Photo by Styley: Louie Barletta, drinks nectar on the Blob in 2006.
Whatever country you are viewing this from, there’s a very good chance that you would have seen footage or photos of Bloblands over the years. The infamous volcanic blob that sits in the heart of South London’s suburbs has attracted skaters from far and wide, more than likely to be followed by another session at the Crystal Palace banks not too far away.
It has come to our attention this week that locals have started petitioning for Bloblands to get a makeover. An injection of council funding is heading to Norwood Park with the intention of updating the existing paddling pool area. Lambeth council has been awarded £60,000 from the Marathon Fund charity, of which the council will have to contribute £15,000 in match funding. Consultation will take place once a design has been formulated.
There are two concerns here. Will £75,000 be enough for a decent update to this area, and secondly, will the infamous Blob be kept in the final designs? Its heritage, like the Gap at Meanwhile, the Sausage at Stockwell is too legendary to destroy and replace with some cheap ledges or yet another London bowl. Before that is decided though, Norwood Park Skatepark Association are tackling the task of wininng over the opposition in the consultation process and that’s where your support from here can start the process. Like their Facebook page today and get involved in this.
The chances are, the Blob will exist in the new plans and the area will be a smoother ride than the last time your urethane was left all over the rough crete down there, but there’s something special about this place that makes it a mission to skate and that is exactly what makes it attractive to most.
Leave your views about Bloblands here, get involved and spread the word.
Information regarding redevelopment taking place at Kennington Skatepark in Lambeth this month has come to light this morning. This legendary London spot built back in 1978 is part of London’s prestigious skateboard history. It has seen sessions throughout the 80’s, 90’s and noughties that will never be forgotten. In fact if I think of Stockwell from the very first times I skated here, the likes of American Steve Wiltshire, Ged Wells, Ricky, Crispin, Aaron Bleasdale, Reuben Goodyear, Wurzel and many other names spring to mind as people who ripped this place apart and used every line in there. It also had a terrible reputation in the late 80s for skaters getting their teeth smashed out with baseball bats. We still went there every weekend though before skating up to Stockwell, undeterred.
Before you jump the gun and think that the park is being knocked down and rebuilt though, it doesn’t seem to be the case. A shoe brand looks to be behind fixing the cracks and adding some welcome features this summer, so watch this space to see if and when this gets done. This image below says it will re-open in May but the weather over the last few weeks may be stopping the work. Who knows. This post has been written solely on the basis of viewing this image, so we do not know for sure if this has even come to fruition or how much work will go into it. Time will tell though but if this is happening, well done to all involved.
Let us know your thoughts on this in the comments below and if you have stories of skating this park over the years, share them with us and send them in.
Also, take in this hand drawn Smell of Death flyer (found on MAS) that was made for a jam at Kennington’s banks. These events were arranged by the pipe-smoking US punk, Steve Wilshire back in the 80’s when skateboarding was owned by skateboarders. These events single-handedly inspired Crossfire to launch and roll out events for the London skate scene. Take in the DIY aspect and weep.