Plans for a skatepark in Cliftonville will move forward if Cabinet members approve proposals for a 20-year lease agreement.
The park will be at the former crazy golf site in Ethelbert Crescent and will be run by a CIC created by Dan Cates and Nic Powley of Margate Skateboard Club.
It is one of the projects being carried out as part of the £22 million Margate Town Deal.
The skatepark proposal received support from Margate and Cliftonville communities and the National Skateboarding fraternity. A petition supporting the plans gained more than 3000 signatures.
It is one of the projects which aims to deal with some of the health inequalities in the area by promoting fitness and wellbeing, social engagement, local tourism, and also creating employment.
Margate Skateboard Club are recognised as experts in their field. They have provided advice and guidance to organisations like Skateboard GB, and they have advised other local authorities on the commission and delivery of Skateparks.
Nic is the boss of Skate Pharm and Dan is a board veteran working with companies including Death Skateboards and part of the Skate Pharm team.
The bid put in for the new skatepark was for £1million. The Town Deal granted £750,000 but there is also £100,000 match funding from artist Tracey Emin and £59,000 from the council’s capital programme which was previously earmarked for a Margate skatepark.
Margate Skateboard Club will also undertake fundraising for construction, community engagement, running events and activities on the site and supporting a programme to encourage people of all ages into skateboarding to improve wellbeing.
Thanet council owns the site which was previously home to the ‘Little Oasis skate park’ built by skateboarders and operating during the Summer of 2013. The park was flattened by Thanet council in 2014, citing health and safety reasons.
Thanet council says it would potentially be forgoing an annual rent estimated to be about £10,000 – £15,000 or possible sale proceeds of £100,000 – £150,000. However, there are restrictions on the use of the site, with significant implications for development, and despite previously being marketed the land did not generate interest.
The development of the skatepark will be carried out by the council, according to the Cabinet document.
The Margate Skateboard Club plans include a toilet and a kiosk with the kiosk having a hub for staff of the CIC to support community engagement activities and deliver health and wellbeing programmes.
Income from the kiosk will be used to maintain the toilets and the Skatepark, covering running and maintenance costs.
Cabinet members at the council are expected to give approval for a 20 year lease with no rent costs to be drawn up alongside establishment of the CIC.
Council documents say if the project looks like it will be over budget the Skatepark will need to be scaled back, or further funding gained by the project sponsors.
The plans will be discussed at a Cabinet meeting on February 22.