Petition for new Oswestry skatepark brings range of ideas

Calls for a new skatepark for Oswestry have led to a raft of suggestions, from a mobile indoor facility or updating the current facility to bringing a state of the art 'visitor destination' park to the town.

Oswestry councillors will debate a report by town clerk, Arren Roberts at their meeting on Wednesday.

It follows a petition from local young people to the council calling for a skatepark.

The report looks at various options, the most expensive being a state-of-the-art park similar to one in Hereford that would bring enthusiasts from across a wide area to the town.

However, Mr Roberts said that the likely cost of such a facility would be about £600,000 and that it would have to be a commercial venture.

He said: "The town council does not own land that could be readily identified for a project of this kind, however a destination facility close to the leisure centre could be an attractive proposition."

The report said that another permanent alternative facility would be to refurbish the existing skatepark at Eastern Oswestry.

"This is provided by Shropshire Council and the town clerk has spoken with officers regarding the condition of the existing provision. Feedback suggests that the facility needs renovation and upgrade.

"There are a couple of options for the Town Council to consider: It could seek permission from Shropshire Council to fund the refurbishment and improvement to the skatepark and request that maintenance is carried out by the unitary authority. Alternatively request an asset transfer of the skatepark to Oswestry Town Council and then fund the refurbishment and improvement to the skatepark.

"It is difficult to provide an estimated capital budget for such a renovation project, however a budget of circa £100,000 could be needed for a newly built facility. Market Drayton and Baschurch Skateparks are cited as examples of good practice," the report says.

As well as discussing the possibility of an outdoor facility councillors are also being asked if they would like to explore the feasibility of running an indoor session over the winter months.

" These would involve a third party and will incur costs, some of which could be part funded by the Council."

They would also be asked if they want to explore the feasibility of running a mobile outdoor facility as part of its holiday activity programme.

"There are some potential short-term solutions and some aspirational solutions," the report says.

"The benefits of working with either a Community Interest Company or a Charity are clear, in particular the engagement with users, the management and ownership of sites and access to external funding are advantageous.

"The Town Council may wish to commission professional expertise to support the development of a community project."

The feasibility of this could be investigated

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