March 10, 2020
The Skateparks Project has been awarded a £2000 Seed Catalyst Grant by the RSA (The Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce) to help councils and communities build better skateparks in the UK.
The grant, which aims to catalyse ideas into scalable projects of innovative social change, was awarded to help The Skateparks Project form as a charity and recruit regional volunteers to better support councils and communities seeking to build skateparks.
The Skateparks Project was founded in 2014 by RSA Fellow and Skateboard England Vice-Chair Alex Jordan. The project was originally launched as a skatepark directory, but quickly started receiving requests for support from councils and communities looking to build new skateparks.
Alex comments “When we launched the website, we started getting the occasional email from people asking how they could get their council to build a skatepark. Five years on and we’re now receiving an enquiry almost daily, largely from councils who know they want a skatepark, but don’t know how to go about it.”
“We’re helping councils and communities across the country. Last week I was down near Portsmouth, next weekend I’ll be near Buckingham. But there’s only so much I can do myself between the day job, so we need more volunteers to be able to provide effective support.”
The Skateparks Project is run by volunteers such as Jon Rimmer of the Alton Skatepark project, who provide email and phone support, meet councils, assist with consultations and engage locals. There are also volunteers who help maintain the skatepark directory, including Chris Davies, who has spent hundreds of hours visiting all the skateparks in Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire.
Please get in touch if you are interested in becoming a regional volunteer. As well as developing guidance materials, the funding will allow volunteers to complete the Introduction to Local Council Administration (ILCA) course, a level 2 qualification that offers an introduction to how councils operate, legal frameworks, obligations and insights useful when building public skateparks.
The RSA is a 30,000 strong Fellowship of proactive problem solvers across the globe. For over 260 years the RSA has facilitated the sharing of powerful ideas, carrying out cutting-edge research and building networks and opportunities for people to collaborate, influence and demonstrate practical solutions to realise change. For more information about the RSA and becoming an RSA Fellow please visit the RSA Website.