Aboyne skate park project needs more hands on decks

Possible design: A skate park in Aboyne could resemble this technical drawing
Possible design: A skate park in Aboyne could resemble this technical drawing

The latest committee fighting for a skate park in Aboyne have insisted that more volunteers are needed if the project is to progress.

Over the past decade, various committees have come together as the Aboyne Wheelers to try and get a skate park for Aboyne.

Woodland by the MUGA: Potential site of Aboyne Skatepark

Woodland by the MUGA: Potential site of Aboyne Skatepark

At last week’s public meeting to gauge how much support the project had, the probable location for the park on the edge of the Ladywood by the MUGA was revealed by the latest committee, alongside a drawing of what the park might look like.

Tom Duberne, a skate park-enthusiast who has been a regular contributor to the latest incarnation of the Aboyne Wheelers, constructed the drawing.

He said: “We do not want to just destroy some woodland and put in a load of concrete, we want to make it work with it.

“We could leave some trees in the middle, and I’ve drawn in a snake run based on the hills around Aboyne that you can actually see from the site.”

The drawing was well received by the numerous youngsters in attendance.

One lady, who had brought her son and his friend along from Ballater to the meeting, said: “I’ve come tonight because one of my boys noticed this event on Facebook.

“A lot of young boys in Ballater are quite frustrated by the lack of things to do, but we would be willing to come to Aboyne to use facilities like this.”

Another lady added: “I would like to see something that’s very inclusive. One of the things that’s worked well at the bike park is seeing two-year-olds up to teenagers all playing together.

“If there was enough of a range of abilities catered for, that would be fantastic.”

Though there were no voices of outright objection present at the meeting, alternative points of view were put forward.

A lady who lives near the Ladywood site said: “I do not have a counter-view of having a skate park, but I desperately feel that something needs doing with the litter situation in that area, and this would bring more people with their litter.

“That being said, I’m impressed with what I’ve heard and I’m not totally opposed to it, but I suppose it is that thing of ‘not in my back garden’.”

Steve Gardyne, Chair of the Aboyne Wheelers, said: “It’s good to have some people begin to engage in the conversation. This is not a demonic force, it’s a conversation about working with the community to make something good happen for the young people in the area.

“Ultimately, the funding for the project is time-sensitive, so if we want this to happen we need to get a move on.”

The funding is currently held by Mid Deeside Limited, and amounts to around £30,000 - it is a combination of money left in a gentleman’s will “to be used for the youth of Aboyne”, and money an earlier committee of the Aboyne Wheelers fund-raised for the project.

Gardyne added: “There’s a lot of people who share our view and support us, but we need more people to get involved, especially on the fund-raising side. It’s a lot of work to try to make this happen.

“We all work full-time jobs and long hours, and as this project goes to its next stages it will go beyond our bandwidths.”

In attendance at the meeting were councillors Katrina Farquhar and Geva Blackett.

Cllr Farquhar said: “It’s been a very positive meeting and the new group seems to have done a lot of research already, and I think it’s something the community will support.”

Cllr Blackett added: “It’s been a very interesting discussion to see the level of support from this focus group.

“I look forward to seeing the conversation with the community develop and perhaps even get to the stage of a planning application.”

Anyone wanting to get involved with the Aboyne Wheelers should visit their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/AboyneWheelers