Hereford’s skatepark ramps up ambition with plan to double in size

“It’s a second home for a lot of users, and we are often at capacity, with 100 or more at a time,” according to Charlie Arthur who chairs Wheeled Sports 4 Hereford, the charity that runs the free-access park by the A49 Holmer Road in the north of the city.

Part of the the StrongerHereford programme of 15 projects receiving Government funding to improve the city, the half-million-pound expansion will double the park’s skateable area while integrating the new with the old.

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“There are bottlenecks in the park we want to address,” Mr Arthur explained.

“We will also build some big features to keep the iconic status of Hereford skatepark going. It’s important to keep the excitement and to draw people in from other areas. They already come here from Bristol and even London.”

There will also be features for less advanced users, he explained.

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“We want to increase the range of users of the park. We already set aside Sunday mornings for scooters and younger users.”

The park already has a shop and social centre housed in old shipping containers, in the style of a 1980 ghetto blaster.  A larger park can generate more revenue, helping it become more self-sustaining.

“The planning permission is in , we hope that will be granted by the end of the month,” Mr Arthur explained.

With to planning consultation concluded, no objections have been published, suggesting it is likely to be approved.

It will then be built by a specialist London company over “a couple of months”, during which the park will have to close, at least initially, he added.

StrongerHereford board chair Abigail Appleton said it was unusual for a wholly community-based initiative to be awarded money from the Government’s Towns Fund.

“But the board have been impressed by the inclusivity, and also the potential for events here like bands and food space.”

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