PLANS to develop an urban skate park in St Helens town centre have been submitted.

St Helens Council’s cabinet backed the skate park, pending planning approval, in April 2017.

A planning application has now been submitted detailing the proposals for the site, which is between Chalon Way car park and Foundry Street.

The plans describes the site – named Bliss Park – as a “unique skateable environment” unlike standard skate parks, built with spectators in mind.

Bliss Park will take the form of a public square with two large sculptural forms placed within it, along with pockets of green space and safe boundaries.

“All elements within the square, including the sculptural forms, will be designed to be skated upon,” the plans say.

“The space will create a varied and challenging landscape for skaters, offering up unexpected skateable elements.”

The project came about due to perceived anti-social behaviour around Church Square, a popular destination for skaters.

It is largely being funded by Merseyside Police, which has offered £65,000 from the Community Cash Back Fund.

The fund utilises money obtained through the Proceeds of Crime Act (POCA), and the skate park is the first project in St Helens to be awarded money from the scheme.

The development is being led by St Helens-based arts agency Heart of Glass, which has pledged £30,000 towards the site's design.

Heart of Glass has worked closely with Merseyside Police and St Helens Council – which will manage the site – as well as numerous other organisations.

The design has been developed in collaboration with Studio Morison, an artist-led creative practice and CANVAS, skate park specialists.

Angharad Williams, lead producer for Heart of Glass, said: “It is a brilliant project for us,” she said. “For us it is about paving the way.

“There are a lot of regeneration plans for St Helens and we believe this project is how it should be done – putting artists and communities at the heart of it.”

Ms Williams said St Helens’ skating community has been consulted with throughout the development process.

“It has been quite incredible working with them,” she said. “We have taken them on various research trips around the North west.

“They have been so welcoming. We have had a lot of opportunities to have conversations to find out what exactly they want and need.”

She added: “The challenge for us is to have something that appeals to first time skaters and for someone who is perhaps an international skater and on a team.

“We believe we have created something that actually does all those different things.”

Cllr Lisa Preston, St Helens Council’s cabinet member for community safety, said: “Having been involved in pitching the idea, I’m delighted that this project has taken a significant step forward to being achieved which will provide young people their own designated area to enjoy their hobby in a safe environment.”

Dave Whittleston, senior transport officer for St Helens Highways, said the development poses “no significant” highway implications.

Highways have no objections to the site. The application is awaiting decision.