Rom first opened its gates in August 1978 and was one of the originals on the UK skatepark scene, it was designed by Adrian Rolt, the same brain behind Harrow skatepark, and has been a common pilgrimage for bowl skaters up and down the country. It hosts many unique features that you are unlikely to find anywhere else in the UK and remains in relatively good condition considering its age! Given this, in 2014 it was given a Grade II listed status, the first in Europe to be awarded this honour and second in the world.
The first thing that you will see on entry to the park is the keyhole pool, based on those that were popular at the time on the west coast. It looks at first glance to be an easy skate, however it is deceptively tight. Next to this pool is the ‘Moguls’, 6 bowls lined up in a triangle shape, and arguably one of the most popular features of the park. Offering endless lines for skaters and BMXers alike pumping around this set of bowls is one of the main attractions of ROM.
Next to these is the ‘Performance Bowl’, an incredibly wide,12 foot deep bowl with a long lead out. Surprisingly this is one of the easier bowls in the park and the large space in the middle gives you time to adjust between tricks.
Adjacent to the ‘Moguls’ and ‘Performance Bowl’ is the small street section. Not the main attraction of the park but still host a nice variety of banks, a mini ramp and a pyramid funbox with a hubba.
Running down the middle of the park is the ‘Slalom’, a favourite of BMXers. It starts by the performance bowl and consists of a mellow flat bank leading into quarter pipes and spines. Next to this is the ‘Snake Run’, it can be quite intimidating with its steep and tight winding path but once mastered is a lot of fun.
In the bottom corner of the park lies a four clover bowl and an old school half pipe with a 3 foot extension giving you 1 foot of vert. Either end of the half pipe has bowled corners as well making it a lot more skateable. There is also a mini ramp with a spine and indoor half pipe for those rainy days.
Overall this park has a lot to offer and would take more than a day to master, but is not for the faint of heart or beginners to bowl skating, if this is the case then try Harrow skatepark before making the trip here.
Whilst this park is listed in London as it resides within the London borough of Havering, we all know it’s really an Essex park!
In September 2019 it was announced that ROM was to close its doors following a fire in 2018 and issues with increasing costs. There is hope that funds can be raised to reopen the skatepark in the summer of 2020, however without such funding the park will remain closed.
Upper Rainham Road
|Elm Park||0.8 miles||District line|
|Laburnum Avenue (Stops RQ & RL)||0.1 miles||252|
Elm Park train station: Exit Elm Park station onto Elm Park Avenue and follow it west until it meets Upper Rainham Road. Once here turn right and follow the road north until you see ROM skatepark on your left.
Laburnum Avenue bus stop: Exit the bus and ROM should be within sight.
- On-site Cafe
- On-site Skate Shop
- Relaxing Area
- Viewing Area