THE campaign to find a new home for Rush Skatepark has stepped up a gear, with the launch of an appeal to raise nearly £100,000.
The fundraiser – which has already raised £4,715 towards the £95,000 target – has been set up by the Friends of Rush Skate Park, who say that not only is the park a vital facility for young people in the district, but now has a proven track record as a training ground for Olympians.
Sadly the Brimscombe Port based skatepark, one of Europe’s biggest indoor facilities, is to close at the end of this month.
Its tenancy ends as Stroud District Council move on plans for the development of the port, which were drawn up before their contract with Rush was signed.
But the Friends of Rush Skate Park are determined to see a new indoor skatepark created in Stroud district.
And Debbie Bird of the group said that they were delighted with the level of community support for the project.
“We are thrilled with the support so far, with the crowd funder raising money to ensure we have a new indoor skatepark for Stroud district,” she said.
“These funds need to be available to be sure all the steps required to get agreement for the new park can be completed quickly once a new site has been found.
“To get started we are working towards a target of £95,000. This will help pay for site surveys, planning enquiries, drawings, plans and more. We understand that some of this money should be eligible for matched funding – so someone giving £1 is in effect giving £2. Once this stage is complete we are very confident the project will be very attractive for national funders and backers.”
Active Gloucestershire, a charity supported by Sport England to drive positive change in the county, is assisting with the new plans and helping to look for a new site for Rush.
Commenting on the significance and the future of Rush, Richard Fishlock of the charity said: “What Jerry and Michelle have achieved with Rush Skate Park has been inspirational. The facility has given local young people a safe and welcoming place to get active, meet their friends and have fun, and it has also enabled talented BMX riders and skateboarders to develop their skills and compete at the highest level.
“Rush has put Stroud and Gloucestershire firmly on the map as a one of the country’s leading indoor skate facilities, and of course the amazing success of British riders and boarders at the Tokyo Olympics has given the profile of these really accessible sports an even bigger boost.
“Naturally we don’t want to see this success or opportunity lost, so alongside other community partners we are working hard to explore ways of maintaining or re-providing what Rush offers.”
To donate to the Rush fundraiser visit: bit.ly/2W61mQN
And if you know of any alternative sites for Rush, email email@example.com