Words: James Brewer
Photography: Alan Hickenbottom
Walsall, a town made famous by Noddy Holder with his band Slade. Well, ok, maybe not famous but still. A town that’s home to… well, ok, not much. But don’t be put off as it’s now the host of yet another one of Maverick’s fine skateparks thanks to dedicated campaigns by the local scene and a lot of co-operation from the local council.
After hearing such good words about it I decided the tempation to go was too much for me to take and I went down there on a cold Autumnul Saturday morning.
The park is located just a 5 minute drive from Junction 10 of the M6 at Walsall’s ‘Arbouritum’, which gives a nice backdrop to your skate. On top of that with a ‘pitch and putt’ just around the corner and the infamous ‘Walsall Illuminations’ about to start this could be well worth the day trip!
It was built for around the £100,000 mark and is a testament to what can be done with a small space and budget. With quirky bumps and ledges, this park, although only open for just over a week, has become a hit with the surrounding Black Country and Birmingham scenes. If you fancy getting tech then you’ve got it, with perfect manual pads that double up as a miniature MK esque ‘T block’. Just watched the latest Anti Hero edit but can’t quite skate tranny that well?! Then Walsall’s also got a brilliant 3 ft quarter that is great for training up your Tony Trujillo skills!
Like all new parks, it is currently real busy, the usual Henley’s t-shirt crews are all down thinking they’re doing jumps on Argos’s finest BMX. On top of that the current wave of kids on scooters has hit it hard too, but these are all things I think we have to expect when a place like this is built. Regardless, The Black Country is quite fortunate to find itself in a wealthy position when it comes to outdoor parks. With Tamworth, Wednesfield, Smithswood and now Walsall all within a half hours drive from each other it’s making the Midlands a great place to skate.
Maverick are hosting an opening day at the park on Saturday November 13th at 12:00pm. London rippers and all-round nice guys Chris Oliver and Daryl Dominguez will be there to get gnarly for everyone; definitely one not to miss!
In between dodging BMX’s and getting my shin smashed in by a skateboard I managed to film a short edit with a few locals. Check it out and I hope to see you there soon!
Here’s the opening jam video too.