It's fair to say that many companies will be glad to see the back of last year. It was a year that turned many of our lives upside down, and many businesses are still on the road to recovery well over a year later. Festival season was cancelled in its entirety, events both outdoors and indoors were scrapped, and the events industry had to stare down the barrel of its greatest ever challenge.
Here at Outdoor Stages, we proud to say that we have successfully weathered the storm. Not only have we survived the numerous challenges thrown our way over the course of the 2020s thus far, but we are using this opportunity to invest heavily in new equipment and services at a time where many others aren't in a position to do so.
If you have considered using us in the past and have chosen to follow a different route, there has never been a better time to reconsider. Today, we offer one of our nation's only outfits that can provide everything you could possibly need for an indoor or outdoor event under one roof. No subcontracting, no having to deal with multiple points of contact for your event production needs, and no need to take on the stress of organising several different contractors to bring your event together.
Instead, we offer you a hassle-free, quality-assured event production service that cannot be matched. While others have folded under the mounting pressure, we continue to move forwards by expanding our services and offering cast-iron guarantees to event organisers that we are going nowhere.
So, given that you might be choosing a new outdoor stage hire supplier shortly, we thought we should take the time to author this all-encompassing guide to walk you through the entire process, step-by-step. No stone is left unturned, from determining what type of stage you need in the first place, to each and every health and safety aspect you need to take care of.
So without further ado, let's get cracking.
Introduction: Why The Stage Carries the Entire Weight of Your Event
Whether you know it yet or not, the stage is the focal point for your entire event. It's the first thing your attendees will see, it will hold their attention throughout each performance, and it will be the critical backdrop to every tweet, Instagram post, conversation, and memory of your event.
Therefore, getting the stage right is critical. Get it wrong, and you'll create an underwhelming impression that permanently ruins the reputation of the event you've worked so hard to build. However, get your choice of stage and supporting event production services right, and you'll have fans lining up to buy tickets for next year's edition.
It's vital to remember that stages are so much more than their mere material structure. It's not just about providing a platform for musical acts, dance troupes, or full-blown orchestras to strut their stuff in front of an army of loyal fans. It's about all of the supporting equipment and services that tie everything together for a successful event. Lighting fixtures, sound equipment, and giant video screens; they all play crucial roles in the overall success of your production.
You also need to realise that, given the multifaceted nature of bringing together all of these different elements, constructing an event stage is a considerable logistical challenge. You need to have set up defined access routes, construction zones, schedules, and an army of stage crew on hand to make sure everything is completed as envisioned and derigged once everyone has gone home.
Here at Outdoor Stages, we've been serving the British and European outdoor events industry for decades. From large-cap dance music festivals to village fêtes, and everything in between, we've done it all both in the UK and across the continent. From mobile stages to the biggest and best festival stages, we have a solution for events of all shapes and sizes.
Better yet, we have all of the supporting equipment and infrastructure to make your event an unmitigated success. From sound and lighting to LED screens and artistic direction, our company is a complete one-stop solution for event organiser looking to taking the smoothest path to an awe-inspiring event.
As we move into the "meat and bones" of this guide, don't hesitate to call us or contact us via email if you have any questions regarding either this guide or any other concerns you may have about your event. We're on hand 24 hours a day on 07908916458, or you can shoot us a message at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Now let's move on to the first step of the outdoor stage hire process – determining your stage requirements.
How to Determine The Outdoor Stage Requirements for Your Event
The first decision you will have to make as an event organiser is determining the type, size, and shape of stage you require for your event. One of the biggest mistakes inexperienced event hosts make is rushing this decision. However, there are several factors that you need to consider before you can even think about coming to any sort of conclusion. The first of which is considering the number of attendees.
Consider the Size and Scale of Your Event
The most important consideration you can have with regards to choosing the right stage is your audience size. Hiring a stage that is too small is bound to have disastrous consequences. Remember, keep in mind that you need to hire a stage that gives your audience members a completely unrestricted view of performers. Otherwise, there is no way that they are going to enjoy or recollect your event fondly.
While there are no hard and fast rules, an excellent general rule of thumb is the larger your expected audience, the larger the stage needs to be. Larger stages tend to have stage platforms that are higher off the ground, which is essential when serving large audiences. However, you may decide to set up your festival with several small to medium-sized stages placed at strategic locations throughout your main arena, proving that there are always exceptions to the rule.
