At a public meeting last evening in Perranporth, which was attended by nearly two hundred members of the local community, it was resolved by members of Perranzabuloe Parish Council that they should seek Planning Consent for the construction of a large skatepark adjacent to the existing football and rugby fields in Ponsmere Valley, Perranporth. The high turnout by those local residents wishing to voice their opinions on the proposals is testament both to the importance of the issue and to the seriousness with which the provision of sports and recreation facilities within the Parish are viewed by those who live here.

There was a presentation, by Councillor Ben Byfield, ably assisted by Russ Holbert of Maverick Industries Ltd, the skatepark specialist designers, to outline the conclusions to date of the Parish Council’s working party, consisting of Vice Chairman Stevie Arthur, plus Councillors Ben Byfield and Mike Crewes. The group have been seeking for several months to find a way of delivering state-of-the-art skateboard amenities within the Parish and believe that the solution now proposed is the most practical, economic and, above all, exciting for the future. (see attached documentation)

The proposed skate park at Ponsmere Valley would be a high quality sports facility, positioned alongside other community facilities that the Parish Council intends to develop there over time. Like Perranporth’s famous surfing beach, the facility will not only will attract local children, teenagers and adults but has the potential to become an attraction for board riders across Cornwall and further afield. Skateboarding is now recognised as an Olympic sport, making its debut at the 2020 Tokyo Games. Perranporth already has a thriving boardriding culture and Perranzabuloe Parish Council, working with the local rider community, therefore hopes to harness this local potential by offering board riding facilities of the highest standards.

At the same time (and not instead of) the Parish Council is proposing to build a less demanding wheeled sports facility in one or more of our established local play parks where younger children and beginners can build their confidence and skills by skating or scootering in a safe, supervised environment. It is coincidental that the recreation facilities in Bolenna Fields need a timely upgrade in line with our children’s and their parents’ expectations for the 21st century.

This affords the community a great opportunity, not only to create eco-friendly and inclusive new play facilities for all our youngsters and for the differently abled also, but it also allows inclusion in those facilities for younger skaters to get involved in a sport which is not only a ‘recreational hobby’ but in which we, in this part of Cornwall, can justifiably claim to be ‘specialists’ – due to our heritage, our location and our long established local culture.

32 parishioners spoke during the public participation session, all with great dignity and passion. All public comments have been noted and will be reviewed by the Parish Council’s working groups and officers as these important projects are progressed. The meeting was held in its extraordinary format precisely to give a voice to the community, and all councillors will now be asked to give consideration to how the points raised will be addressed in the Parish Council’s plans.

There will also be further opportunities for community engagement, which will be publicised in due course. It is also hoped that some of the speakers may step forward to fill the current vacancies on the Parish Council, or to engage in stakeholder groups such as The Friends of Bolenna Park initiative who will be involved in shaping these projects.

It cannot be overlooked that Councillors are charged with representing all 5700 parishioners of the parish of Perranzabuloe, and safeguarding the wider public interest. This includes the provision of flagship facilities, but also infers responsibilities to protect public funds against risk for the benefit of all local tax payers. With this in mind Perranzabuloe Parish Council will always seek to provide the best possible sports and recreation amenities subject to budgetary and planning constraints.

Further information will be published by the Parish Council as the proposals are taken forward, but any written comments may also be directed to