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Children in Employment and Entertainment

Work permits and licenses - information for chaperones, parents, employers and children

Work Permits

In order for a child of compulsory school age to be legally engaged in any part-time work they must be issued with a work permit.
It is the employer's responsibility to ensure that all children whom they wish to employ have a valid work permit issued by West Berkshire Council.

Icon for pdf Work permit application forms [97KB]  need to be completed by both the parents and the employer and returned before a permit can be issued.
Our Icon for pdf Guide to Child Employment [109KB]  contains information for both parents and employers.

Advice for Parents

Please ensure that you monitor your child's employment. Whilst the vast majority of employers work within the regulations, there are those who have exploited and will exploit children.  Do not let it be your child. 

Before we can issue your child with a permit, we have to be sure that you are aware of their proposed employment and that you are content for your child to undertake the proposed employment - you indicate this by signing the declaration of parent/guardian/carer on the form itself.  Before you sign, the employer must have filled in the reverse of the form, as this section explains the type of work your child will be expected to do.

Advice for Children

The law requires you to have a work permit - this is to protect you.  It is your employer's responsibility to make sure you have one.

You shouldn't be working for any employer unless you have a current work permit - it's against the law, and your employer could get into serious trouble.  If you don't have a current work permit then you are not insured to do the work you are doing.


Performance Licences

We are responsible for issuing licences to children of statutory school age and under, including babies, to take part in entertainment.  This includes theatre, film and television work and taking part in paid modelling and sporting activities.  Our Icon for pdf Guide for Parents to Children in Entertainment [147KB]  contains information that can help.

Applying for a Child Performance Licence

To apply, download, print, complete and return our Icon for pdf Performance Licence Application Form [444KB] .

The person responsible for the production of the performance should apply for the licence. Application should be made to the Local Authority in which the child lives - this may be different from the Local Authority of the child's school or the place in which the production is to take place.

Application for a licence must be made at least 21 days before the date of the first performance for those children who live in West Berkshire.


We do not issue six month or open licences for modelling - licences are issued for each performance as required.  If your child is registered to undertake a number of modelling assignments, we can set up a file for the child to enable a licence to be issued more promptly.
This is not guaranteed, and the required 21 days notice still applies.



A chaperone is responsible for the supervision of a child who is taking part in entertainment.  Our guide to Icon for pdf Becoming a Chaperone [192KB]  explains more.
All licenced productions or performances in West Berkshire must have approved and licenced chaperones.

As they are required to work closely with children, we require that all applicants are subject to a criminal background check through the Criminal Records Bureau.  This process may take up to six weeks.

Applying to become a chaperone

You can apply for a license as a chaperone online, or alternatively download, print, complete and return our Icon for pdf Chaperone Application Form [406KB] .

We will only accept a current Disclosure Barring Service (DBS) certificate from an individual who works in a West Berkshire educational establishment.  Applications for DBS Certificates are completed on-line and this information needs to be supplied when an application is made.

From 1 July 2014 the approval of a chaperone licence will be for three years - licences must be renewed after this period.

Renewing a chaperone licence

You can apply to renew a Chaperone License online, or alternatively download, print, complete and return our Icon for pdf Chaperone Renewal Application Form [280KB] .

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