Southbank development: 60,000-strong petition handed in
A 60,000-strong petition objecting to plans to refurbish the Southbank Centre has been delivered to a south London council.
The arts centre wants to refurbish and make use of its undercroft for commercial space. It is currently used as a skate park.
Members of Long Live Southbank said people had been skating there for 40 years and it had "real cultural value".
Lambeth Council said a consultation on the plans would end on Friday.
The proposed £120m redevelopment would double the size of the arts centre with proposals to move the skate park to Hungerford Bridge.
Jason Caines, from Long Live Southbank, said: "There are hundreds of places to go and skate in London, but what we're talking about is the oldest place in the world to skate.
"This is real cultural value and real history and integrity that we want to stick to and keep and preserve.
"It's [the plans] a contrived space that's been designed without the consultation of the people using the original space, it's been a complete mess."
But Jude Kelly, the Artistic Director of the Southbank Centre, said the plans were "the opposite" to what the skaters feared.
She said: "It's just over 100m from the previous site, it is still part of the Southbank Centre which is what we want because we want the Southbank Centre to be part of skateboarding forever.
"We've consulted with skateboarders who we've invited along to come to the Southbank centre many times to consult, but they [Long Live Southbank] won't."
The applications will be considered by Lambeth Council in February.