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Newmarket Academy students' skate park dream becomes reality




Work got under way on Monday on Newmarket’s new skate park on the George Lambton playing field.

The project was initiated by a group of students from Newmarket Academy who started fund-raising the following year and have now successfully secured the cost of the skate park build.

They secured the £150,000 funding for the first phase and are now well on the way to raising the £30-£40,000 needed for the second phase, which includes lighting and security cameras for the site.

Students, whose dream of a new skate park is about to become a reality, with project supporters at the start of construction on Monday. Picture: Mark Westley
Students, whose dream of a new skate park is about to become a reality, with project supporters at the start of construction on Monday. Picture: Mark Westley

On Monday they received a boost from Newmarket town councillors who agreed to grant £5,000 to the project towards the remaining £13,000 needed.

West Suffolk’s families and communities officer Will Wright said: “This has been a truly young person led project where they have had to apply all the skills they have learnt about using the skate park and the ones they have learnt in school.”

In order to comply with social distancing and track and trace, the contractors will be occupying the site full time until completion, thereby reducing the risk of delay due to having to self-isolate.

Nick Froy, principal of Newmarket Academy, said: “I am delighted that the skate park has received planning permission. This feels like a massive leap for the students to seeing this project come to fruition.

"They have worked incredibly hard to make this plan come to life and in so doing contribute to the improvement of our town and provide our young people with a skate park. I am so proud of their vision, commitment and resilience.’

Cllr John Griffiths, leader of West Suffolk Council said: “I am delighted that everyone who has worked so hard on this project will now see it come to fruition.

“This is a first for Newmarket, with its young people taking such a large scale project from start to finish.

“It is of course disappointing that current restrictions mean that attempting to re-open the old skate park as previously envisaged, would jeopardise completion of the new one, but this is a bigger prize.”