Millbrook youngsters have been asking for a skate park in which they can use their skateboards in relative safety for years. There is a moderately large skateboarding "community" in the village and according to the village plan consultation which was carried out a couple of years back building a skate park was high in the list of priorities that villagers would like to see.
Now there's another reason that we need to push ahead with this project. Some of the boarders have been being more than a little silly, using their boards as a form of local transport and skateboarding down the main road from Maker past Fourlanesend and down into the village. Imagine the speeds they're reaching - imagine the consequences if a car hit one of them; the activity is often after dark. I believe that some 'boarding has also taken place from Hounster into the village down the main road.
These young people are looking for "kicks" in the wrong way; we can help by providing a place where they can get their kicks in the right way.
One skateboarder is currently in hospital, in the high dependency neurological unit having come off his board on exactly that run and fractured his skull banging his head on the road. OK - so he was being stupid and, some may think, got what was coming to him. Just be thankful it wasn't your boy!
Doug Reid is the young man in question. Many of you will know him. He's one of the most sensible. polite and pleasant youngsters we have in the village and is a frequent house guest at Millbrooker Towers. Even he is capable of one of the most common stupid errors of youth: thinking oneself to be immortal. I'm sure every reader will join me in wishing him a speedy and complete recovery and in extending our very best wishes to his mum who is spending an awful lot of time up at Derriford at the moment.
Doug's accident is an example of precisely why we need to build and maintain a high quality skate park where these young people can get their fun in some semblance of safety. Injuries will happen when indulging in this sort of activity, but on a skate park they will almost always be minor. Even a minor injury hurts and the 'boarder will learn that fact from the bruises and minor scrapes suffered on the park ramps, leading we can only hope to a more sensible idea of what is a good thing to do on a skateboard and what is a danger to himself and to others.