Most event organisers prefer the aesthetic appeal of a large, imposing and impressive stage structure. But for smaller events, this is much less of a consideration. In many cases, you are going to be led by the demands of headline acts and leading performers who may specify specific stage requirements as part of their rider, which we'll now cover in more detail.
1. Performance Requirements
As highlighted, while the size of your audience will undoubtedly have a significant bearing on the choice of your stage, you also have to remember that the nature of the performances or the performers themselves will also influence the type of structure you need.
Many leading artists will make requests not only about the stage, but for certain production aspects such as sounds equipment, lighting fixtures, and special effects too. All of those requests will also feed directly into your choice of stage.
These requests will be made by most (if not all) headline acts, regardless of whether they are a largescale band or a solo artist. Even small-time cover artists or tribute acts will often request specific stage set and technical equipment requests, such as monitor mixing areas, backstage changing areas, or guitar prep areas.
While those specific demands will change for artists, you've got to choose a stage and accompanying services that can accommodate them. In the case of festivals, you've got to opt for a stage that can facilitate all requests made by dozens of artists, which is no mean feat and will affect the size and the layout of the stage you need. It will also require you to build in additional space that facilitates the rearranging of equipment for performances.
But it's not all about meeting the demands of highly-strung performers. The performances themselves might also necessitate a change of your initial thoughts on which type of stage you'd like to hire. For example, if you're hosting a classical music festival, you are going to need to hire a stage with a large surface area to accommodate each and every playing member. Not to mention the musical instruments they bring with them.
In the case of an orchestra specifically, you may be better served to opt for an arc dome roof design which maximises floor space as opposed to a more traditional arc roof of an outdoor festival stage.
For smaller events, it's true that you probably do have a little more flexibility. Many, if not all, of your artists, will be happy to use the same technical equipment, saving you the hassle of having to cater to dozens of individual technical specification requests. However, you will still have to factor in instrument changeovers and making tweaks to technical equipment such as increasing or decreasing the number of microphones on stage.
No matter the size of your event, or who your performers are, it's best to keep them in the loop when it comes to choosing your stage and associated technical requirements. Not only will it avoid any nasty or awkward shocks come the day of the event, but you can ensure that both your performers and their performances have the necessary platform to be shown in their best possible light.
2. The Size and Nature of Your Venue
Of course, the size and accessibility of your venue are going to play a significant role in deciding which stage you choose to hire. Don't forget that while your planned location may look incredibly spacious now, you have to factor in the number of audience members that will be present come event time. Suddenly, the margins may become very tight when it comes to squeezing in the stage you had always envisaged.
Then you need to factor in the physical obstacles that may dictate where you can even consider placing the stage. First and foremost, you need the ground earmarked for the stage to be as flat and even as possible. You also need to ensure that it's free of human-made obstacles such as overhead wires, underground pipes (or wiring), drainage systems, buildings, and any other structure that cause potentially cause issues for your stage (e.g. large overhanging trees).
Fortunately, our selection of stages is exceptionally flexible. We've erected stages in the grounds of stately homes, in public parks, and even in one instance over the top of an outdoor swimming pool! However, no matter how challenging the terrain or obstacles may be, nothing can be overcome if you haven't got the necessary access routes in place.
Logistics are one of the most crucial factors you will need to consider in your choice of stage. This is especially the case in you are organising a sizeable event such as a festival. Remember, these massive structures do not magically appear out of thin air. They arrive on several articulated lorries, and if you can't create a passage for them from a road to a proposed stage site, then your stage plan is dead in the water.
Those of you looking at setting up a stage on a grass surface will need to factor in how you are going to make provisions for the lorries to make their way off-road to as close to the construction zone as possible. Obviously, the smaller the stage, the less of a consideration this is going to be. But for large-cap festival stages, figuring out how you are going to get our lorries to the site of the stage is half the battle.
We have worked on some extremely challenging sites in the past, so we're no strangers to working out solutions to tricky access problems, but it should be front and centre of your mind. Many organisers forget the access implications of their stage requirements and come unstuck with a few days left until their event, so breeze over this consideration at your peril!
