Work on a hotly-anticipated new skate park in Sidmouth is set to be finished ‘by the end of this week’.
The wheely good news means Christmas has arrived early for skaters, BMX and scooter riders – with the Manstone Recreation Field facility touted as ‘one of the best’ in East Devon.
It is one of the biggest projects ever undertaken by Sidmouth Town Council, which appointed skatepark consultant Maverick Industries in June 2018.
Construction began in September.
The contractor had to demolish and remove original ramps and surfacing before replacing them with super-smooth, state-of-the-art sprayed concrete features.
Ideas from Sidmouth’s wheeled sports community have been incorporated in the design.
Around 200 cubic metres of special concrete has been used to construct the new skate park.
Workers finishing up at the site this week were delighted to receive a card and box of chocolates from a young girl who delivered them to the facility with her dad.
Councillor Louise Cole, who chairs the town council’s Youth Provision Working Group, said: “Children and young people in Sidmouth have been involved in the design process, taking account of what they wanted to feature in the new skate park to make it the best it could be.
“I know it is eagerly awaited and will be well-used.
“It’s a really high-quality facility for young people to develop their skills and have fun.
“It’s really important that there are spaces for positive activities which enable young people to be active and social.
“I think it will be quite the envy of other towns and after such a tough year and will be a welcome boost to our young people and their sense of place in our community.”
Russ Holbert, Maverick’s design director, added: “Sidmouth is a bespoke, high-end spray concrete skatepark facility which has been designed in conjunction with the local riding community.
“Heading into the Olympics for 2021, the future is super-exciting for wheeled sports in Sidmouth and beyond!”
Sidmouth Town Council agreed on Monday, December 7, to continue work to provide safety lighting for the scheme in spring 2021.
This will support the use of the park in the darker winter early evenings.
Town clerk Christopher Holland said: “Together with the new recently completed Alma Bridge and Knowle drainage and amphitheatre scheme due for completion in 2021, Sidmouth has benefitted from some large capital schemes in the last year.
“This new facility is one of the biggest projects ever undertaken by Sidmouth Town Council who are two -thirds funding the project together with Section 106 funds made available by EDDC.
“The new skatepark is suitable for use by all ages and all skill levels of wheeled sports users including skaters, BMX bikers and scooters.”