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Do interlocked chairs impede fire evacuation?


Guest BarabaraNom

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Guest BarabaraNom

I am Manager at a grade II listed community hall in Birmingham and I have a query regarding fire safety during theatrical performances in the Main Hall. The Main Hall is 20m x 9m with capacity of the Main Hall is around 120 in close seating format. A regular Theatre Group have queried whether it is fire safety regulation to have the seats interlocking during performances. The Fire Inspector who came to inspect the Hall in November made no mention of this, so my query is whether this is a requirement?
I look forward to hearing from you. Thank you very much.

Kind Regards,

Barbara

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  • 2 years later...

Theatres Guide p 72 "If temporary seating is provided, these should be secured in lengths of not fewer than four seats (and not more than 12). Each length should be fixed to the floor"

Large Places of Assembly Guide p67; Small & Medium Places of Assembly Guide p60 "In general, no seat should be more than seven seats away from a gangway. If temporary seating is provided, these should be secured in lengths of not fewer than four seats (and not more than 12). Each length should be fixed to the floor"

Not always enforced as vigorously as when fire safety formed part of the Theatre, Dance or Entertainment License requirements back in the day though.

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  • 1 year later...
Guest Jump Architects Ltd

Both HSE guidance and Guide to Small and Medium Places of Assembly refer to British Standard BS9999 part 8 which require close seating configuration of more than 50 seats to be fixed together in groups no less than 4. There are other requirements concerning length of rows and spacing of rows.

Additional requirements apply for groups greater than 200 seats concerning fixing to the floor. 

 

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