Next, you need to think about the ground surface upon which you propose to erect your outdoor stage. Our stages can be constructed on both grass and concrete, but there are significant differences in the approaches taken to secure the stage on either. They need ground anchors (grass) or ballasts (concrete) to ensure that they are protected from wind lift. With large structures in particular win presents a considerable threat, so we have to use the appropriate equipment (with the appropriate calculations) to ensure that the stage will stay firmly in place.
We can factor in a certain degree of unevenness to the ground with our stages, as is always the case with grass surfaces. However, we do need to carry out inspections of extremely cambers to ensure that your proposed stage location is appropriate or indeed feasible. In many cases, we can tell simply from a photo, so send one across to us via email if you're unsure.
3. Time and Weather
Another couple of factors that are often overlooked by event organisers are time and weather. You can have the visions of hiring the biggest stage in our selection. But if you haven't factored in the three or four days required to ensure that everything is ready to go come event day, then you could find yourself faced with the nightmare scenario of a partially-finished stage.
To give you an idea, the largest festival stages can be built in as little as two working days, but that can stretch to four if there are access issues or weather events that make working on the stage difficult. At the other end of the scale, our smaller, mobile stages can be constructed in a mere matter of hours, and are much less dependent on the factors just mentioned.
Moving on to our infamous British weather, it doesn't just need to be factored into the physical process of building up the stage itself. To illustrate this point, think about what contingencies you have in place if your access routes become unviable thanks to torrential rain and the subsequent mud and bogs it has created. Without temporary roadways, your festival stage construction could come to a standstill.
When it comes to the weather, it's best to follow the mantra of "plan for the worst, hope for the best." What that means is that you need to have both the time and infrastructure contingencies in place to account for bad weather events, whether you end up using them or not. Speaking from experience, hoping for the best is usually a recipe for disaster, so get those plans in place now, before you even start thinking about your stage.
How Much Does It Cost to Hire a Stage?
There's no such thing as two identical events, which means in most instances the quote you receive from us with be heavily dependent on factors that are specific to your requirements. However, we do have a range of so-called "off the shelf" outdoor stage hire packages that include several extras such as lighting fixtures and sound equipment.
But before we get into any ballpark figures, it's worth running over the aspects that will influence your overall cost the most.
Factors That Affect the Cost of Your Stage Hire
The two most significant variables when it comes to hiring an outdoor stage are duration and the transport to and from the site. The more we have to travel, and the longer the event lasts, the higher the cost is going to be. Then size is another prominent factor. The larger the stage you require, the more it is going to cost you.
A decent chunk of our work is with largescale events because it takes no more effort to set everything up and dismantle afterwards for a one-day event than it does for a large-cap four-day festival, making us an excellent value for money choice. However, we also provide considerable savings to smaller events by bundling together a range of our services into one easy-to-understand price.
Speaking of which, the number of additional equipment services you order is also going to impact your overall costs. The more lighting, sound, and special effects equipment you hire, the higher your overall cost is going to be. However, by sourcing them all from one contractor, you can net yourself some significant cost reductions. You also don't have the hassle of dealing with one contractor for each specific aspect of event production.
Stage Hire Costs
Before we give you some ballpark figures, it's essential to understand that, here at Outdoor Stages, we have two pricing systems. Firstly, we have a range of packages that include everything you need bar set up and delivery costs (as they are venue dependent). If one of those stage hire packages doesn't work for you, we can create a completely bespoke quote for you if you need an all-encompassing range of equipment hire and event services.
Now to put some rough figures on our outdoor stage hire packages, let's start with our smallest stage hire package. It starts at £850, and it includes a 6m x 4m mobile stage, PA speakers, microphones, mixing desk, and LED stage washes. By contrast, at the upper end of our stage packages, you can hire our 11m x 9m arc-roofed stage. This bundle comes complete with a suite of audio visual (AV) equipment and on-site technicians to operate everything on the day (suitable for 10,000+ attendees). This specific package starts at £8,000 minus set up and delivery costs.
As we said at the beginning of this section, every outdoor event is different. It's frequently the case that your event doesn't neatly fit into one of these packages. That's perfectly fine. We can create bespoke quotes made up of any combination of stage, equipment, and event support services. We're entirely flexible to your needs.
