VIDEO: West Marsh Parkour project will soon be a flipping reality
PARKOUR lovers will be running free before long thanks to a flipping fantastic £57,000 facility to be built on the West Marsh.
Builders will start work on a new training park at the Duke Of York Gardens in the first two weeks of next month, which will allow local young people to take their skills to the next level.
As revealed last week, the park will include concrete obstacles, railings, wooden posts – and all on rubber matting with woodchip to make training safer.
It will be funded by £40,000 from not-for-profit funding scheme Waste Recycling Environmental Limited (WREN); £10,000 from Humberside Police and £7,000 from North East Lincolnshire Council.
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When the project is complete, Team Reality – a group of Parkour enthusiasts who run coaching sessions – have agreed to run two free sessions every week.
Team Reality managing Director Neil Hutson, 22, said: "We have actually designed the facility so it is based on our needs and will revolutionise the way that people from this area train.
"Young people train inside at the moment but Parkour is designed to be an outside sport so we can get back to its roots."
Jake Harris, 21, also a Team Reality coach, said: "There is only so much you can teach people indoors but this will allow us to take the people we coach to the next level."
Parkour, or "free-running", is the newest urban sport to sweep Europe – getting from one point to the next as fast as possible, tackling obstacles as you go.
Yet until now, young people of Grimsby and Cleethorpes have had to make do with public benches, railings and whatever else they can find to train on.
Mr Hutson said that people often call the police when they are training, mistakenly thinking that they are vandalising property and endangering themselves.
However, Adam Johnston, NELC's health promotion programme co-ordinator for sport and physical activity for the specialist health promotion service, hopes this will change the public perception.
He said: "It will actually reduce antisocial behaviour by giving people somewhere to train in a safe environment, engaging in a positive activity.
"They are not vandals and it is not in their interest to break the equipment that they train on, but the new facility is robust and built to last.
"Team Reality are a group of young people who have been doing their sport for seven years and engage with 150 to 200 young people a month as positive role models."
Mr Hutson added: "Often people call the police and we get moved on, even though we are not doing anything else.
"Now we have a purpose-built facility it means that those young people who see videos on Youtube will have somewhere safe to learn, with proper training, rather than trying it out with no knowledge and potentially injuring themselves."
Visit www.thisisgrimsby.co.uk to see videos of Team Reality's mad moves.