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Skateboarding Devon
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Skateboarding Devon: What’s going on & why do I care?

When you think of Devon, a few things may spring to mind: Cows, Seagulls, Fish & Chips or even Britain’s beloved “Fawlty Towers” which was inspired by the Gleneagles Hotel in Torquay! But what doesn’t spring to mind is that the small holiday destination, where mostly over sixties pensioners choose to spend their golden years, is actually a big player in today’s UK skate scene.

Torbay was the starting point for (the now defunct) Ennvi Skateboards owned and operated by former Savier footwear & Headworx rider Mark Bryan. Odessa Footwear, which ran a good action sports campaign throughout the mid 2000’s, was also South Devon based. In relation to more recent times, Tom Gabriel, a current member of the Isle of Wight based company Wight Trash, lives in Dawlish. Barney Page, who currently rides for Sour Skateboards and has a shoe on Etnies, originates from Exeter.

Over the last 10 years skateboarding, alongside most other action sports, has become much more accepted in the mainstream world. A positive outcome of this is that  financial funding has become increasingly available for the construction of some very well designed skate parks withDevon being no exception to that.

 

The Parks & the Crews

 

Teignmouth (where Dobby dies in the Harry Potter film…) has an excellent example of a “Fun” park which was converted from an old 1960’s Lido (outdoor pool).  With rollercoaster style hubba ledges, dive board manual pads , flatbank kickers and many other obstacles to rekindle your childish playground excitement.

 

Tom Gabriel & Sam Parker double their different takes on what an Ollie should look like.

Photo by Jamie Higham

 

Tom Gabriel – Bin Ollie to flat.

Photo by Jamie Higham

The British weather shining down on Teignmouth’s seafront park.

Photo by Jamie Higham

 

Another notable part of Britain’s road less skated is Dawlish. Dawlish is pretty much only known for its Black Swans and a place called “Gay’s Creamery”. However Dawlish skate park is the centre point for a lot of the South West skaters who more or less commute from the surrounding areas of  Exeter, Teignmouth & Torquay.  The park, which was opened in 2007, has seen consistent use and some very heavy NBD’s (Never Been Done) are thrown down still to this day.

 

 

Luke Bourne & his trademark back smith on Dawlish parks “steeper than it looks” rail.

Photo by Jamie Higham

Risk Assessment – Supervised by Mark Bryan

Photo by Jamie Higham

 

Josh Harper – Back 50-50 in Dawlish Town

 

Photo by Jamie Higham

A quick footage check from everyone

Photo By Jamie Higham

Jamie Higham – Front Smith 180

Photo By David Stocks

 

 

Why I care (and you should too)

 

Over the last few years, the scene in South Devon has really come into it’s own. With most of these guy’s out every given dry day (and dictated by people daily grind commitents??) it’s hard to ignore that some of the next up & coming UK skaters are based in sleepy ice cream towns like these. Within the next decade I wouldn’t be surprised if Devon’s skate scene has doubled and,with many more skate parks built, useable mordern architecture and it’s (sometimes) sunny beaches, it’s quite plauseable that South Devon could become the UK’s first skateboarding holiday destination.

 

Click below to catch this lot in the Digital Dust Promo…

https://youtu.be/MCt-fhBipDU

Written for urbansurfer.co.uk

Jamie Higham

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