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Events and places that attract crowds or large groups of people bring a range of unique challenges that require specialist knowledge.  This one day event features fantastic and experienced speakers who will help you to develop a risk management strategy to keep people safe, protect your reputation and your staff.

10 October 2018 – Victoria Place, Manchester, M4 4FB

20 March 2019 – 100 Victoria Street, London SW1E 5JL 

Members of IIRSM must log in before booking to receive the member rate.  



Wednesday, 10 October, 2018 - 09:30 - 17:00
Including VAT
Including VAT

Event Date & Location





Session description


Registration and refreshments




Welcome and scene setting





‘Real Risks’ V ‘Topical Threats’

Mark Breen

Are we focusing too much on the latest attack types, while losing sight of ‘real risks’ that are more likely to impact on our events and our attendees? 



Scenario planning

Mark Breen

Types of emergency situations: fire, floods, terrorism, violence, crowd surge (importance of dynamic thinking).  Scenario planning and security measures.  Conditions.  Developing a response plan.  Understanding premises and types of scenarios that can occur in different environments. 



Andy Neal

Prediction indicators (reading crowd behaviour).  Threats (lone wolf, marauding attack, vehicle based, etc). Behaviour recognition.   Hostile reconnaissance.    Mitigation measures.


Coffee/tea break




The group psychology of mass emergencies – and how to manage it

Dr John Drury



An understanding of the principles of group psychology, based on the social identity approach, can contribute to safer events.  Delegates will learn why and how to prioritise their relationship with the crowd through communication strategies.


Case study

Wild Lights @ Dublin Zoo

Mark Breen

With an attendance of almost 200,000 people across 47 nights, this new event at Dublin Zoo posed an array of challenges.


With year two of Wild Lights kicking off mere weeks after the conference in October, Mark will provide an insight into how this year’s planning has been informed by what was done for year one and what was learned during those 47 nights of events. 







Real-time evaluation of crowd dynamics.  Crowd counting, management and control/movement of people 


Prof Keith Still



Crowd safety and the use of crowd risk analysis techniques are the core topics of MMU’s short courses and MSc programme. 

Pre-event, the application of these tools helps planning and crowd risk analysis for places of public assembly and during the event it can provide early warning indicators of potential problems. 


Risk mitigation




Temporary structures

Roger Barrett, Star Events

How to assess and then deal with risks related to temporary structures, including real life examples of failures and near misses, statistics and systems to help you assess the overall safety of any temporary structure


Coffee/tea break




Emergency planning




Evacuation/lockdown procedures



Speaker TBC

Decision making and best practice (evacuation/invacuation/lockdown)

Communications, planning, dynamic risk assessment and how to be flexible depending upon your environment.


Using technology and communication tools




Communication systems

Phillip Brown SOLT UK Theatre

Free tools, Local authority licensing, safety advisory groups.


Summary and close




NOTE:  Dr John Drury is not yet confirmed for the London conference.


Professor Keith Still

Keith is the Professor of Crowd Science at Manchester Metropolitan University (UK) where he developed and delivers an online MSc programme in Crowd Safety and Risk Analysis. His work focusses on the use of planning tools for places of public assembly and major events. Keith has consulted on some of the world’s largest, and most challenging crowd safety projects.

Keith has developed and taught a wide range of crowd dynamics, crowd science, crowd planning, crowd safety and crowd risk analysis short courses for event organisers, police, first responders, emergency planners, city authorities, building control officers, licensing officers, architects, event managers, security companies, venue operators and consulting engineers. These courses draw on his extensive experience of planning major events, his various research projects and application of crowd safety and risk analysis over the last 29 years and his crowd modelling background.

Mark Breen

Mark is Director of Safe Events as well as Cuckoo Events based in Dublin, Ireland. He is an award-winning Event Safety Officer and one of the most experienced and qualified event & crowd safety practitioners in Ireland. He works internationally and domestically, with recent projects including a number of international festivals, Wild Lights at Dublin Zoo, multiple events in Saudi Arabia and work on consultancy projects for a large international airport and a European arena.

Mark is a Specialist Member of IIRSM, as well as being a member of IOSH, EPS, IFEA and ESA. He is currently working on his dissertation for the MSc in Crowd Safety & Risk Analysis in Manchester Metropolitan University.

