Apply for a child performance licence

You may need a performance licence or an exemption letter if you're putting on a performance or producing a show

About performance licences and exemptions

If you’re producing a performance which involves a child of school age you may need to apply for a performance licence or an exemption letter.

School age lasts until the last Friday in June of the school year in which the child becomes 16 years old.

Children who perform and take part in TV, film, theatre or modelling work must be looked after by a chaperone. This can be a parent, carer or a registered chaperone.

You don't need a performance licence or an exemption letter if the child is taking part in a school play organised by the school.

When you’ll need a performance licence

You need to apply for a performance licence if the child will:

  • perform for more than four days within a period of six months
  • take part in TV, filming, modelling, sport or theatre work
  • get paid for the performance, or their parent or carer will get paid

When you’ll need an exemption letter

You need to apply for an exemption if the performance will not be broadcast on TV, radio or the internet, and if the child:

  • will not get paid for the performance
  • will not miss any school
  • will not perform for more than four days within a period of six months, including the performance

Apply by email

You need to apply at least 21 days before the date of the performance. 

Download one of the applications below:

Send the completed application to:

  • by email to
  • or by post to Child Employment and Entertainment Officer, Brighton & Hove City Council, First Floor, Hove Town Hall, Norton Road, Hove, BN3 3BQ

Incomplete and late applications

Any incomplete or missing paperwork is the responsibility of the person or agent applying.

If an application is received late it may be declined.

More information

Email or phone 01273 291378 for more information or if you have an urgent request.

Read the Guide to child performance licences and exemptions (PDF 212KB) to help you apply.

Visit the National Network for Children in Employment and Entertainment website for legislation and guidance.

Go to the NSPCC website for advice on keeping children in music, drama, dance, television and theatre safe.