Body of Persons Approval Guidance Wales
Under Section 37(3)(b) of the Children and Young Persons Act 1963 a licence is not required for a performance given under arrangements made by 'a body of person' approved by the local authority where the performance is taking place, or in some exceptional circumstances by Welsh Government or the Secretary of State.
What is a BOPA?
The first thing to be made clear to both organisations who are applying for and local authorities who are issuing body of persons approvals is that a BOPA must not be viewed as a means of 'getting round' the requirement for a performance licence.
Applying for and granting a BOPA will reduce the administrative burden for all parties, however the same principles apply in terms of safeguarding the child and ensuring there is proper provision to secure his health and kind treatment. There must be no reduction in safeguarding arrangements.
A BOPA, if granted, removes the need to apply for an individual licence for each child; it is granted to the organisation that is responsible for the performance.
The approval is granted by the local authority where the performance is taking place; the local authority can grant the approval even if the children taking part do not live within its' boundaries. It is the organisation which is approved not the children i.e. the local authority is confirming that the group or organisation is a 'suitable' or 'approved' group and therefore must be certain that they (the LA) have taken every reasonable precaution to ensure the group is indeed a suitable group.
A BOPA can be granted to an organisation for a single performance or for a series of performances within a specified time providing no payment is made to the child or to anyone else in respect of the child taking part in the performance and the child does not require absence from school. See Section 7 Absence from school for further details.
A BOPA is not transferable to another organisation or to individual children taking part in a performance arranged by someone else.
A BOPA cannot be issued in respect of an activity.
Who can apply?
Any type of organisation can apply for a BOPA i.e. amateur group, professional company, stage or broadcast providing there is no payment made (other than expenses) for the child to take part. However they will be required to meet certain criteria and to demonstrate that they have clear, robust and well embedded safeguarding policies and arrangements in place to protect children. This will inform the local authority decision and it is at its' discretion whether to issue an approval.
Applying for a Body of Persons licence
To apply for a body of persons licence, you will need the following documents:
- Fully completed application form
- Safeguarding Policy
- Risk Assessment
- Copies of all licences for everyone who will be acting as chaperone for the performance.
- List of other supervising adults and copies of their current Disclosure and Barring certificates
- Risk Assessment
For an application form, please see below, or contact ESWS@conwy.gov.uk requesting a form to be emailed to you.
Completed applications and supporting documents (as above) can be emailed to ESWS@conwy.gov.uk or posted to:
Education Social Work Service,
PO Box 1,
Completed applications must be received within 15 working days of the event however we advise that you give as much notice as possible to avoid disappointment.
Phone: 01492 575031