Flashback Friday – The Birthplace of British Skateboarding
The Undercroft of the Southbank Centre has been the heart of London Skateboarding for the past 40 years. With a constant battle between the building’s owners and skateboarders, we’re delving into a bit of history about the famous skatepark.
The undercroft skateboarding area was an unused space appropriated as a cultural and recreational facility within the South Bank complex that has been used consistently for the last 40 years. Skateboarders initially adopted the area but it quickly became used my BMXers, inline skaters, graffiti artists and many other creatives like street dancers, musicians, videographers and more.
The space is unique as it grew organically into what is now widely recognised as the home of British skateboarding. Our weather can make outdoor skating difficult however the undercroft space provided the perfect environment for skating as it was covered from the rain, its smooth and flat with features like ramps, stairs and ledges making a dream skate spot with an amazing view.
In late 2003 the Southbank Centre reduced the skate area by two thirds without consulting any users of the undercroft space and destroyed the small banks and driveway ramp that was in that area, this area was then used as extra storage space. However, recently there has been news that the famous skatepark may be getting an upgrade, we are all anticipating further information on what renovations will be made.
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