Skate park lights ‘will stop us being spooked’

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SKATERS in Berkhamsted will be celebrating after plans to install lighting at Canal Fields were given the green light.

Under the scheme agreed by Dacorum Borough Council’s development control committee two floodlights will be mounted on a 6ft column and switched on from dusk to 10pm each day.

Councillors agreed the plans after hearing pleas from members of Berkhamsted Youth Town Council.

Kirsty Robertson told the meeting: “By installing the lighting column we hope to improve the feelings of safety to users of the skate park and passers-by, who can often be spooked.”

Jak Chowdhary said: “The skate park since it opened in 2006 has been a huge success.

“We feel such a wonderful sports facility should be able to be used later in the evening.

“We feel as a youth town council the lighting will be appreciated by skaters and the wider community.”

The youth town council has to find funding of £3,640 to instal the floodlights and hopes to have the work done by the end of September.

A report to councillors says: “A survey carried out by Berkhamsted Youth Town Council confirmed that while the incidence of anti-social behaviour and crime within the vicinity of the skateboard park is low, there are concerns regarding the fear of crime during the hours of darkness.

“The proposal is to address this issue and create more 
opportunities to encourage the skateboard park’s use at night. The provision of an additional CCTV camera within the locality is not a feasible option.”

Concerns have been expressed about light pollution but last year it emerged the skate park was being used by teenage drugtakers and a survey found youngsters were too afraid to use it.