High School pupils campaign for skatepark

Councillor Helen Oswald pictured at the skate park in Carnoustie on Friday. The youngsters are looking for a much superior feature than already exists.
Councillor Helen Oswald pictured at the skate park in Carnoustie on Friday. The youngsters are looking for a much superior feature than already exists.

A CAMPAIGN to have a new skatepark constructed in Carnoustie which is being run by three Carnoustie High School pupils has gained the support of local councillors.

Last Wednesday, Kieran Bell (16), Newton Crescent, Andrew Patterson (14), Prosen Bank, and Ross Macdonald (14), Lowson Avenue, met with Councillor Helen Oswald and put forward the reasons they believe money should be spent on a new facility.

Kieran told the Guide & Gazette: “Recently there have been a number of complaints regarding cyclists in Carnoustie. We, the children you have been complaining about, have decided to present you, the community, with a solution to this problem.

“That is to build a new skatepark.”

He continued: “You will probably be aware that we already have a skatepark, but I can’t emphasise enough how poor an attempt that was. The current facility was an afterthought of the waterfront development.”

Kieran made it clear that he and his co-campaigners don’t want to take any more land from the community therefore they propose that a new skatepark be built where the current ‘skatepark’ is.

He went on: “We understand that we will have to earn the construction of this new skatepark which is why we are willing to design the park under Angus Council’s guidelines and raise funds to pay a substantial percentage of the cost.”

The trio have organised an online petition and have invited members of the community to support them by signing it at http://www.thepetitionsite.com/4/skatepark-in-carnoustie/

Councillor Oswald stated: “I read about the petition on the Internet networking site Facebook and contacted Kieran and Andrew to arrange a meeting. We met in the Burgh Chambers where parents and a member of the council’s community planning team were also present.

“Having contacted the other two local councillors, I was pleased to be able to tell the youngsters that we all support the project.”

She continued: “We agreed that a steering group would need to be set up to guide the youngsters through the various stages of such a massive undertaking and that a public meeting should be held to see what support there was among the wider community.

“Hopefully from this meeting, other interested parties will come forward to be part of the steering group.”

It was agreed the public meeting should be after the schools go back.

Councillor Oswald stressed that it is too early in the process to be contacting potential funding sources, but said that the boys are keen to start the group’s fund and awareness raising as soon as possible and have spoken about sponsored events in the near future. It was also suggested that a coffee morning could be held when parents could get involved and reach out to the wider community.

She concluded: “I have been in touch with the director of neighbourhood services to see if the council would pledge a piece of ground for the proposed skatepark and am waiting for his response.

“Everyone at the meeting was very positive and excited and all agreed that, although it will be a lengthy process, they were willing to be involved in the long term.”