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Demonstrations, marches or parades

Information for organisers

When organisers are planning a public procession or march they should be aware of the event guidance contained on this website and in addition should also be aware of the provisions of the Public Order Act 1986, in particular section 11 - 14 inclusive, which places specific obligations on organisers.

Failure to give the police written advance notice (at least 6 clear days) of

  • the date, time and venue/route of the procession
  • variation of such details from those previously notified
  • or failure to comply with changes, conditions or prohibitions imposed by the police on processions or assemblies

may constitute a criminal offence.

Whilst event organisers are obliged to notify the police at least 6 clear days in advance of their event, earlier notification with as much notice as possible is helpful.

To make this process easier a form has been created to provide the relevant information required, which can be found here in both PDF and Word format.

If banners are to be used, it is essential that they be designed in such a way as to reduce the risk of danger when they are used in high winds and not contravene public order or other legislation in relation to any obscene or offensive content or images.

When it is intended to present a petition either, during, or at the completion of a protest march, prior notice must be given to the police because special arrangements usually have to be made.

The use of certain locations for assembly or dispersal will also require permission from the landowner, which in many cases may be the local authority. This permission must be obtained in writing well in advance of the event day, by the organiser.

A copy of this permission must then be sent, by the organisers, to the police as soon as possible at this address.

Marches, in particular, present a mobile event, which is far more unpredictable and therefore, it is very important that planning for such events starts as early as possible.