Heaven is a grind box for skaters

Morpeth skate park in Carlisle Park.
Morpeth skate park in Carlisle Park.
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YOUNG skateboarders have called for new kit at a popular town centre facility.

Morpeth skate park has proved ever-popular with young boarders, BMX bikers and roller-bladers since it was installed in 2005.

Young people themselves helped to fund and design the facility after a long-running campaign to secure the project and it continues to attract a variety of users.

However, a popular grind box had to be removed some years ago due to safety concerns after an inspection found it was too close to other equipment.

The kit was one of the most-used pieces in the park and ever since its removal there have been calls to have it replaced.

Now skateboarders have again raised the issue in a meeting with Morpeth Town Council, which manages the site.

At the council’s Property and Asset Management Committee meeting last week, Deputy Clerk Angela Logan brought members up to date.

She said: “We met with Joe Thompson and some of the other skaters to discuss any issues they had.

“They said the skate park has been great, but unfortunately we had to remove a jump maybe five or six years ago because it was too close to the other jumps. The group said that this was one of the best bits of equipment and they were sad that it had to be taken out. They have now asked the town council to put a new grind box in.

“It will cost in the region of £2,000, but we would also have to do some surfacing work.”

She added: “We did suggest that maybe the skaters could do some fund-raising themselves, but they have not got the commitment to do that at the moment.”

Mrs Logan said the skaters were also concerned about glass in the area.

The skate park is checked and cleaned every day, but she said glass may be broken after the inspection is made and she has advised the skaters to contact the council immediately if they find any at the facility and it will be removed as a matter of urgency.

Town Clerk Gillian Turner told councillors that there is a budget set aside for the skate park and no work has had to be carried out so far to the jumps or other equipment.

Committee Chairman Andrew Tebbutt said: “We need to do a complete review of the skate park and come back to the committee with detailed proposals as to what should be done with a proper costing.

“It is then for the new council to make that decision when it has all the information.”