Chaperones and child performers
Children in entertainment may need a performance license. Relevant activity includes TV, theatre, modelling, dance shows, pantomimes, music groups, and paid sport whether professional or amateur.
A licence will be needed:
- for all children from birth to the end of compulsory education, which is the last Friday in June of the academic year they turn 16
- if a fee is made in connection with a performance, which applies whether the performers are paid or not
- if the performance happens at a licensed premises
- if the performance is recorded for broadcast or exhibition, such as on TV, radio, or the internet
Children in entertainment are regulated under the Children Young Person Act 1933/63 and the Children (Performances and Activities) (Wales) Regulations 2015.
Some types of performance will not need a licence. Yet such exemptions only apply where no payment is made to or in respect of children participating in a performance, whoever takes the payment. They do not apply to paid sport, or paid modelling. The exemptions are where:
- a school organises a performance
- the child has performed for fewer than four days in the past six months, which is known as the four day rule
- the organiser can apply for a Body of Persons Approval (BOPA)
In some cases, an organiser can apply for a Body Of Persons Approval (BOPA) from the local authority where their performance/s occur. A BOPA covers all children at once with no need for individual licences.
The key requirements are that:
- children are not paid, and would not normally be expected to be
- the organisation can show that it has robust and effective systems to safeguard children during rehearsals and performances
If a child needs time off school, this exemption does not apply, and an individual licence is required.
An authority can impose conditions that ensure children’s wellbeing, and may revoke approvals if these are not met.
Children in public performances must be supervised by a council-approved chaperone. Exceptions to this are if they are in the care of their parents/carer, legal guardian, or, in certain circumstances, a teacher.
- are responsible for safeguarding, supporting and promoting the child’s wellbeing
- must stay with the child at all times
- must be able to see the child when they are on stage, set or performing
- ensure that the child/children are properly supervised when not performing, and have adequate meals, rest and recreation
- must ensure that suitable changing facilities are arranged by the company or venues, with separate changing rooms for boys and girls over five
A chaperone can supervise up to 12 children. However, in certain circumstance we may decide to reduce the amount of children in the chaperone’s care to ensure that all children are properly safeguarded.
Chaperone licences are regulated under the Children Young Person Act 1933/63 and the Children (Performances and Activities) (Wales) Regulations 2015.
Our registration process needs:
- a completed application form
- a passport-sized photograph
- two good references
- an enhanced Disclosure Barring Service (DBS/CRB) certificate, which is provided by Bridgend County Borough Council and for which there is a charge
- completion of Child Protection training