Additional Equipment Hire and Support Services
Of course, hiring a physical stage is only part of what you are going to require for your outdoor event. There are many other factors associated with a stage that will influence your overall budget, including but not limited to:
- Lighting equipment
- Sound equipment
- Video/LED screen equipment
- Additional structures such as PA wings
- Power supply
We are happy to report that we include many of these services within the preset stage hire packages detailed above. But you may want to request certain pieces of equipment on top of those packages, or request a different brand to meet the rider specifications of a headline act, for example.
Whatever it may be, understand that we can supply it for you. We are part of one of the most prominent event production companies in the UK, which means we have several warehouses chocked full of associated technical equipment ready to be hired out as part of one bespoke stage hire package. We don't subcontract anything in. We can tell you the history of event light, speaker, and mixing desk because we own everything we hire out.
Experienced event organisers will tell you that the experience of working with just one contractor for all event production requirements is worth its weight in gold. Not only do you realise some pretty hefty savings from our in-house economies of scale, but you also get to enjoy a smoother experience by avoiding the constant back and forth that comes with trying to accommodate several contractors on just one stage.
The best part is we can also provide you with any technical support services you might require across the duration of your event. We have some of the most experienced sound technicians, lighting directors, and engineers in the events business. They are just as comfortable running the light show for nationally televised awards show as they are mixing the sound for a local tribute act. There's nothing they can't handle.
In other words, for one transparent price, we can indeed provide everything you could ever wish for when it comes to running your event. Why give yourself the hassle of working with multiple contractors when you can save both time and money by working with Outdoor Stages?
Health and Safety of Hiring an Outdoor Stage
As you're probably well aware, large outdoor events such as music concerts and festivals are subject to a broad spectrum of health and safety regulations. This section will cover the two main categories of these event considerations and how they relate to your stage hire. Initially, the burdens on your event can be divided into two categories: licensing requirements mandated by your local authority and regulations set by the Health & Safety Executive (HSE).
It's important to note that local authority requirement vary significantly from region to region, so we'll only go into broad details concerning these aspects. For that reason, it's also crucial to understand that's impossible to take a "one size fits all" approach in this regard.
On the health and safety side, your preparations will rest heavily on your "Event Safety Plan," which, by its very nature, is unique to your event. Thus, once again, we will only be covering best practices here. On both local licensing and health and safety, you'll have to do your homework to ensure that you've taken care of everything that's required of you.
Let's make a start with local authorities.
Local Authority Event Licences
As just mentioned, to host any public event, either you as the organiser, or the local authority must license your chosen venue. For the purposes of this guide, we are assuming that you aren't hosting your event at already-licensed premises.
You will need to obtain a licence from your local authority in almost all instances if:
- Your event will be serving alcohol
- There will be food available at your event
- You will be broadcasting live music to an audience of over 500 people
If one or all of these stipulations applies to your event, then you'll have to apply for a temporary event licence, but there are two different types. One is quite simple, and one is much more complicated. So let's start with the first, a Temporary Event Notice.
Smaller Events Require a Temporary Event Notice
If you are hosting an event with less than 500 people, then you may only need to apply for a Temporary Event Notice (TEN). The application you need to make is submitted to your local council. To qualify for this type of licence, there must be no more than 500 people on-site at any one time, including all support staff and performers.
You should submit your application directly to the council a minimum of 10 days in advance of the event, and the fee to be paid is £21. Once a certificate for your event has been granted, make sure to forward a copy to your local police authority. It's very rare for a TEN to be denied unless a representative of the Environmental Health Authority objects to your event on safety grounds.
For larger events, the licensing process is much more complicated.
Temporary Event Licensing for Larger Events
Unsurprisingly, if you are hosting an event with thousands expected in attendance, then the licensing process is much more thorough. First and foremost, it will involve you liaising with your local authority's Safety Advisory Group (SAG) who will need to be satisfied in order to grant you a licence.
You will have to show your local SAG proof of the following:
- Public Liability Insurance
- A Health and Safety Risk Assessment and Event Safety Plan
- Written permissions for any road closures or potential traffic disruption
- A Management Control Document demonstrating how you intend to regulate noise pollution and food hygiene
As you can see, bar the public liability insurance, these perquisites can and will be time-consuming. That's why it's vital to meet with your local authority at least six months in advance of your event to make sure everything is in place by the time you're a matter of weeks out from the event. Also, don't forget that, depending on the nature of your on-site vendors, the sale of alcohol and food will require their own specific permissions.
