Events and SIA Licensing

Individuals undertaking manned guarding activity at events will require an SIA licence. Manned guarding activity includes any of the following:

  1. guarding premises against unauthorised access or occupation, against outbreaks of disorder or against damage;
  2. guarding property against destruction or damage, against being stolen or against being otherwise dishonestly taken or obtained;
  3. guarding one or more individuals against assault or against injuries that might be suffered in consequence of the unlawful conduct of others.

Individuals undertaking such activity on a wholly voluntary basis will not require an SIA licence. A volunteer must not receive any reward, benefit or payment in kind.

Door Supervisor Front line Licence

If the licensable activity undertaken is in relation to licensed premises, a door supervisor licence is required.*

"In relation to licensed premises" means when those premises are open to the public, at times when alcohol is being supplied for consumption, or regulated entertainment is being provided, on the premises.

The extent of the area covered by any of the premises licences will be up to the local licensing authority and not the SIA to decide.

The licensing authority may choose to license a complete event, stadium or venue. This would require all those undertaking licensable manned guarding activities to be licensed as door supervisors, unless exempted in connection with a certified sports ground or stand.*

Security Guard Front line Licence

If the licensable activity undertaken is not in relation to licensed premises a security guard licence or a door supervisor licence is required (holders of door supervisor licences can work as security guards on non-licensed premises).*

*Exemption from licensing applies to in-house employees when carrying out duties in connection with their employer's use of a certified sports ground or certified sports stand for purposes for which its safety certificate has effect. Employees of a visiting team to such premises are also exempt provided that the visiting team has a certified sports ground or stand. For a more precise description of the exemption see Section 4(6) to 4(12) of the Private Security Industry Act 2001 as amended and the explanatory notes to section 63 of the Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006.

If you manage, supervise and / or are the employer of individuals who engage in licensable activity, but you do not personally carry out the front line activity at any time, then you need a non-front line licence.

If you have a non-front line licence you do not need to get another one if you are involved in another area of non-front line licensable activity (for example: if you are a director of a firm supplying door supervisors but you also supply security guards, you will not need to get two licences).


'Security at Events' Booklet

Cover of the Security at Events booklet

More information is available in our 'Security at Events' booklet (download size: 1,291kb), which summarises the licensing of security staff at events.



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