Miliband gives boost to Bike Club 26/04/2012Posted by Patrick Carr in Uncategorized.
MP David Miliband lent his support to the young people of SSB Bike Club in their quest to see improvements to the popular skatepark on the seafront at South Shields. Visiting the club at their base in town centre bike shop Conways Cycles, Mr Miliband met young people and chatted about their passion for BMX, which led to the formation of the club under the auspices of George Simpson, who runs Conways as a social enterprise for the benefit of local young people. Conways hosts regular events such as competition screenings, workshop nights and maintenance training with local schools, with Bike Club funding and support. SSB are also incredibly skilled riders, impressing Mr Miliband with an impromptu display of flatland skills outside the shop. (Oh, and check out their video at the bottom of this post.)
After a quick look round the shop, Mr Miliband promised to return with his kids to be fitted with their next bikes. He also asked about good local routes for families.
Outside he rode the shop’s restored Haro BMX, and though he looked confident, confessed to being worried about damaging the bike. (to be fair, I would be too, the paintwork and parts are stunning) SSB members shared their experiences of using the busy park, and the politics between the various groups of bikers, skaters and scooters who use it. An extension to the park would be welcome, and Mr. Miliband shared his thoughts of how to attract funding for its improvement.
Mr Miliband was curious about the origins of the group’s enigmatic name SSB, which stands simply for South Shields Based. “South Shields Based what?” asked the MP understandably. “South Shields Based anything.” came the reply. “Bikes, blades, boards, scooters, anything. We don’t discriminate.” Good answer. Wonder if that young person wants a job in politics?