With the local authority licensing taken care of, it's time to take a look at the regulations set by the HSE that you'll need to navigate.
HSE Guidance for Outdoor Events
The HSE is an excellent resource for event organisers. While HSE guidance and advice isn't legally binding, by following their requirements, you will stay on the right side of the law and protect yourself from many of the potential repercussions should something go awry during your event.
To satisfy HSE guidance and regulations, your event safety plan will have to include health and safety provisions during the following key stages of your event:
- Event setup
- While the event is in progress
- Deconstruction / dismantling
- During potential incidents and emergencies (including extreme weather)
It's imperative that you understand that the vast majority of incidents occur during the setup and dismantling phases of an event, which is hardly surprising given it's when heavy equipment is being moved, stages are being constructed etc. Thus, you need to have provisions in place to offer protection to the health, safety and welfare of not just your employees, but anyone working on-site.
As an event organiser, you have a duty of care to three groups of people:
- Your employees
- Contractors, performers and third parties, including vendors selling alcohol, food and merchandise on-site
- Your event attendees and any other members of the public
Construction, Design, and Management (CDM) Regulations
These regulations were brought in by the HSE back in 2015 to ensure that project management roles of each event were clearly designated and that policies were put in place to cover all health and safety responsibilities. These include but aren't limited to sufficient lighting levels, predetermined traffic routes, fire detection, clean air standards, and minimum welfare facilities.
You can have a look at them in more detail here, should you wish.
These regulations provide an excellent roadmap to your event safety plan and cover everything you need to think about from a health and safety standpoint. As well as using this document to create your event safety plan, you'll need to assign those working on bringing your outdoor event together to one of three roles:
- The Client
- The Contractor / Designer
- Principal Designers and Principal Contractors
As the event organiser, you must (in partnership with your venue) to take reasonable steps to ensure that your appointed team and contractors have the necessary skills and experience to undertake the relevant CDM roles and functions. You'll be expected to be able to demonstrate how and when this has been done.
Now let's get onto perhaps the most crucial document of your entire event, the event safety plan.
Creating an Event Safety Plan
As we just said, it doesn't get much more critical than your event safety plan. Without a robust safety plan, your event won't get the go-ahead, and any stage hire arrangements you made will be irrelevant. So you must get this right.
First, you will need to have completed a detailed risk assessment under the guidance of the HSE. Next, you can start the event safety plan in earnest. Just because it's important, don't be daunted by it. Remember, all you're doing is putting practical health and safety provisions in place for each group of people mentioned above. Once you've done that, all you have to do next is lay out how the parties charges with those responsibilities are going to implement them. That's it.
You can make a start on your event safety plan by using the following categories to assess the risk they present to those groups of people mentioned:
- The scale, type and scope of the event
- The type and size of the audience
- Duration of the event
- The time of day and year the event will be held
By breaking down your outdoor event in this way, you can begin to determine what resources and facilities will be required to ensure health and safety. You need then need to be able to demonstrate that you have enough knowledge about health and safety to organise all necessary works appropriately and that you have devised and have implemented good health and safety policies and procedures.
If for any reason you feel that you are not well-positioned to demonstrate these prerequisites, then please speak us. We've been helping event planners for decades, and it's fair to say we know every regulation and legal requirement inside and out. If you are unsure about anything regarding the health and safety implications of erecting a stage or any other aspect of event production, just let us know, and we'll happily give you the advice you need.
Working with Contractors
You don't need us to tell you that it's unheard of for an events company, no matter how big, to take care of everything in-house. That means you need to get to grips with working with contractors, which is a skill that is required of all event organisers.
The larger your proposed event, the more contractors there are likely to be. For instance, even just a local music festival is going to need security firms, food and drinks vendors, outdoor stage hire suppliers, lighting, sound, and event production suppliers, logistics providers, merchandisers, ticket sellers, booking agents, and the list goes on!
You'll have no shortage of offers when it comes to contractors providing you with one, or several of the above services. The question is, how do you choose trustworthy contractors that are an excellent fit for your specific event? Be advised; no two contractors are the same. Each outfit will offer differing levels of experience, areas of expertise, and numbers of services they can provide under one roof.
