Birmingham marquee firm fined for worker injury at Coventry film premiere

A firm from Birmingham have been fined more than £15,000 after one of their marquees collapsed in the run-up to a film premiere in Coventry. Two employees were reportedly injured in the incident.

The partial collapse of the marquee occurred in November 2009, whilst workers were attempting to erect it ahead of a preview of the film ‘Nativity!’. The incident caused injuries to two workers, and prompted Coventry council’s environmental health team to come in and investigate.

Inspectors also found that the marquee had been improperly erected following the collapse, which potentially put workers and members of the public at risk on the day of the event.

The company, Crest Marquees Ltd, pleaded guilty to five breaches of health and safety regulations in Coventry Magistrates Court. Its owners were ordered to pay £6,000 for erecting a marquee in an unsafe manner and a further £9,000 for using insufficient scissor braces in order to do so.

For events such as film premieres and previews, event insurance is usually taken out to cover accident, injury and other setbacks. However, Crest’s managing director Matthew Faizey said:

“As a small family business, we were completely devastated by the accident.”

“But there have been many positive things that have come out of it, including better training, more rigorous safety checks and an overall focus on improved standards.”

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