Parkrun Enniskillen gets 'Pay to Stay' Ultimatum fromThe National Trust

What kind of sad bunch of miserable scrooge like dictators have been let loose in the National trust? Surely sacking of the culprits must be in order?

I know a parish council has already done this in down Bristol way but surely the national trust leadership panel must be a lot more open minded than a few inbred nimby councillors!??!!!

Ok I know sections of Northern Ireland can be a bit narrow in their views but this is ridiculous. I would go on but I'd only get banned for profanity and abusive comments.

Long live parkrun!!!!!


  • MillsyMillsy ✭✭✭
    I always thought the National Trust were very "pro" parkrun. One local to my mums house has now introduced parking charges with no concessions for parkrunners.

    Very disappointing.
  • one of the early welsh ones is at national trust and they have been great.There are parking charges there but i havent known them enforce it for parkrun. I dont mind parking charges if its for all users.....

  • M..o.useM..o.use ✭✭✭
    Our parkrun, Little Stoke, is now closed. As mentioned in the first post, the parish council voted to levy the tariff, so it's gone. A great shame.
  • My "favourite" thing Mousie is that Little Stoke council are currently playing with £750k to encourage participation in the park  image 

    I think car parking charges are fair enough - but I'd bet that any venue that tries to charge parkrun will go the same way as LS, i.e. the event will end. 


  • (and I see Enniskillen parkrun has a new temporary home from September)

  • VDOT52VDOT52 ✭✭✭
    At the National Trust site in question, I was stopped from entering the other day while on a run by some bloke on the gate who asked for my membership card. I asked what membership card and he said that if I didn't have a national trust membership them I would have to pay.

    Having spoken to a local runners today I now know that the National are not allowed to charge a fee at this site- they can only ask if you would like to contribute and make a suggestion to how much would be 'nice'.

    Apparently if the locals get confronted they tell the gate staff to 'jog on' or opt for something a lot less polite. It seems that there is so many old rights of way in the title deeds that they can not legally enforce their requested contribution as a fee.

    I look forward to the next time someone tries to stop me.

    Parkrun don't seem to want to make a fuss about this because the NT is home to a further 24 parkruns and negative publicity over the decision in Enniskillen might mean a spiteful knee jerk reaction that leads to the same thing happening elsewhere.

    Pay for parking would be fair as then people could decide whether to jog to the start or drive. There is a cafe on site but I only saw about half a dozen of the100+ runners pop in for a coffee last week so perhaps that is what has brought this about. Whatever the cause it is an awfully sad outcome for what is my new home run.

    Long live parkrun!
  • M..o.useM..o.use ✭✭✭
    Mrs F - I had no idea about that. Even more of a shame because it's a nice little park (as you prob remember.)

    I hope you don't lose yours, Vdot.
  • senidMsenidM ✭✭✭
    It just makes the mind boggle a bit - one minute we're getting told there's an obesity epidemic, next bodies like the NT are seeing a way of exploiting this to make a few quid.

    In a sensible world we should be getting paid to do Parkrun, might save the NHS loads in the long run (he says as a 68 year old on no medication, and fit as your fiddle, albeit now a bit slower)
  • VDOT52VDOT52 ✭✭✭
    The parkrun will survive at the Forum which is where it actually started but it is not as nice a route. The run was thriving at the NT location because it is a nice parkland run.

    I am just shocked that parkrun is not publicising the issue. It seems to be sacrificing the run to avoid a bigger battle, which makes no sense in the long term.

    The management at Castle Coole ought to be ashamed of themselves and NT N.I and NT U.K should be too. They are all idiots.
  • let me check my facts: parkrun is a bunch of random people organizing themselves to meet at an agreed time in a public location to go for a run together. They're not making any money  out  of  it or  being  any more trouble than any other random passer by at that time of the day. 

    Yet they are a target.

    Is it human nature just to see a group of humans gathering together as some kind of threat, especially if they give the impression of gathering for pleasure.



  • MuttleyMuttley ✭✭✭

    To play devil's advocate for a moment:

    What if it's a large number of people turning up in an organised way every week, with the effect of hogging the site for a couple of hours and causing overcrowding and accelerated wear and tear on footpaths, grassed areas etc? Seems reasonable to ask a small fee for use and upkeep of the venue (not profit). But there's probably a smarter way of doing it than just levying a fee, maybe have a licensed tea and bacon butty wagon or something similar.

  • I know, sure there is wear and tear; is it a measurable amount? Surely the NT exist at these locations to deal with the wear and tear caused by nature and the public in general which includes parkrunners. Otherwise, what's the point of the NT?

    I could cite my local parkrun, Colwick, who's volunteers turned up one weekend last winter with a truck load of gravel and filled in damaged paths. And there is a car park charge at Colwick.

