Sunday, 24 March 2019

Skate park campaigner encourages others to start community project

Skate park campaigner encourages others to start community project

COLIN BRATHWAITE won the outstanding achievement prize in the sporting awards category of the inaugural Henley Heroes awards last year,

Mr Brathwaite, 47, of St Mark’s Road, Henley, led the Henley Skatepark Initiative, which successfully campaigned for a £290,000 “wheeled sports facility” to be installed at Makins recreation ground, off Greys Road.

The skate park opened in August 2017 following a six-year campaign by the group, which was supported by the town council.

It replaced a rapidly deteriorating skate park on the same site, which was 13 years old and nearing the end of its life, with a concrete one.

The new facility has sunken obstacles rather than hollow metal ones, which reduces the noise, and caters for BMX bikers, skateboarders and roller-skaters.

Mr Brathwaite, who works in the computer industry, said: “Obviously it was really nice to receive some recognition for the hard work but it is not easy for some of us to stand up on stage and say ‘thank you’.

“The people who are nominated for these awards put an awful lot of work into community projects. I would encourage anyone who has an idea, however unachieveable it may seem at the time, to go for it. We always expect someone else to stand up but I would say go for it.

“Our work on the skate park inspired other groups to give it a go. We had a lot of other community projects get in touch with us. They thought that if we had done it, they could do it, too.”

Do you know a Henley community hero? CLICK HERE TO NOMINATE THEM FOR THE HENLEY HEROES AWARDS 2019 NOW.

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