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New skatepark opens in Norwich

PUBLISHED: 11:31 28 May 2010 | UPDATED: 16:51 01 July 2010

BMX riders show off their skills at the new skatepark

BMX riders show off their skills at the new skatepark

Matthew Sparkes

After five years of campaigning, Norwich has finally been given a skate park to be proud of.

A new £300,000 site in Eaton Park - which is large enough to hold national-level competitions -was opened at a small ceremony yesterday.

Launch of the BBC's Springwatch at Pensthorpe Nature Reserve.

After five years of campaigning, Norwich has finally been given a skate park to be proud of.

A new £300,000 site in Eaton Park - which is large enough to hold national-level competitions -was opened at a small ceremony yesterday.

It was funded by Norwich City Council and the Homes and Communities Agency, and skateboarders and BMX riders were consulted on its design from the start to ensure that they were given the right facilities.

Steve Morphew, leader of the council, said: ”The young people of the city told us they wanted a skatepark.

“It has taken a long time and a lot of hard work but we are now at the point where we can open this national standard facility.

“Norwich's skateboarder, BMX and inline skating communities have been very patient and worked closely with us and we are delighted to be able to reward their patience.”

Sam Avery, 32, who runs skateboarding shop Drug Store, in Pottergate, was at the opening after campaigning for the park for several years.

“It was the first time I've been on there and its been amazing. It's better than most people thought it would be,” he said.

“The flow of the park is amazing, better than anywhere I've been in as long as I can remember.

“The advantage of it taking so long was that we got to fiddle. We jigged around with the design a lot before the final one was done.”

He said that there were still several keen skateboarders in the city who remembered attending the first meetings with the council five years ago to discuss the possibility of getting a new park.

Work eventually began on the site in February and council bosses hope that it will cut the amount of skateboarding in the city centre.

Later in the summer it is hoped that there will be an official weekend-long celebratory opening for the new park.

Have you been campaigning for your area? Call reporter Matthew Sparkes on 01603 772439 or email matthew.sparkes@archant.co.uk

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