Outrage at decision to close Retroskate rollerskating venue at Great Yarmouth’s Marina Centre
- Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2016
There is outrage at a decision to close and board up Retroskate in Great Yarmouth.
Yesterday they were taking part in a national competition and today they returned triumphant with another haul of medals and trophies to find they have been kicked out of their home.
In the latest twist in a long-running saga between Retroskate and Sentinel leisure trust, the front door to the venue was boarded up with a notice of forfeiture posted on it.
MORE: Calls to stay positive as Retroskate future is close to decisionStaff at Retroskate said they were devastated but could not speak further until they had sought legal advice.
Sentinel have been approached for a comment and they said they would respond this afternoon.
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In a statement, Great Yarmouth Borough Council, which owns the Marina Centre where Retroskate is based, said: 'The council understands that the sub tenant is in breach of their tenancy and Sentinel have initiated legal action as landlord. This is a matter between the landlord and sub tenant. The council would hope that Sentinel will take the view that the space will continue to remain available to the artistic roller skating clubs to ensure that members are not disadvantaged. The council cannot comment further due to the legal position between these two parties.'
MORE: Retroskate win seven national titles and 32 medalsA petition which was signed by more than 1,000 people was handed to the borough council earlier in the year.
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A wrestling show was scheduled to be taking place at the venue on Sunday, though it remains to be seen whether this will be affected.
Zak Knight, co-owner of World Association of Wrestling, said: 'We're trying to investigate the situation and see what is going on. If the show can't go ahead, we would definitely need to be compensated. We have already sold more than 100 tickets and have spent lots of money on preparations for the show.'
Retroskate is the country's biggest artistic roller skating club, winning 16 British titles and five international selections. Four skaters also made their mark at the Cup of Europe in Bologna, Italy.
Pete Lewis, 71, from Caister, who remembers rollerskating at the nearby Winter Gardens when he was a youngster said he thought the decision was disgusting.
'It is something for children to do. If this closes what would they do? People would complain if they rollerskated on the front.'
'When we were kids we used to spend six days a week at the Winter Gardens.
'I think it is disgusting they have done it during the school holidays when lots of children come down here.' Jackie Daniels, from Gorleston said
'We are outraged at the way they have been treated. To turn up for work and not know what is happening at all is dreadful.'
Helen Lewis, also from Caister, said she skated at the venue regularly and was upset at the decision.
'It is an awful shame for the local people, especially with all the national events they hold here.'