Blog - Southsea Skatepark's 40th Anniversary

Southsea Skatepark's 40th Anniversary

28.6.18

A few weeks ago our very own Southsea Skatepark saw it's 40th anniversary, with celebrations taking place throughout the weekend of the 16th and 17th of June. There was a series of comps running over the two day event, with the Shut Up and Skate vert contest, Snake Run slalom sessions, a Bored of Southsea game of S.K.A.T.E, Strong Island miniramp contest and best trick jams. John Nicholas and Dread City Skates set up an old school memorabilia display that featured loads of incredible shots from the skateparks golden era, with local legends like Mark Abrook, Barry Abrook, Gary Lee and Sue Hazel. As well as a whole host of visiting US pros, vintage boards, magazines and equipment. 

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For those who don't know Southsea Skatepark is one of the oldest surviving skateparks in the country, starting as a rollerskating rink under the bandstand in the 1930's. Then as a result of the skateboarding craze hitting the UK seventies the local authorities added a series of bowls, moguls and a snake run and officially opened it's doors in June 1978. 

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Over Southsea's four decades in existance the park has hosted some of the worlds most iconic and best skaters, as well as legendary tours and competitions. Like the epic Bones Brigade tours and Shut Up and Skate competitions of the late eighties and early nineties, with names such as Tony Hawk, Steve Cabellero, Lance Mountain, Mark Gonzales, John Cardiel, Tommy Guerrero, Jeff Grosso, Ed Templeton, Tom Penny and many more having visited the park over the years.

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Also adding to the festivities was the re-opening of the Spoon Bowl which was one of the skateparks original features, but had additions made to it back in 1990 that have since fallen in to disrepair and deemed it unuseable. That was until locals Sam Tuffnell and Dan Dyer took on the incredible task of returning the bowl to it's original form, with only a handful of old photos to work from and all done in their spare time. See more about The Duffnell Project here. Good work lads.

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Despite the threat of rain by the end of Sunday all of the events went off and smashed it, especially the Shut Up and Skate vert series with a great turn out in all groups, and some incredible skating from the likes of Alex Griffiths, Oakley Liddell, Jake Anderson, Greg Nowik, Jossi Korhonnen, Noddy Rands and our own Jak Tonge. See all official results here

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The Bored of Southsea game of S.K.A.T.E saw a win for Matt Treese, with Carlo Anderson and Callum Kenny came in runners up. And in the Strong Island miniramp comp local boys Matt Grey and Kyle Fletcher were amongst the winners that walked away with the booty.

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 All the skaters that entered events really smashed it, and it was great to see all the people that came down to spectate and show support. We were really stoked to be part of the celebrations, and very proud to see that Southsea Skatepark is still an important part of UK skateboarding four decades after it first opened. 

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 Photographs courtesy of Paul Gonella and Paul Scott

 

 

 

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