GMW is Victoria’s largest rural water corporation, managing lakes, dams, reservoirs and waterways across Northern Victoria. But GMW doesn’t just capture, store and deliver water to customers, we also issue event permits, enabling local communities to safely enjoy their regional waterways.
If you’re looking to host a community or commercial event on or near one of our waterways, or simply planning a wedding at one of our beautiful recreation areas, the information on this webpage will assist you to plan and manage a successful event.
How to apply for a permit
An Event Permit Application Form must be submitted to GMW for any event including, but not limited to:
If your application is conditionally approved and fees paid, you will need to provide the following:
- Insurance certificate of currency (as detailed below)
- a Communications Plan that details how organisers will communicate during the event, particularly with limited or no mobile phone reception
- an Emergency Management Plan that covers how participants, officials and the general public will be protected in the event of an emergency
- a Risk Management Plan that identifies and assesses any risks for the event and how they will be managed
- copies of relevant permits if you will be supplying food and drink and/or alcohol at the event
- copies of relevant approvals from other agencies (e.g. Transport Safety Victoria, DELWP and local councils).
GMW templates must be used for the plans listed above - download our Event Management Plan Templates here.
Once all these documents have been received and reviewed by GMW you may be issued with the permit.
The timeframe for approving an event permit can vary, but we recommend applying for your permit at least 90 days before the event. Incomplete information will delay this process.
Anybody applying to host an event on GMW managed storages and land must hold Public Liability Insurance cover for a minimum of $20 million for any single accident or event. This should cover the loss of or damage to any property and the death of or injury to any person.
Once your application has been conditionally approved, you will be required to submit a Certificate of Currency with Goulburn-Murray Water noted as an interested party for the event, prior to the Permit being granted.
Events at Dartmouth Dam, Hume Dam, Torrumbarry Weir, Mildura Loch and Lake Mulwala also require the Murray Darling Basin Authority and the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning to be noted as interested parties (in addition to GMW).
Criteria for permit approvals
Because the waterways are responsible for collecting, storing and delivering water to customers, GMW must ensure that recreational use doesn’t cause a negative impact.
Event Permits can be granted where the event does not:
- interfere with the storage operations
- pose an unacceptable risk to water quality, ecological health, cultural heritage or to staff and public safety
- create a liability for GMW or our customers
- cause a negative financial impact on GMW or our customers.
GMW will assess the Event Permit Application Form and:
Conditional approval will be sent in writing, however a permit will only be provided once all documents are received and assessed.
If you are issued with a permit it must be signed by both GMW and yourself, the host of the event. This permit may be withdrawn by GMW if special conditions are not met, there are safety concerns or the operation of the storage may be compromised as a result of the event.
You must have this permit on your person during the event.
*These fees are non-refundable if your event is cancelled.
Event permit approval doesn’t guarantee exclusive use of the area unless formally requested and approved and noted by GMW.
GMW cannot guarantee that construction or operational works on or around the waterway will not occur during the period of your event. These may impact the area available, cause noise or change the conditions. We will attempt to notify you of works where possible.
Water quality and conditions
Due to the natural surrounds and the operational roles of storages, it’s important to note that GMW is unable to guarantee the quality and/or suitability of a location on the day of your event.
Water levels may fluctuate with the storage operating to deliver water to downstream customers and water quality can change. Updates on water storages can be found at our Managing Water Storages page.
Water supplied by GMW is not suitable for human consumption without first being properly treated. However, blue-green algae, which is always present in waterways can reach harmful levels and this may impact your event. Further information and current warnings are available at our blue-green algae alert page.
Further detail can be found in GMW’s Water Quality Customer Information Statement, available at our Don't Drink the Water page
Your event may be cancelled
GMW reserves the right to cancel or alter the event if there is concern for public health and safety or storage operations. GMW will not be responsible for any losses incurred as a result of an Event Permit being withdrawn or the event activity being cancelled.
Other safety obligations
If anyone will be on or in the water during the event, the Permit Holder must promote the GMW Water Smarts campaign. This can be achieved by one of the following actions:
- Displaying one or more Water Smarts posters at the event (available for download at our Water Smarts page ). The size of the posters is at the discretion of the Permit Holder, but it must be placed in a prominent position.
- Promoting the GMW Water Smarts messages via event social media channels (eg. Facebook) or through promotional materials (eg. event flyers and signage)
The method of Water Smarts promotion should be recorded in the Communications Plan (refer to Event Management Plan Templates) and evidence provided to GMW if requested.
As a Permit Holder, you are required to report to GMW any incidents that occur (on water or on land) as soon as possible, in addition to contacting relevant emergency services.
To report an incident please call:
- 1800 013 357 - GMW Call Centre
- 1800 064 184 - GMW 24hr Emergencies
If you are an owner/master of a recreational vessel involved in a marine incident you must also follow the incident reporting process outlined in the Transport Safety Victoria Maritime website.
Other permits and permissions
In addition to the forms and plans listed above, some other permits and permissions may be required depending on your event. If they are required, copies of these permits and permissions must also be supplied to GMW before the Permit will be issued.
The following is a guide of other consent your event may require, but is not an exhaustive list.
All events planning to sell or provide alcohol must apply for a Temporary Liquor Licence from the Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation.
All Temporary Liquor Licence applications must specify that alcohol won’t be served in glass containers and that the persons serving the alcohol have a RSA certificate and the licence is displayed at the event.
This is a State Government requirement.
For more information visit www.vcglr.vic.gov.au/home/liquor/
Food and Beverage Licence
If you plan to sell food at your event, each temporary food trader must be registered with Streatrader. An annual (calendar year) fee will be payable online.
All temporary food traders must also submit their Statement of Trade (SOT) online with Streatrader.
This is a State Government requirement.
For further information contact the Environmental Health Officer at the Council where your event will be held or visit https://streatrader.health.vic.gov.au Government Agency Approval
Some events may require approval from government agencies such as Transport Safety Victoria (TSV), Parks Victoria, or the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP).
GMW will assess the need for agency approval based on the event application, may seek approval on behalf of organisers and inform organisers of any requirements for them (e.g. public notice advertising).
If your event requires road closures or changes in traffic conditions, you must contact VicRoads and your local Council to discuss your proposal as you may be required to place public notice advertisements prior to the event.
For more information about events and road closures, visit the VicRoads website.
Events requiring road closures must also notify Ambulance Victoria by emailing email@example.com.
If an event will impact Public Transport Services, the organiser must complete a Public Transport Victoria (PTV) Event Notification Form online at the PTV website.
Some events, especially those which also take place on Council owned or managed land or roads, may require a Council Permit.
Please contact the local Council where your event will be held to find out whether you will require a Council Permit.
After the event
As the Permit Holder it is your responsibility to ensure the area is left in a clean and tidy condition. Any local municipal requirements regarding rubbish removal or temporary sanitary conveniences must be adhered to.
Refund of bond
Complete the GMW Refund/Credit Transfer Form after the event and note the title of your event on the Form. Bonds will be refunded into the nominated bank account if the GMW Storage Officer has approved the refund.
Should you have any queries in regards to an event application you can contact GMW via phone, email, fax or post.
Phone: 1800 013 357
Fax: (03) 5826 3334
Post: Goulburn-Murray Water
Business Performance Team
PO Box 165
TATURA VIC 3616