Guidance

Welcome

Thank you for volunteering to run a group or activity for LALG, without your support we could not continue.  Guidance is available to support the running of groups and other LALG activities. We hope this will be useful to you.  If you have ideas how to improve it, please contact Elaine Fox: dpo@lalg.org.uk.

The guidance topics are grouped into the categories shown on the left-hand side of this display.  This one is for general guidance. It is viewed by clicking one of the titles below and it will expand to show the guidance. The other titles will then be above or beneath the expanded one as you move down the list. Please start with this one if you are new to using the guidance.

LALG holds your data securely and only uses it to let you know about LALG activities or give you information.  The principles of the LALG privacy policy apply to group contacts.

Support Team exists and its members are available to give help to all those running groups and organising activities.

Setting up a new group

The Support team are responsible for supporting groups who need their help, especially new groups. They may be able to attend and even run your first few meetings. The following checklist contains items to consider when launching a new group.

  • Use the website, social media and the newsletter to invite anyone who is interested to leave their contact details at David’s Bookshop.  Provide an email or telephone number for William /prospective group contact as an alternative.
  • Decide who will run the group after the setting up period. You need a Group Contact to act as at least an information point. It might help to note down the key elements of the role.        
  • Consider how many members are needed to make the group viable. This will vary.
  • Ask prospective members how often they’d like to meet, and daytime, evening or weekend? Try to avoid overlap with other similar groups unless they are already full.
  • Identify a potential venue and check availability. See Finding a Venue for some ideas.
  • Work out costs and a charge per meeting. The group will need to be self-financing and the constitution prohibits an extra subscription charge by groups.
  • Ask leaders of similar groups for advice.
  • Make sure you understand and apply data protection rules.
  • Draft a programme for the first few meetings. 
  • After the first couple of meetings, ensure that all participants are paid up members of LALG.
  • Consider having a dedicated bank account if significant monies are changing hand on a regular basis. See All Finance Guidance.
  • Consider having a new email account for the group contact – particularly if there needs to be more than one person managing the group via email or your personal email is joint with someone else.  A group email address reduces the risk of your personal account being hacked.

 

Support Team

Thank you for volunteering to run a group or activity for LALG, without your support we could not continue. All LALG groups are supported by the following team:

William Armitage 01462 643537

George Barnes 01462 673710

Ronnie McInerney Gilbert 07809 100647

Steve Green 07710 542803

Astrid Hansen 01462 337991

Val Quieros 07787 512580

They are available to give help and advice to all those running groups and organising activities. 

Please contact any of the team if you need to, or email groupsupport@lalg.org.uk 

Running successful group activities

Most people come to groups to enjoy a specific activity in the company of friends. The Group shares responsibility for making meetings successful. Successful groups:

  • Welcome new members; perhaps accompanying them or assigning a ‘buddy’ informally or rotating them amongst established members so no one feels an outsider.
  • Cherish existing members, for example sending a message when someone is away ill.
  • Plan ahead so that each meeting is well organised and participants know what’s happening.
  • Notice if membership is falling and act to attract more participants.
  • Notice if any ongoing arrangements need to be improved.
  • Ensure that the group remains financially robust.
  • Share the workload and responsibilities among the group, having people to bounce ideas off makes it more inclusive and fun and meets them within reason.
  • Make sure they comply with the LALG Equality Policy
  • Comply with the LALG Privacy Policy
  • Understand potential Safeguarding issues.
  • Read the LALG Guidance on Accessibility for members with a disability [add link when approved]

Further information on chairing a meeting

Finding a suitable venue

  • Once you have established the size of your group and whether specialist equipment is needed you can start to search for suitable place.
  • Look at the monthly newsletter which will show where similar groups are meeting.
  • Local council websites give details of halls available to hire; including in North Hertfordshire the Mrs Howard Memorial Hall and Jackson Community Halls in Letchworth.
  • A comprehensive list of venues in Letchworth   (This website is currently being revised)
  • Information on The Settlement
  • Information on Fairfield Community Hall
  • For other areas try a google search!

Disaster-proofing your group

Don’t wait for an emergency. Make use of the Support Team. The LALG committee has systems in place so that LALG can continue to run smoothly through ups and downs. Groups can make similar plans. Here are some ideas:

  • Make sure that there are at least two people who know how to run the group.
  • Keep a written record of key information that would be needed if the main organiser was unavailable.
  • Consider appointing a deputy who can take over as group contact if needed.
  • Have one or two alternative venues in mind, in case of need.
  • Keep a small amount of funds available to see you through temporary leaner times.
  • Watch the group membership and consider emailing people you haven’t seen for a while.

Rescuing a Failing Group

Support is available to groups that are struggling to attract or retain members. As soon as you suspect a problem contact a member of the Support Team. They can help by offering any of the following:

  • Temporary group leader
  • Publicity boost
  • Financial support
  • Practical help and advice.

Money held by a Group must be donated to central LALG funds if the Group closes.

Information Security

Organisations are obliged to hold information securely.  Details of the General Data Protection Requirements to which LALG must adhere can be found at All Privacy Guidance. As far as LALG is concerned this applies to all its members who organise its groups or other events and activities.

Technical security:

  • Make sure you have up to date virus protection on your computer.
  • Ensure any networks you use (whether at home or in public places) are secured.
  • Beware of hoax emails that try to obtain your log in credentials or personal details.
  • Use strong passwords and don’t write them down or share them with anyone else.
  • Lock the screen on your computer, laptop or other device when you are not using them.
  • Don’t store confidential information on an unencrypted device or in a folder you share with others.

Physical security:

  • Make sure your home or office are secure (e.g. door and window locks).
  • Don’t leave papers, laptops or other devices visible in your car – lock them in the boot.
  • Use a secure form of waste disposal for papers e.g. a shredder.
  • Don’t lose your laptop or memory stick!  And make sure they are password protected.

Other risks to be aware of:

  • Being overheard/overlooked in public places or when travelling.
  • Family members sharing your computer, laptop, tablet or other device should not be able to access personal information about members.
  • To avoid passing unwanted bugs and viruses between the computers and mobile devices of your group members please make sure you have up to date virus protection enabled. This may already be loaded on your device but you should check this out. Let members of your group know if you think you have been hacked or your online security otherwise compromised, using another method to contact them.

Insurance

LALG holds insurance which includes cover for people on group activities if the group contact has thought about the risks involved and done their best to manage them.

For many groups risks will be minimal but we have provided safety checklists for some which carry more risk such as cycling, walking and trips using various means of transport. More information is available at All Safety Guidance.

Accessibility

LALG’s Equality policy states: “LALG will make every effort to use venues that are accessible to all and will respond positively to any requests for improving access.”

Group contacts and others who organise LALG events should do all they reasonably can to make activities and events accessible to members with a disability. A disability could mean that someone will need to use a wheelchair or other walking aid, not be able to walk very far or cope with steps or stairs, or have sight or hearing problems. We also recognise that not every disability is visible or obvious.

Group contacts and event organisers should reassure any member with a disability attending an activity or event that they will support them and make their attendance as easy and stress-free as possible. Members who cannot manage without help should be given the opportunity to bring a companion/carer with them. If a member of a household has a non-resident carer due to age, disability or a medical condition and needs the carer to accompany them to LALG activities and events, then their membership will also cover the carer.

LALG’s activity groups and events take place in a number of different venues, depending on their nature.

Public venues (e.g. The Settlement, a Coffee bar) should already comply with legal requirements to provide disabled access but some will be more suitable than others depending on a particular disability.

The following are some factors that should be taken into consideration when choosing a public venue:

  • Served by public transport.
  • Adequate car parking facilities onsite or very close at hand including disabled parking bays.
  • Ramp for building access.
  • Ground floor accommodation where possible. If you are considering upper floor accommodation because there is a lift, you must ensure that onsite help can be provided with evacuation in the event of a fire.
  • Accessible and usable disabled toilet facilities.
  • Good disabled access.
  • A sound system and loop.
  • Spacious enough to cope with wheelchairs/mobility scooters.
  • Good lighting.
  • Access to heating/air conditioning controls.

