From Sidewalk 208 – January 2014
Photography by Alex Irvine
Previously known as ‘Random Rikk’ (with the tattoo to prove it) the pie-fuelled boy from Wigan has been killing it since the early Bones Bolton days. We almost lost him for a year or two when he discovered punk, booze, drugs and women but I’m glad to say that he’s back again and combining all the above with some serious wooden plank stunt’age.
A proper Northern grafter and one of the true Black Sheep Doggers.
I’ve known Rikk since the day I started skating, 14 years ago. He has always been super-talented and has an unbelievable bag of tricks. Despite his brief disappearance, he doesn’t seem to have lost any tricks or look uncomfortable on his board; in fact, if anything, he seems to have improved and learned more new tricks whilst not skating. Rikk’s punk ethos shows through in his don’t give a f*ck style of skating too – gnarly tricks, land on anything, full force: RIKK FIELDS!!
– Rob Smith
So Rikk, tell us a little bit about yourself please…
– I’m 23 and I’m from Wigan, which is a town in between Manchester and Liverpool.
You started skating at Bones Bolton and became a heavy lurker there in your youth – what are your favourite Bolton Bones memories?
– There were a lot of fun memories, but I think the all-night parties they used to have there stand out the most. People used to travel from all over the place for them, and you don’t really get things like that happening anymore.
You must’ve skated a lot with people like Scotty, Eddie, Rob, Mike Sutcliffe, etc – how did they influence the way you skated?
– That’s a hard one but I reckon the skaters that stuck out the most were Scotty, Eddie and Avi, and then there was the younger group – Rob Smith, Olly Tyreman and Josh Parr, and it definitely influenced how I skate in a big way because who was at the park would determine what you’d skate, so that pushed you to skate everything.
There were always a lot of good tours, events and demo’s passing through Bolton, what was your favourite demo/ event?
– Definitely the Black Label tour, some of my favourite childhood skaters were there like Chet Childress and Jason Adams, and it was the first time I witnessed Andy Scott going all out.
So after the Bolton days you seemed to have a slight disappearance from skating, what happened there and what did
you get up to off the board? Tez kinda suggested that you disappeared into a bit of a wreck head phase – is that true?
– Yeah I went through a bit of a partying stage when I was 18 till I was about 21. I just started going to loads of punk gigs and festivals. I had a good time and it gave me chance to figure myself out.
What made you start skating again?
– I started going out once every so often with guys who skate in Wigan, then my mate Kayed gave me John Cardiel’s Epicly Later’d DVD to watch and after that I was hooked again and I was going out as much as I could, because I was working nightshifts at the time. Then I started skating Manchester again and Eddie Belvedere pushed me to go out skating more, he’s like Mr Motivator.
Did you find it hard to start skating again or did it feel refreshing?
– Skating was fine, I was just a bit sketchy for a while, it took
a long time to get used to slamming and doing more exercise than I was used to during my off time though.
Tell us about your hometown of Wigan
– what’s life like there?
– Wigan is Wigan, I haven’t been about much lately as I’m spending a lot of time in Manchester, working away, or skating new things with new people, but I have a lot of good friends and family in Wigan so it’s always fun.
There are a ton of good spots in Wigan too but nobody but locals seem to venture there – what are your thoughts on that?
– It’s only recently got better to skate, people always say they will come from Manchester but it never seems to happen. We’ve got a Wigan/Manchester scene video coming out with a lot of Wigan spots in it, so hopefully people will get keen after that.
Tez said I should ask you how many
pies you eat every week and ‘Greggs or Greenhalghes’?
– (Laughing), I don’t know, it varies but I do eat my fair share. I think if you want quality then go to Greenhalghes, but there’s the cheap and cheerful Pound Bakery too, which does two pies or pasties for a quid!
Tell us about your job working for Carve Designs – you’ve been involved in building a fair few of the indoor parks, what’s an average day at work like and do you get a lot of satisfaction from doing this job?
– Yeah, it’s a good laugh: everyone’s sound and we get to stay in some memorable places. An average day involves a lot of grafting; plenty of brew breaks and choosing the right working music. It’s awesome being part of a team where everyone skates or rides and the most satisfying thing is when you get to skate what you’ve built before anyone else.
So since you started skating again in you’ve managed to pick up some new sponsors, one of them being Witchcraft, how has that been meeting all the dudes and going on trips with them?
– It’s been a memorable year; I’ve met and stayed with a lot of new people. I even got to meet some of the people who inspired me to get back on my board. Skating for Witchcraft and The Black Sheep is rad; I couldn’t think of better people to hook me up, it’s exactly what I’m into.
Do you have any other hobbies besides skating?
– Between skating, going to gigs and building stuff, I’m pretty busy.
Anything else you want to say?
– I’d like to thank Dave at Carve Designs for giving me the best job ever, Harry and Tez at Black Sheep and French and Alex from Witchcraft, it’s a pleasure to part of all their teams. Oh and thanks to everyone who’ve let me kip on their couches over summer.