R.I.P Skatepark - Mad Dog Bowl (Old Kent Rd 1978-1979)
The Astoria cinema 593-613 Old Kent Road was home to the famous Dog bowl Skatepark, 
at the time Europe's only indoor skatepark. It featured moguls, a freestyle area, snake run,
the tightest halfpipe and the famous pool which was the deepest in the country.
Many of the great UK greats skated there including Jeremy Henderson, John Sablosky,
Seth Cutts, Mad Mark Baker to name a few. Even Tony Alva made a visit when he came
to the Uk apparently after riding the bowl he remarked 'It was going to F***ing Kill Someone!
The cinema was later demolished as is now a magnet kitchen appliance store
Article in Skateboard Special 1978

Advertisment that appeared in Skateboard Special 1978
Tont Alva getting air ! Photo Skateboard magazine
10 Year old Mark 'Floater' Maunders ripping it up in the pool. Photo Tim Leighton Boyce (Skateboard magazine)

R.I.P Skatepark - Rolling Thunder (Old Kent Rd 1978-1979)
Built inside the old fruit market in Brentford Midlesex Rolling thunder was a favourite amongst 
skaters of the day. Designed by Richard Wrigley (co-designer of London's first skatepark – Skate City), it was built by Mayway Construction Ltd. It opened in September 1978 and covered 3,000 sq metres and included he Channel Run, Clover Leaf Pool, Freestyle Area, Reservoir, The Ramp and Death Valley Run, The Whiplash, Kidney Bowl, Pool Bowl, Mini Bowls, Half-pipe. The Half Pipe was 55 meters long and stretched across one side of the building.

Imagine this - a 3 acre site devoted to skateboarding in Tooley Street, London Bridge right behind HMS Belfast! well that was reality in 1977. Skate City was built for a cost of £100,000 and built in a total of six weeks - pretty impressive even by todays standards! Entry was £1 and earned the rider a full day in the park. An additional cost of 50p would buy you pad and helmet hire and even boards could be hired at a cost of 30p! A coloured badge system entitled riders to use certain areas of the park. A beginners green badge got you into the freestyle area only and only after satisfying a marshall could you move up to the blue badge to ride the bowls and then red and black badges ! The park consisted of  freestyle area, 50 metre slalom run, a half pipe and several bowls. At the time it was the UK's premier skatapark and held the Nationwide Championships were jeremy Hendserson kick flipped of a table at the start of his freestyle section!