Licence - child employment


Child employment and children in entertainment

The rules governing children in entertainment covers children who take part in 'performances', including all broadcast performances, child photography or modelling. Any child engaged in these occupations must have a licence issued by us. Here is our guidance on the employment of children and our leaflet about children in employment.

An application for a licence must be signed by you as parents and accompanied by a photograph. We must be satisfied that the arrangements for the supervision and protection of the child are adequate and that the disruption to the child's education is kept to a minimum.

The legislation which demands this licensing is The Children and Young Persons Acts 1933 and 1963 and The Children (Performances) Regulations 1968.

Key issues included in the regulations are:

  • is the child/young person below minimum school leaving age?
  • do they reside in the Derby City Council area
  • is there a charge made for admission?
  • is it within licensed premises?
  • is it broadcast on TV?
  • is it intended for filming?
  • is the child/young person fit to take part?
  • education; consultation with headteacher if in school time
  • is the activity safe?

No licence is required under the following circumstances:

  • no payment made to child and they have not taken part in performances in the previous six months on more than three days
  • no payment made to child and performance arranged by school
  • no payment made to child and performance exempted by Secretary of State, such as scout gang shows.

This table licences requirements table shows you whether your child will need a licence. If you do not think your child needs a licence then you still need to register your child as taking part in a performance.

When is a licence required?

A child cannot take part in a performance or activity without a licence. Backdated licences should not be issued as they undermine the licensing process which is, after all, a safeguard for the children involved.

When licences are requested at short notice we will always try to accommodate requests. However there must be enough time to deal with the application detail beforehand. Productions should be mindful that we can insist upon 21 days notice under The Children (Performances) Regulations 1968, Regulation 1(3).

When sending details from one council to another "the licensing authority must send to those authorities copies of the application form and the licence, together with any information they think should be brought to the notice of the other authorities" as per the Children (Performances) Regulations 1968, Regulation 4.

Children’s licences

Does my child need a licence to appear on stage at the theatre?

Yes, a child performance licence is required for infants and children up to the age of 16, when appearing in theatre, film (studio and or location), modelling, sport or in a licensed premises. For further details please contact us.

I would like to register with you as a chaperone, how do I do this and what does it involve?

A chaperone acts ‘in loco parentis’ (in place of a parent/carer) to the child or children under their care when they are modelling, performing on stage, taking part in a film production, radio or television programme. A chaperone is expected to exercise the same care and control as a good parent would with a view to securing a child’s health, comfort, kind treatment and moral view. For further details please contact us.

Useful forms


Contact details

Post address:
218 Osmaston Road
DE23 8JX
Phone: 01332 641448
Minicom: 01332 256666

218 Osmaston Road
DE23 8JX