Some good news this morning in the form of the legendary Stockwell Skatepark being listed as an 'Asset of Community Value' after some solid pushing from Friends of Stockwell Skatepark - props are in order! This is just a start however - here is a more detailed breakdown of what needs doing courtesy of FOSS:
"This new right means communities can ask the council to list certain assets as being of value to the community.
If an asset is listed and then comes up for sale, the new right will give communities that want it six months to put together a bid to buy it. This gives communities an increased chance to save local facilities of community value.
The legislation does not give a right to buy the property in question - but it does give potential bidders the time to put a proposal together."
As you can probably see this is of limited value itself, but it's a start, and the process has helped form the organised group we have now - currently 220 registered members (1150 on FB though!), with a constitution and 4 officers.
The next step is probably to look at making a specific Section 106 agreement between Lambeth Council and FoSS. This would permanently protect the skatepark as a skatepark, and so legally prevented it from being redeveloped for any other purpose. LLSB have a similar S106 an agreement with Lambeth now as we understand it.
And there's the matter of getting the large sums of money need to repair and possibly upgrade the park... and establishing a budget going forward. At the moment there is no budget...
We attended the Lambeth Council cabinet meeting on Monday, January the 11th, and spoke on item 3 regarding the councils Parks and Open Spaces Budget for the next 5 years. We had previously emailed them prior to their consultation deadline on October the 31st of 2014. The minutes of that item from the meeting are here
The council appear broadly supportive of our aims. Over the next month we'll be meeting with local councillors, the Mayor's office, LLSB, and hopefully with the planners/Community Housing Trust too.
The Thrayle House redevelopment plans will clearly have a significant effect on the skatepark, the budget there is some £20 million and it seems not unreasonable that the skatepark and it's community should benefit. The green space next to the skatepark is under threat, in the process of this being redeveloped we have a vision that incorporates additional skatepark facilities without losing green area, but more on that soon...
Big thanks to everyone that's supported us so far, especially those that registered as members and that participated in the various meetings. 2015 looks to be a significant year in the life of Stockwell Skatepark. For years the park has been under-valued and under-represented, now's the time to make sure it gets the recognition it deserves. Next members meeting is on the 12th of February, venue TBC.
You can register as a member at: https://friendsofstockwellskatepark.wordpress.com/join-friends-of-stockwell-skatepark/