Youth to get say on port skate park

Youngsters will be consulted over plans to build a skate park in Fleetwood
Youngsters will be consulted over plans to build a skate park in Fleetwood

Campaigners who have spent years fighting for a skate park in Fleetwood today pledged to make sure youngsters get a say over its design.

The port’s skate park dream has been revived following the announcement of a £1.5m Government grant to revamp the seafront.

A grassed area between the leisure centre and the Esplanade has been set aside for the development, which is due to be put out to tender in the coming weeks.

But Coun Emma Anderton, who is on the town’s skate park committee, said she has been assured that the successful bidder will have to consult skaters as part of the design process.

She said: “It’s all systems go at the moment.

“I am hoping by the end of the summer we will be in a position to hold these consultations.

“I think it is really important to get the youngsters involved in this and let them take ownership of the park.”

There have been repeated calls from community groups and councillors since the £1.5m Coastal Communities Fund grant was announced to ensure residents are asked for their views on how it should be spent.

Coun Anderton added: “I definitely want to make sure people have a say in this.

“I was assured it is going to be written into the contract about having workshops with the public.

“It is going to be a small collection of people who are interested in skating.

“The last thing we want to do is build something the kids think is rubbish and they end up not using.

“It is really crucial for the kids to get involved and I’m sure they will have plenty of ideas.

“I am just really pleased that the campaigning that myself and Coun Paul Treece-Birch have been doing has really paid off.”

The councillor added that she has not been told exactly how much of the Government cash will be spent on the skate park, although the committee has already secured a £20,000 grant from Fleetwood Town Council.

The money was committed by councillors in 2012, to be paid once the rest of the funding is in place.

Initial plans for the skate park would have cost around £250,000 but new designs will be drawn up according the amount of funding that is allocated to the project.

The skate park, along with an improved children’s play area and revamped paddling pool to include a ‘splashpad’ water feature, will make up a new leisure zone as part of Wyre Council’s plans for the seafront in Fleetwood.

It is part of the Five for Fleetwood scheme that will also see improvements to Euston Park, Marine Lake and the Promenade as well as a new ecology zone at Rossall Point.

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