We met him the other day at the skatepark up at Brighton’s Level. His new skateboard put under his arm, Thomas was watching the other skaters do their tricks, waiting for it to be less crowded. The 31-year-old lives in Hove and regularly comes down to the Level to have some fun on the skateboard.
Hi, Thomas. Nice to meet you. So, you are a proper skater boy? Maybe wannabe skater boy. I bought this new board just for a bit of fun but I haven’t actually had a go on it yet because I’m a bit scared I’m gonna hurt myself.
Why are you afraid of hurting yourself with the new board? Well, I am actually not so much scared to try it out but I am just conscious of the fact that I am probably gonna fall off it. So, the fewer people who witness me doing that the better.
So, you have never tried out your new board before? I have a couple of times, just not today. I will maybe do so in half an hour. I have just come down to watch and give it a go when it gets a bit quieter and when there aren’t so many people around to bump into.
Do you do tricks? This one here isn’t a trick board, but more of a cruiser. You can’t really do tricks on this one. It’s just to glide around on.
How often do you come here to skate? All the time. I come here maybe twice a week if the weather is good. I have a friend who lives just up the road who might join me a bit later on.
How long have you been skating for? I have been riding skateboards for maybe 20 years but I have never really taken it seriously. For me, it’s just for a bit of fun although I always fall off and I always find a way of hurting myself.
What was the worst injury you have ever had? I broke my arm quite bad and I got some really bad scars from that accident. I skated down a hill which was quite steep and I came off pretty bad and crumbled over it. I spent six weeks in hospital.
Was it hard to get back on a skateboard after your accident? Actually, no. Probably because I was a bit younger and a bit more gutsy. So, it was very easy.
Fingers crossed you won’t hurt yourself today. Have fun when you have a go later on.