Friday, 29 November 2013

Bar Hill Skate Park: Letter Of Support From Margaret Sellars (Former Parish Council Chair)

The following letter has been sent to the Bar Hill News but, unfortunately, will not be published until after the decision has been made. It is reproduced here with Margaret's permission;

"Dear Residents

Skate Park

When you get a leaflet about the Skate Park do take the time to fill it in.  The Skate Park has been very important to our village.  Before we had it, residents and visitors had to walk amongst young people using their skate boards around the shopping area and in other parts of the village.

The Skate Park has been a place where young people go in their free time to skate, to meet, to play their music (quite loudly) and to have food and drink.  If they did not have this place, where would they go?  Perhaps in places where residents would not welcome them.  Certainly our Police officers have always felt the Skate Park was an important feature in deterring anti-social behaviour around the village.  Since the Skate Park was built there have been few complaints about the behaviour of the young people.

When it comes to paying for a replacement, and maintaining it, careful thought needs to be given to decide what would be best for the village.  The Parish Council did have a budget for maintenance but, unfortunately, as the wood aged and rotted it was not enough.  I wonder if they will decide to replace the ramps with metal frames which would not rot?  The Parish Council receives money from South Cambs (which is what we all pay in Council Tax), and from rent from the Farmhouse and The Willows (at the entrance to the village).  It seems very strange that South Cambs would not give a grant to maintain an existing facility but would give a grant for a new facility.

Lastly, I know that there is a group around the village which has raised funds through various events for improvements to the children’s play areas and for the Skate Park.  I would like to congratulate them on their efforts and wish them well in their future fund raising.

I would also like to ask the young people who use the Skate Park to be actively involved in discussions about its future and to participate in the democratic process in deciding what should be done.

Margaret Sellars"

Just a reminder that the survey is available electronically via the link on the left of the homepage (or by clicking here).