In almost every case where a child takes part in a performance, a licence is required. The applicant for a child performance licence is the producer, not the child or the child’s parent.
Application forms can be obtained from and returned to:
Child Performance Licence
Education and Youth
Please ensure that you read and fully completed the form with all the information requested as we will be unable to consider any incomplete applications.
Application for a Children Performance Licence
Forms should be returned fully completed and accompanied by all the necessary documentation 21 days before the date of the first performance. Regulations state that the licensing authority, i.e. the LA, can refuse a licence on the grounds that the application was not submitted within the 21 days timescale
The purpose of the timescales is to allow the licensing authority (LA) to carry out the checks necessary for ensuring the child’s safety, health, welfare and educational needs. The LA also has to notify the LA for the area where the performance is to take place, to allow that authority to make arrangements for its inspection.
The licence application must be accompanied by:-
- two recent passport-size photographs of the child;
- proof of the child’s date of birth (copy of birth certificate or back page of passport);
- health declaration form;
- letter from the child’s Headteacher agreeing to the child’s absence from school and/or confirming that the proposed performances will not be detrimental to the child’s education - click here for the form.
With only very few exceptions, a child may not perform unless a licence has been issued. Licences cannot be issued retrospectively. Exceptions to the need for a licence are:-
- the performance is not for more than four days and there has not been another such performance in the last six months, and
- the child is not paid, and
- the child will not be absent from school.
School performances (or those with organisations such as scouts, guides or a church) are also exempt.
In some cases, an organiser can apply for a Body of Persons Approval (BoPA) from the local authority where their performance(s) are taking place. This covers all children in one approval, rather than individual licences for each of the children taking part. A BoPA can be a good option for amateur groups who otherwise might find the licensing process onerous and costly, to the extent that children may be deprived of good opportunities. They may also be appropriate for other types of organisation: the key requirement is that the child is not paid.
Body of Persons Application
NB: A child cannot hold a work permit and a performance licence at the same time