Facilities for Skate Boarding could come to Beeston – Inspired by a government grant won by community group Skate Nottingham and educational charity Ignite! It envisages skateboard-friendly sculptures in Beeston and across the Borough – designed and built by local young people and school children, in the run-up to next year’s Olympics.
Nottingham is one of the original homes of UK skateboarding – with a 50-year history in a sport that will join the Olympics for the first time in Tokyo. Our area may also be represented in Tokyo by local professional skateboarder – GB team-member Alex Halford.
Skateboarding is unique in encouraging young people to develop expertise in sport and complementary creative interests like design, film and photography – and Beeston could be part of it.
Imagine a community whereby the skills developed by our local young people involve them from ‘the ground up’. These could start with building wooden ramps with friends before progressing into careers in civil engineering or landscape, the built environment and architecture – inspiring future generations. Simultaneously bringing under-used outdoor spaces to life, temporarily or longer-term.
“Our vision is to identify local areas that could benefit from these installations – teaming up with youth groups and schools to create them. Skateboarding is a free, healthy, social activity for all ages – especially the young, who so often encounter barriers to participating in things they can enjoy and learn from – so this will really help our entire community” – said project lead Chris Lawton from Nottingham Trent University.
The idea is influenced by similar projects across Scandinavia and also City Mill – envisaged by, University College London and Goldsmith University – engaging participants to design a ‘trail’ of ‘skate dots’ leading into the new UCL East Campus in Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. Like the Beeston proposals, City Mill aims to encourage a more diverse range of young people to use the spaces. City Mill will not come to fruition until 2022 – but our project here in Beeston could happen within a matter of months!
Endorsed by Beeston Civic Society their Secretary, Mervyn Brown, commented: “The idea is sensational – it has really kicked off something that has realistic potential to succeed at so many levels. World recognition for Beeston. Inspirational from concept to completion – socially Inclusive, with health and fitness benefits – adding value to our community”.