Non-event commercial activities in parks

Trafford Council have introduced a charging scheme for commercial activity providers who wish to use its parks and greenspaces. This licence is primarily intended for fitness class operators and forest schools.

In recent years outdoor personal fitness classes, boot camps, forest schools and other forms of commercial activity have become increasingly popular in our parks and greenspaces. Whilst acknowledging that these types of activities can be good for the health and wellbeing of residents the Council wants to ensure that activities are appropriate to the site.

This scheme will ensure that residents can easily determine whether an operator has a relevant qualification, has appropriate insurance and has addressed relevant health and safety requirements. Fitness classes, especially larger ones, can also have an impact on the grounds and maintenance of the space and on other users.

As a general rule, the Council does not currently permit use of its venues for private commercial activities or events which are not promoted to the general public. 

If your activity is classed as an event, as opposed to a short term or ongoing activity class, different rules apply. Please visit our Corporate and community events page for more information.

The scheme comprises:

  • a one off registration fee per operator
  • an annual administration fee
  • annual licence fees

The registration and administration fees contribute towards: 

  • Consulting on your application
  • Reviewing your insurance documentation and trainer qualifications
  • The issuing of a permit
  • Updating our web site to include your activity and contact details.

Registration fee  (VAT at the standard rate applies)

A one off Registration fee of £15 net (£18 gross) will apply to all operators who are not currently operating with our permission. Registration will remain valid whilst you continually operate with us or operate on a seasonal or casual basis for at least one quarter in each financial year.

Annual administration fee (VAT at the standard rate applies)

The annual administration fee is £25 net (£30 gross)

Licence fees (zero rated for VAT)

Adult activity classes

Licence fees are set at £30 per quarter (this is the minimum booking period) or £100 per annum if you pay the full year in advance. The licence fee for adult activity classes is per venue, per session for up to 15 participants and payable in advance or immediately after the four week free trial period for new operators. Quarterly classes then increase in cost at £10 per addtional 5 participants for quarterly billing or £40 per additional 5 participants for annual billing.

Under 18s activity classes

Licence fees are set at £30 per quarter (this is the minimum booking period) or £100 per annum if you pay the full year in advance. The licence fee for children’s activities is per venue, per session with a maximum class size of 30 children.

Free trial periods - applies only to classes open to the general public which are intended to operate for a minimum period of 13 weeks

If your application is approved,  we will issue you with a free licence for four weeks.  If you subsequently wish to expand to a new venue we will issue a free licence for four weeks for that venue.  At the end of the free trial period if you wish to continue operation we will invoice you for the Registration and administration fees plus the licence fee to the end of the current quarter or for the remainder of the year depending on how you have asked to be invoiced.

The free trial period does not apply to applicants who may have been inadvertently been operating without a licence for more than four weeks.


Local authority schools in Trafford wishing to operate “Forest Schools” will not be charged if classes are led by their own teaching staff.

Friends of Parks

If you are a commercial operator who has an existing on-going relationship with a Friends Group to operate in a park that arrangement is not currenlty affected by the licensing process but you must still use the appropriate application form and obtain a licence from us.

Additional information

Terms and conditions will apply – new applicants should not promote their classes until a licence has been granted.

All licences will expire on 31 March each year.

It is intended that quarterly invoices will be issued in April/July/October and January. If your classes commence mid-quarter your first invoice for licence fees will be pro-rated.

If you wish to purchase an annual licence and commence operation between April and September we will pro rata your annual licence. If you commence operation between October and March you will need to pay for a quarterly licence and apply for an annual licence in March. 


New applications must be received at least four weeks before the intended start period please ensure you read our terms and conditions. If you are already registered with us and no details have changed you can complete a renewal form.

Once your application has been approved the contact details you have provided for the public will be published on our Greenspace activities planner.

If you have any questions please contact the Head of Operations on 0161 912 4152 or email