Syston Skatepark Then and Now

Clip of the article in 2009 when the paper was printed in Black and white!

Back in 2009 we featured Phil MacDonald and an article he wrote about his love for the Skate park in Syston. This year he has sent us his memory of that time and how his love for the park is still strong.



This is what he sent us: Most memories of summers past sort of blend into each other for me. If you asked me to recall exactly what I was doing or where I was in the summer of say 2015, or 2007 for example, I’d have to pause and really figure it out. But if you ask me to recall summer 2009 – I remember instantly being 20 years old at Syston Skatepark. All day, every day, all summer long. I even wrote an article for the Stn saying how much we loved the new skatepark.

I had just finished my 2nd year of university in London. The initial jitters and anticipation of my first year were behind me. I didn’t have to deal with the worry and panic of my 3rd and final year yet. I didn’t have any life plans or any career in mind. I was 100% solely focused on the present: skating at Syston Skatepark every day throughout the summer break.

It’s probably the last period of my life where I had no cares or concerns or anything to worry about. After I finished university I got my first full-time job in a museum warehouse in London. Over the next 7 years, I was intent on gaining promotions and furthering my career. I pretty much stopped skateboarding all together. Eventually, I somehow managed to become the store manager of a parcel collection chain in King’s Cross station.

During this time I began skating more regularly and began to meet up with my old friends from Syston. I decided I couldn’t be bothered with the London rat race any more, nor did I care about chasing a promotion at work. Quite quickly I made the decision to move back to Syston so I could skate with my friends again. I’m no longer a store manager. There’s more to life than my job. Like most people I have a number of issues, worries and concerns. Especially in the current climate in 2020. I’m 30 now, but every time I go to the skatepark it feels exactly like it did in 2009. My knees might not be able to take as much as they once did, and It might not be for an entire summer. But for an hour or so, I don’t have a care in the world.

Phil in 2009
Phil in 2020