and checking that daily safety checks are carried out on access routes, fire-fighting equipment, areas closed to the public etc


  • checking that safe conditions are maintained throughout the life of the fair by:
    • monitoring individual rides to make sure they don't affect those outside their movement envelope
    • controlling numbers to prevent overcrowding
    • keeping emergency routes clear
    • ensuring housekeeping is done to keep down rubbish and flammables etc, and to ensure the ground stays in good condition
    • checking that the layout has not altered from the original plan

Managing the rides and attractions

Where individual rides operate as discrete businesses within their own boundaries, ride controllers have overall responsibility to ensure their attractions run safely. The organiser should make reasonable checks to ensure individual ride controllers are complying with their own duties, so they do not affect the safety of the public on site.

Where individual ride controllers come together to operate as a temporary or fixed park – whether paid a set amount, receiving a percentage of the gate or where customers pay once for all rides, etc – they will probably become subcontractors and the organiser will take on the legal duties of landlord, with more responsibility for how individual rides are managed.

For further guidance on managing rides and attractions, see: Fairgrounds and amusement parks: Guidance on safe practice.

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Updated 2022-11-01