With under a week left of the summer holidays, I am sure I can’t be the only one who has run out of money and things to do with my already (bored?) children, who genuinely think I’m nothing more than the equivalent of a human cashpoint machine.
So, I am thrilled that skateboarding has become a ‘thing’. Not only is it super fun, but it’s also budget friendly. Well, the outdoor ones are, indoor venues do charge an entry fee. But overall, skate parks have seen a huge influx with new and re-engaged skaters jumping on boards and hitting the streets aiming to nail their heelflip and grinds (apparently ... I don’t actually know what a heelflip or grind are?!).
The growth in skateboarding and scooting has emerged as an unlikely outcome from the Covid lockdowns, with its perfect match for quarantine restrictions and requiring just a set of wheels and a patch of flat ground, it’s not just for the stereotypical young ‘dudes’ anymore.
There’s been a big increase in girls and women taking up the sport, too. But a word to the wise, don’t be like me trying to be clever, getting egged on by your kids to try a ramp and then fall over like a sack of spuds. Wear the right protective gear, yep that means helmets, pads - the lot, or you’ll be sorry.
Couples and older generations who used to skate in their youth are now re-engaging with the sport again. With skateboarding becoming an Olympic sport for the first time in Tokyo this year it’s unlikely the popularity will slow down anytime soon. So, impress your brood or get a new hobby and check out these local skate parks.
Morrisons, also known as Haydon Leigh Skate Park, Haydon Leigh, Swindon SN25 1JP
Got an £80,000 refurbishment and redesign in 2020. The new skate park is designed in such a way that it can be used with skateboards, scooters and bikes. There's a small bowl and a few banks. It has smooth concrete and nice coping, but the ramps aren't very tall, nothing more than about 3ft, so good for younger kids.
Cirencester Skate Park, Kingshill sports development field, Cirencester, GL7 1HS
Known as the ‘skate capital of the Cotswolds’ this park is suitable for skateboards, skates and BMX bikes and there is a separate scooter park on the other side of the car park for younger children. It’s very popular, so if you want to avoid the crowds go in the week when it's quieter.
Rivermead Skate Park, 54 Rivermead Dr, Westlea, Swindon SN5 7EX
Rivermead skate park is a concrete park featuring a back-and-forth layout with quarter pipes, ledges, rails, manny, stair set and flat banks.
Faringdon Skate Park, Faringdon, SN7 8BF
I’ve been told by one of my sources (Max, 9) that this park has a nice half bowl, rainbow ledge, small p rail and small down rail along with a floating quarter and various other ledges and a great flow. I don’t know what this means either, but it sounds good and has great reviews on Google.
ATB shop & Skate Warehouse, Unit 1 Newcombe Drive, Swindon, SN2 1DZ
Swindon’s only indoor skate park is the place to go if you want to get into skating properly, the staff in the shop are known for being helpful and are as knowledgeable as they come. The warehouse houses its very own indoor arena which is suitable for all ages and very safe and secure. You are in very good hands; this place is impressive – if you don’t believe me check out their YouTube video here.
Blogger and Magical Mummy