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Project Update shared at Swanage Town Council Community Services Meeting 8th Nov 2023

Update on activities: 

Since the last Community Services Meeting in June 2023, the Swanage Skatepark Community Group (SSCP) built a website and created Facebook and Instagram accounts to share news about the Skatepark with the community. 

In July 2023, the group launched a user consultation survey. The survey was the first of its kind for Swanage Skatepark revealing demographics of park users, barriers faced by some who would like to use the park but don’t and preference towards the type of equipment people want to see in the Skatepark. The Survey closed with 170 responses in Oct 2023 (an extension on the deadline was granted to The Swanage School who needed more time to engage students). 

Survey highlights & immediate opportunities 

35% of respondents to the survey were aged 0-15 years old. By comparison, this age group only makes up 12.3% of the population in Swanage. The group views the portion of responses from this age group as a success because this age group is hard to reach with surveys but important future custodians of the Skatepark.  

The results of the survey will be ready to share publicly mid November

The survey revealed various opportunities that will be of interest to Community Service Meeting Stakeholders to increase participation in sport, build a friendly multigenerational community of users at the Skatepark and indirectly possibly reduce anti-social behaviour.

  • There is huge demand for lessons and sessions with guest coaches. These options were voted for over 170 times in response to the question ‘what type of events would you like to see taking place at Swanage Skatepark in future. 

  • As a follow up, SSCP will source quotes from skate, BMX and scooter coaches e.g. local provider Happy Skateboarder School. SSCP isn’t currently in a position to fund these sessions and would appreciate suggestions from the community on how we could collaborate with any organisations who have budget to pay for or subsidise costs. SSCP can assist with organising and promotion. Skate jams and days of lessons could also be fundraising opportunities for SSCP towards the cost of ramps. 

  • Of the 32 people who said they don’t use Swanage Skatepark, 13% said they were too old. There’s no age limit on skating, skating isn’t just for young people! Lessons for older people could help this group overcome the social barriers and stigma to be seen in the skatepark and encourage more parents to use the park with their children.

  • The arrival of the skatepark in Dorchester led to a 33% reduction in crime in the area around where the park is located. Even through Swanage Skatepark is going to be without full equipment for a while, if we can increase the number of users to the current equipment or learning on flat-ground anti-social behaviour could be discouraged simply because it will be more well-used.

Swanage and Purbeck Development Trust set up update

Following a series of meetings agreement has been reached that SSCP will form a separate Charity and project under the umbrella of SPDT.  SPDT acts as a charitable delivery vehicle, advisor and catalyst for projects identified by the community in meeting these issues and challenge

s. SSCP received onboarding paperwork in mid October 2023. Our chairperson is away until approx. mid November so formal setup will progress at the time they return.

Next steps: 

  • Release our public consultation survey - Nov 23

  • Share our survey results with various skatelite park builders to obtain estimate quotes we can use for fundraising goals - Nov - Dec 23

  • Create a video to explain why there is a need for skatepark in Swanage to help attract funding - ASAP

  • Create a fundraising plan (we imagine this will start with crowdfunding in our community that we can ask bigger orgs to match) Nov - Dec 23

  • SPDT setup TBC (pending signature on docs) 

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