MEMBERS of a project which led to the creation of a skatepark and BMX track in Monmouth have been ‘overwhelmed by the kindness’ of local businesses from Abergavenny and Monmouth who have completed much-needed improvement works free of charge.

Monmouth Off Street Project, the organisation which spearheaded the skatepark’s design and construction in 2015, has been supported by local companies to solve drainage issues at the site on Rockfield Road in the town centre.

In the six years since the skatepark opened, the grass and gravel ground at the site has suffered during wet weather, with puddles building on the gravel and the grassed areas turning to mud, which eventually made its way onto the skatepark itself on the wheels of bikes and skateboards, due to insufficient drainage in the area.

The project has been unable to fundraise for the improvements during the pandemic, and the group say they have been ‘very fortunate’ to have local businesses step up and provide goods, materials and labour to contribute to the upkeep of the facility in recent weeks.

Alun Griffiths Civil Engineering, which is based in Llanfoist, came to the rescue after setting up a site compound in the car park next to the skatepark to complete separate works in the town.

Project director Shirley Hughes contacted the company’s public liaison officer, Georgie Davies, and the company offered to replace the drains and surface the area with tarmac free of charge.

Monmouth company Chilli Pepper Signs have also donated a new ‘Monmouth Off Street Project’ sign for the skatepark, which has now been installed on the side of a ramp, to replace an older sign which had become tattered.

In recent weeks, the facility had been subjected to ‘an act of mindless vandalism’ with graffiti spray-painted all over bins and benches at the site, but the situation was quickly dealt with by Wayne from Monmouth Exterior Cleaning.

Project director Shirley Hughes said: “We are overwhelmed by the kindness of local companies who are supporting our facility, which is the only community run Skatepark in Monmouthshire.

“During the Covid-19 pandemic, we have been unable to raise any funds, but the kindness shown by these local businesses have helped no end to continue to make the Skatepark a facility that all young people and families can attend and enjoy”.

The project to build the skatepark in 2015 came about thanks to input from over 60 young people, local adults including parents, Monmouthshire County Council, Monmouth Town Council, the Rotary Club of Monmouth, local businesses, local police and various other agencies.

The £180,000 project was funded in part by a Ministry of Defence Community Covenant grant as well as fundraising events organised by the project and various other sources.