Terms & Conditions


These were last updated in July 2013 and all bookings accepted by the Council are subject to these Terms and Conditions unless otherwise agreed in writing.

You can download the Hire Agreement and standard conditions by clicking here, or when making a booking we can post it out to you.

Welwyn Parish Council Standard conditions of hire

These standard conditions are available to all hirers on our website www.welwynhalls.com and can be sent on request, by email or hardcopy by post. If the Hirer is in any doubt as to the meaning of any of the conditions, the Clerk or Bookings Clerk should immediately be consulted.

1.    Age

The Hirer, not being a person under 18 years of age, hereby accepts responsibility for being in charge of and on the premises at all times when the public are present and for ensuring that all conditions, under this Agreement,  relating to management and supervision of the premises are met.

2.    Supervision

The Hirer shall, during the period of the hiring, be responsible for: supervision of the premises, the fabric and the contents; their care, safety from damage however slight or change of any sort; and the behaviour of all persons using the premises whatever their capacity, including proper supervision of car parking arrangements so as to avoid obstruction of the highway. As directed by the Council, the Hirer shall make good or pay for all damage (including accidental damage) to the premises or to the fixtures, fittings or contents and for loss of contents.

3.    Use of premises

The Hirer shall not use the premises (including the car park if any) for any purpose other than that described in the Hiring Agreement and shall not sub-hire or use the premises or allow the premises to be used for any unlawful or unsuitable purpose or in any unlawful way nor do anything or bring onto the premises anything which may endanger the same or render invalid any insurance policies in respect thereof nor allow the consumption of alcohol thereon without written permission.

4.    Insurance and indemnity

(a)            The Hirer shall be liable for:

(i)            the cost of repair of any damage (including accidental and malicious damage) done to any part of the premises including the curtilage thereof or the contents of the premises

(ii)           all claims, losses, damages and costs made against or incurred by the council, their employees, volunteers, agents or invitees in respect of damage or loss of property or injury to persons arising as a result of the use of the premises (including the storage of equipment) by the Hirer, and

(iii)         all claims, losses, damages and costs made against or incurred by the council, their employees, volunteers, agents or invitees as a result of any nuisance caused to a third party as a result of the use of the premises by the Hirer, and

subject to sub-clause (b), the Hirer shall indemnify and keep indemnified accordingly each member of the council and the council’s employees, volunteers, agents and invitees against such liabilities.

(b)       The council shall take out adequate insurance to insure the liabilities described in sub-clauses (a)(i) above and may, in its discretion and in the case of non commercial hirers, insure the liabilities described in sub-clauses (a) (ii) and (iii) above.  The council shall claim on its insurance for any liability of the Hirer hereunder but the Hirer shall indemnify and keep indemnified each member of the council and the council’s employees, volunteers, agents and invitees against (a) any insurance excess incurred and (b) the difference between the amount of the liability and the monies received under the insurance policy.

(c)                      Where the council does not insure the liabilities described in sub-clauses (a)(ii) and (iii) above, the Hirer shall take out adequate insurance to insure such liability and on demand shall produce the policy and current receipt or other evidence of cover to the council.  Failure to produce such policy and evidence of cover will render the hiring void and enable the hall secretary to rehire the premises to another Hirer.

The council is insured against any claims arising out of its own negligence.

5.    Gaming, betting and lotteries

The Hirer shall ensure that nothing is done on or in relation to the premises in contravention of the law relating to gaming, betting and lotteries.

6.    Music Copyright licensing

The hirer shall ensure that the council holds relevant licences under Performing Right Society (PRS) and the Phonographic Performance Licence (PPL) or, where appropriate, the hirer holds a licence.

7.    Film

Children shall be restricted from viewing age-restricted films classified according to the recommendations of the British Board of Film Classification.  Hirers should ensure that they have the appropriate copyright licences for film.

8.    Childcare Act 2006

The Hirer shall ensure that any activities for children under eight years of age comply with the provisions of the Childcare Act 2006 and the Safeguarding Vulnerable groups Act 2006 and only fit and proper persons who have passed the appropriate Criminal Records Bureau checks should have access to the children.  Checks may also apply where children over eight and vulnerable adults are taking part in activities.  The Hirer shall provide the council with a copy of their CRB check and Child Protection Policy on request.

9.    Public safety compliance

The Hirer shall comply with all conditions and regulations made in respect of the premises by the Local Authority, the Licensing Authority, and the hall’s Fire Risk Assessment or otherwise, particularly in connection with any event which constitutes regulated entertainment, at which alcohol is sold or provided or which is attended by children.  The Hirer shall also comply with the hall’s health and safety policy.

