Saturday 17th September heralded the official opening of the groundbreaking new GBH Ramps skatepark in St Neots, Cambridgeshire, England. The revolutionary flagship skatepark is the proud owner of the world’s first massive bowled mini ramp, with 6m wide spine and volcano sections fashioned completely out of steel. Christened â€˜The Playboy’ this monster structure gives props to the engineering and craftsmanship of the GBH design & installation crew, who have created an immense, seam free curved bowl structure, so smooth it’s obscene. All this has been made possible by the company’s massive investment into new engineering technology and the future of Skate and BMX.
The story of the St Neots Skatepark has been 5 years in the making, starting when the local skaters were given no choice but to renovate their existing wooden ramps after constant acts of vandalism transformed their dream park into a nightmare. Ironically, the morning of the farewell party for the park dawned with news of a final arson attack which spelt the demise of the much loved skatepark.
The proactive skaters formed the New Ramp Group (NRG) and embarked on extensive research by visiting installations by a variety of skatepark manufacturers â€˜to try before they buy.’ Dan Keen, skater and chairman of the NRG, admits it was an arduous task but someone had to do it. With the process of elimination wrapped up, GBH Ramps came out as favourite to build.
GBH Project Manager, Russell Holbert, drew upon his own expertise, both as a skater and park designer, during in-depth collaborations with NRG on every aspect of the scheme. The St Neots super park enjoys an ultra wide 1800 spine volcano mini ramp complex with a comprehensive competition spec street course featuring a 2100 roll in and extended flatbank with kicker. The bowled mini ramp with 6m wide spine and escalator is the icing on this sweet cake, as commented by up and coming skater, Ross Forknall, at the opening, â€˜This I could eat and it would fill me up.’
The innovative design sets new standards within the skatepark industry, separating the men from the boys in the world of skatepark builders. There are already plans to extend the park with the addition of an enormous vert ramp and a wall ride. There’s no doubt that St Neots boasts the ultimate GBH Skatepark.
Special thanks go out to Rob Murray, Director of the St Neots Crime Prevention Panel, Huntingdon District Council, Living Spaces who were amongst the many funders who supported this project with hard work and cash.