Brass Band Policies

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by loulou_bedford, May 9, 2008.

  1. loulou_bedford

    loulou_bedford New Member


    Our band is looking to update it's policies and procedures and am interested in what policies the other bands have in place. Obvious things are
    • constitution
    • child protection policy & CRBs
    • equal opportunities
    • instrument insurance
    • performance rights license
    but what about
    • risk assessments
    • public liability
    • licensing act
    • and any others I may have missed
    Many Thanks in advance for your sharing your experiences

  2. Al

    Al Member

    My initial post deleted

    "Lucy 2 posts"?

    (mods please delete my post and let this ridiculous thread plummet)
    Last edited: May 9, 2008
  3. loulou_bedford

    loulou_bedford New Member

    I'm unsure why you think this thread should plummet. I've come onto this site to seek advice from fellow brass banders. If you do not wish to contribute to the thread I understand but please do not sabotage it.

    Apologies if I've mis-read the context of your post.
  4. dyl

    dyl Active Member

    What's so ridiculous about it? Lucy's made a perfectly reasonable request for assistance and information.....let's keep it civil so that she has some replies and advice to help her and her band along the way.
    Last edited: May 9, 2008
  5. TubaPete

    TubaPete Member

    Hi Lucy (and others who may be interested),

    I've been involved in voluntary group development work since 1990 and now work in local government policy development. I can probably put some stuff together that might help you - but not for a couple of weeks. If you PM me I'll see what i can do.

  6. bignige

    bignige Member

    I agree that this is worthwhile as some bands may have policies in place that others can benefit from. We had an instrument policy setting out the minimum standard of instrument we would consider buying for our main band, training band and learners.

    Your insurance should include public liability and if you pay an MD it might be useful consider employers liability as well. There maybe occasions when your treasurer will have cash at home (after a concert or from Christmas collections) you should consider cover for cash thefts as this may not be available on normal household insurance. Also consider including your music library, uniforms and trophies etc on the insurance. Some contest organisers ask that you insure trophies held by you and some can be worth a lot.

    You might need a lottery licence form your Local Authority if you have a 200 Club or hold grand draws for fundraising. Your Local Authority will be able to help with any other licences you need.

    If you collect you might need a street licence but I think that anything under the Licensing Act for performance will either be held by halls etc rather than the band unless it is a specific one off. Again your Local Authority should be able to help.

    The idea of risk assessments in this day and age is a good one but it is not something that I am aware of in our band. We have an annual fire assessment carried out on our Band Hall but nothing more formal than that.

    One final thing that is worth considering. The band is classed as an unincorporated association for Corporation Tax purposes. You should seek advice from your local tax office about that though.
  7. Janet Watkins

    Janet Watkins Member

    There is some information regarding child protection and CRB checks on the British Federation of Brass Bands site, here.
  8. loulou_bedford

    loulou_bedford New Member

    Thank you for your comments.

    I was at a meeting last week with a new band which were setting up and they asked our bands advice on the set up of their organisations. They had specific questions about policies asking questions such as 'do you have a set risk assessment' etc etc, at which point a realised that ignorance was not an excuse for us not 'toeing the line' so thought I'd better make sure we had it all in order.

    From a few discussions, it sounds like the band has the same policies/procedures in place as most.


  9. TubaPete

    TubaPete Member

    There is also your local Council for Voluntary Service (they may have a different name) which will be listed in the Yellow Pages under 'Charities.' They receive funding to enable them to support local voluntary groups (which would include brass bands) to manage themselves efficiently.

  10. WoodenFlugel

    WoodenFlugel Moderator Staff Member

    Based on my <cough>15 years<cough> committee service to a band that is fairly well run (or so we're told!)...
    • constitution - yes absolutely! If your band doesn't have one you should look at getting one sorted ASAP. I think some band's have theirs on their website - mine doesn't, but I'd happily forward a copy of our constitution to you.
    • child protection policy & CRBs - Again, something you should really have. Our child protection policy is part of our constitution and is pretty much taken from the BFBB's website :)tup ). CRB's are also essential - especially if you have a lot of kids or a junior band.
    • equal opportunities - We had to add this as part of our lottery application about 12 years ago. Its something which we did anyway of course, but in this day and age it seems you have to have everything written in triplicate!
    • instrument insurance - Yes, yes, yes! - vitally important. Ours is though the BFBB and includes public liability insurance too (another must-have)
    • performance rights license - This is something I know less about. We always get "PRS fees" on the accounts come AGM time, so I guess we have this!
    • risk assessments - Hmm not sure about this. I'm not sure what risk you would be assessing that isn't already covered by your insurance (or should be) or general constitution.
    • public liability - COvered in our insurance policy
    • licensing act - As I have said I don't know too much about this, but I think we tell the people booking us that they need to get this.
    • and any others I may have missed -
      • Booking forms - Make sure you get everything written down - start times, finish times, what the band requires (25 chairs for example) the fee, plus anything else I've forgotten. This should be filled in by both your secretary (or whoever looks after the bands diary) an the organiser. Then you have it all written down to go back to if things go wrong.
      • Mission Statement / band objectives - I am really not a fan of mission statements for anything, but people like the charities coimmission really go big on these.
      • Trustees - Find some worthy people who will ensure the bands assets (which will amount to tens of thousands probably) are looked after properly should the unthinkable happen and you fold either temporarily or permanently. Ours are required to meet yearly in the event of the band folding to see if the assets can be used to promote music making in our area - only after a period of time (I think 5 years though it might be 10) can anything be sold. I've seen several bands "lose" instruments to players when they've folded. Good for the player you might think, but that instrument might have been better used to start a kid off playing...
    Incidentally if your band are looking for grants or charity status then you'll find a lot of the above are things you will need before you are even considered.

    Finally have a look at the British Federation of Brass Bands' website. It has some useful info and also a couple of template policy documents.