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28/04/2014 - Craven Youth Council launch campaign to save Skipton skatepark

A group of local young riders is today launching a fundraising campaign to raise £100,000 of funding for the rebuild of the Skatepark in Aireville Park, Skipton. The group is receiving support from Craven District Council, Craven Youth Council and Friends of Aireville Park to rebuild the Skatepark in Aireville Park.

The Skatepark has been in Aireville Park since 1998 and because it is so well used has become worn and has unfortunately has been closed following a routine health and safety inspection by the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) on behalf of Craven District Council. The closure of the skatepark means that many young riders have to travel to places much further away!

Chair of Craven Youth Council, Jay Harrison said: "We've been going to other places in Skipton like car parks and practising tricks in them. Local people were complaining and community support officers were telling us to go somewhere else. But the Skatepark is unsafe and we can't go anywhere without getting into trouble so where do we go? We have been working with Craven District Council over the last year to get a new Skatepark!"

The Council is investigating putting a temporary skatepark in place in the summer until funds can be raised for a new permanent one. The skatepark users have worked with Craven District Council to design a new skatepark as part of a tender competition and the preferred designs will cost between £50,000 and £100,000. The new skatepark design is a more modern design with better equipment that is more weather resistant and won't wear out as quickly. Which design will ultimately be chosen, depends on the amount of funds that can be raised. So far Craven District Council has given the Save Skipton Skatepark Campaign (SSSC) £25,000 towards the project. The group also took part in the Craven Dragons Den and received £500. In addition, they are aiming to raise £5,000 from fundraising events and will be applying for funding from organisations such as Sport England.

The first SSSC fundraising event is on 18th May, at Sandylands Sports Centre for this year's Festival of Culture and Sport to encourage people to have a go on stunt scooters. On Saturday the 24th May, SSSC will host a fundraising café at Skipton Town Hall. On the 7th June SSSC will be doing a charity car wash at Skipton fire station. The final planned event is a bag pack at Skipton Tesco on 29th June

Paul Shevlin, Chief Executive of Craven District Council will donate any sponsorship money he raises from his annual Manchester 10k run on 18 May towards the campaign. He said: "It is fantastic to see skatepark users and Craven Youth Council putting so much effort into fundraising for a new skatepark. The skatepark is a valued facility for young people in Craven and clearly well used. It is important that we try to get a new one in place as soon as possible and I would like to show my personal support for the cause by running the Manchester 10k and making the skatepark campaign the benefactor."

Jordan Clarke, a spokesperson for Craven Youth Council said: "We hope that we will raise the money as soon as possible so we can get a new Skatepark in the near future and that it will last much longer than the current one. We also hope that you will support the project as the whole community will benefit from the new Skatepark. It will help to lower anti-social behaviour and improve health and wellbeing of young people around craven."

The SSSC is asking for local people, organisations and businesses to back their effort by writing a letter or email of support stating why they believe the skatepark is important to the community and why a new one is needed. Please send your letters of support to Policy Development Officer, Craven District Council, 1 Belle Vue Square, Broughton Road, Skipton,BD23 1FJ or email feedback@cravendc.gov.uk Please make sure these are sent in by no later than the 23rd May 2014.

If you would like to donate to the Save Skipton Skatepark campaign there is a collection tin in reception at Craven Pool in Aireville Park and at the Council Offices, Belle Vue Square, Skipton (opposite Morrisons).

Save Skipton Skatepark will present their campaign during the Friends of Aireville Park AGM on 1st May 2014. The presentation will include the launch of the Save Skipton Skatepark campaign film. The meeting will take place 7pm - 8.30pm, Council Offices, Belle Vue Square, Skipton, BD23 1FJ.

To find out more about the campaign, please go to our page Save Skipton Skatepark Campaign