|(Posted 9/12/2002) |
Kids 'need more safe places to go'
Sep 12 2002 *
By Richard Crowe
A CROWN Wood grandmother wants to rally residents in an attempt to get
the borough council to do more to provide safe leisure facilities for
Jenny Seymour believes parents should not be forced to curtail the
freedom of their kids despite a summer which saw the rape of a
12-year-old girl in Crown Wood.
Jenny, 53, of Dalcross, also believes a lack of decent leisure facilities
leads to boredom among children, provoking petty crime and dis-order.
She told the Bracknell News: "As a grandmother I've seen how bored kids
get, especially those aged 10-15 and particularly during school holidays.
"Bracknell seems to lack a decent place where they can congregate without
causing trouble. Look at the old skateboard park at Long Hill. Because it's
so far out, unsupervised and surrounded by undergrowth it would be a
prime spot for abductors, making it understandable why so many parents
don't like their kids going there.
"Skateboarding seems to be a popular hobby among kids and relatively
cheap, so why can't someone open a covered skatepark *, maybe at
Bracknell Sports Centre? Even if kids were charged a small fee to use it,
this could bring in a small revenue."
Despite the sad events of the last few weeks she does not believe parents
should be forced to wrap their children in cotton wool.
"It's been a horrid summer for children with the Holly and Jessica tragedy
and the horrific rape of the 12-year-old girl, but we can't get to the point
where children's freedom is completely restricted," she said.
Jenny has written to Bracknell entrepreneur John Nike * asking whether he
would donate money towards new facilities and is awaiting a reply. She
advises parents with similar concerns to write to Mark Devon, head of
recreation and amenities at Bracknell Forest Borough Council.
Phil Dodds, manager of Bracknell Sport and Leisure Centre, was dubious
about plans for a skatepark and said: "If one was opened in the future
how many kids would use it? Even if a small fee was charged we'd still
have to pay someone to supervise it."
A council spokesman confirmed there were no plans to build a covered
skateboard ramp * at Bracknell Sport and Leisure Centre.
This article was originally found at
http://icberkshire.icnetwork.co.uk/0100news/ 0200berkshireheadlines/page.cfm?objectid=12193147 &method=full&siteid=50102
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