Martyn's Law is a proposed piece of legislation to better protect the British public from terrorism in any place or space to which they have access. Figen Murray, mother of Martyn Hett who tragically died along with 22 others when a terrorist detonated a bomb at an Ariana Grande concert at Manchester Arena in May 2017, has headed the proposal. Here, we look at how making these four crucial sets of checks at different stages in your venue or event management is vital for your venue security, and adherence to Martyn's Law.
First, check the 5 key requirements of Martyn's Law
Whether the Law gets passed or not, these requirements are crucial for your venue to follow. Ask yourself these questions to follow the requirements:
- Have you engaged with counter-terrorism advice and training?
- Have you conducted a vulnerability assessment?
- Have you developed a mitigation plan for the risks created by those vulnerabilities?
- Have you made a counter-terrorism plan?
- Have relevant local authorities planned for the threat of terrorism too?
Next, consider venue security in your regular 365 venue management
These are your standard operational checks to ensure general readiness to open doors to the public. This might include checking that areas are clean and checking that the tech is working (cameras, ticket scanners, emergency exit doors) - all areas that contribute to the smooth running of your venue and are essential for your visitors to have a safe and enjoyable visit.
Perhaps most importantly, carry out your checks just before an event
A lot of these might be the same as your regular checks. Consider particularly the security measures such as metal detectors, CCTV, and emergency exit signs and doors. Scrutinise your vulnerability assessment to make sure you have contingency plans for your risks. This is your last chance to make sure that you are happy with your venue security, so do build a comprehensive list of checks here that give you the assurance you need.
Finally, carry out post-event checks and learn lessons
Ask yourself those same 5 questions from the first point again - how could you improve your venue security procedures for next time? As you and your team carry out checks before officially closing the venue after an event, think about what went well and what could go better. Considering counter-terrorism procedure is a large responsibility for an operations team, so constantly iterate, develop your plans and scrutinise your checks as you plan for every new event.
Carrying out these four types of checks at the right moment will give you confidence and accountability that you are operating your venue securely. Martyn's Law is yet to be passed as legislation - although it is looking very likely - but it provides a framework that is well worth following. Go and read our larger introduction to Martyn's Law and how venues can follow its guidelines before, during and after your event.