The point is, you need to be able to evaluate and assess the contractors you choose so that you can ensure you receive a suitable, reliable, and most importantly, safe service for your event.
So let's walk you through precisely how you can achieve that outcome.
Selecting the Best Contractors for Your Event
Choosing between contractors can be difficult, particularly if some outfits are well-matched. However, you'll find that you can rapidly whittle down the number of possible contenders by asking the right questions.
Firstly, you should ask them to clearly demonstrate an understanding of their work and the health and safety risks involved. Next, ask them to provide extensive evidence (including certifications and qualifications) of a highly-trained workforce, along with the individual qualifications of the staff filling critical positions on your project. Once you're satisfied with what has been presented to you thus far, ask those remaining contractors to prove they have sufficient resources to undertake the works.
Finally, and most crucially, demand that you see evidence of previous successful work that demonstrates they can both implement and develop safe methods of working. This stage should include gathering references from other previous event organisers, preferably for the projects that have been most similar in nature to your proposed event.
Since we are talking about hiring an outdoor stage for your event, let's guide you through what you need to be looking for from stage hire suppliers in particular.
What to Look for in Your Stage Hire and Event Production Supplier
We can't speak to selecting contractors for services such as site security as it's not something in which we have any experience. However, what we can do is tell you what you need to see from any stage hire or event equipment hire company before committing to use them for your event.
It's vital to remember that outdoor stage hire suppliers (such as ourselves) need extra scrutiny because they are in charge of assembling and dismantling what is usually the biggest structure on-site. Therefore, they will play one of the most prominent roles in ensuring the overall health and safety of your event.
Here is a brief list of what you should need to see from your outdoor stage hire supplier as a bare minimum:
- Drawings and structural calculations in relation to the stage(s) being provided
- A Risk Assessment and Method Statement (RAMS) for the works
- A wind management plan (essential)
- Safety rules and guidance about the structure being provided and how they will be monitored
- Suitable liability insurances (we suggest a minimum of £5 million in public liability coverage)
- Qualifications relating to any plant or machinery being used (e.g. forklift licence)
- A suitable completion document for the structure, which you'll both parties will go over and sign off on before the event goes ahead
Of course, here at Outdoor Stages, we can and will provide all of that information (and more) for you if you decide to choose us for your event. We've amassed decades of experience and continue to work to exacting standards concerning health and safety and quality assurance.
While we believe no contractor should claim they are head and shoulders above the rest when it comes to the documentation requirements laid out above, we know that there are only a few companies based in the UK that share our commitment to HSE regulations, construction standards, risk assessments, and the quality of equipment and service provided.
Which brings us nicely to the next section. Why should you choose Outdoor Stages over anyone else to look after all of your event production needs?
Why Work with Outdoor Stages?
Here at Outdoor Stages, we mean it when we say that we are a one-stop solution for your event. Not only can we provide you with an array of stages, but we also have our own sound, lighting, and audio visual (AV) departments complete with state-of-the-art equipment and knowledgeable support staff.
We've been around long enough to know that there is enormous pressure on you as the event organiser, which is why we are hand to take as much of the event production burden off your shoulders as possible. For one transparent and affordable price, you can secure yourself a genuinely turn-key solution for your event.
Unlike the vast majority of other stage hire suppliers, we don't just offer our event production extras as a way to increase revenues. We own and stock an extensive in-house equipment inventory covering all event production aspects. For instance, we have over 120 square metres of industry-leading 3.9mm pixel pitch LED video panels on standby, ready to build the stage-accompanying screens of your choice. Our sound equipment only includes the best brands in the business, such as Shure, Midas, and d&b audiotechnik. Our lighting and special effects options offer the same guarantee of performance of quality.
You can name any piece of event production equipment and not only will we have it in stock, but we'll have the best brand name in that specific industry. The best part? All of the equipment is owned and operated by us. Our in-house team of engineers and technicians use this equipment every day and can tell you the history of each and every item, eliminating the chance of mistakes. We rotate stock every three years and, to date, we've never had any piece of event production equipment let us down. How's that for quality of service?
All of this means that, should you want to, you can turn over your entire stage and technical event production requirements across to us, safe in the knowledge that you are working with some of the best individuals in the industry.
There's no need to try and organise and accommodate multiple contractors each taking care of one specific aspect of event production in and around the stage. There's also no need to pay over the odds by paying several different event equipment contractors when you can take advantage of our economies of scale and secure the highest-quality equipment and personnel at the most affordable price.
