Events on the highway

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This guidance relates to the section of your event management plan for road closures of the public highway. More information is available on hosting an event.

Public highway or a private street

Check if a road is public highway or a private street. Requests for the use of a private street should be made to the landowner. The only organisation that hold land ownership information is HM Land Registry.

Legal order needed to close a road

Roads can only be closed to traffic for an event on the public highway when a legal Order is in place.

Some legal Orders can only be processed by us, and some can only be processed by Kent County Council (KCC).

Both organisations will only consider processing a legal order once your event management plan has been submitted. It should be supplied early in case more information is needed or changes made and in many cases 12 weeks notice is required.

Who deals with different types of event

We deal with the following events in our Borough

KCC deal with

  • Sporting events on the public highway
  • Road closures for 15 minutes or less
  • Street parties for national/Kent wide events such as the Royal events

Contact information for KCC is shown at the end of this page.

Police are required to be notified of certain events

Event organisers are required to notify the police in advance of certain types of event on the highway

Contact information for the Police is shown at the end of this page.

Prepare your event information for road closures that we deal with

All event organisers, other than for small street parties, will need to provide completed:

  • Proposal for a road closure form
  • Traffic Management Plan
  • Risk Assessment
  • Plan/drawing of whole event, parade route, signage, marshal location, diversion route where necessary
  • Copy of £5 million public liability insurance (not required for small street parties)

Traffic Management Plan

This must be tailored to your event and should include the following basic information:

  • Name of event
  • Event organisers name, organisation name, contact information including phone, email and postal address.
  • Day and date of event
  • Start and end time of road closure (include time for setting up and removing items in the road)
  • Brief description of the event including what is taking place on the road
  • Names of the roads to be closed e.g. High Street, Anytown and West Street, Anytown
  • The lengths of roads that need to be closed e.g. Between 10 High Street and its junction with West Street.
  • Expected amount of volunteers/workers and visitors to the event
  • Where sufficient parking will be available for both volunteers/workers of the event and visitors to the event
  • The event organisers (person who has overall responsibility for the whole event) name and mobile phone number that they can be contacted on the during the event day
  • Signage (see Signage section) will need to be manned during the event by a marshal (see Marshals section). This information is needed both as text (including what type of sign and where it will be) and on a drawing/map.
  • How communication will take place between marshals manning road closures and the event organiser/lead marshal and vice versa. How this form of communication has been tested at the location to ensure that phone signals/sight lines are possible at the location
  • Procedure in the event of vehicles entering the road closure area
  • Procedure in the event of vehicles moving within the road closure area
  • If the event is cancelled, for any reason, how the event organiser will inform the attendees.
  • How access will be available at all times for emergency vehicles

There are 3 types of signage that event organisers are responsible for in relation to road closures:

  • Prior warning – notifying road users that there will be a road closure on a specified date. These are usually in place 2 weeks before an event.
  • Road Closed and Road Closed Ahead – on the day of the event
  • Diversion – on the day of the event (where a diversion is needed)
  • Must be over 18 and deemed mentally and physically competent for the role
  • There will be a minimum of 1 marshal at each closure point
  • There should be a lead marshal who will check that the road/traffic conditions are appropriate for the event to take place.
  • That marshals putting signs in the road do so when there is no passing traffic
  • All marshals to wear hi-visibility clothing when in the road
  • Procedure for marshals letting event organiser/lead marshal know when signage is in place/all signage removed
  • Marshalls to inform drivers why the road is closed and the likely duration. Note that marshals do not have the legal power to direct traffic
  • That marshals will inform the event organiser/lead marshal if there is any traffic movement within the road closure area
  • How and when all marshals will be briefed by the event organiser/lead marshal prior to the event

Risk Assessment

This must be tailored to your event and should include all aspects of your event. More information on risk assessments and what you should include is available from the Health and Safety Executive website.

Kent Police also need event organisers to include in their risk assessment a consideration of terrorism and vehicle mitigation (attack by vehicle). They have supplied an Event Guidance document with more information.

Send us all documentation

By email to or Post to Technical Services, Tonbridge & Malling Borough Council, Gibson Building, Gibson Drive, Kings Hill, WEST MALLING ME19 4LZ.

After we have received event documentation

1. We will email event organisers a draft order for them to check and confirm with us.

2. We will email all of your event information to:

This is because only we, Tonbridge & Malling Borough Council, have the legal power to use the Town Police Clauses Act to process a legal order to permit roads to be closed for suitable events. However other organisations have a number of legal obligations, powers or duties in relation to the public highway, prevention of crime and disorder and to preserve public safety.

We will only complete the legal order process once we have received support for an event from KCC. Event Organisers are responsible for meeting any conditions that KCC or Kent Police set.

We may also pass on any information provided by you to those with a legitimate concern.

3. Once we have received KCC support, copies of the completed road closure order will be put up at the location of the road closure. Please note that these copies of the order do not form part of the signage that event organisers are responsible for.

Contact information

KCC Highways and Transportation

  • Email:
  • Phone: 03000 41 41 41
  • Post: Streetworks Coordinator, Highways, Transportation & Waste, Kent County Council, Aylesford Highways Depot, St Michaels Close, Aylesford, Kent ME20 7BU

Kent Police

  • Email:
  • Phone: 01622 798580 Extension 1422100
  • Post: Tasking Operation Planning Team, Coldharbour, London Road, Aylesford, Maidstone, ME20 7SL