LGA demands talks over anti-terror law

By Mark Conrad | 20 June 2023

The Local Government Association (LGA) has demanded fresh talks with senior Home Office figures amid concerns a proposed anti-terror law will heap huge costs onto councils.

Ministers have proposed the introduction of Martyn’s Law - a duty that would require venues and public spaces to improve safety.

The LGA has raised concerns about the regulatory and administrative costs of the law, which would cover council-linked venues including community centres, town halls, schools, libraries, museums, village halls and sports facilities.

It has been estimated that larger venues face huge compliance bills of £80,000 over 10 years.

Deputy chair of the LGA’s safer and stronger communities board, Clive Woodbridge, said: ‘Implementation will require substantial resources - not just money, but investment in people with the necessary skills and capabilities.

‘I think there has been some contact - certainly between the relevant officers and the Home Office - but over the coming weeks and months we would welcome the opportunity to speak in more detail with them and at a higher level.’

The LGA has called for ministers to consider exempting smaller bodies or venues amid fears that small, religious or charitable organisations may stop hosting events.

Cllr Woodbridge added: ‘It would be a win for terrorism if a lot of those events that are at the centre of our lives… were to be wound down because of this legislation.’

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Whitehall Finance Local Government Association Politics Legislation Terrorism