Other considerations that would help:

  • Providing a map, directions and details about a venue to new members.
  • Having a designated person who is easily identifiable, to ensure members with a disability are provided with appropriate seating e.g. at the front for those who have vision or hearing loss and at the end of a row for those with mobility problems.
  • Timing and length of meetings – remember to factor in a break.

Assessing Potential Problems with Events

It is a requirement of LALG insurance that the organiser of any event has thought about potential problems and planned for them.

This checklist identifies some problems that may occur and how to deal with them. There may be additional ones for specific events.

Hazard

Who might be harmed and how

Actions to take in advance

If it happens

Accommodation/ facilities/key personnel

Venue becomes unavailable

All

Pay deposit on time

Check a few days before event that all is in order

Find alternative venue

Or cancel the event and:

Post notice on hall door

Contact LALG publicity to tell people via website and social media

Tell TIC if they have sold tickets

If you have contact email/phone for attendees send them a message

Key facilities at venue are unavailable

All

Check a few days in advance that all is in order

Organise alternative provision

Or cancel the event - as above

Speaker/band/quiz master etc becomes unavailable

All

Check a few days in advance that all is in order

 

Find an alternative

Or cancel the event - as above

Incident at accommodation eg fire alarm

All

Check premises evacuation procedures and know where meeting point is

Have emergency contact number for venue manager

Tell participants what to do in case of emergency

Ensure venue is safely evacuated

Call Emergency Services if needed

Inform venue manager

Unusual or extreme weather conditions

All

Consider taking event cancellation insurance

Monitor weather forecast

Agree with team when decision to cancel/go ahead should be taken

Organiser to obtain everyone’s mobile phone number or email

Make timely decision to go ahead or cancel – as above

Injury and illness

 

 

Attendees are responsible for their own personal insurance – as notified on website/newsletter

 

Minor injuries (eg cuts, bruises, stings)

Individual

None

Offer first aid kit and find quiet place for injury to be treated in consultation with person or their companion

Consider making incident report to Secretary of LALG

Trips and sprains

Individual

Check before event starts that there are no trip hazards

Point out any uneven floors, taped wires, steps etc to participants

Serious injury/illness needing ambulance/

accident

Individual

None

Dial 999 and call emergency services

Make incident report to Secretary of LALG

Damage to property or environment

 

Individual

LALG has third party insurance but individuals are responsible for their own insurance

Organiser to claim on LALG insurance, as appropriate

Complete incident report form

People at risk

 

Individual/  organiser

Understand the requirements when running events including children/young people/adults at risk

Notify LALG committee safeguarding officer and complete incident report form

Budget

Event loses money

Organiser

Budget for realistic number of people

Have cancellation policy

Consider cancellation insurance

Understand commitments to venue and speakers etc

Cancel event if insufficient people

Trip makes money

All

Budget for realistic number of people

Surplus to be returned to LALG or to the group organising the event

Equality

Letchworth Arts and Leisure Group (LALG) is open to all. We aim to provide our Members, volunteers, supporters and suppliers with equal respect, regardless of any personal characteristics, including: age, disability, gender, marital status or pregnancy, race (including colour, nationality, ethnic or national origin), religion or belief, sexual orientation, class or socio-economic status. The Equality policy can be viewed here

Rules on being a member

  • All participants should be members of LALG. You could consider asking to see their membership cards once a year.
  • New participants can come a couple of times before deciding whether to join.
  • Members accept personal responsibility for their own insurance.
  • The membership fee entitles every adult living in the household to participate in all LALG activities providing a group is not full although a fee may be payable for some activities; this will be made clear in the LALG Newsletter.
  • Carers are able to come to events free of charge when they are supporting an LALG member.
  • In case of doubt you can ask the Membership secretary to check that people attending your group are LALG members by sending her a list of names and addresses.

See also the LALG Constitution

This page provides information on how LALG handles personal data, and a statement of conformance to the regulations (known as GDPR) governing this subject.  LALG also has a Cookie policy for the website but this will not directly concern GCs.

The following four documents can be viewed by selecting from the list below this page etc..

  • A Statement to members explaining how LALG handles personal data.
  • A formal Notice describing conformance to the regulations.
  • A document giving Guidance to Group Contacts on the steps they should take when handling any personal data about their Group members.
  • A document giving details of the General Data Protection Regulations.

It is likely that as a Group Contact you, or someone else in your group, will keep a list of your group members and it is therefore essential that you comply with the GDPR regulations set out in the Guidance.  LALG also keeps a list of all Group Contacts which may include emails, telephone numbers and addresses.  This data is held securely and the LALG Committee will only use it to let you know about LALG activities or to provide you with information relating to your position as a group contact.

Privacy Statement for Members GDPR

The incorporation of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) into the Data Protection Act 2018, effective 25 May 2018, replaced all previous data protection legislation. For Letchworth Arts and Leisure Group (LALG) there will be no changes to the data we collect from you or the information we send you.

As a member of LALG, it is essential that we continue to communicate with you. Currently we do this by email (if you have supplied an email address) or by post and occasionally by telephone. We also send you our monthly newsletter and put that on our website. We will continue to contact you in these ways. Additionally your group contact may send you details of activities they are organizing.

Our emails and letters to you will contain membership information, plus details of meetings and events organised by LALG. We will also continue to inform you of other events, meetings, exhibitions and our discount suppliers scheme. As before, such emails will still carry an ‘unsubscribe’ option in the footnote.

You can request to see your membership information that we have on file under your name. This is limited to the date you joined, your name, address, home and mobile telephone numbers and email address. We will also record whether you have paid your subscription but not your banking details.

We will continue our policy of not passing on your details to third parties other than for distribution of the newsletter, which is undertaken by our printers, and we use GPDR compliant companies to distribute emails to you.

You can view the LALG Privacy Notice below or request a copy from the Secretary.

Privacy Notice

Why do we need your data? We need to collect and store your name, address and email so that we can let you know what leisure opportunities are provided each month by Letchworth Arts and Leisure Group (LALG). We provide you with details of linked organisations, discount suppliers and include some advertising in our monthly newsletter. We also track subscription payments. We use anonymised data for statistical purposes for example to track survey responses and membership numbers year on year. We check what data we have on members every two years and remove it if we no longer need it. If you leave LALG we’ll make sure we remove and/or delete any data, we don’t need to keep.

What do we use it for?

Any of the information listed might be needed to manage your membership with LALG and to run our activities including those organised by group contacts. We won’t ever use this information for anything else unless you give us your active consent for that additional use. We will also tell you about activities run by like-minded organisations and from time to time we will tell you about volunteering opportunities. We will always include opt-out options on all email communications. You can withdraw your consent at any time by contacting the LALG Secretary.

Do we share your data with anyone else? 

  • We will never give your data to third parties for them to use.
  • We will use third party services to send emails and our monthly newsletters. The Tourist Information Office and David’s Bookshop act as our agents for some purposes. We will make sure they are reputable and secure, and that your data is kept safe.
  • If another member of LALG asks for your contact details, we will only ever share them with your consent.

What can you ask us to do?

At any time you can ask to view, update or correct any data we hold on you. You can also ask that we stop using your data or that we erase it. To request any of these please contact the LALG Secretary.

If you’ve got a question who should you speak to?

The best person to speak to is the Data Protection Officer: dpo@lalg.org.uk 

Data Protection advice for Group Leaders and Group Contacts

This page provides information on how LALG handles personal data, and a statement of conformance to the regulations (known as GDPR) governing this subject.    In addition you can view the LALG Cookie policy.

Data Collection and Use

Personal information should be collected and used lawfully and fairly.  ‘Fair’ means that that individual should know who has their information and what it will be used for.  Information collected for one purpose should not be used for another.  So if someone gives you information for LALG purposes you should not use it for anything else – for example to promote a business, event, charity or political party.

The key things you need to know:

New data protection legislation was introduced in May 2018.  The definition of what is personal data remains the same and includes anything that can identify an individual: contact details, membership number or photos. 

We can only collect data which we have a valid reason for having, and for which we have the owner’s consent to using. Sometimes explicit consent is not needed because it is obvious. Under the ‘contract’ that members have with LALG we do not need their consent to communicate with them but even so we have to provide clear and simple information about how their data will be stored and used.

We must keep data safe, see Information Security. If it is online it should be password protected. If it is a paper record, it should be kept private and when possible locked away.

