Youngsters get council backing for skatepark

Alnwick Skatepark Group chairman Graham Atkinson with Mitchell Knox, Bradley Knox, Connor Doole and Joe Davies.

Alnwick Skatepark Group chairman Graham Atkinson with Mitchell Knox, Bradley Knox, Connor Doole and Joe Davies.

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Young sport fans have got Alnwick town councillors on board their scheme for a £200,000 skatepark.

Five boys presented ideas for the project, written by a team of 12 youngsters, to this month’s Alnwick Town Council meeting.

They earned a round of applause and the agreement of councillors to take on the lease of the proposed site, next to Alnwick Community Centre in Howling Lane.

They said: “We believe that we need a skate park because it will keep young people out of trouble and the anti-social behaviour will go down.

“This helps the police force and gives young people something do, and helps local businesses nearby.”

There was nowhere else to go and they were not allowed to play anywhere any more. “We will all end up unhealthy and playing on computer games.”

Supporters of the project intend to do car washing, a sponsored walk and a sponsored scooter ride to raise funds.

They would also like to benefit from a Gazette Jam Jar Army appeal. There would be continual fund-raising after it was built to cover insurance and other costs.

Appeals for money will go to the Big Lottery for 75 per cent of the cost, as well as local businesses.

People living near the site have raised no objections to the idea, councillors were told.

Coun Jim Thompson said Alnwick used to have a mobile skate park and was told it still existed, but could not be used because of the insurance cost.

He said that was a great disappointment.

Members backed Coun Bruce Hewison’s motion to accept responsibility for the lease.

l A group of youngsters helped bring the Amble skatepark project to fruition in 2011, sparked by the removal of the previous one in 2007.