Apply to close a road for an event

How to apply for a Special Events Order to close a road for an event in Suffolk - including civic events, fairs or a carnival.

Suffolk County Council prefer that events do not impact the public highway (i.e. event to be held off the highway, with no impact) and we ask you to consider this option thoroughly before applying to hold an event on the highway. The public highway includes, but is not limited to, the verge, footway/pavement, or road.

If your event is not going to be held on the highway and/or will not impact on the highway you do not need to tell us. You will need to contact your local borough or district council if you want to provide entertainment, serve food or alcohol.

Once you have ascertained that there is no viable location off the highway and that your event will require a temporary traffic restriction, you will need to complete an event application form.

We ask for a minimum notice period of 3 months from receipt of a complete application.

Events in Suffolk are split into three categories:

  1. civic event
  2. event organised by a registered charity
  3. other event e.g. a fair or carnival

Details about each event, that's recognised by Suffolk County Council, is outlined below.

A civic event is as an event which will be attended by one or more of the following:

  • A member of the Royal family
  • Lord Lieutenant of Suffolk
  • High Sheriff of Suffolk
  • Chairman of Suffolk County Council

Suffolk County Council also recognise Acts of Remembrance (Remembrance Parades) which are organised by the District or Borough Councils with the Royal British Legion in attendance, as civic events.

Fee

Suffolk County Council will waive the administrative fees (Event Application Fee and Highway Restriction Fee i.e., Road Closure) for processing Civic Events and will further look to contribute towards costs* of the Traffic Management to support the Civic Event.

* The Traffic Management contribution is capped and is only available if the event organiser chooses to proceed with Traffic Management being supplied through Suffolk Highways. The contribution will not be available if the event organisers choose another supplier to provide the Traffic Management for the event. Please contact Network Assurance for more information.

A charity event is as an event that is organised by a registered charity (a charity number is will be required at application stage).

Search the charity register on GOV.UK if you're unsure what your registered charity number.

Fee

Suffolk County Council will waive the administrative fees (Event Application Fee and Highway Restriction Fee i.e., Road Closure) for processing charity events. However, the applicant will be responsible for any other associated costs/charges for holding the event safely on the highway (e.g. traffic management/traffic control).

Suffolk County Council may require confirmation of the relevant public liability insurances and qualifications for the event. Unfortunately, Suffolk County Council cannot recommend a Traffic Management supplier, however, there are many local suppliers within Suffolk and the surrounding areas.

Note: events which are raising money for charity but are not being organised directly by a registered charity will be classed as “other events” events by Suffolk County Council.

Other events (classed by Suffolk County Council) include:

  • carnivals
  • fayres/fairs
  • festivals
  • concerts

Working out the cost to pay

Other events are assessed through the “Event Impact Matrix (use table below) which looks to assess the impact of the event and provide an “Impact Score”.

This score will sit within a range, this range provides the rate of the “event application fee” for the event.

Depending on the range in which the score falls, it will also indicate whether the Highway Restriction Fee applies to the event. Read “paying the fee” for more information.

Event Impact Matrix

The below table is used to assess the event to determine the Event Impact Score.

This is calculated as (Event Size Score) + (Restriction Number Score) + (Duration Score) = The Event Impact Score

Worked Example

Event has 100 people attending with a road closure (1x Restriction) and will be for 4 hours duration, this would have Event Impact Score as follows:

Event Size Score is 1

+ Restriction Number Score is 1
+ Duration Score is 0
= The Event Impact Score equals 2

How to work out Event Impact Score

Event estimate attendance

Highway restrictions(s)

Duration of highway restriction*

Event size

Score

Restriction number

Score

Duration

Score

Small (0-99)

0

None

0

0 to 5 hours

0

Medium (100-499)

1

One to three

1

5 to 12 hours

1

Large (500-4999)

2

Three to ten

2

12 to 14 hours

2

Major (5000+)

3

Ten+

3

48+ hours

3

*Duration of highway restriction for example is calculated by taking the time the first road closes to the time the final road reopens i.e. If road A shuts at 9am and opens at 12pm but road B shuts at 10am and reopens at 1pm the duration would be 9am until 1pm thus 4 hours of closure.

Note: highway restrictions can include (but are not limited to): temporary road closures, implementation of a temporary or suspension of an existing one-way restriction, banned turn or prohibition of entry, implementation of a temporary speed limit or to implement or suspend a temporary weight, width or waiting restriction.

Event application and Highway Restriction Fee

The below table outlines the fees associated with processing event applications on the highway and this is dependent on the impact score achieved on the “Event Impact Matrix”.

Impact Score

Event Application Fee

If a Highway Restriction is required (i.e., Road Closure, One-Way, etc.), an additional charge of below will apply

0-2

£0

£0

3-5

£50

£0

6-7

£100

£1,560

8-9

£250

£1,560

Note: the applicant will be responsible for paying the relevant event application fee and highway restriction fee for the event. Furthermore, the applicant will be responsible for any other associated costs/charges for holding the event safely on the highway (e.g. traffic management/ traffic control).

Suffolk County Council may require confirmation of the relevant public liability insurances and qualifications for the event. Unfortunately, Suffolk County Council cannot recommend a traffic management supplier, however, there are many local suppliers within Suffolk and surrounding the areas.

Please visit Roadworks in Suffolk to see if your event may clash with any other events or roadworks on the Suffolk Highway Network. If it does, you may need to re-consider the date of your event.

You will need to:

  • liaise with everyone who will be affected by your event in advance, this will ensure that they will have the opportunity to raise any concerns or objections (this should include residents, businesses, local councils and the emergency services)
  • have a plan for resolving any problems that arise from your discussions with third parties
  • create a map showing where your closure is and the proposed diversion route; and
  • confirm your traffic management provider.

Resources to support your application:

Download the application form (Word, 267KB)

Email your completed application to na.applications@suffolk.gov.uk

If your application is successful, a payment request email will be sent out to advise on the total fee payable and how payment can be made.

Only pay after you're asked to make the payment. You'll receive a reference number too.

Once your application is approved, we will complete your legal order and send it to you using the email you have provided.

If the road closure is to remain in force for more than 3 days or the road has already been closed within the last 12 months for an event, we are required to gain approval from the Secretary of State. This can take up to 4 weeks upon receipt of the application from us.

Please be aware that it is a criminal offence to obstruct the public highway without lawful authority or excuse.

Managing traffic at your event

To enforce an order you receive from us, you will need to use an acc to direct traffic around your event. In some cases, accredited marshals can be used to direct traffic. For chargeable events; Suffolk Highways are able to provide the traffic management for a fee. To request a quote from Suffolk Highways please email customer.services@suffolk.gov.uk.

If your application is successful, a payment request email will be sent out to advise on the total fee payable and how payment can be made.

Make your payment online once you've received your payment request and reference number.

Please note: although the online payment system says "incl. VAT" there is no VAT included in this service as it is a zero-rated supply.

You can also pay by:

  • BACS
  • Bank Transfer
  • credit card

We no longer accept cheques as payment for event applications.

You:

  • do not need to tell us if your event is not on the public highway or will have no impact on the highway
  • need to tell the local borough or district council if you want to provide entertainment, serve food or alcohol.

Contact Customer Service quickly and easily by webchat

  • Your questions will be answered quicker on webchat.
  • Open Monday to Friday 9am to 4:30pm (excluding bank holidays).

Click the webchat button in the right hand corner of your screen.

Alternatively, you can email your enquiry to customer.services@suffolk.gov.uk.