With summer finally upon us, thoughts soon turn to that great British pastime of going to a festival. Glastonbury, Reading, Leeds, Latitude; festivals of all shapes and sizes are popping up across England and Wales.

However rather than paying for expensive tickets, what about taking on the challenge of organising your own festival in your local community? If this sounds like an interesting idea, here are a few pointers for how Land Registry could help you plan your event.

Finding a property or piece of land

For those of you who own a massive field in the West Country, accommodating a modest 200,000 people in your back garden may be an easy option. For everyone else a little more planning may be involved.

Some of the things you need to consider:

  • what type of venue do I want?
  • where is the venue located?
  • what are the restrictions on my venue?

Once you’ve found a potential location for your festival you can find out whether it’s registered with us. This will then tell you who owns the land. You can do this by using our ‘Find a property’ service which lets you buy:

  • title registers showing ownership details
  • title plans showing property extent (the general boundaries of the property)

If the land is unregistered, we won’t have any record and you may have to do some local detective work to try and find out who does own it. This could include contacting National Archives, the County Record Offices or local libraries – see our guidance to get information about property and land.

You can also use our online services to find out whether the land you’re looking at is at risk of flooding by purchasing a Flood Risk Indicator Report. After all, a bit of mud is fine but you don’t want your guests going for a swim given our unpredictable weather!

Setting sensible boundaries

Once you’ve found a location or for those lucky enough to already have access to a piece of land, you can find out a great deal of information about the land’s boundaries.

Understanding the lie of the land and where the boundaries are should help identify your neighbours and avoid any confusion on the day. When planning any sort of activity which may impact on the neighbours, it’s probably best to talk to or write to them about your plans so they are informed – they may even want to help with your festival!

Other handy tips

Of course we won’t be able to help with everything, but here are some further pointers to get your event off the ground.

Temporary Events Notice – if you’re selling food/alcohol and/or playing music late into the night you may need a Temporary Events Notice (TEN). Search online for ‘temporary event notices + your local council’ to find out more about applying for a TEN in your area.

Safety – have you a contingency plan in case anything goes wrong? This doesn’t have to be too difficult as just a few smart steps (first-aid kits and access for emergency vehicles) and you should be on your way.

Good luck and hope this helps you start to plan a great summer festival.

Duncan Keary
By Duncan Keary,
Marketing Manager at HM Land Registry