New fire safety rules come into effect on 1 October, requiring charities that run anything from offices to sports clubs to carry out fire risk assessments.
The rules, passed by Parliament last year, replace the old system of fire certificates. They place a duty on employers, and anyone who owns or controls premises, to take preventive measures.
"Prevention has always been better than cure," said fire minister Angela Smith.
Facility owners will also have to ensure the safety of those in the immediate area who may be at risk.
Advice on how to comply with the rules is available at www.communities.gov.uk.