The Fire Service shall be called to any outbreak of fire, however slight, and details shall be given to the council.

(a)   The Hirer acknowledges that they have received instruction in the following matters:

  • The action to be taken in event of fire.  This includes calling the Fire Brigade and evacuating the hall.
  • The location and use of fire equipment.
  • Escape routes and the need to keep them clear.
  • Method of operation of escape door fastenings.
  • Appreciation of the importance of any fire doors and of closing all fire doors at the time of a fire.
  •  Location of the first aid box.

(b)   In advance of any activity whether regulated entertainment or not the Hirer shall check the following items:

  • That all fire exits are unlocked and panic bolts in good working order.
    • That all escape routes are free of obstruction and can be safely used for instant free public exit.
    • That any fire doors are not wedged open.
    • That exit signs are illuminated.
    • That there are no obvious fire hazards on the premises.
      • That emergency lighting supply illuminating all exit signs and routes are turned on during the whole of the time the premises are occupied (if not operated by an automatic mains failure switching device).
      • That they have adequate support in place for those with additional needs such as mobility.

10.  Noise

The Hirer shall ensure that the minimum of noise is made on arrival and departure, particularly late at night and early in the morning.  The Hirer shall, if using sound amplification equipment, make use of any noise limitation device provided at the premises and comply with any other licensing condition for the premises.

Excessive noise which may interfere with other hirers, or with neighbouring properties, may be treated as a breach of contract and can lead to the loss of deposit and/or cancellation of future bookings without refund.

11.  Drunk and disorderly behaviour and supply of illegal drugs

The Hirer shall ensure that in order to avoid disturbing neighbours to the hall and avoid violent or criminal behaviour; care shall be taken to avoid excessive consumption of alcohol. No illegal drugs may be brought onto the premises.  Drunk and disorderly behaviour shall not be permitted either on the premises or in its immediate vicinity.  Any person suspected of being drunk, under the influence of drugs or who is behaving in a violent or disorderly way shall be asked to leave the premises in accordance with the Licensing Act 2003.

12.  Health and hygiene

The Hirer shall, if preparing, serving or selling food, observe all relevant food health and hygiene legislation and regulations. In particular dairy products, vegetables and meat on the premises must be refrigerated and stored in compliance with the Food Temperature Regulations.  Each of our premises is provided with a refrigerator.

13.  Electrical appliance safety

The Hirer shall ensure that any electrical appliances brought by them to the premises and used there shall be safe, in good working order, and used in a safe manner in accordance with the Electricity at Work Regulations 1989. Where a residual circuit breaker is provided the hirer must make use of it in the interests of public safety.

14.  Stored equipment

The council accepts no responsibility for any stored equipment or other property brought on to or left at the premises, and all liability for loss or damage is hereby excluded. All equipment and other property (other than stored equipment) must be removed at the end of each hiring or fees will be charged for each day or part of a day at the hire fee per hiring until the same is removed.

The council may, use its discretion in any of the following circumstances:

(a)     Failure by the Hirer either to pay any charges in respect of stored equipment due and payable or to remove the same within 7 days after the agreed storage period has ended.

(b)    Failure by the Hirer to dispose of any property brought on to the premises for the purposes of the hiring.  This may result in the council disposing of any such items by sale or otherwise on such terms and conditions as it thinks fit, and charge the Hirer any costs incurred in storing and selling or otherwise disposing of the same.

15.  Smoking

             The Hirer shall, and shall ensure that the Hirer’s invitees, comply with the prohibition of smoking in public places provisions of the Health Act 2006 and regulations made thereunder. Any person who breaches this provision shall be asked to leave the premises. The Hirer shall ensure that anyone wishing to smoke does so outside and disposes of cigarette ends, matches etc. in a tidy and responsible manner, so as not to cause a fire.  Smoke machines are currently NOT permitted.

16.  Accidents and dangerous occurrences

             Any failure of equipment belonging to the council or brought in by the Hirer must also be reported as soon as possible.  The Hirer must report all accidents involving injury to the public to a member of the council as soon as possible and complete the relevant section in the council’s accident book.  Certain types of accident or injury must be reported on a special form.  The council will give assistance in completing this form and can provide contact details

17.  Explosives and flammable substances

The hirer shall ensure that:

(a)   Highly flammable substances are not brought into, or used in any part of the premises and that

(b)   No internal decorations of a combustible nature (e.g. polystyrene, cotton wool) shall be erected without the consent of the Council.  No decorations are to be put up near light fittings or heaters

18.  Heating or cooking

The Hirer shall ensure that no unauthorised heating or cooking appliances shall be used on the premises when open to the public without the written consent of the Council. Portable Liquefied Propane Gas (LPG) heating appliances shall not be used.