When we no longer need the data, for example when a member has left the group or after an event we should safely destroy it.

So how does this apply to you as a Group Contact?

As a Group Contact you probably have a list of members in the group. Make sure you only have data that you have a valid reason for having. For example, if you will never email members don’t collect email addresses. 

If you meet in each other’s houses you will need to collect addresses.  Consider whether you should send a list to everyone in the group or just put the details for the next venue on the call up.

You should tell group members that you will abide by LALG’s privacy statement  www.lalg.org.uk/privacy.  If they prefer a paper copy they should contact the LALG Secretary via the contact details on the website or in the newsletter.

If you intend to use the data for anything other than running your group you will need the explicit permission of the member?  For example, you can only take and store an image such as a photograph or video if you have the explicit consent of the member(s) involved.

You need to review how safely you are storing the data you hold. Take steps to avoid data going to anyone else. This includes within the group: so when emailing several members, use the bcc facility unless you have explicit permission to share those email addresses within the group.

Any data that you no longer need should be destroyed safely and securely.  This also applies if you step down as Group Contact. 

Summary Statements

For Members - It is best practice to add a footnote to any email, booking form, or leaflet saying:

'I will safely store your name, phone number and email address and will only use them to manage the group’s activities and to contact you about group events.'  (Note: Add address if you use this to contact people or meet at each other’s houses).

'If you give me your consent I will add your phone number /email address, address to my mailing list for other communications which might be of interest to you. You can withdraw your consent at any point by contacting me.'

(Only if relevant to your group) 'If you give me your consent I will take photographs/videos of group activities which might be used on public sites such as the LALG website or LALG Facebook page for promotional activities.'

'The full LALG Privacy Notice can be found on the LALG website (www.lalg.org.uk) by clicking on LALG Privacy Statement at the bottom of any page.'

For Non Members - Sometimes people who are not members of LALG join us at events or activities. If we collect data from them, we should also tell them how that data will be used. 

For example, on an email or booking form:

'I will safely store your name, phone number, email address, address (delete as applicable) and will only use them to manage the LALG event/activity (add details).  

The principles outlined in the LALG privacy notice apply and can be found on the LALG website (www.lalg.org.uk) by clicking on LALG Privacy Statement at the bottom of any page.'

If relevant you can add:

'If you give me your permission I will store your details and use them to send you future information about LALG events/activities.'

GDPR Detailed Guidance

Introduction of General Data Protection Regulations – some key principles

From May 2018 the new General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) will be in place.  The definition of what is personal data has been expanded and now includes almost anything that can be used to identify an individual, so this could be personal contact details, a membership number or a photo.  The key thing with all data is that there is a good reason to have it and consent to use it.

Reason – under GDPR we should not be collecting data for no good reason.

Consent – under GDPR a person must give positive consent.  They should have access to a clear and specific privacy statement that explains what the data they are providing will be used for.

Legitimate interests – there are situations where positive consent is not needed because use of data is implied in the activity the individual is taking part in.  Whilst positive consent might not be needed there should still be access to clear and simple information about how the data will be used.

Retention of Data – we need to be vigilant about how long we keep data, if we don’t need it any more we shouldn’t keep it.

Secure Storage – any electronic data should be in a secure password-protected environment.  Physically held data should be held locked and secured too.

Documentation and Process – there is a shift in emphasis to show compliance.  So having documentation is important for example having evidence of consent being given.

Reason, consent and legitimate interests

The key thing with all data is not that you have it as such – but that you have a good reason to have it and that you have consent to use it.

  • Reason: under GDPR you should not be collecting data for no good reason. Unless you have a genuine reason for having and using data then don’t ask for it. This is common sense really – and good practice. All it will do is take up digital or physical space - and if you have no use for it, it essentially exists only as a risk for you – so why have it all?
  • Consent: this will perhaps be the biggest change. Previously consent could be implied by inaction or silence – it’s the pre-ticked box or ‘unless you tell us otherwise we will email you’ approach. Under GDPR consent will have to be positive – an individual will have to take definite action to say ‘you can have and use my data’ – so they tick the box rather then it being pre-ticked. They should also have access to a clear and specific privacy statement that explains what the data they are providing will be used for. It shouldn’t be a general catchall for all data and all use – it has to be specific to the data they are providing at the time.
  • Legitimate interests - there will be situations where you don’t need positive consent as use of data is implied in the activity the individual is taking part in. For example emailing a member of your group about a meeting change or fee reminder is legitimate interest and implied by being a member. Whilst positive consent might not be needed they should still have access to clear and simple information about how the data will be used.

Retention of data

One of the changes with GDPR is that you will need to be more vigilant with regards to how long you keep data for. It can be very easy to keep old data on a spreadsheet somewhere or locked away in a filing cabinet.  However, you should not hold and use data unless you have a good reason for doing so.

Removing old data may seem like an administrative burden. But tidying up data is a good administrative process to go through anyway – and if you don’t need the data, why have it? It takes up space and exists purely to create risk for you – which you can easily remove.

Having a regular review of the data you hold and how you use it is a good idea. But thinking about data retention and making sure your data is clean and useful should be an ongoing process. If you have some processes in place for cleaning data as you go, it will help ensure you are being fair and responsible in how you use data and reduce any risk to your group, not to mention making a regular data review much easier.

Have a process in place for reviewing your data on a regular basis. The point of this review should be to decide if you still have a good and fair reason to store and/or use the data, and that you have any necessary permissions in place.

Secure storage

Rules around how data is stored have not changed too much. But it’s always useful to have a reminder:

  • Any electronically held data should be in a password-protected, secure environment, and those passwords should be changed regularly.
  • It can be easy to focus on digital/electronic data for GDPR. Physically held data should be kept locked and secure too.

Summary Statements

On our general Data Protection Requirements Guidance page there are some summary statements to help you.

Safety checks & Assessment of risk

Everyone wants to enjoy LALG events and to feel safe.  We have devised some checklists to help people organising activities.  Please take time to read the one most appropriate to your event and adapt it as necessary.  It is a condition of our insurance that organisers have thought about the risks and done their best to manage them. The checklist enables you to do that. If an incident occurs during your event you will need to complete an Incident Report form and alert the LALG secretary at secretary@lalg.org.uk.

General safety checks for trips and transport

Risk

In advance/before arrival

If it happens

Unusual or extreme weather conditions

Monitor weather forecast; cancel or postpone trip in extreme conditions 

Have drinking water available

Consider abandoning visit

Minor injuries (eg cuts, bruises, stings)

Consider carrying a small first aid kit

Refer injured person to destination’s first aider, coach driver or a pharmacy 

Serious injury/illness needing ambulance (individuals are responsible for informing others if they may need assistance eg they carry an epi-pen)

Trip organiser to have everyone’s name and contact details and plan what to do if someone is unable to continue or return with the party

Trip organiser to carry mobile phone and liaise with emergency and destination’s staff

Implement plan as appropriate

Damage to property or environment

 

Trip organiser to warn individual or destination’s staff, as appropriate

Major incident at destination

Trip organiser to give out their mobile number for the day

Trip organiser to have everyone’s name and contact details

Organiser may carry a backup battery for mobile devices

Follow destination’s procedures

Trip organiser to carry mobile phone to contact coach driver should an alternative pick-up location be necessary

Trip organiser to check everyone accounted for

Lost property (people are responsible for their own belongings)

 

Trip organiser to give the individual the destination’s/coach company’s contact details

Lost person

Trip organiser to give out their mobile number for the day

Trip organiser to plan what to do if a lost person does not make contact

Take vulnerable people only if accompanied by a responsible adult

Inform destination’s staff and follow their procedures

Implement plan as appropriate

Mobility/health issues

Ask travellers if they have any mobility or health issues which could impact on the day

Allocate seat near coach front if mobility issues

Ensure traveller explains how to use epipen etc

Create plan for serious cases

Carry out traveller’s requests if safe and reasonable to do so

Carry out pre-prepared plan

Hazards at destination

Contact destination in advance and check access, facilities etc and ensure travellers aware

 

LALG Guidance for Cycling Groups

There are a number of LALG cycling groups, completing many different types of rides so this guidance may need adapting to suit particular rides  / situations.

