Running your hall safely

Top Tips to remember so you can sleep at night

1. Appoint a management committee member as your Health and Safety officer. Equip them with ACRE Village Hall Leaflets No's 15, 20 and 37 and Village Hall Health Check form. Get them to do monthly checks. Have Health and Safety as a standing agenda item. Rotate the job every year, if possible, given that it is burdensome.

2. Keep an up to date written Risk Assessment for your Building.
Check it’s still accurate every 6 months. Remember to review it if you change the building or its equipment in any way.

3. Make sure your Hire Agreement gives you maximum protection and every hirers completes the form.
See ACRE Model Hire Agreement

4. Get your fire extinguishers and fire alarm system checked annually.

5. Have your portable electrical appliances.
Anything with a plug on it - “PAT” tested regularly ; annually is recommended.

6. Be sure you don’t have asbestos in your building and take the right steps if you have. See ACRE Village Hall Leaflet No 14

7. If you have a cleaner, make them your first line of defence.
Include reporting problems in their job description and give them positive feedback when they do. See ACRE Village Hall Leaflet No 22

8. Remember that Health and Safety issues may be different for different kinds of use.
See ACRE Village Hall Leaflets No 21 Overnight Accommodation and No 22 Children and Young People

9. Remember that hygiene is your responsibility.
Toilets and kitchens must be on the regular inspection list See ACRE Village Hall Leaflet No 20

10. Have clear notices in plain English.
For every obvious and unobvious danger and every rule you need users of the building to follow. Check regularly that they are still in place and relevant.

11. Check regularly for anything hall users may have moved or changed that may have undermined your safety rules.

12. If you have a Health and Safety issue that your leaflets don’t seem to cover, get advice, and record that you have done so. Talk to us at Community First – richard1@comfirst.org.uk  01684 312730. Or try the Health and Safety Executive website http://www.hse.gov.uk and look at their free leaflets.