Permit Scheme Introduced for Businesses Operating in Our Parks

Bedford Borough’s parks are the perfect place to enjoy exercise and keep healthy, with local fitness instructors offering a range of sessions, from bootcamps to yoga. From 1st January 2022, people looking for a workout will be able to check that the activities are insured and licensed to be taking place – all approved instructors will be easily identifiable by their permit card.

The new permit cards will provide peace of mind that the fitness sessions are risk assessed, and also let people know that their instructor is contributing to the upkeep of our beautiful parks and outdoor spaces.

It will also make our parks safer for those taking part and other park users, as these organisations will be required to have insurance and safety measures in place before a permit is issued.

Instructors will be asked to carry their permit card while using the park, so people looking to join fitness groups and officers can see when unauthorised groups are using the park.

A list of authorised groups will be put on the Council’s website, so people looking for a new workout group will be able to check which groups are part of the scheme. In the interest of public health and safety, the Council does not recommend participating in sessions organised by unlicensed operators.

Cllr Charles Royden, Portfolio Holder for Environment said “By introducing this permit system, people looking to exercise in our parks will be able to tell which groups are authorised, and help to manage demand on our parks.

“People running fitness groups and boot camps in our parks are charging people to take part, so it is only fair that they pay a small fee towards to Council, who work to maintain these parks all year round and this income will go towards that upkeep.”

Groups that the Council are aware of have already been contacted directly about this scheme and any groups that would like to get involved can visit or for further information please contact