    This is the kind of relationship parkowners should expect. Most people just  don't understand the  concept of volunteerism and it confuses them.

  • VDOT52VDOT52 ✭✭✭
    The NT is behaving disgracefully. i hope that the runners rebel and i'll join them if they do.
  • MillsyMillsy ✭✭✭
    They are being very vague about it on their Facebook page.
  • VDOT52VDOT52 ✭✭✭
    I think that is because parkrun uk and the NT U.K have both been involved and most likely agreed to hush it up rather than get into a public spat. At the end of the day NT have the upper hand as they are managing 25 sites that parkrun use, albeit they do not own them all afaik.
  • no point in being awkward if there is a genuine problem on one site..maybe the parking area cant cope with the parkrunners and guests..maybe the paths arent well enough developed to cope with the wear and tear.....

    I take it is a mutual agreement for now so no point in kicking up a fuss and risking all future and present venues


  • VDOT52VDOT52 ✭✭✭
    Ultimatums always bring about a 'mutual' decision. It is just sad that the bully gets to decide the terms of all the outcomes.
  • As a NT member I actually support them on this ... become a member and run in any of the grounds when you like for about £5 a month

    They are a conservation charity, looking after most of our green spaces and historic sites.  Worth a fiver of anyones money if you enjoy the great outdoors

  • If they had begun with that  attitude M...eldy I don't think anyone would be complaining. It's perfectly understandable not to want hundreds of people traipsing over private ground but it's a bit off to allow people in to play for a while then tell them no more.

    That sort of thing upsets people. 

  • Fair comment .... maybe they didnt expect the growth rate?

  • and if the local parkrunners are in the majority ok with the change of venue.then it seems silly for the big parkrun family as a whole to kick up a storm...There must be something here that has caused the problem as its obviously not a NT change of policy as they do allow so many...

    so its not just the NT being high and mighty and forcing their will on parkrun.  I believe its a partnership......


  • MuttleyMuttley ✭✭✭

    I remember the kerfuffle when that council near Bristol wanted to levy some kind of fee for using the facilities (or sth similar, I don't recall the precise details).

    TV reports showed blokes delivering angry finger-jabbing rants and women tearfully proclaiming the end of the world as we know it. They may have a point but the way they put it across had me sympathising with the council, tbh.

    For something devised as a bit of fun, Parkrun does seem to get people wound up.

  • VDOT52VDOT52 ✭✭✭
    Thought I posted a response here earlier... Was it removed ???
  • senidMsenidM ✭✭✭
    After all, I can run my local parkrun 7 days a week if I want to, even do a couple of laps to give me a nice 10K run, and don't have the bother of all those other runners getting in my way!

    As you say Muttley, it was devised as something quite informal, why people get so uptight, harp on about PBs, I'll never understand - its just another run!
  • VDOT52VDOT52 ✭✭✭
    Each to their own in terms of what floats their boat in terms of enjoying s run.

    And was my earlier post deleted? Anyone???
  • I wouldnt have thought so VDOT....even if it had upset someone enough to report it..The RW are never very quick to respond to reporting image

  • VDOT52VDOT52 ✭✭✭
    Cheers Seren, It wasn't particularly offensive, just slightly political I guess. Can't be arsed to type it again now though.
  • VDOT52VDOT52 ✭✭✭
    The Run Directors are remaining professional but the runners who have commented on Facebook are quite rightly calling out the NT for the horrid move they have pulled.

    The word on the street is that it was the manager at the site that made the decision to remove Parkrun, asking for a fee was just the sneaky way of making it a 'joint decision'. What a twunt.

    Considering the land that the NT manages was stolen from the local Irish by the British monarchy and given to one of their rich lords of the time- it seems ridiculous to ask locals to pay to use it now. Why not give something back to the area to help heal the division that was imposed and promoted??

    Parkrun is one of the biggest community projects in N.I.

    No boundaries, no politics, no religion, just runners. The NT and the bodies that fund them ought to be very ashamed of themselves.
  • NellsNells ✭✭✭

    I often run at a parkrun in a NT property in Wales. They could make a fortune in the cafe every Saturday, but most of the time don't bother having staff turn up to open it, and when they do it takes them so long to make the tea/coffee for one order, we've given up and gone home. It's a very family friendly run as well as popular with tourists, so they could probably make more in that hour than the rest of the day if they got themselves organised. Official opening time for the coffee shop on their website on Saturday is 11am, and this is in the middle of August in an area popular with tourists. I know one of the run directors well, and apparently they've been like this from the start. There are other ways to make money. Charging a fee for parkrun means that only the ones who can afford to pay can do it. Buying coffee and a cake in the cafe is completely optional.

  • WombleWomble ✭✭✭

    So if loads of runners turned up brandishing NT membership cards there would be no problem? It would be interesting to see the reaction image

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