The Wokingham Paper

Wokingham Borough Council launch compulsory permit for outdoor fitness coaches — starting this Saturday

Fitness trainers must register for a permit to continue running their classes in council managed parks

Personal trainers and fitness instructors will need to register for the new permit if they want to hold classes in council-managed parks

OUTDOOR fitness instructors must now register for a permit to hold their exercise classes in council-managed parks, as of this Saturday.

Earlier today, Wokingham Borough Council announced that personal trainers and coaches can register for the new Outdoor Fitness Training Permit.

A spokesperson from the council said the permit would protect the public from unqualified and uninsured ‘trainers’ using the parks.

Cllr Parry Batth, executive member for environment and health, said: “As we all tentatively emerge from lockdown, keen to shift some of that extra weight or simply get out there and exercise, there may be some people hesitant to go back into gyms just at the moment.

“This permit gives personal trainers and coaches a different option of venue for their clients. We’ve an abundance of fantastic parks and open spaces in our borough which are perfect locations to have fun, get fit, and boost physical and mental wellbeing during these tough times.”

Coaches using parks managed by the council for personal training, or to run group fitness or workout sessions, must have had a permit as of Saturday, August 1.

The permit covers:

  • Cantley Park, Wokingham
  • Bigshotte Park, Wokingham
  • Keephatch Park, Wokingham
  • Sandford Park, Woodley
  • Waverley Way, Finchampstead
  • Laurel Park, Earley
  • Elizabeth Park, Wokingham
  • Barkham Recreation Ground, Wokingham
  • Chalfont Park, Earley
  • Chestnut Park, Wokingham

Personal trainers and coaches wanting a permit must have insurance and public liability up to £10 million, a DBS background check, as well as individual checks if working with children and vulnerable adults, and relevant qualifications for their sport such as personal training certification at REPs level 3 or equivalent. 

And these must all be current and last the duration of the permit.

They will also need appropriate risk assessments and first aid plans in place as well as follow current government Covid-19 guidance for their particular activity and for the numbers of people allowed per trainer.

The permit lasts a year from the date the fee is paid and comes in the form of a colour-coded armband worn by the personal trainer or coach.

Permit cost: 

  • 1 client per session: £500.00
  • 2 to 5 clients per session: £750.00
  • 6 to 10 clients per session: £1000.00 (1 trainer to 5 participants based on Covid-19 guidance)
  • 10 Plus clients per session: £1500.00 (1 trainer to 5 participants based on Covid-19 guidance)
  • 20 Plus clients per session: price on application

Applications for the permit can be made online at: where there is also more information about the scheme.

For additional questions, email the sports team at:

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Oliver James Hackitt-Anwyl

This is beyond disgusting and actually exploits the market of instructors trying to provide for their families!!

Last edited 3 months ago by Oliver James Hackitt-Anwyl
Anne Parry

Far too expensive

Imogen Shepherd-DuBey

Wokingham Town Council does not charge trainers for using their parks for small groups and I believe other Towns are Parishes are either free of very cheap for this purpose.

Parks are there for people to take exercise – the prices that WBC want to charge are ridiculous.


What an absolute joke, the council should be embarrassed

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