I have no hassle with skateboarders, and am certainly not enmeshed in their various faction fights, but I do think that it is time the South Bank was re-engineered.
When it was built there was a road running along the river bank and the idea was that pedestrians would use the high level walkways. See London Wall, it was all the fashion. It didn't happen but that left the spaces beneath derelict. The skateboarders turned up and colonised it. Good for them. But is it an eyesore in what is now a world class tourist site.
So, if the boarders have been offered a decent way out, and I cannot judge, i think the environment for the majority should be improved.
I do live within half a km so look at it often
One person's 'eyesore' is another person's 'vibrant London', just as one person's vision for a 'world class tourist site' (!?) is another person's 'ugly generic and downright soulless money making grab' theedy.
I also spend a lot of time on the South Bank and particularly near the skateboarding site (not skateboarding I hasten to add!) and I - like 40,000 others (judging by the petition) - love the mix of architecture, culture and variety of life that we have there at present. The variety of life has been eroded somewhat IMHO with some of the recent development after the tourist pound and I hope to God that someone wakes up soon and draws a line in the sand.
I wouldn't necessarily disagree about improving aspects of the Southbank, but I would question such improvement is arrived at through adding yet more cafes and restaurants to what is after all supposed to be a cultural institution. And when Jude Kelly, artistic director speaks of the '...crustier sort of arts audience' you have to question the direction such change is moving toward.
I suppose it is a world class tourist site,currently enjoyed by many many tourists judging by the amount I see gathered there watching the skaters and taking pics,what else is a world class site supposed to achieve? Does it always have to be about £££££££s?