It is important that all cyclists, for the safety of themselves and others, are familiar with the Highway Code. The pages relevant are the ‘Rules for Cyclists’, pages 59 - 82

Cyclists

•   It is the responsibility of all cyclists to prepare themselves for the ride that they are undertaking - including personal fitness, equipment, clothing and suitable refreshments.

•   All cyclists are responsible to make sure their bike is roadworthy - to inspect their bike prior to each ride paying particular attention to brakes, frame, steering, pedals, wheels, lights & tyres.

•   All cyclists should carry a method of tyre inflation, a spare inner tube, a multi-tyre changing tool and it is advisable to wear an approved safety helmet.

•   If the cyclist is unsure of his / her capabilities to complete the ride, or has any other concerns, it is their responsibility to contact the ride leader prior to the day of the ride.

•   All cyclists are expected to stay as a group, to warn others of approaching vehicles and hazards using known calls and be considerate to others within and outside the group.

•   At the completion of the ride, riders should raise any issues, concerns and, just as important, aspects of the ride that went well. Riders should bring to the attention of the leader any accidents and near misses, if this hasn’t been done during the ride.

Ride Leaders

It is the responsibility of ride leaders to:

Before the ride:

•   Plan the route to suit the particular cycling group and to investigate the length, timing, terrain and possible obstacles.

•   Provide the ‘Group Contact’ with details of the ride for publication in the newsletter.         

At the start of the ride:

•  Clarify the ride leader & any other rider with specific responsibilities (ie tail).

•  Provide an overview of the route, stopping points, duration & distance - including any known route hazards.

•  Any new rider should be introduced to the ride leader & consideration should be given to allocating a chaperone / mentor for the ride.

•  A reminder of the standard hand signals & calls used within the group.

•   Count the group and signal the start of the ride.

During the ride:

•   Ride at a speed at which you and the group are competent / confident.  

•   Should the need to stop arise (e.g puncture, breakdown) then a place must be found sufficiently off road to allow safe passage of traffic.

•   Assess the problem & decide whether to hold up the ride or leave the affected rider with helpers and details of the route to the next stop.

•   Concentrate at all times & anticipate changing road conditions.

•   Stop at convenient intervals to allow for refreshments and to check the welfare of all

   riders.

At the end of the ride:

•   Conduct a debrief where riders should be encouraged to raise any issues, concerns and, just as important, aspects of the ride that went well.

•   Report all incidents to the LALG Secretary (secretary@lalg.org.uk) as soon as possible using the Incident Report form on the web site.

Further information

•   In order to be covered by LALG insurance rides should be recognised as official LALG events - they should be advertised in the monthly LALG newsletter, organised by or with the agreement of the group contact and participants should all be current members.

•   Any non LALG members participating on the ride should be encouraged to join.

Further reference / guidance click on:

www.sustrans.org.uk - the-m-check-for-your-bike-in-11-steps

Steve Green   July 2018

LALG Guidance for Walking Groups

There are a number of LALG walking groups, completing many different types of walks so this guidance may need adapting to suit particular walks / situations.  

Walkers

  • It is the responsibility of all walkers to prepare themselves for the walk that they are undertaking - including personal fitness, equipment, clothing and suitable refreshments.
  • If the walker is unsure of his / her capabilities to complete the walk, or has any other concerns, it is their responsibility to contact the walk leader prior to the day of the walk.
  • ll walkers are expected to stay as a group and be considerate to others within and outside the group.

Walk Leaders

It is the responsibility of walk leaders to:

Before the walk:

  • Plan the route to suit the particular walking group and to investigate the length, timing, terrain and possible obstacles.
  • Provide the ‘Group Contact’ with details of the walk for publication in the newsletter.
  • Whether or not you recce the route beforehand (recommended), take account of critical navigation points, hazards and possible problems. Timings, rest and toilet stops and access restrictions should be checked, adjusting the route if necessary.
  • The day before the walk check the weather forecast, and if required review the route and be prepared to cancel if necessary.

At the start of the walk:

  • Introduce each other and appoint a back marker if possible.
  • Outline the route, estimated distance, finishing time and points of interest.
  • Count the group and signal the start of the walk.

During the walk:                                                                                                       

  • Warn walkers on approaching a road, keep all of the group together - especially at stiles, on inclines and any other difficult parts of the walk.
  • Check on the back marker, if appointed, and the number in the group as appropriate.
  • On any hill walks there should be a minimum of 4 walkers.

At the end of the walk:

  • Conduct a debrief on how well the walk went, identifying any incidents and near misses if this hasn’t been done during the walk.
  • Report all incidents to the LALG Secretary (secretary@lalg.org.uk) as soon as possible using the Incident Report form.

Further information

  • In order to be covered by LALG insurance walks should be recognised as official LALG events - they should be advertised in the monthly LALG newsletter, organised by or with the agreement of the group contact and participants should all be current members.
  • Any non LALG members participating on the walk should be encouraged to join.

Further reference / guidance:

www.ramblers.org.uk > safety

www.ramblers.org.uk > Countryside Code for the public

Steve Green   August 2018

Assessing Potential Event Problems

It is a requirement of LALG insurance that the organiser of any event has thought about potential problems and planned for them.

This checklist identifies some problems that may occur and how to deal with them. There may be additional ones for specific events.

Check the other items in All Safety Guidance.

Hazard

Who might be harmed and how

Actions to take in advance

If it happens

Accommodation/ facilities/key personnel

Venue becomes unavailable

All

Pay deposit on time

Check a few days before event that all is in order

Find alternative venue

Or cancel the event and:

Post notice on hall door

Contact LALG publicity to tell people via website and social media

Tell Discover Letchworth if they have sold tickets

If you have contact email/phone for attendees send them a message

Key facilities at venue are unavailable

All

Check a few days in advance that all is in order

Organise alternative provision

Or cancel the event - as above

Speaker/band/quiz master etc becomes unavailable

All

Check a few days in advance that all is in order

 

Find an alternative

Or cancel the event - as above

Incident at accommodation eg fire alarm

All

Check premises evacuation procedures and know where meeting point is

Have emergency contact number for venue manager

Tell participants what to do in case of emergency

Ensure venue is safely evacuated

Call Emergency Services if needed

Inform venue manager

Unusual or extreme weather conditions

All

Consider taking event cancellation insurance

Monitor weather forecast

Agree with team when decision to cancel/go ahead should be taken

Organiser to obtain everyone’s mobile phone number or email

Make timely decision to go ahead or cancel – as above

Injury and illness

 

 

Attendees are responsible for their own personal insurance – as notified on website/newsletter

 

Minor injuries (eg cuts, bruises, stings)

Individual

None

Offer first aid kit and find quiet place for injury to be treated in consultation with person or their companion

Consider making incident report to Secretary of LALG

Trips and sprains

Individual

Check before event starts that there are no trip hazards

Point out any uneven floors, taped wires, steps etc to participants

Serious injury/illness needing ambulance/

accident

Individual

None

Dial 999 and call emergency services

Make incident report to Secretary of LALG

Damage to property or environment

 

Individual

LALG has third party insurance but individuals are responsible for their own insurance

Organiser to claim on LALG insurance, as appropriate

Complete incident report form

People at risk

 

Individual/  organiser

Understand the requirements when running events including children/young people/adults at risk

Notify LALG committee safeguarding officer and complete incident report form

Budget

Event loses money

Organiser

Budget for realistic number of people

Have cancellation policy

Consider cancellation insurance

Understand commitments to venue and speakers etc

Cancel event if insufficient people

 

Trip makes money

All

Budget for realistic number of people

Surplus to be returned to LALG or to the group organising the event

Travel by coach

Risk

In advance / before arrival

If it happens

Coach does not turn up

Book a reputable company

Organiser to carry mobile phone and coach company’s number

Coach breaks down

Book a reputable company

Coach driver to make alternative arrangements

Coach is involved in an accident

Book a reputable company

Follow driver’s instructions. 

If driver incapacitated then trip organiser to move people to place of safety and call coach company and/or emergency services, as appropriate.