Safe Events specialises in Crowd & Event Safety and counts the Dublin Marathon and Race Series, the Irish Maritime Festival, Fleadh Cheoil na hEireann, Paralympics Ireland, the National Dairy Council, Dublin Pride, the FAI, Cricket Ireland and many more among its list of clients. At the forefront of the industry in Ireland and internationally, Safe Events is recognised as an industry leader, both strategically and operationally.

Dr John Drury

John Drury is Professor of Social Psychology at the University of Sussex.

He has published over 70 peer-reviewed journal articles on crowd behaviour. Some of the crowd events he has researched include the Hajj (Mecca), the London bombings of July 7th 2005, the Hillsborough disaster, the 2010 Chile earthquake, and the 2011 English riots.

His work has informed the training and guidance materials of the UK Fire and Rescue Service and the Civil Contingencies Secretariat’s National Risk Assessment. His work on CBRN mass decontamination is included in international guidance and his work on crowd safety has informed the training of over 2000 personnel. He runs the Crowds & Identities group and is the lead for Impact in the School of Psychology at Sussex University.

He is currently the editor of the British Journal of Social Psychology.

Andy Neal

Andy is the Associate Director of Global Security Solutions at Cardinus Risk Management where he provides a range of clients with training in corporate travel safety, lone working, hostile environments, conflict management and behaviour profiling.

Previously he founded Protaris - a unique specialist security training provider and strategic risk management advisory business which delivered training and bespoke Behaviour Recognition Programmes to help businesses in the UK and internationally improve their employees’ safety and security. Protaris worked closely with Government Agencies, Military and Police Services in over 22 countries, including the UK, United States, China, Africa, Middle East, Brazil and in Europe.

Throughout a career spanning 22 years, Andy has a proven track record in delivering outcomes across regional, national and international projects. Highly regarded in his field, Andy has extensive experience, specialist training and a unique style of delivery that gets results.

He has designed and delivered strategies on counter-terrorism, lone working, global travel safety, overt–covert security operational training and procedures.

Roger Barrett Eng Tech, TIStructE, SIIRSM, MIoD

Roger Barrett has been involved in the design and supply of equipment to the events industry since 1970, co-founded Star Events in 1976 and founded Star Events China in 2007.

Nearly five decades of event specific design work has led to a keen interest in designing out risks and hazards to ensure the Health and Safety of the crews who build temporary event structures and the audiences who are near them.

Renowned for its commitment to quality and best practice, Star Events engineers and supplies award-winning staging, rigging solutions, seating and support structures for festivals, brands and events. 

Apart from designing and building some amazing structures in over 40 countries to date, Roger has lectured worldwide about the safety of Temporary Demountable Structures and specialises in cutting through the jargon to help event professionals understand the basics of what makes temporary structures safe, or not.

Over his highly successful career, Roger has received many awards including ‘The Event Industry Award’ in 2011 for services to the industry and the ‘Event Industry Legend’ award in 2018. However, it was the 2017 award from the Institution of Structural Engineers (for the VerTech Ultra stage for the Adele Live tour) that he cites as a career highlight, it being the first such award to the events industry in the 50-year history of the IStructE Awards.

Roger sat on his first event industry safety committee in 1988 and has either written or contributed to substantial sections of most of the guidance in current use. His simple traffic-light safety assessment system for event structures is gaining wider and wider interest and features front and central in his presentations.

Phillip Brown 

Phill is Head of Risk & Technical, SOLT|UK Theatre.  He started his career with the Ministry of Defence and for 10 years worked in a variety of positions including UK and International security management.   On leaving the MoD he re-trained and qualified in health, safety and risk management first working within the NHS in safety, risk and security management positions before moving into the theatre industry eventually becoming Risk Management Director for the Ambassador Theatre Group.  During that time he created and nurtured a proactive approach to risk management and developed positive changes in theatre working practices before moving onto the newly created industry role for SOLT|UK Theatre. 

As the inaugural person to hold this role Phill provides a consolidated and effective industry voice to represent the collective interests of SOLT and UK Theatre membership in relation to risk and technical management.  The role provides him with the unique opportunity to have direct dialogue with hundreds of theatre operators, employees and other stakeholders such as HSE and NaCTSO.  He strives to find imaginative and original ways to engage with staff and venues throughout the industry, setting high standards of risk management for all members. 

Phill is a Fellow of International Institute of Risk and Safety Management (FIIRSM), Fellow of Institute of Entertainment & Arts Management (FIEAM), Registered Safety Practitioner (RSP) and Chartered Member of Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (CMIOSH)