Organisers hope week-long temporary skatepark can lead to regular sessions in Kesgrave
PUBLISHED: 09:12 17 April 2017 | UPDATED: 09:13 17 April 2017
Volunteers for a new temporary skatepark being set up in Kesgrave during half-term are hoping it can lead to regular sessions for young people in the future.
In December, Kesgrave Town Council confirmed it had secured funding from Suffolk Coastal District Council’s holiday grant scheme, and had acquired mobile skatepark equipment.
A tie-up was then secured with Cedarwood Primary School to set up a temporary skatepark at the school for the May/June half-term holiday, run by local volunteers specially trained in coaching and first aid.
The plans took a step closer when professional skateboarder Denham Hill carried out a training session for five volunteers at the Millennium Jubilee Hall earlier this month – the first training course in Suffolk by accredited company Sk8 Safe.
The volunteers gained a level one award in coaching skateboard sessions, which means they can supervise and teach skateboarding.
And while the four days from May 30-June 2 are the only sessions confirmed so far, those behind the project have said they hope it can lead to other holiday skateparks, or even regular evening or weekend sessions.
A town council spokeswoman said: “We hope it will lead to something regular. I think there are a lot of people who would like it. I know people said a long time ago it is just a craze but it has lasted rather a long time for a craze, and there is an image problem sometimes that isn’t always justified.
“It’s a big thing in Kesgrave because there are not many areas suitable for it, and we don’t want it so far away, so we are really pleased that Cedarwood are allowing us to open up their playground for us to use for it.”
Skatepark provision has been a long running issue in Kesgrave stretching back more than 15 years when petitions first began.
Coach Denham Hill said the volunteer coaches can be “role models” for youngsters in the town, and hailed their enthusiasm for the spot and passing on their skills. Volunteer coach Lewis Anderson added: “It’s going to be awesome – I get to skate and teach kids how to skate. Skating is what I live for.”
The half term sessions will be free, with those aged five to 11 welcome from 10am-12pm and 12-16 year olds running from 6-8pm.