Bristol City Centre Skateboarders have been pushed out of the space they use in the centre whilst more skate stoppers are installed
A row has erupted in Bristol over the use of skate stops being installed in an area of the city centre.
The area of pedestrianised land which features the Cenotaph – directly in front of Electricity House – is where the Bristol skateboarding community migrated to from College Green.
Since then, the numbers have swelled in the larger area, with the community being largely self-policing and careful to avoid use of the Cenotaph.
Bristol City Council has already installed skate stoppers on street furniture in the location to discourage its use by skateboarders. But, this week, a large area of the space was sectioned off, with the installation of more skate stoppers across the pedestrianised area.
As well as stopping skateboards, the protruding strips are also acting as a trip hazard, with members of the public already stating that they have tripped over them.
We’ve found a Bristol City Council contract estimated to be worth £15,000 awarded to Scribble Stone, for the new Skate Strips surrounding the Cenotaph area.
The cost of the project has not proved popular with Bristol residents. Resident Joanna Booth called the work ‘disgraceful’ saying:
‘I cannot believe this. They are cutting £30,000 from libraries and paying £15,000 for these trip hazards and anti-skating stoppers?’
I cannot believe this. They are cutting £30,000 from libraries and paying £15,000 for these trip hazards and anti-skating stoppers?— Joanna Booth (@stillawake) June 19, 2021
It's disgraceful. https://t.co/KLSE3ge47r
Disabled People’s Organisation Wecil, branded the skate stoppers a trip hazard and asked if the council had conducted an access audit.
We understand what ?@BristolCouncil? is trying to stop but these seem like an incredible trip hazard for many, especially those with a visual impairment. Have you conducted an access audit? Do you need support? https://t.co/WkJ2hXuUUj— WECIL Bristol (@WECILBristol) June 19, 2021
A report accompanying the City Centre Development which went to Cabinet on Tuesday 14 July 2020, stated then that there were ‘concerns about creating spaces for skateboarders’.
Since the area of land near the Cenotaph has been barricaded, skaters have moved towards the non-functioning fountains opposite the Bristol Hippodrome instead.