Industry-leading equipment and experienced, highly-skilled crew members aside, we're also on hand 24/7 to give you helpful advice and to guide you through the event planning process. Whether you want some input regarding a specific health and safety matter, or you want to consult us on the design of your stage, we'll be there whenever you need us.
We've played integral roles in events with tens of thousands of attendees, from large-cap branded music festivals to one-off outdoor music concerts. Trust us when we say that there is very little that you could throw at us that we haven't dealt with before.
By choosing us as your events partner, you can rest easy in the knowledge that you're handing over to one of the safest pair of hands in the business.
Frequently Asked Questions
We thought we would use this section to answer some of the most common questions we receive from event organisers of all experience levels. Hopefully, they'll clear up anything that wasn't already covered extensively in the guide above. If you still have questions, please reach out to us using the contact details provided at the end of this guide.
Which Regions Do You Cover?
Outdoor Stages can supply our equipment to all of the UK and most of continental Europe.
Can You Offer Discounts?
One of the best ways to secure a discount is to take advantage of one of our "off the shelf" packages which have several services bundled together at a considerable discount. We also offer discounts for booking in advance, since that provides us with plenty of time to get everything in line for your event. Another way to achieve a discount is to book multiple events with us per year, or by extending how long you have the equipment on hire.
Is it Possible to Dry-Hire Stages?
Generally speaking, no, we don't. There's an excellent reason for this. First and foremost, outdoor stages require highly-skilled staff members to construct and subsequently dismantle. Secondly, our stages represent vital assets to our company, and we can countenance a situation whereby we could entrust their care to another team of individuals unless you were able to provide us with some compelling documentation. Speak to us directly if you want to enquire about dry-hiring one of our stages, but we can't promise you anything.
Who Is in Charge of Security?
As the event organiser, it's your responsibility to provide security. That includes overnight provisions if necessary. We always recommend that fencing should be placed around the stage area to maintain its security.
Will I Have to Pay a Deposit?
Yes, you will. When you book your dates, we will require a deposit to ensure we have our equipment and associated services reserved for you. Our availability is based on a first-come, first-served basis, so it's always best to approach us as far out from your event as is feasible.
What About Cancellations?
Deposits are non-refundable. If you need to cancel your event, the amount you receive back will depend on when you cancel. Cancellations received close to the event will still require the full amount to the paid.
What Aspects of Event Planning Can You Help with?
As mentioned, we can help you with anything that is within the purview of event productions. Whether you need health and safety advice, help carrying out risk assessments, or want us to take a leading role in the design of your stage or accompanying production aspects, we can do that for you.
I've Been Offered a Stage at Well Below Market Rates, What Should I Do?
In the process of gathering quotes, you might find one or two quotes significantly below the going rate. If that's the case, you have to ask yourself why this is the case. The outdoor stage rental market is relatively small, and there is plenty of work to go around, which means something is likely missing when a really cheap quote comes in. Perhaps the stage structure itself doesn't meet regulatory standards, or maybe the stage crew is inexperienced. Either way, if a price sounds too good to be true, it invariably is.
How Far in Advance Should I Book My Stage?
The short answer is as soon as possible. Once you've got your dates confirmed, it's best to approach us straight away. Not only does it give us enough time to make the necessary logistical arrangements, but the sooner you bring us on board, the more we can help you when it comes to the vital aspects of event planning. We prefer at least six months' notice, if not longer. But we can work to shorter timescales for smaller events, or in the case of an emergency, such as another supplier letting you down at the last minute.
Can You Help Us with Our Power Requirements?
Yes, we can! Until recently, this was once of the only aspects of event production that we didn't handle directly in-house. However, after the events of the early 2020s, and the preference for events being held outdoors, we took the plunge and invested in our own fleet of towable generators, which are a perfect accompaniment to our stage hire packages.
Firstly, thank you for taking the time to read all of this extensive guide. We hope that it's given you plenty of handy tips and useful information for you take on board moving forwards. We also hope that it's put your mind at ease, knowing that you don't have to know every single aspect of technical event production, you can simply hand it over to the experts instead!
If you still have any questions, or you would like to have further discussions with us about your upcoming event here are our contact details: