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Marches and protests

If you are organising a public march to protest within Avon and Somerset, by law you must inform us at least six days before it is due to take place.

This helps us minimise serious disruption and prevent crime, disorder or breaches of the peace. To achieve this, officers will talk to organisers before and during the event.

Informing the police

If you arrange a march or protest at short notice, you must still inform us as soon as possible under sections 11(1) and 11(3) of the Public Order Act 1986.

You must tell us the:

  • date and time of the march or procession
  • planned route
  • names and addresses of the organisers

Our involvement

Depending on your plans and other events going on in the force area, we have options to influence various aspects of the protest including powers to:

  • change the route or location
  • restrict how long the march or procession lasts
  • limit the amount of attendees
  • stop sit-down protests if they block roads or public walkways

Officers may be posted at key locations on the route. This includes any prominent buildings or landmarks which might be at risk of criminal damage. Arrests will be made if necessary.

Guidance for event organisers

If you are organising a different sort of event, such as a music festival, see public event planning.

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