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Leak in Stoke Newington’s skatepark is still a mystery

PUBLISHED: 12:07 04 October 2011 | UPDATED: 12:38 05 October 2011

The empty skate bowl in Clissold Park, abandoned by skaters because of the leak.

The empty skate bowl in Clissold Park, abandoned by skaters because of the leak.

Archant

Clissold Park’s skaters and BMXS riders are becoming impatient that five months on, what’s causing the leak in their brand new bowl is still a mystery.

Contractor Osborne has been working since May to identify why water is seeping into the skatepark, which was opened in April as part of the £8.9million National Lottery revamp of the park.

Water seeps up through the bowl through the joins whenever it rains heavily, making it impossible for skate boards and bikes to grip or turn.

After months of constant water streams, thin layers of concrete are now lifting off the worst-hit areas, and the bowl is sitting there virtually unused.

Skaters and bikers have taken to ringing out rags and using sponge buffers and towels to mop out the water, in a desperate attempt to use the park they waited so long for.

“As it stands zero progress has been made to rectify any of the problems,” said John Dye, who owns BMX shop Volt BMX in Cazenove Road.

“As we approach winter, the water will be staying in the ground and bowl longer due to the lack of heat.

“There is a chance that if this problem is not tackled by October at the latest the main bowl will not be usable again without some seriously drastic repairs,” he warned.

The skatepark user group – formed of around 15 skateboarders and BMXers who have travelled extensively for the last 20 plus years riding bowls and skateparks all over Europe – spent years helping to draw up a top class facility.

“It’s one of the best bowls in the UK, but what stands there now is a waste of everyone’s time and money,” said John.

In a press statement, Cllr Jonathan McShane, cabinet member for health and social care and culture said he understood how frustrated the skaters are.

“It is the responsibility of the contractor to put it right and we are working with them to get this done as quickly as possible,” he said.

A spokeswoman for Osborne said the team had been working hard to try to establish the cause of the leak and find a solution since the issue first arose.


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