London mayor Sadiq Khan has requested a review of the Metropolitan Police Form 696 Risk Assessment following concerns that the form unfairly targets grime, garage and R‘n’B acts.
Form 696 is designed to help security and police work with an event’s team to minimise the risk of violence or misconduct. The form must be submitted for approval 14 days prior to an event by an artist or promoter.
The use of the form is voluntary, though in a very small number of cases completion of the form is a condition of premises’ licences.
A version of the Form 696 Risk Assessment is used by several other police forces around England, including in Leicestershire, West Yorkshire and Hertfordshire.
Amy Lamé, London’s first-ever Night Czar and the chair of the London Music Board, convened a special meeting this week to consider how the board can work with the Met to ensure the safety of events, without compromising the capital’s diverse grassroots music scene.
Mayor Sadiq Khan has tasked Lamé with bringing together people and businesses from across London’s night-time industries to transform the UK capital into a truly 24-hour city.
“As chair of the Mayor’s London Music Board it was great to bring DJs, artists, promoters and unions together with the representatives from the Metropolitan Police, local authorities and industry bodies to start a conversation about how we can work collaboratively during the review of Form 696. I look forward to continuing to work with colleagues from across the night time economy and culture to ensure that we can create a safe, 24-hour city that truly works for everyone,” said Lamé.
Lamé will ensure the continued collaboration between the Met and the capital’s music industry through the London Music Board.
The London Music Board is a body comprising of influential individuals from across the capital’s music scene, including industry bodies, DJs, artists, promoters, venues, local authorities and union officials.
Currently, the Met recommends that venues and promoters consider completing Form 696 when promoting events that predominantly feature DJs or MCs performing to a recorded backing track.
A wide range of artists, promoters and venues – with an interest in Form 696 – attended the meeting, including Crispin Parry (British Underground), DJ/Producer Funk Butcher (aka Kwame Safo), Dominic Madden (Electric Brixton), Jane Beese (Roundhouse), Auro Foxcroft (Village Underground), DJ Ritu and DJ Danny Rampling.
The meeting also included representatives from local authorities, UK Music, Musicians’ Union, Night Time Industries Association, Arts Council England, DCMS and the Metropolitan Police.
Michael Dugher, CEO of UK Music, commented: “It’s great news that Mayor Sadiq Khan has listened to Londoners and responded to campaigners. This long overdue review offers a welcome opportunity to end the damage caused to our music scene by Form 696, while making sure live music events in London are safe for all to enjoy.
“One of our first campaigns after UK Music was formed in 2008 was to call for Form 696 to be scrapped. The Form wrongly makes performing music a crime and disorder issue. Performers rightly feel it discriminates unfairly against certain types of music like grime and it flies in the face of efforts to make our vibrant music scene even more diverse.”
The review, which is now underway, will examine the impact of the current Form 696 process on promoted events in the night-time economy and will consider any negative impact (real or perceived) on specific venues and community groups, recommending steps to mitigate this impact in the future. It will also consider any benefits that Form 696 brings to the safe enjoyment of London’s vibrant and diverse music scene.
Throughout the autumn the Met will continue to consult a range of stakeholders including promoters, venues and the London Licensing Managers’ Forum. An equality impact assessment, as part of the consultation process, is also underway, to understand whether there is any disproportionate impact on certain communities from the use of Form 696.
The review will be completed and measures implemented by the Metropolitan Police in early 2018.