Coach driver is taken ill

 

Organiser to contact coach company, plus emergency services if appropriate

Travel sickness

Anyone saying they are travel sick should have a seat reserved near the front of the coach

Check where bowl is stored on coach

Ask driver to stop at a safe place if necessary

Provide wipes, water

Travel by public transport

Risk

In advance / before arrival

If it happens

Bus or train cancelled or delayed significantly

Have a contact person for each place that people are departing from

Contact people and agree new arrangements

Accident

 

Advise people not to stand or walk too close to the edge of the road/platform.

Advise people to sit down if seats are available and remain seated until bus/train stops

Follow bus/railway employee’s or emergency services’ direction

Travel using car sharing

Risk

In advance / before arrival

If it happens

Car discovered to not be road worthy, or driving not of appropriate standard

Presume all cars are taxed, insured and road worthy, and that drivers are of an appropriate standard

Reallocate passengers to another car; if insufficient room then trip organiser to be aware of public transport options, or to carry mobile phone, number of local taxi company and enough money to lend individual to get home

Inform LALG secretary so other organisers can be made aware

Car breaks down

Trip organiser to give mobile number to all drivers

Reallocate passengers to another car; if insufficient room then trip organiser to be aware of public transport options, or to carry mobile phone and number of local taxi company

This document brings together information found elsewhere in the safety guidance to provide a comprehensive assessment of risk.  It can be printed off as a word document and adapted for use as a template for your own activity.

Background to trip - The organisers of the trips take LALG members and non-members to London by public transport for pre-arranged guided tours at places of interest.

Hazard Who might be harmed and how Actions to take in advance If it happens

Travel

Meeting point unclear

All - do not rendezvous at correct place

Send instructions in advance specifying meeting point and alternatives

Individuals are responsible for arriving at the meeting place at the given time

Organiser(s) to carry mobile phone

Consider having a LALG sign

Public transport disrupted

All, disruption may be complete or only affect some travellers

Have access to timetable and alternative routes if possible

Carry contact number for venue

Alert people joining elsewhere of the problem

Find alternative route

If severe cancel trip and tell venue

Unusual or extreme weather conditions

All

Monitor weather forecast

Organiser to obtain everyone’s mobile phone number

Have drinking water available

Injury and illness

Serious injury/illness needing ambulance/accident

Individual

 

Inform travellers they are responsible for their own insurance

Organiser to carry mobile phone and liaise with emergency services and destination’s staff as necessary

Make alternative arrangements for anyone unable to continue or return with the party

Minor injuries (eg cuts, bruises, stings)

Individual

Consider carrying small first aid kit (which people utilise at their own risk)

Refer injured person to destination’s first aider or a pharmacy

Sickness/diarrhoea

Individual

None

Inform venue

Known medical issues

Individual

Individual to complete form in advance if there are medical issues the organisers should be aware of

Carry out agreed action

Refreshments

None available

All

Be clear whether food and drink is provided and where it can be bought

Build in enough refreshment breaks

Ask guide to identify where food/drink may be purchased and to allow time for it to be consumed

Food (if provided) not of reasonable standard

All

Book a reputable venue

Complain to management and get improvement

Eat elsewhere and get refund

Special needs not met

Individual

Book a reputable venue

Individual to tell in advance of any dietary requirements

Organisers to tell venue

Incident at accommodation eg fire alarm

All

Book a reputable venue

Follow venue procedures

Comfort breaks

Need to use toilet

Individual

Make sure venue/guide builds enough time into programme and knows where toilets are located

Find nearest toilet

Make sure rendezvous point is known

Tickets

Tickets not ready for collection

All

Tickets purchased in advance and collection arrangements agreed

Organiser to remind venue a couple of days before travelling

Organiser to ensure takes credit card used to purchase tickets

Wait until tickets ready

Tickets lost

All

Organisers collect tickets on arrival and distribute immediately

For the individual to pursue

Damage to property or environment or accident

 

Individual

Travellers informed in advance that they must arrange their own insurance for all aspects of the trip

LALG insurance covers………

Trip organiser to warn individual or destination’s staff, as appropriate

Individual to pursue, or organiser to claim on LALG insurance, as appropriate

 

Individual

Travellers informed in advance that they must arrange their own insurance for all aspects of the trip

Organiser to give the individual the venue’s contact details

Lost person

 

Individual

Organiser to provide their mobile number

If lost person cannot be contacted organiser to take rest of group home as agreed (eg utilising off peak travel)

Implement plan

Budget

Trip loses money

Organisers

Budget for realistic number of people

Non-returnable deposit to cover all fixed costs apart from accommodation

Balance to be paid within venue cancellation period

Warn people there may be a small surcharge

Cancel trip if insufficient people

Apply surcharge

Trip makes money

All

Budget for realistic number of people

Make contribution to organisers’ costs

Give refund and/or donation to venue depending on amount

Carry forward surplus to next trip

Donate to LALG central funds

This link enables the LALG Incident Report form to be downloaded. It is a Word .docx template and so can be completed electronically.

How to Organise .......

A frequent requirement of groups is to organise events, and trips and visits using a variety of transport methods. This page provides information, guidance and examples of how this can be done.

General Guidance on Organising Events

Planning the event

1. Consider why you are running the event.  Is it for fun – to raise funds – a thank you?  Make sure everyone knows and agrees the objectives.

2. Decide the broad parameters, what, when, where, who.  Is this a small event just for your group or for all LALG members, or also for the general public?

3. Organise the team. 

  • What roles do you need to cover?
  • How many people will you need?
  • Is it all on the day or are there some advance jobs?
  • Make sure you have people to help clear up.

4. Set the date.

  • Check the LALG calendar for any clashes.
  • Check team availability.
  • Check for any other big events in the town eg satellite screening at Broadway cinema.

5. Draw up a preliminary budget.  You should have an idea of how much you want to charge which will then influence other decisions.  LALG members should receive a lower price than members of the public.

6. How many people do you need to make it viable?  What is the upper limit to numbers?

7. Find a venue

Link to the venue section in the guidance

  • Check what is included in the cost, e.g. kitchen facilities.
  • Do they have enough chairs/tables and other equipment you need?
  • Do they have a sound system/microphone/projector?  Ask the caretaker to explain how it works.
  • Do they have crockery, glasses and cutlery?
  • When will you get access, and do you need to vacate by a given time?
  • People with Disabilities.  LALG activities should be accessible to all so check access, toilet facilities and car parking.
  • Ask who cleans up, if it is you (it often is) where do they keep the cleaning equipment?
  • Ask if you can use the stage, if you need to?
  • Are there any restrictions for example on the use of alcohol, gambling etc?

8. Find and engage the person(s) who will provide the entertainment – the quizmaster, dance caller, speaker etc. 

  • Do they need any equipment?
  • Access to electrical sockets?
  • Access to sound system?
  • Where will they load and unload?

9. Decide if you will provide refreshments e.g.

  • Hot drinks and biscuits only.
  • A finger buffet.
  • Will the venue provide food/drink at a cost?
  • Alcohol and soft drinks, some supermarkets provide a glass loan service if you buy alcohol.
  • Bought in items such as fish and chips.
  • Remember to cater for people with allergies/food preferences.
  • Decide who will oversee catering and agree who will provide food, drink, crockery, cutlery, napkins, condiments etc.

10. If you intend to sell alcohol or provide it as part of the cost of a ticket you may need an alcohol licence. 

11. If you wish to play music you need to consider whether you need to pay for a PRS/PPL licence.  Your venue may already be registered and the cost will often be part of the hire fee but if not you will usually need ‘TheMusicLicence’.

12. Raffles.  Not all venues allow raffles so you should check this.  Decide who will:

  • Provide prizes.
  • Buy the cloakroom tickets.
  • Organise the float.
  • Sell tickets on the day.
  • Decide whether you will take people’s phone numbers in case they are not around when the raffle is drawn, how you will hand over the prizes and how you will destroy the tickets afterwards. Or just restrict to people still in attendance.
  • If you intend to sell tickets other than on the day of the draw you will need a Small Society Registration from the local council in accordance with the Gambling Act 2005. https://www.north-herts.gov.uk/home/licensing/gambling-and-lotteries/small-society-lotteries The production of a specific Guide ‘How to Run a Lottery’ is planned.
  • If raffles are not permitted, you may find that ‘guess the weight of the cake’ or similar is an acceptable substitute as it not purely a game of chance.