19.  Animals

The Hirer shall ensure that no animals (including birds) except guide dogs are brought into the premises, other than for a special event agreed to by the council. No animals whatsoever are to enter the kitchen at any time.

20.  Fly posting

The Hirer shall not carry out or permit fly posting or any other form of unauthorised advertisements for any event taking place at the premises, and shall indemnify and keep indemnified each member of the council accordingly against all actions, claims and proceedings arising from any breach of this condition.  Failure to observe this condition may lead to prosecution by the local authority.

21.  Sale of goods

The Hirer shall, if selling goods on the premises, comply with Fair Trading Laws and any code of practice used in connection with such sales.  In particular, the Hirer shall ensure that the total prices of all goods and services are prominently displayed, as shall be the organiser’s name and address and that any discounts offered are based only on Manufacturers’ Recommended Retail Prices.

22.  Cancellation

If the Hirer wishes to cancel the booking before the date of the event and the council is unable to conclude a replacement booking, the question of the payment or the repayment of the fee shall be at the discretion of the council.

The council reserves the right to cancel this hiring by written notice to the Hirer in the event of:

(a)     the premises being required for use as a Polling Station for election or referendum purposes.

(b)     the council reasonably considering that (i) such hiring will lead to a breach of licensing conditions, if applicable, or other legal or statutory requirements, or (ii) unlawful or unsuitable activities will take place at the premises as a result of this hiring.

(c)     the premises becoming unfit for the use intended by the Hirer.

(d)   an emergency requiring use of the premises as a shelter for the victims of flooding, snowstorm, fire, explosion or those at risk of these or similar disasters.

In any such case the Hirer shall be entitled to a refund of any special deposit already paid, but the council shall not be liable to the Hirer for any resulting direct or indirect loss or damages whatsoever.

23.  End of hire

The Hirer shall be responsible for leaving the premises and surrounding area in a clean and tidy condition, removing any waste arising from their booking, properly locked and secured unless directed otherwise and any contents temporarily removed from their usual positions properly replaced, otherwise the council shall be at liberty to make an additional charge.

A function must terminate in time for the building to be fully vacated by the stipulated finishing time.  This includes any clearing up activities and removal of vehicles from the car parks.

Please ensure when booking that you have included sufficient time for setting up and clearing away.  Booking times must be strictly adhered to so that they do not interfere with other hirers and staff duties.

24.  No alterations

No alterations or additions may be made to the premises nor may any fixtures be installed or placards, decorations or other articles be attached in any way to any part of the premises without the prior written approval of the council Clerk.  Any alteration, fixture or fitting or attachment so approved shall at the discretion of the council remain in the premises at the end of the hiring.  It will become the property of the council unless removed by the Hirer who must make good to the satisfaction of the council any damage caused to the premises by such removal.

25.  No rights

The Hiring Agreement constitutes permission only to use the premises and confers no tenancy or other right of occupation on the Hirer.

26.  CCTV, policing, information sharing and enforcement

To improve security the council has installed CCTV at a number of our venues.  In addition we work closely with the police and other authorities and organisations and may share information relating to your booking and any details that you have provided to us.

By entering, or parking, on our premises you agree that your image and details may be recorded for enforcement purposes and shared and that you will inform those participating in your invitees as appropriate.

27.  Internet Access

Where this has been provided by the council you understand that the service is provided as an additional free service as is without any filtering or limitations currently in place.  Hirers agree not to misuse the system, or allow those taking part in their hire activity, to do so in anyway.  The council will also provide information to the police and law enforcement agencies on request as per clause 26.

Where people are accessing the Hertfordshire County Council Library Services Wireless Internet System they are advised to review their Terms and Conditions.

28.  Use of own or hired equipment

Where a hirer wishes to use external equipment prior authorisation must be requested.  It should be noted for example that use of a Bouncy Castle has to be insured by the Hirer and that smoke machines are not to be used without prior written permission.

Other information

The WHITE HILL CENTRE main hall seats 60 – the small hall seats 24, setting up tables and chairs is the responsibility of the hirer.  They can be set up and cleared away ONLY upon request at the time of the booking if the caretaker is available.

The PAVILION seats 40 and setting up tables and chairs is the responsibility of the hirer.  They can be set up and cleared away ONLY upon request at the time of the booking if the caretaker is available.

The CIVIC CENTRE – main hall seats 200 – small hall seats 75 – tables and chairs can be set up and cleared away ONLY upon request at the time of the booking.  A hearing loop system is installed. There is a small committee room seating six people.  A sound system is available on request.

Welwyn Parish Council reserves the right to refuse or cancel any booking or refuse admission to an individual without giving a reason