Is Rush Skate Park definitely moving to Stratford Park? Below is an exchange recently featured in the SNJ’s letters section where a reader calls on the council to explain what’s going on - and gets a reply.

WHILST SDC is to be applauded for its support for the creation of the wonderful Rush Skate Park at Brimscombe Port, I was very surprised to read in SDC leader Doina Cornell’s recent ‘News from Stroud District Labour’, that, ‘the council is helping the skate board park move to Stratford Park’.

I emailed Cllr Cornell over a month ago to ask her who in SDC had made the decision?

And how the decision had been reached?

I asked: What were, as she saw them, the advantages and disadvantages of such a large industrial type building in our green Stratford Park?

What alternative sites were there for such a world class facility?

Who has been consulted and what has been the process with civil society organisations?

How does this plan fit in with the overall plan for Stratford Park or, lacking such a process, will this be another Sub Rooms type fiasco?

She has not replied yet.

However, she could choose to brief us all with the rationale and plans in the SNJ so we are in the picture.

Lets not rush into this!

Martin Large


I AM writing to respond to the letter from Martin Large which was published on August 22, regarding Rush Skate Park.

I have written to Martin and apologised for not having responded earlier, I get hundreds of emails and unfortunately I do sometimes miss one.

On April 12, 2018, district councillors made a decision to offer a lease in Stratford Park to Rush Skate Park, on two conditions, that planning permission would have to be granted, and secondly, finance raised to complete the project.

The background to the decision was reported in the SNJ in November 2016: ‘Uncertainty over future of world-class Rush Skatepark’.

Rush was granted a 10 year lease at Brimscombe Port in 2013 with the knowledge that when the regeneration of the port for housing began, they would have to move.

As the SNJ reported, there was growing public concern that Rush would be forced out with nowhere else to go.

It was clear that SDC had to do something to help or would have been criticised for losing what has become such a successful recreational and sporting facility.

For the past two years Rush has been looking for alternative sites, locally, and in Swindon, Birmingham and Tewkesbury – some 40 sites have been considered, mostly brownfield, but none proved suitable.

SDC officers have been working through this time to help. The owners and customers of Rush were always very keen to keep Rush here in the district. The proposal to consider Stratford Park therefore came at the end of a long process, and was considered the last possible option, otherwise the skate park would either leave the district, or cease operations.

Before the April decision, councillors spent time at Rush park and questioned and debated all the details and implications of the decision.

Rush also conducted its own consultations, for example with the town council.

I also talked to users of Rush and began to understand the beneficial impact it had on their lives, for example, in keeping young people off the streets, and taking up physical activity they otherwise would not have bothered with.

Martin’s questions were regarding consultation - as yet the planning application has not been submitted, so there will be plenty of opportunities for local people to contribute to the process.

The granting of planning permission will be subject to the usual stringent legal and planning requirements, including full public consultation.

Alongside this, SDC has committed to creating an overall strategy for the whole of Stratford Park, to better manage this complex site and to ensure the preservation and enhancement of the richness and complexity of what it offers to so many people, from its green spaces to its sporting facilities.

Cllr Doina Cornell

Labour & Coop District Councillor for Dursley