December 9 2013 Latest news:
By STEVE DOWNES
Thursday, November 8, 2012
The dying wish of a Cromer woman has been fulfilled after the poignant handover of £8,000 to help a town skatepark dream come true.
Verity Fridman’s husband Hillel gave the cheque to young people and committee members from Cromer Skatepark a few days after his wife’s brave battle with cancer ended.
And the sum could more than double by the end of today, with Mrs Fridman’s children Rebecca and Hugo set to give £5,000 each to the same cause when planning consent is gained for a permanent park.
Scores of youngsters currently use the BMXs, scooters and skateboards at a temporary base at the former Kiddles’ Corner at North Lodge Park.
But this morning, North Norfolk District Council’s development committee will decide whether to accept an officers’ recommendation to approve a skatepark at The Meadow on the edge of Cromer.
With their big day looming, grateful skatepark users braved the rain to be at the temporary skatepark for the handover of the £8,000 cheque by Mr Fridman and Rebecca.
Mr Fridman said: “Verity’s last lucid week of life was a great week. Following her bequest to Cromer Skatepark and the publicity surrounding it, she was surrounded by thanks and gratitude, especially from the young. She was uplifted.
“Dying is a lonely affair, but during that week she felt less lonely. She slept unaided for the first time in many weeks. She knew that in her small way, she had made a real difference and had given the project a real hope of success.
“It was a source of priceless comfort.”
Cromer Skatepark chairman Edward Land said: “We are extremely grateful to Verity and to Hillel. It’s lovely to see how somebody wants to invest in the skatepark and the young people of Cromer.
“It’s given us fresh hope of realising the dream, by knowing that people in the community are backing us.”
Mrs Fridman, 61, who moved to Cromer with her husband from London three years ago, said last month that she was determined to “give something back” to the young people of the town.
She said: “I have a son, so I’m well aware how much exercise boys particularly need between the age of nine and 15.
“When I came up to Cromer I always had in my thoughts to try to do something for that age group. There’s nothing in Cromer for the children. The town is over-balanced with older people and there are not enough young people.
“There’s not enough for the boys and girls to do. It’s essential to keep them out of trouble, keep them interested and give them somewhere to go which is their own.
“The skatepark is a marvellous way of achieving that. The older boys help the younger boys and have developed a sense of community.”
The Meadow plans stalled earlier this year, when NNDC’s development committee suggested the skatepark should go on a sloped site, rather than the planned flat location near the children’s play area.