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Thursday, 18 December 2014

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Thumbs up for Barrow skatepark

BMX riders and skateboarders have applauded plans to bring an indoor skatepark to town.

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wheels in motion BMX riders showing their skills at Barrow Park. Inset, organisers campaign to build an indoor skatepark, back row, from the left – Stuart Hines, Jason Keith, Anthony Ramsey and Lucas Hogg with, front, Josh Keith, Jane Keith and Jack Keith and Jamie Keith CHRIS WARNER REF: 50049576B002 & B004

Former semi-pro BMX rider Jason Keith and his wife Jane have bought a plot of land at James Freel Close, Barrow,where they intend to build the indoor facility, which would be the first in Cumbria.

The Facebook group UrbanExtreme Ltd already has hundreds of followers, and on Saturday the Keiths met with skate board, BMX, scooter and inline skate enthusiasts to get their ideas.

Mr Keith said: “The demand is huge for an indoor skatepark, the outdoor park is all we have in Barrow. We want to share our plans and get their ideas and expressions of interests.”

More than 30 people met at Barrow Park’s outdoor skatepark.

Mr Keith, 43, of Ireleth, told them he hopes the park, which would be run as a charity and open seven days a week, will be up and running by Christmas.

Those who attended requested everything from a foam pit, to street sections, bowls and ramps.

The enthusiasts cannot use the outdoor park in the rain and it does not have flood lighting.

Lucas Hogg, a 26-year-old BMX rider, said: “The need for an indoor skatepark has been massively overlooked, it would be a training facility. It’s the same as having a football pitch, it’s something we need. BMX racing is now an Olympic sport.

“This would bring people here because it will be that good. It’s something amazing to get behind.”

Christian Hunsdale, 16, a Barrow skateboarder, said: “It’s absolutely amazing. There’s such a high demand for an indoor facility. In the summer holidays people are here (at the outdoor skatepark) from 10am to 10pm.

“I prefer ramps and bowls, but others prefer street sections. So it will need variety.”

Designer Anthony Ramsey, of Art Ramp Parks is assisting the project.

The skatepark is expected to create at least 10 jobs. The scheme is going before Barrow Borough Council planners on Thursday.

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