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Community spirit flows at Bishop's Stortford skate park

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Plans to regenerate Castle Park were showcased on Saturday alongside a spectacular display of local talent from basketballers, street artists, skaters, BMX bikers, roller bladers and scooter riders.

The event – which was organised by the Bishop’s Stortford safer neighbourhood policing team, East Herts Council, Bishop’s Stortford Town Council and Clarion Futures, the charitable arm of the Clarion Housing Group – attracted several hundred visitors over the course of the day.

Love Stortford, a group made up of members of Churches Together Bishop’s Stortford, brought along 100 hot dog sausages to feed the masses and, on more than one occasion, were forced to make an emergency trip to Waitrose when their barbecue stocks became depleted.

The police officers used the opportunity to publicise their Lives Not Knives crime prevention campaign, along with the work they have been doing around the skate park.

PCSO Jordan Tooke forged a friendship with the young people who regularly meet at the skate park, after members of the public in June had outlined Sworder’s Field as an area of anti-social behaviour concern.

Jordan found that the group of skaters were keen to engage with him and share their expertise on ways to improve the park for future generations.

Visitors on Saturday were also able to have a go at creating street art under the guidance of Brave Arts, an experienced graffiti artist who led workshops on ethical and spray paint artwork.

During the afternoon, he created a design for Stortford’s graffiti wall, which was installed in 2012, to echo the police’s Lives Not Knives message.

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