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Portsmouth’s first indoor skatepark and community hub opens

December 20, 2022

It was a dream in the making since he was a teenager but after years of planning and many obstacles overcome, Jacob Stanley was proud to have finally opened the city’s first indoor skatepark.  The Pitt Street Skatepark, located at the former Commercial Road Sainsbury’s north of the city centre, threw open its Clarence Street doors to the new community hub. The large park boasts ramps, rails and ledges with enough variations to hold competitions alongside day-to-day use. There is also a cafe, restaurant, skate shop and bar on site with seating areas to safely watch the action.

Portsmouth City Council bought the former Sainsbury’s building as part of its regeneration plans and  let the building to the Pitt Street Skatepark to support this exciting community project.

Skateboarder and founder of Pitt Street Skatepark Jacob, 33, said he first had the idea to have a skatepark when he was aged 15 and admitted he was ‘proud’ to have finally achieved his dream.

‘I’ve been working for this moment for half my life. It’s a mixture of emotions…when you’ve worked for so long and the day finally comes it’s hard to describe but I feel more chilled than I thought I would be,’ he said.

‘This has taken over our lives…this is my full-time job now. There’s good pressure – I want to do it properly.

‘We’ve always needed an indoor skatepark in the city. There’s never been one for the public. It’s a nice size…people can come and enjoy honing their skills and learning new stuff. We want it to be a community hub that inspires people. Skateboarding can be scary at first but once you’ve overcome that it is the best.

‘It’s been five years in the planning and there have been many obstacles. We’re proud we’ve finally done it.’

Councillor Steve Pitt, Cabinet Member for Culture, Leisure, and Economic Development at Portsmouth City Council  said:

‘We needed to find a use for this site and repurpose it. We decided to do a skatepark and after looking for quite a while when this site came up it was the obvious thing to do with it.

‘You need big space so it made perfect sense. So we’ve been involved supporting wherever we can with bits of money.’

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