Your Essential Guide

Your Event

Thank you for considering the Royal Borough of Kingston upon Thames for your event. We have many diverse settings that make perfect surroundings for all kinds of occasions. In Kingston we encourage and support the successful planning and delivery of public events, as we know these are important occasions that bring people together and build a sense of community.

We can help you work towards a well managed event that is safe for all involved. We provide information and guidance to help make your event run as smoothly as possible. On these pages you will find information about public event planning, delivery and what you can expect from us

When you submit an initial enquiry form, we aim to support you to host public events with confidence through our officers, partners and spaces.

Before starting to plan your event, it is important you consider the following:

  • is your event private or public?

  • is your event community based or commercial?

  • what support is on offer to you?

  • how much time is needed to apply for an event?

  • how much hosting an event might cost?

  • what is the application and planning process?

Public or private event?

Public event - this is on public land and/or on private land that the general public can access. If your event meets one or both of these criteria you will need to apply to host your event in Kingston.

Private event - this can relate to a wedding, private party or other celebration. These types of events do not require you to submit an application form. However, private events like fashion shows or exhibitions, where members of the public can attend (even when they are ticketed), require you to submit an application. With these types of events, the Council will review your plans in relation to public safety.

If you are unsure if your event will be classed as a ‘private event’, please get in touch with us to discuss.

Community event or commercial event?

We determine each type of event using the following guidelines:

Community events - these are not-for-profit events organised by, and provided for, the community and do not generate income. Any income made from the event is used to sustain future community events, or is invested in the improvement of the community initiative. Reduced rent may apply for community events if you are using green spaces or property that we own. Based on the size of your community event you may also be eligible for support with and parking and waste removal.

Your local Neighbourhood & Communities Managers will be notified about your event as part of the Safety Advisory Group and will attend where possible to engage with local residents and show support from the Council. They can work with your Community Rangers to provide additional support such as advertising your event in the Community Noticeboards around the borough. If you are a first time event organiser and would like some further guidance, please contact your local Neighbourhood & Communities Manager.

Organisers may be eligible for the Royal Borough of Kingston Grants Scheme, if they meet the relevant criteria. For further guidance on running a community based event we recommend you read the 'Can Do' Guide for organising a voluntary event.

However, it is important to note that some charges and fees have to be paid by all event organisers, even those that are acting for community benefit or charity. You will have to pay fees if you need to apply for a licence for your event (or part of your event). Check our list of licensable activities and if you intend to have any of these at your event further details on how to obtain the relevant licence can be found under our licensing guidance.

Commercial events - these are events where the organiser aims to make a profit. These usually charge a fee to stall holders and/or to the public attending. Any profit made from the stalls or event, does not go back into a community project. These types of events will often require different types of licenses and permissions.

Early event planning

Look through our essential guide pages and once you know what type of event you want to host (including numbers of attendees and where), please complete our initial enquiry form to get started on planning your event. We will then get in touch with you for further details and to provide guidance before processing your application. Please allow additional time prior to your event to complete this process. See timelines for your event for the different deadlines that apply.