20 Go Mad in Dorset!

Spring is in the air, new skate parks are being built and we have many vehicles to choose from. Hmmn, smells like a road trip.

Now these road trips are always fun due to the people on them and of course the places to shred and knowing the South Coast has had not one but 2 pours of fresh crete laid on it’s mud over the last month or 2, we decided to hit the M3 from London and make a day of it.

Bournemouth has had Slade’s Farm to skate in the past. It has a concrete snake run and can be fun, but it is now 2006 and this area needed some fresh curves to keep up with the times.

Our first stop was Verwood Bowl that you can find in Potterne Park (from London take the the M3, then the M27, then the A31.

This park was built by Gravity Parks and has a total length of 16 metres with a width of 11 metres and although it’s tight, it was the most fun to skate as soon as we got there. Marc Churchill, Vans shoe rider and one of Gravity Parks main crete grafters met us up there with all the locals who ripped that place apart on it’s opening ceremony.

Those worthy of a mention are Greg Nowik, a Crossfire Xmas Jam regular and arguably Southampton’s highest frequent flyer. Greg looked in good shape and although this was the first bowl he had skated properly, he annihilated it with massive lien airs, crail slides, backside airs and his bolt standard double kick flip fakies.

Globe Shoes rider Ged Curran ripped this little bowl all afternoon with long ass 50-50’s down the escalator and trademark blunt fakies, blunt flips to fakie, frontside blunts in the deeper end (5ft) by the dozen. Then Marc himself knew every line in that place due to his hands getting dirty in the build so all eyes were on him as he swung in corner smiths, fat fs ollies over the 25 degree hip and fakie crooks in the same area. His local buddy Ross has a mean hardflip nosestall on him to, check the pic of the Dekline rider in the white top and pink laces below.

But you don’t take to the road with the Death Squad and not see some action, and it was not long before Horsey managed to beanplant fakie this bowl with ease whilst Mark Nicolson (with freshly cut hair making him more of an Axl Rose lookalike) tried his best to fingerflip the hip, but mainly gave this bowl a damn good fucking rinsing it deserved.

With Martin Herrick in cruise control a la Jeff Grosso, Steak with his wonderful stalefishes and Boots with his tech skills, it was a day to remember for all the right reasons. This Verwood Bowl set up will expand with another bowl and a street course next to it over the summer, so expect more about this little retreat soon as the concrete was smooth, fast and the surroundings were fresh.

So fresh in fact that even the future Extreme Channel presenter (can’t wait to send fan mail into that!) Dan Cates was in a good mood after all of that stuff going down, so with hip hop on the stereo to replace Pig Destroyer, we headed back onto the A31 towards Bournemouth, then took a left off to Christchurch and it’s the 3rd exit off called Kings Park and head for the football ground signs.

Kings Park in Bournemouth is only 20 mins drive away from Verwood meaning you would be stupid not to run a day trip to both this summer if you are from outta town. This only opened on March 18th and with it’s much bigger size and weight, it made for a killer session before the sun went down.

This park was built by Bendcrete and has a small street area with ledges, rails and tight banks, a reservoir with a funbox in the middle which leads into a fun-as-fuck 4ft mini ramp channel that leads right into an 8ft bowl with a vert extension.

The Bendcrete crew are the same people that built our local bowl at Meanwhile Gardens but this new one in Dorset is much bigger than the latter and although it is fun to skate, it still comes with a slightly sketchy finish on the platforms and the coping is not set into the concrete as perfectly as it could have been. ie they have stuff to learn from people like Dreamland and considering we have skated lots of their parks, they are by far still the best concrete skateparks we have come up against.

But saying that, the overall park is fun with great lines once you remove the chav kids with snotty green noses and heroin addictions at 12, but what do you expect being built near what looked like a Leisure Centre or Football Ground? This has its advantages though as you are less likely to be mugged here than in the middle of an estate where most skate parks are being dumped thesedays! The overall feel of the park is fantastic and the session ripped open leaving local kids stoked! This is the sort of park that needs a credible annual event.

Herrick was first to handplant the vert extension, Horsey bonelessed into the main bowl form the extension! Fuck yeah! Camo Pete, Steak and I found that the faster you go around this place, the more fun it is once you remove the kids in the way on roller skates! Zorlac decided that his trademark feeble grind had to be left on the big bowl before we split and as that was going down, Steak was warming up the vert extension with a nose pick for Styley’s photographic desires. The departure of Rayman, Punk Darryl and the Gormster left a hole for people to view the skills of new Death recruit – Boots, to destroy the overly steep handrail with a kickflip front boardslide and Horsey got the last bit of action before the sun went down with a kickflip over the fucking lot, stairs and all.

So all in all, Bournemouth rocks, so stop reading this, turn off your computer and go skating you fat bastard!

Chuck Bangers

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