13. Public Liability and other insurance. 

  • Check what insurance cover is held by the premises. 
  • Check what LALG Insurance covers.
  • Do you need any other insurance, for example to cover cancellation charges by the venue or performer if the event cannot go ahead for any reason?

14. Decide how many tickets need to be sold to make the event viable.  

  • Will you accept people ‘on the door’ or advance sales only?
  • Discover Letchworth provides a useful booking service.
  • You should decide who on the team will be the contact for the event and the ticket manager.
  • Put a checkpoint in your diary to see if you have sold enough and to cancel if necessary. 
  • Have a refund policy – depending on costs etc it could be that refunds will be given only when all tickets have been sold.

15. Have a plan for cancellations.

  • Ask LALG publicity to put a notice on the website and social media.
  • Consider putting cancelled stickers on all posters.
  • You could ask the TIC to collect phone numbers when they sell tickets for you to ring, but remember to handle the data in accordance with GDPR guidance link.

16. Publicity: Contact LALG publicity for advice.  They can help with:

  • Posters
  • Tickets
  • Programmes
  • Advice on where to promote the event
  • Newsletter copy.

17. Carry out safety checks (also known as risk assessment).

  • It is a requirement of LALG insurance that the organiser of any event has thought about potential problems and planned for them.
  • There is a checklist to help you do this.
  • Copy it to the team.

18. When you have determined all the costs you need to draw up a final budget.  It is a good idea to include a contingency for unexpected costs or a shortfall in ticket sales.

19. Confirm with the venue and the performer and enter into a contract with them.  Make sure you understand when and how you must pay and what cancellation charges may apply.

20. Decide how you will fund any deposits if they are needed before ticket sales.  The LALG Treasurer can offer guidance.

21. Keep in contact with the venue, performer and your team so you can check everything is on track and ensure no misunderstandings

 

On the Day

22. Arrange to collect the keys/have the venue opened so that you have enough time to set up.  Have a contact number for emergencies. 

  • Arrange seating and tables if used.
  • Organise refreshments.
  • Meet and greet performer and help set up/give access to equipment.
  • Front of house – ticketing, programmes, name badges, registration sheets, pens.
  • Set up raffle.

23. Check the emergency exits, fire extinguishers, first aid kit, position of toilets and other public facilities.  Evacuation procedures/assembly point should be given by the venue. Announce this at the start of the event.

24. Registration.  The ticket manager (and team) should:

  • Check tickets at the door if they have been issued.
  • Sell tickets if appropriate, have an agreed float of small denomination coin and notes.
  • Or take a list of people attending the event, checking LALG membership if necessary.
  • Provide name badges, if needed.
  • Hand out programmes or other material.
  • Make sure you know how many people are at the event so you can do a head count if evacuated.

25. Have an agreed chair to open the event, give notices, keep things on track, close and thank the participants and organisers.

26. If you have ordered outside catering have an agreed time and place for delivery and a contact number in case of emergency.

27. Agree how any money collected will be handled and subsequently accounted for.

28. At the end:

  • Put away furniture and equipment as agreed with the venue.
  • Collect and dispose of rubbish.
  • Leave the venue clean and tidy, including the kitchen.
  • Lock up and return keys unless this is done by a caretaker for the venue.

29. Thank those who have helped make the event a success.

30. And remember - if something does go wrong then nobody has probably noticed – only you knew what was supposed to happen, everyone else just came along and had a lovely time!

Discover Letchworth (formerly the Tourist Information Centre) on Broadway next to Morrisons provides a free and highly competent Booking Office service. They can either sell tickets for you or collect names of people interested in a trip.  Please help staff by approaching them in good time.

Selling tickets

  • Agree arrangements before the first publicity of the event;
  • Print out enough tickets. A template is available from the Publicity Chair. You might wish to number them. Include the member and non-member price;
  • Provide a Discover Letchworth Booking sheet, with details of the event, refund conditions/deadline and a contact number for staff in case of questions. Include a column for the number of tickets bought, amount paid, the buyer’s name, and their membership number. 
  • Periodically call at Discover Letchworth with ID to collect the takings and ask for a copy of bookings so far. Please let them know the day before so that they can be ready;
  • Pass takings to the LALG Treasurer if applicable.  Cheques should have the event name written on the back.

Collecting Names

If you are using Discover Letchworth to collect names of people potentially interested in an activity:

  • Agree arrangements before the first publicity of the event;
  • Provide a Discover Letchworth Booking sheet, with details of the event, and a contact number for staff in case of questions;
  • Make sure that you ask for Member’s details, so you can contact them to advise if the event is happening;
  • Discover Letchworth will also act as a collection point for cheques for the event, if it goes ahead.  Alternatively, people can pay direct to the LALG bank account.  Contact the LALG Treasurer for details of how to do this.

How to Organise an Event with a Speaker

This guidance gives advice on the things you should consider when organising an event with a speaker.  Click here for general guidance on how to organise an event.

  1. Decide on the topic – is this part of a series of events such as Members Meetings or a one off?  Does this coincide with a special event such as an anniversary?
  2. Decide on the audience – is this for all LALG, your own group or open to the public.
  3. What can you afford to pay?  Put this in your budget.
  4. Where will you find the speaker? Perhaps:
  • A volunteer.
  • A member of a LALG or another local group.
  • Word of mouth recommendation.
  • Someone from a charity, place of interest, local business, university, public institution.
  • Look on-line - for example https://local-history.co.uk/lhspeakers.html gives lists of local history speakers.
  • Speakernet  https://speakernet.co.uk/talks aims to link speakers to an audience – at a price!
  • Other websites are available using search facilities.
  1. When you know the topic, audience, place, date, time and what you can afford to pay contact the speaker and agree terms.
  2. You will need to confirm:
  •  Availability.
  •  Cost.
  • The length of the talk and whether questions will be at the end or during the presentation.
  • Any equipment needed, including access to IT, microphone and projection.
  • How and when to make payment, is a deposit needed?
  1. Put the terms you have agreed in writing.  This may be a simple email or a more formal contract depending on circumstances.
  2. Before the event contact the speaker to reconfirm the arrangements.  Provide a map to the venue.  It will be helpful for the speaker to know something about the event and LALG beforehand.
  3. On the day be on hand to welcome, provide refreshments and help set up.
  4. Find out a few key things so that you can introduce the speaker appropriately.
  5. Manage the time, make sure things do not overrun and that the audience has opportunity to engage.
  6. At the end thank the speaker and allow the audience to show their appreciation.  The speaker may be willing to stay on for individual questions - check this out.
  7. Help the speaker remove any equipment.
  8. Make payment as agreed.
  9. After the event send a written thank you.  You never know you - or another LALG group - might want to use them again.

How to organise a coach trip or holiday

  • Work out a budget and a timetable so that you have sufficient time to publicise your plans and to collect money etc. Budget for being 80% full.
  • Check the proposed date on the LALG calendar to avoid any clashes.
  • Consider using the Booking Office service offered by Discover Letchworth (formerly the Tourist Information Centre).
  • Have all arrangements and costs with providers confirmed in writing.
  • Give the LALG Treasurer at least a week’s notice of any advance payments (deposits etc.) or to provide funds for payments needed on the day.
  • Make clear your cancellation policy and deadline (e.g. only refund if substitute found or no loss incurred).
  • Charge non-members of LALG more than members and arrange that booking is open to members earlier than non-members.
  • Maintain simple but clear accounts and submit a final statement to the LALG Treasurer.  See also Finance (in menu on the left).
  • Have cheques made payable to “LALG” with the event name on the back.
  • When booking a coach, check that the driver knows the route and whether they have been there before. Provide written instructions (preferably with a map) on the precise location of the venue and coach parking facilities.
  • Exchange mobile phone numbers with the driver.
  • Once on the coach identify yourself as the leader. It is best to use the PA system and to make sure that you are audible.
  • Ensure that passengers are clear about the time and location for departure on all legs of the journey. It may be advisable to stand at the coach door and remind people as they disembark. Remember timings are longer with a coach-load of people.
  • Give passengers a handout beforehand, and again on the day listing:
    • All key timings, venues and activities
    • Arrangements regarding food
    • Mobile phone number of organiser
    • Any advice on dress code, security checks, what to bring etc.

