New skate park design unveiled 

Skate park
Design ramps up: Jack Micklewright, senior designer from Freestyle Skateparks Ltd, holds up the design for the new skate park.

A design for Bolton’s new town centre skate park has been unveiled.

Bolton Council has awarded a contract to build a state of the art skate park to Freestyle Skateparks Ltd.

Freestyle, based in Hertfordshire, is the UK’s oldest and largest skate park design and build company.

The existing steel facility in Dawes Street will be replaced by a larger concrete skate park. The new design will see it extended across the street, into a nearby car park and the footpath to Morrisons will be diverted.

A proposed design has been drawn up by Freestyle with input from a range of park users. The space has been specifically designed to accommodate all disciplines, skill and age levels together in one safe place.

There is widespread support for the scheme with more than 1000 people ‘liking’ the project’s Facebook page.

Leader of Bolton Council, Councillor Cliff Morris, said: “We opened the current skate park in 2007 and since then it has grown hugely in popularity. We’ve listened to the young people who use the park, and a group of 12 of them have been involved in the selection process for Freestyle and in the design.

“The design for the skate park is suitable for a wide range of ages and abilities, and the new park will provide an excellent place for young people to meet and enjoy their sport.”

Tom Searson, a 21-year-old skater, was one of the young people behind the original campaign which resulted in Dawes Street skate park being built. He said: “The council got back in touch with me and brought different skate park designers down and Freestyle were the best.

“I’m extremely excited about the new skate park opening. I really like the quirky objects in the new park such as the Taco ramp, which is like a half moon.”

Will Grimshaw, an 18-years-old BMXer, from Farnworth, has been using the park for a year and a half. He said: “I’m really pleased with the plans for the new park. The park stops us messing about, gives us something to do, and it means we don’t have to travel to other places.”

Freestyle senior designer, Jack Micklewright, added: “We have built 400 challenging parks over the last 30 years, but this one is special. It offers a genuine chance to increase community integration and cohesion.

“By being so central and visible, everyone in Bolton will stop and watch at some point and by doing so help to spread the word, and create the next generation of skaters and riders.”

Planning permission for the project was granted in August 2013. Building work is expected to start in July/August, but some preparatory work is likely to take place before. The project is expected to take around 12 weeks to complete.

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