We have had to change the way that some of our services operate to meet the guidelines set out by the government in response to the Coronavirus pandemic.

Designated Sports Grounds

The Secretary of State may designate any sports ground, which in his opinion has accommodation for more than 10,000 spectators, or 5,000 in the case of Premiership or Football League grounds in England and Wales as a ‘Designated Sports Ground’.

The designation function is performed by the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, (DCMS).

Currently there are no designated sports grounds in Torbay.

Regulated Stands

A regulated stand is any covered stand within a sports ground, with accommodation for 500 or more spectators, whether seated or standing. It is our responsibility to determine whether any of the stands at sports grounds within its area qualify as regulated stands.

In determining the occupancy of a stand, we will have regard to the Home Office Circular 97/1988, which gives detailed statutory guidance on how to determine whether or not a stand provides accommodation for 500 or more spectators.

General Safety Certificates

If a sports ground has been designated by the Secretary of State as a ‘Designated Sports Ground', or if we have determined that a stand within an undesignated sports ground is a ‘Regulated Stand’; then that ground or stand will require a ‘General Safety Certificate'.

A ‘Responsible Person’ acting on behalf of the relevant sports ground must make an application for a ‘General Safety Certificate’ to us and subject to all requirements being met, we will then issue the safety certificate.

In preparing a general safety certificate the Local Authority will:

  • Request suitable plans and drawings from the applicant
  • Request structural, electrical, mechanical and other pertinent certification
  • Request information as to the stands use in the previous three year period
  • Survey the ground in detail
  • Consult with emergency services
  • Consult with ground management
  • Determine appropriate conditions
  • Determine numbers of spectators permitted into the ground/stand

We currently have one issued General safety Certificate for Torquay United at Plainmoor.

Special Safety Certificates

‘Special Safety Certificates’ are issued in respect of activities which are not included within the ‘General Safety Certificate’ already issued in respect of the ground or stand; for instance to authorise the provision of a live music event at a venue normally used for league football.

The process for the issue of a ‘Special Safety Certificate’ is similar to that for a ‘General Safety Certificate.