Coach Hire
Groups wishing to hire a coach for an excursion should make the necessary arrangements themselves. There are some experienced tour leaders in LALG who may be contacted for advice via the Secretary, including about which operators are recommended.

  • It is advisable to be clear with the coach operator about the seating capacity; more seats can mean less leg space.
  • Pricing of trips is the responsibility of the organiser.  It may be prudent to budget on the basis of say 80% of seats being sold.
  • It is usual to give the driver a tip and it may be easiest to factor this into your price to avoid going round with the hat.

How to Organise a trip by Public Transport including a guided tour

As people pay a fee to join LALG their membership should offer benefits.  

When organising an event you might:

  • Set a lower price for Members
  • Open the trip only to LALG members
  • Give LALG members preferential booking, opening to non-members later

Setting up a visit with a tour

  • Check the proposed date on the LALG calendar to avoid any clashes.
  • Select the place to visit and contact them to see if group tours are available, cost, time and any restrictions.  For example, how many people may be accommodated.
  • Work out a budget and a timetable so that you have enough time to publicise your plans and to collect money etc.
  • Have all arrangements and costs with providers confirmed in writing.
  • Check with them a couple of days in advance that all is to plan.
  • Agree with the guide how long the visit will take and construct a timetable for the day including comfort breaks and refreshment stops. 
  • Decide if you will collect names yourself or utilise the Booking service of Discover Letchworth (formerly the Tourist Information Centre).
  • If you collect the names yourself an example LALG booking form for trips is available.
  • Put information into the monthly newsletter. You can either decide to put all the information in the newsletter up front or you can collect names and send the participants detailed instructions closer to the trip.  Email is a useful method for doing this though you will need to plan for anyone not on email, possibly via TIC.
  • Venues often require you to purchase group tickets in advance and you may need to pay your guide separately.  Make sure you have included this in your budget and collect money in advance. 
  • Make sure people know under what circumstances money is non-refundable.
  • You can ask the LALG Treasurer to manage the money via the LALG account or you can set up a bank account for your group.  Electronic payment is easiest using the surname as an identifier.  People who do not bank on line can go to their bank and ask for a payment to be made into the designated account.  Or you can arrange for cheques to be collected at the TIC but you will need to make sure you have time to collect them and for them to clear.
  • Remember the guidance on Data Protection 

Planning the route

  • Decide the route you will take to the venue and what transportation you will use.
  • Travelling off peak will be cheaper but you need to check restrictions on travel.
  • Check train times: http://www.nationalrail.co.uk/ gives up to date train travel information and a journey planner. 
  • Transport for London (TFL) also has a journey planner which covers tubes and buses https://tfl.gov.uk/plan-a-journey/
  • Have alternative travel plans in mind in case there is a problem on the day.
  • Work out how to navigate between modes of transport (for example from the train to the tube) and how to get to the venue itself. 
  • Carry a map and any instructions from the venue.
  • Remember it takes longer for a group to get about than an individual or couple on their own!
  • Know where on the route to find public toilets and cafes and tell people when there will be breaks.
  • Make clear that transport costs are not included and people will pay for their own travel on the day.

On the day

  • Agree where the group will meet and at what time.
  • Provide your mobile number in case of problems.
  • People may choose to join the group at different stations or go directly to the venue.  Make sure you know this and tell them how to find you.  A LALG sign might help!
  • Arrange with the guide where you will meet and when and exchange phone numbers for any emergency.
  • After the trip escort the group back to the starting point.  Some people may chose to travel home independently, ask them to let you know if they plan to do this so you are not waiting for them.

How to Organise a Quiz

This guidance gives advice on the things you should consider when organising an event with a quiz. Click here for general guidance on organising events

  1. Decide on the audience for the quiz.  Is this something just for your group, for LALG or will it be open to the public?
  2. Is this the main event or a part of the meeting?
  3. Decide on the timings for the evening.  How many rounds can you fit in?  Will there be a refreshment break?  Or is it light entertainment in the midst of a meeting? If you are providing hot food, or are having food delivered, make sure the round before the food is due can be delayed until after it if timings go out…and vice versa with the round following it.  Or have a table quiz for the interval which will soak up any timing issues.
  4. Find a volunteer (or team) to manage it.  This may include:
    • Providing the questions:

      • Structure the questions concisely but so they are easy to take in and process.
      • Word questions so you point people towards the correct answer (eg “how much less do you weigh on the moon?” would be better as “you weigh less on the moon – but by what fraction?” so you get a fraction, not a decimal, and not someone’s actual weight loss).
      • Don’t get bogged down in providing context to the question.
      • Make sure the quiz master knows how to pronounce tricky words.
      • Prepare 2 tie-break questions and decide how you will run a tie-break. The first to raise a hand/shout the answer can have the evening finishing on an inconclusive note. 
    • Running the quiz, photocopying of quiz sheets, picture rounds etc.
      • If you’re providing written questions, pictures etc then give out enough copies for all team members to see them properly at the same time.  And be clear how you want the answers submitted.
      • Have spares – teams may split, plus drinks and food get spilled.
    • Marking the answer sheets. Decide who will do this (swap with other teams in the quiz, or pass to a central team) how to present the scores eg flip chart/project a spreadsheet/read them out at half time & the end.
    • Providing prizes (and maybe booby prizes).
  5. Have a policy on expenses, for example photocopying costs and prizes.
  6. For a large event provide a microphone - check there are spare batteries.
  7. Check whether the quiz master will need access to a computer, a screen (for picture rounds) and a sound system (for music rounds), make sure you have these and the power to run them! It saves a lot of repetition if questions are displayed on a screen.
  8. If the quiz will be run for teams, decide how many people in each, whether whole teams will sign up or whether individuals will be combined.  Have a process for linking individuals to teams and do this before the event.  Ask each team to hand in a form with their team name on before the quiz starts to avoid duplication etc.
  9. Make sure you know before the day how many people will be at the event, how many teams there will be and have enough quiz sheets, spare paper and pencils for them.
  10. Make sure you understand the mechanics of running the quiz, marking, compiling scores, keeping a scoreboard and announcing winners.  Decide how many people you need to do this efficiently.
  11. Check and double check and triple check the answers using a reputable source – Wikipedia is not always accurate!  Even check things you are convinced you know – knowledge moves on plus there are many urban myths in circulation. Consider creating answer sheets with answers that are acceptable and answers that are not acceptable.  Have a policy on names (will just surname do?) and on spelling (is phonetic good enough?) as consistent marking is vital. Get friends with a range of interests and the people who will mark the answers to do the questions in advance. Make changes to questions and/or answers as necessary. But make clear that the quiz master’s decision is final.
  12. Have a policy on mobile phone use and make this clear.
  13. Keep an eye on the clock to make sure you finish within the allotted time.
  14. Hand out prizes at the end.
  15. Reimburse expenses.
  16. Thank those who have helped make the event a success.

Introduction

Your first stop for advice or assistance with financial matters is the LALG Treasurer.

  • Groups should be self-financing.
  • However, the LALG Committee may give up to £50 for initial set up or other exceptional costs.
  • Appoint a treasurer and set up a simple method of keeping track of income and expenditure. 
  • If significant sums are involved, open a bank account. Many banks and building societies offer a “Treasurer’s Account” or similar which is aimed at small groups.
  • Alternatively you can ask the Treasurer to handle the money. Have cheques made payable to “LALG” with the group or event name on back.
  • If you plan an activity outside the usual for the group, please speak to the Treasurer if additional funds might be needed.  If agreed you will be asked to complete a summary sheet and return it with receipts. 
  • All groups’ financial records are subject to scrutiny by the Treasurer if requested.
  • Money held by a group must be donated to central LALG funds if the group closes.
  • If a group closes temporarily the Treasurer will retain any funds until the group restarts.

Record Keeping

LALG groups will differ in their record keeping requirements and some groups will have no need for any at all!   If you take subscriptions or other financial contributions from your group, you will need some way of accounting for them.  This enables you to keep track of how the money you have collected has been spent and to avoid the group running into financial difficulties.  You may wish to appoint a treasurer who does this on the group’s behalf.

