Campaign for Bourne skatepark on Abbey Lawn given October funding deadline by Sport England
A long-running campaign to build a skatepark in Bourne has reached a crucial crossroads after receiving a deadline from a major donor.
Sport England has told Bourne Dimension Skatepark group, which is leading the plans, that their £100,000 grant will be withdrawn if all of the funds for the project are not in place by October 1.
Supporters have so far raised £183,000 towards the total £327,000 cost, but the group remains hopeful they can bridge the £144,000 shortfall.
The new deadline has prompted the group to redouble their efforts with a raft of new grant applications sent out. Results are expected within the next month.
Alternatively plans would have to be scaled down to reduce the overall costs.
"We do have fingers in a lot of pies after various meetings with different organisations just recently and things are moving forward," said project founder Nelly Jacobs.
"Once we know how much money we have, the design can be altered accordingly.
"Ideally we would rather leave the project as it is, rather than be amended."
Nelly first explored the idea of a skatepark back in 2002, and a new committee was set up10 years ago.
The group, which is working with Skateboard England, want to lease land at the Abbey Lawn from Bourne United Charities.
However, efforts to raise funds were badly hit by the pandemic as businesses were forced to keep a tighter rein on spending.
As well as the Sport England money, the project has pledges of £25,000 from Bourne and District Round Table, £25,000 from the Pocket Park Plus Scheme of the Ministry of Housing, £10,000 from South Kesteven District Council's community fund, and £4,000 from Warners Midlands.
The idea has received renewed backing from Grantham and Stamford MP Gareth Davies, SKDC, Bourne United Charities Trustees and Bourne Town Council.
"The majority of these representatives feel strongly the project needs to come to fruition and are helping us to find additional monies," Nelly added. "We are very grateful for their support.
"The skatepark is something the youth of the town will definitely benefit from because they don't really have anywhere they can go which is free of charge.
"Our main aim throughout has been to provide something where they won't need money."
To make a donation, visit www.paypal.com/gb/fundraiser/charity/3232176 and to find out more about the project, go to www.dimensionskatepark.org.uk