Wyre Council U-turn on cost of new permit scheme for personal trainers to use outdoor spaces

Wyre Council has removed the cost of its permit scheme pilot for fitness professionals for the time-being, a day after announcing permits for them to use its land outdoors would cost £25 a year.

Tuesday, 13th April 2021, 4:50 pm

Yesterday, the council announced a new permit scheme, to be implemented for personal trainers and instructors who want to train clients outdoors on council-owned land, "including the beach."

But it has since decided to offer the permits as part of a free trial instead, and will look to introduce "a small admin fee from next year" if the scheme works well.

The permits are intended to prevent clashes with local sports teams, and enable "high quality sessions to take place regularly in a particular venue and time."

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Wyre Council originally said it would charge £25 a year for personal trainers to use its land and beaches, but has since decided to introduce a free trial for permits instead.
Wyre Council originally said it would charge £25 a year for personal trainers to use its land and beaches, but has since decided to introduce a free trial for permits instead.

A spokesman for Wyre Council said: "If you intend to provide instruction or recreational fitness activities outdoors, the permit provides a simple and easy process for anyone wanting to use the council’s land. The land is there to be used and the council want to encourage more people to use it safely.

"The aim of the permit process is to promote health and wellbeing opportunities for Wyre’s residents in parks and open spaces. It is to ensure that activities are taking place in a safe and structured way by people who have the right qualifications to give the best possible experience for people who want to take part in these activity sessions.

"It enables the council to highlight the best spaces to use and the wide variety of outdoor venues that they have for this type of positive use. Wyre Council already promote their open spaces for people of all ages to attend and enjoy with all the health and wellbeing benefits that they bring.

"This doesn’t replace that, it is a process that enables high quality sessions to take place regularly in a particular venue and time. It helps to avoid clashes with local sports teams who have booked their venues or with local events that will start now to take place.

"The permit will be valid for one year and will authorise each organiser use of a specified location for fitness or wellbeing activities in accordance with the terms of the permit. The council is piloting how the permit scheme works and will look to introduce a small admin fee from next year if the scheme works well.

"The permit ensures that organisers or trainers hold an appropriate qualification, are fully insured and have liability for the safety of the participants. A permit is required for all activities that are operated on a commercial basis."

Instruction or coaching includes personal training, physical fitness, martial arts, circuit training, use of the outdoor gym equipment and other similar activities that promote health and wellbeing.

But motorised sports are excluded from any permitted activity, and permits are not required for sports clubs with existing agreements with Wyre Council land.

Permits and locations will be limited per year, and the number of permits issued by the council will be determined by "usage and demand in an area, the number of permits already approved in the area, and possible conflicts with other users."

Permits apply to the following sites:

Poulton

Tithebarn Park

Cottam Hall playing field (Exceptions: not the fenced Poulton Town FC football pitch, or the marked pitch areas on a Saturday or Sunday or evenings from 5-9pm as these will be booked by sports clubs. Not the cricket square while in season)

Jean Stansfield and Vicarage Park

Civic Centre playing field (Exceptions: not the marked pitch areas on a Saturday or Sunday or evenings from 5-9pm)

Thornton and Cleveleys

Bourne Way playing field

Church Road playing field

King Georges playing field (Exceptions: not the marked pitch areas on a Saturday or Sunday or evenings from 5-9pm as these will be booked by sports clubs)

Jubilee Gardens

Hawthorne Park

North Drive Park

Fleetwood

Memorial Park – do not use area around Cenotaph

Marine Hall Gardens – do not use bowling green

King George V playing field (Exceptions: not the marked pitch areas on a Saturday or Sunday or evenings from 5-9pm as these will be booked by sports clubs)

The Mount

Roundway

Rural Wyre

Derbyshire Road open space, Garstang

Canterbury Avenue open space, Garstang