On 10th October 2010 parish councillor, Suresh Gattapur is doing a walk for BMX park Swindon. He intends to walk 26.1 miles around Swindon. It’s his aim to raise awareness and achieve funding for local youth engagement. That’s quite a walk – he could do it with my guide book in his back pocket! 😉 Suresh does have a copy.

Suresh hopes to raise £5,000 out of an estimated budget of £70,000 to £90,000 to build a BMX track in Westlea, in Swindon. It’s Suresh’s belief that championing youth projects is a transformative approach that can encourage urban youth engagement in local communities.

Parish councillor, Suresh Gattapur

If you’d like to support Suresh in his WALK FOR BMX PARK SWINDON to Swindon the Go-Fund me link is here.


Parks and Public Spaces

Says Suresh: Parks and public spaces are often built with small children and adults in mind. There’s often an emphasis on playgrounds for the children and benches for the adults watching them.

On the other hand, some public spaces are simply devoid of activity or amenities. This is fine for picnicking or maybe playing ball but offers little else for young people. And they use public spaces as much as anyone else. If not more.

Exclusion of young people from place making

And yet, too often young people, or young adults between the ages of 13 to 21, are not included in the process of place making. But, with active engagement in youth-friendly spaces, young people can feel like they have investment in their community. And from that they can develop a strong sense of ownership in these places.

I believe identifying the interests of local young people, or issues in the community around young people is a key part of building a relationship with them. I have myself conducted extensive research on youth engagement and their interests. I’ve identified the demand and need for a solid BMX track and how it would be a significant contributing factor to positive youth engagement.

In a world of virtual gaming platforms, bike parks are fun, challenging, and healthy places for young people to get their exercise in. As bike parks get built and maintained then riders frequent the parks on a regular basis.

Compared to more traditional parks and playgrounds, bike parks offer an incredible value vs the budget spent on them.

Well built facilities also have the potential to become tourist draws. Attracting events leads to benefits to the local economy. People spend money locally on amenities, food, repairs and new equipment.

It’s one thing to build a bike park. But a bike park helps build something larger for a community. It helps build healthy, happy, outdoor lifestyle choices.


If you’d like to support Suresh in his WALK FOR BMX PARK SWINDON to Swindon the Go-Fund me link is here.

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