SCORES of skateboarders around Bognor Regis have sent an SOS message to the council.
The skateboard and scooter fans told Arun District Council ‘Save Our Skatepark’ plans.
The council is set to reject the proposal to turn an empty commercial premises on the Southern Cross Industrial Estate into the unique indoor facility. But the young supporters of the scheme joined its creator, Janina Cooper, on Monday to urge a change of mind. Jack Brake, ten, of Bersted, said: “Everybody in the area can come to this skatepark and it will be fun. We won’t have to worry about the weather.
“When it’s raining, I’m stuck at home but the indoor skatepark will give me something to do. It will be really fun to get out and about with my friends and practise on the ramps.”
Another Bersted resident Michael Robinson, nine, said: “I would like this skatepark because the ramps will not be slippery when it is wet.”
As reported, Mrs Cooper wants to convert the former Oldlands Way warehouse into The Base. It will be a focal point for BMX riding, skateboarding and scooting as the only indoor skatepark along the coast between Poole and Eastbourne.
Ramp designers have devised a range of facilities for 50-80 skaters to use. But Mrs Cooper has been told by Arun planning officer Simon Davis he will recommend councillors reject the proposal at their meeting on July 2.
She asked her backers to continue to show their support by writing to him. She claimed the opinion failed to take into account The Base’s contribution to the community. “We have already received overwhelming support from so many quarters, including Sussex Police and Bersted Parish Council,” she said.
This had enabled her to reach her £80,000 funding target.
But Mr Davis has told her the site would remove a commercial premises from a modern industrial estate, was separated from housing by the A29 and could cause conflict between the skatepark’s users and lorries.
Mrs Cooper said the building had been empty for two years. The highway safety matters did not stop McDonald’s being approved nearby.
She had also spoken to nearby firms about her plans.