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Lyme Regis: Dream for skatepark rolls ever closer
THREE major stages are well underway to finally get a skatepark in Lyme Regis.
The first is the completed consultation with youngsters in the area, the second is a skaters forum and the third is fundraising.
Chairman of the working group Coun Lucy Campbell was congratulated on the skatepark questionnaire at last week’s strategy and policy committee meeting.
She said she was delighted with the response.
She said: “I am really pleased at the response, getting 668 young people to fill in a questionnaire is fantastic.
“Even though we set our target at 1,000 to be quite honest I thought we’ve be lucky to get one or 200 back.”
She warned that most of the responses were from younger children as it was difficult to consult with older age ranges but that did not mean they were not interested.
The consultation deliberately did not include location, she said, because there was no other realistic location other than the Charmouth Road car park She said: “There was no point in asking the question. I have spent nearly all of the seven years I have been on this council looking for sites and they have all been turned down.”
Although there is £17,000 in the council’s budget and the possibility of taking out £25,000 from trading surpluses in the next three years, more money would need to be found.
The estimated cost is between £100,000 and £150,000 but nearby residents have yet to be convinced it should be put in the West Dorset District Council-owned car park.
To get external funding the town has to show it is a needed and wanted facility.
This was part of the reason for the consultation, a fund-raising group and young worker Harry Warren’s skaters’ forum that meets once a month, said Coun Campbell.
Now suggestions for equipment will go to designers who in the next month or so will come up with proposals and costings.
Mr Warren said despite the disappointments with lack of progress over the years, youngsters were still enthusiastic.
He said: “Even though it’s been taking a long time to try and get a skatepark there is a new generation of youngsters coming through who are just as keen on making a skatepark a reality as previous generations.
“It is very evident to me on my third time round of trying to get a skatepark even though I have worked with different young people every time there is the same enthusiasm.
“There are certainly some of the older young people who are sceptical about whether it will ever happen but young people are eternally optimistic.”
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