Boy’s delight as skate park funding and location agreed

Charlie Harford and his friend, Jazz Hardy, campaigned for a skate park in Lancing SUS-161204-170557001
Charlie Harford and his friend, Jazz Hardy, campaigned for a skate park in Lancing SUS-161204-170557001

A boy and his friend’s wish for a skate park in Lancing is a reality after planning permission and funding was secured.

Jazz Hardy, 12, and Charlie Harford, 14, spent months campaigning for the facility, which will be delivered by Lancing Parish Council on Beach Green.

Adur District Council granted planning permission on Monday, a week after senior councillors approved up to £100,000 of funding.

Jazz, of Monks Close, said: “I am really happy that it is actually happening. It is weird how a little idea has gone all this way.

“It is really exciting and I can’t wait for it to be built.”

The duo dreamed up the idea last year and Jazz asked his mum, Denise, if they could contact the council.

They contacted East Worthing and Shoreham MP Tim Loughton, who directed them to the parish council.

The parish – led by chairman James Butcher – has pursued the issue ever since.

Planning permission to build the skate park near SE Tyres was agreed in January but residents were opposed to the location.

After a public meeting, an alternative site – next to the children’s playground – was identified.

That site was approved by the district council’s planning committee.

Mr Butcher said: “We’re now within touching distance of delivering yet another major project on Lancing Beach Green.

“Building this skate park is especially close to my heart, as the youngest parish chair in the country when elected, our need to govern for all ages is always in the forefront of my mind and I am looking forward to us doing just that.

“We will now pull out all the stops to finalise the details and build the skate park for the end of the summer season. “

The funding was secured through the legal agreement related to the building of Brighton and Hove Albion’s training ground – reserved for sport and leisure projects.

Mr Butcher said those involved should be ‘incredibly proud’ of their achievement.

Jazz’s dad, Trevor, said: “We are immensely proud. They have done superbly and have been so committed and driven.

“We never expected it to get this far. I am very pleased with what the council has done.”