Skate park cash hopes

Campaigners for a skatepark in Fleetwood. Plans for a new facility are moving forward.
Campaigners for a skatepark in Fleetwood. Plans for a new facility are moving forward.

FUNDING plans for a skate park in Fleetwood will continue despite an apparent setback.

Wyre Council decided not to back funding plans for a skate park in the town and a row blew up between council leader Peter Gibson and Labour councillor Marg Anderton.

The money from the Shaping Your Neighbourhood Scheme - a possible £100,000 - was denied because council chiefs said the plans were too similar to those which already exist. It will instead look at providing money to repair the town’s Sea Cadets base and improve the Jean Stansfield play area in Poulton.

However, a meeting has since taken place in Fleetwood between councillors involved in the skate park plans and Fleetwood Town Council chairman, Coun Alan Marsh.

Coun Marsh says that both Wyre Council chiefs and those pushing for the skate park will be meeting up to iron out their respective concerns, and a way forward may still be found.

Coun Marsh told the Weekly News: “I believe the door is still open for support from Wyre Council. Wyre has understandable concerns such as sustainability, development, suitable siting and additional financial support.

“Wyre could not be expected to fund a skate park, or anything else, without feeling that certain groundings are in place first.

“The same could be said for any organisation, including Fleetwood Town Council.

“But after speaking to both parties, including Peter Gibson, I feel confident the door is still open.”

Coun Marsh was speaking just days after Fleetwood Town Council unanimously agreed to provide £20,000 towards the skate park, on the proviso that the rest of the money was in place. The park could cost up to £250,000 and various funding pots could be needed, but the scheme could also be down-sized to make funding easier.

Coun Marsh’s meeting was with Labour’s Warren ward borough councillors, Emma Anderton and Paul Treece-Birch.

Coun Anderton said: “It was a very productive meeting and we now hope to meet up with Wyre leader, Peter Gibson, and the skate park committee, to iron things out. I understand that if we are able to alleviate the concerns that Wyre Council have, there is a chance the matter may be deferred and discussed at a later cabinet meeting at Wyre. We’re hopeful there is still a chance.”

Coun Gibson commented: “If they can resolve some serious issues we have, we will look again at this.”