Children in entertainment and performances must be in the care of their legal guardian (usually their parents/carers) or an approved chaperone at all times. They must be in their sight even when performing. Aunts, uncles, grandparents and childminders are not legal guardians (unless appointed by the courts) so need to be approved in order to chaperone a child.
A chaperone must show the same care a good parent would and cannot carry on another role at the same time. Main responsibilities include:
- taking action if the child is ill, tired or upset
- making sure the child has enough breaks, rest and meals
- thinking about health and safety issues on set/stage
- being aware of child protection issues
A chaperone may supervise up to 12 children/young people at a time but we can reduce this number if we think it necessary. This could be for different reasons such as the children's ages or the demands of the performance for example.
A chaperone must know the Government regulations which protect a child's wellbeing and education and against exploitation. Anyone registering as a chaperone with us must attend our training sessions to help them understand how to act as a chaperone.
The regulations and the role of the chaperone are explained in our children in entertainment guide (PDF). We have a handbook to help those working with children and young people in entertainment to recognise any abuse (PDF).
A chaperone will be given contact details (including Children's Services out of hours number) for the child employment manager or officer, in case any child protection issues happen.
We can undertake unannounced site visits to any place where a performance or entertainment by a child is taking place unannounced to check that they are being properly supervised and cared for. If we are concerned we can take the child out of the performance and/or withdraw a chaperone's registration.
Want to apply?
Anyone aged 18 or over, living in the Surrey County Council local authority area can apply to be registered as a chaperone with us.
- Complete the online application form and provide details of two independent referees and send it to us by email to email@example.com. Please do ensure that your referees are appropriate and know you well enough to provide the required reference.
- Attend two evening training sessions, or one daytime session, on child protection awareness and the role/powers of a chaperone. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call on 01483 517838 for training dates and locations.
- Pay a £40 fee via credit/debit card if using the online application form or in cash or cheque in person.
- Provide a clear headshot photograph of yourself by email. If this is not possible please bring one to training or send it to us by post.
- Prove identity by showing three types of ID - (originals only accepted) in person, at a time agreed with the child employment office.
- Once we have checked your ID you will be invited to go online to complete the Disclosure and Barring Service disclosure form. You will be given a link to the website and details of how to access the form. Please note that a DBS check can take between two and six weeks.
- If you are signed up to the DBS Update Service and you have an enhanced children's workforce and children's barred list DBS check, then we may be able to accept this instead of running a new DBS check. Please contact us for further information.
- Once we have received a satisfactory enhanced DBS disclosure and two satisfactory references and you have attended both training sessions, we will send you confirmation of your chaperone approval and ID badge, which may be valid for approximately up to three years.
- You must let us know of any changes to your circumstances or address which may invalidate your registration.
To renew your chaperone approval
Please contact us directly for information, you can email us on: email@example.com
If you would like to see how we use your personal data please read our privacy notice.
Files available to download
Children in Entertainment Guide 2015 (PDF)
Information on some of the most common queries about children appearing on stage or in a broadcast performance
Children in entertainment: Recognising child abuse (PDF)
A handbook for those working with children and young people who perform.