A NEW BMX track could be built in west Swindon but not before up to £90,000 of funding is in place.

So to get the ball rolling, parish councillor Suresh Gattapur is taking on a 26.1-mile walk around the town on October 10.

He hopes to raise £5,000 which will go towards funding the track in Rivermead, Westlea.

He said: “Most of the parks in here are for children between five and 12, and there are not many facilities for those aged between 13 to 21.

“They are not included in the process of 'placemaking', so being actively engaged in youth-friendly spaces, young people can feel like they have investment in their community and they can develop a strong sense of ownership in these places.

“A lot of them cycle on public roads, shopping centres. They need somewhere to release that energy.”

Coun Gattapur has conducted extensive research on youth engagement and young people's interests in the area.

He added: “Bike parks are fun, challenging, and healthy places for young people to get exercise in.

“Compared to more traditional parks and playgrounds, bike parks offer an incredible value compared with the budget spent on them.”

He added: “There is an empty space, it’s the parish council’s land, we just need to secure the funding..

“Well-built facilities have the potential to become tourist draws.

"Attracting events leads to benefits to the local economy with money being spent locally on amenities, food, repairs and new equipment.”

The parish councillor has obtained two quotes and needs a third for the project to get started.

He added: “We are looking to raise funds from local businesses.

“And I’m going to also write to all the councillors and see if I can get help from the council.

“A bike park helps build something larger for a community.

"It helps build healthy, happy, outdoor lifestyle choices.

“Championing youth projects is a transformative approach that can encourage urban youth engagement in local communities.

“With this in mind, I would like to invite people with interest in building youth facilities of Swindon, whether you are young, or an adult please come together to help create a brighter future.”

To support the project visit gofundme.com/f/walk-for-bmx-park-swindon.