Simple Accounting

Groups that simply collect a small sum from participants each meeting and use it to pay the expenses for that meeting need nothing more than a record of income and expenditure.  This might be in a notebook or you can set up a simple recording system on your computer. For example:

Date

Details

Income

Expenditure

Balance

1/4/18

Brought forward kitty

£3.50

 

£3.50

13/4/18

April meeting dues - 6 members at £2 each

£12.00

 

£15.50

13/4/18

Room hire

 

£11.00

£4.50

13/4/18

Refreshments

 

£3.00

£1.50

15/5/18

May meeting dues – 10 members at £2 each

£20.00

 

£21.50

15/5/18

Room hire

 

£11.00

£10.50

15/5/18

Refreshments

 

£5.00

£5.50

8/6/18

May meeting dues – 9 members at £2 each

£18.00

 

£23.50

8/6/18

Room hire

 

£11.00

£12.50

8/6/18

Refreshments

 

£4.50

£8.00

This way you can always see what balance you should have in your kitty and adjust what members pay accordingly.

But if your group shares costs over the medium or longer term, for example to hire a sports facility for a few weeks, then it is wise to ask members to make a non-refundable payment up front so that the organiser does not risk being left out of pocket if members do not attend regularly.   For example:

Date

Details

Income

Expenditure

Balance

1/4/18

Brought forward kitty

£3.50

 

£3.50

1/4/18

Subs from:

Ann

Bob

Carol

Dan

Ellen

etc.

8 at £33 each

£264.00

 

£267.50

1/4/18

Court hire 1 Apr -30 Jun (10 sessions at £26)

 

£260.00

£7.50

1/7/18

 Subs from:

Ann

Bob

Carol

Dan

Ellen

etc

8 at £33 each

£264.00

 

£271.50

1/7/18

Court hire  1 Jul -30 Sep (10 sessions at £26)

 

£260.00

£11.50

This way you can always see what balance you should have in your kitty and adjust what members pay accordingly.

It is good practice to show the income and expenditure at least once a year to members of the group.   At the same time the group can decide whether any changes are needed to the amount collected.

Running activities that require budgeting, prepayments, contractual arrangements and where variable numbers may attend.

Some LALG activities such as trips or events with speakers require more detailed accounting.   Such activities will normally have several costs for example hire of hall or coach, speaker or guide expenses and entrance fees.

  • The first step is to establish all the costs of running that activity.  When do you have to pay?  Is anything refundable if someone can’t come?
  • The second step is to establish the total number who can attend – there may for example be a limit to seats on a coach, the number in a tour group or the number who can be accommodated at the venue.
  • The third step is to estimate how many people are likely to go.  You may have evidence from previous trips or you can speak to someone who has run such activities in the past.  Be cautious in your estimates.
  • The fourth step is to prepare a budget.

Example 1

  • You are going to hire a hall which costs £50 and engage a speaker at the cost of £75.  There will be tea, coffee and biscuits at a cost of £25 which you have decided to include in the price of the ticket.  The capacity of the hall is 100 people, but you think only about 50 will come.
  • The costs of the event are £50 + £75 + £25 making a total of £150, if you sell 50 tickets for £3 you will cover your costs. 
  • If you decide to offer concessions perhaps to children, seniors or LALG members you will need to factor that into your ticket prices.  For example if you think there will be 10 children and 10 members at a discounted price of £2 (that’s an income of £40), the remaining 30 tickets will have to cover £110 so each of those tickets will have to be around £3.70 – or you may decide to round this up to £4 so you have a small contingency in case not all tickets are sold.
  • Remember that LALG will not be able to underwrite any loss you make so start collecting ticket income well before the time when you have to pay a non-refundable hall or coach hire for example.
  • You need to know for certain – from ticket sales – that the activity is going to be viable, before you make any non-refundable payments.
  • If your event makes a profit you are asked to temporarily or permanently give this to the treasurer of LALG.

Example 2

  • You are planning a trip by public transport, people will buy their own train tickets.   There is group entry fee of £20 each person payable at the gate with a maximum of 30 people.  You decide to hire a guide which costs £150 for the whole group, payable in advance and not refundable.   Although the maximum group size is 30 you decide only 25 people will sign up.
  • The upfront cost for the guide is £150 divided by 25 so the non-refundable deposit needed to secure a place is £6.  The entrance fee is £20 each.  There are now options.  You can ask for people to pay in advance and have the money ready to hand over at the gate or you can collect the cash during the journey.  You need to check in advance what payment methods the venue accepts. Because the entrance fee is only payable if you go in it can be refunded to those who cannot go and who have paid in advance.

Money handling options

  • The LALG Treasurer can help by handling the money for you and you should make contact well in advance to agree what needs to be done.
  • You can open a bank account in your name purely for LALG activities and use that to manage the event, recording the income and expenditure and keeping a record of who has paid what.
  • If you use a bank account, either LALG’s or one you have set up, you can collect money by bank transfer which is clearly easiest. Make sure payments in are recorded with the payer’s name. 
  • Alternatively, payment can be made by cheque sent to you at home or collected by Discover Letchworth. Make sure you leave enough time before the event for cheques to be collected, paid in and cleared so you have sufficient money on the day.
  • You can ask people to pay in cash on the day but there are risks associated with handling cash in a public place.  You will need to decide what to do if someone hands you a cheque on the day!

Finally

  • Do a reconciliation of amounts received with expenses paid, hopefully these will balance.  Repay any sums collected in advance which were not needed, for example entrance fees.   If you are in profit you may consider repaying any non-refundable deposits on an ex gratia basis.
  • Any positive balance may go forward to the next LALG event that you run as a contingency. 
  • But if you cease to run such activities any surplus remaining should be paid to LALG central funds.

Introduction

Groups often need to engage in publicity – for example: promoting events, attracting new members, asking for help – and some groups choose a small number of their membership to focus on this.

All publicity should provide a positive, respectable and well-run image of LALG, and be in line with LALG’s Publicity policy, found in Policies.

The Publicity team are always ready to help you.

Newsletter – month by month entry

The Group contact is responsible for putting details of the group’s activities in the monthly newsletter.  Email a Word document to lalgnewslettereditor@hotmail.co.uk by the 10th of the previous month; earlier is always welcome.

Be as concise as possible and follow the style guidelines

If you would like to be featured on the front page or in a special advert, contact publicity@lalg.org.uk or William Armitage 01462643537.

The LALG website

The Website is important as it is an open site and thus potentially the first point of contact by those seeking information about Letchworth.

The Website can be accessed at www.lalg.org.uk

The Group contact is responsible for ensuring that the information on the website is accurate.  This can be achieved by sending information to the website editors website@lalg.org.uk or by putting the information on yourself.  This is especially useful if the group has a lot of information on the website and it is updated regularly.   If you do not yet have admin access, contact website@lalg.org.uk.

A beginners guide to the website

The menu bar gives access to information on the LALG and to specific information on the over 125 Groups which cover the arts, sports, crafts, food and drink, games and travel. Each Group Page contains a general description of the aims and activities of the Group and any other information which does not change frequently. The Group Logo is usually included and photographs can be added (with the permission of those featured) as plenty of space is available. An aim of this page is to attract new members.

  • There is a search capability, and on the right-hand side of the display the name of the Group Contact and a list of future Group Events.
  • Future events for many months can be added, typically until the end of the calendar year. This is useful for regular meetings, e.g. Sports Groups for which the details do not change.
  • The date of each event is automatically entered in the LALG Calendar (see Calendar in menu bar).
  • Information on past meetings, including photographs, can be presented on the Group Page beneath the heading More News and Pictures.  Many groups use this to keep a record of meetings and significant events.

Social media

To help build local awareness of LALG’s broad range of activities, please consider sharing your Group’s news on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

Keep your entry short but cover all relevant points.

Photographs should be well executed and captioned; make sure you have the permission of those in the photo.

For any help with social media, email facebook@lalg.org.uk

Posters, fliers & templates

  • Include the LALG logo and Letchworth Arts and Leisure Group in Broadway font.
  • Ask someone who is not involved to read your draft poster/flier and comment constructively on whether it is clear, concise and complete.
  • Keep a note of where you display the poster(s) and remember to remove them when they become out of date.
  • For any help with poster design, email publicity@lalg.org.uk
  • A poster template is available to download
 

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