Skateboarders, BMX bikers, roller-bladers and scooter-riders can look forward to a new state-of-the-art skatepark in Winchester at the end of August.
Work starts on the landmark £270,000 skatepark at North Walls on Monday 7 April, with funding of £170,000 from Town Forum open space funds; £100,000 from the Veolia Environmental Trust, made through the Landfill Communities Fund; £10,000 from Headbourne Worthy Parish Council; and £240 from Tichbourne Parish Council.
The skatepark will be built for Winchester City Council by Maverick Skateparks. It features a modern design that uses spray concrete rather than prefabricated ramps. This approach provides more options for users and it is more sustainable.
The skatepark’s design was developed after a consultation process undertaken by the City Council. In 2012, over 50 young people and other interested individuals put forward their ideas at a public meeting to launch the project.
A design team, which included representatives of the park’s users, worked for six months to create and revise the design. This was launched at a public meeting in January 2013. Local residents and organisations including the Indoor Bowling Club, the Canoe Club, and Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust, were also consulted on the design.
Cllr Jan Warwick, the City Council’s Portfolio Holder for Neighbourhoods & Environment, said: “We are delighted to be working with our partners to provide this exciting new skatepark, which will suit all abilities.”
The Executive Director of The Veolia Environmental Trust, Paul Taylor, said: “This new skatepark will provide young people with a place where they can meet up and have fun outdoors. It is great news that work starts next Monday and I look forward to seeing it take shape over the coming months.”
The footpath between the existing skatepark and the play area, from the bridge to the leisure centre, will be closed during the work but the play area will remain open and accessible from the entrance closest to the leisure centre.
Winchester’s other skateparks at King George V Playing Fields, Milland Road, Highcliffe, and Somers Close Recreation Ground, Stanmore, will be open and available while the North Walls site is redeveloped.