Kessingland skate park plan faces lease hurdle

This image shows how teenagers in Suffolk's largest village could practice gravity defying skateboard and BMX tricks if their dream of getting their own recreational area comes true.

The schematic has been created after frustrated young people in Kessingland, near Lowestoft, carried out a consultation in the village and got a quote from skate park designers Streetskape.

On Wednesday night, the �64,804 plans for a piece of land on the Francis Road playing fields were presented at a public meeting by teenagers Callum Goddard, William Trew and James Stone to highlight how Kessingland lacks adequate leisure facilities for young people.

At the moment skateboarders and BMXers in the village have to travel to Lowestoft and Beccles to perform their hobby.

James, 15, told the meeting: 'Having a skate park in the village would be an outstanding thing to have.'

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The teenagers' plans are supported by Waveney District Council and Kessingland Parish Council but there is opposition from the lease holders responsible for the playing fields.

The land identified is part of a recreational site and social club run by the Kessingland Sports and Social Club (KSSC).

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Club treasurer Judy Lawson said the club would be liable for insuring and maintaining the skate park if it was built.

Mrs Lawson said she supported the teenagers' skate park ambitions but also said it should be built on land off London Road instead, if its owner wished to sell it.

In response, Liam Martin, parish council chairman, said the Francis Road land was actually owned by the parish council and KSSC would not have to meet insurance and maintenance costs.

He added the Francis Road site was for the benefit of everyone and not just the users of the social club, the majority of who were aged over 60.

Campaigners will now send a letter to KSSC asking it to support their plans, which should be funded by the Big Lottery Fund and Sport England.

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