‘Skater Girlhood’ published in Grey Skate Magazine

‘Skater Girlhood’ – is a collaborative project between academic, skater and mother Esther Sayers and skater and photographer Amanda Fordyce.

“The scene at many skateparks nationally has seen women and girls taking up skateboarding alongside men and boys in ever increasing numbers. They are forming an alternative girlhood, consciously positioning themselves against what they perceive as the mainstream and against conventional forms of femininity in which bruises, scabs and scars would be unwelcome.”

Click on the link here to read Esther’s article, accompanied by photography from Hackney Bumps and other locations, captured by Amanda over a year-long period.

‘Skater Girlhood’ was originally published in Grey vol. 05 issue 12, released December 2021.

Installation views of No Comply: Skate Culture and Community at Somerset House
Installation views of No Comply: Skate Culture and Community at Somerset House
Installation views of No Comply: Skate Culture and Community at Somerset House

‘No Comply’ skate exhibition at Somerset House

Since we founded the City Mill Skate project in 2019, we have been interested in capturing the voices of a wide range of skaters across East London and beyond. 📍🌇🗺

With this in mind, it’s an honour for us to be included in ‘No Comply’ – a new exhibition at Somerset House exploring the phenomena of skateboarding and the impact of its culture and communities on the UK over the past 45 years. 🙌

Curated by Tork Turk @tory_turk with special assistance from friend of City Mill Skate, Helena Long @helenalegslong , No Comply is based on an original idea by Frankie Shea and brings together a superb range of photographers, filmmakers and other creatives. Safe to say we are very grateful to be in such great company! 📸🎞🎨🖼📝🛹⚡️

If you are downtown or just en route to Southbank, pop in to Somerset House to check out this fantastic exhibition – No Comply is open until September 19th 👀😃

All 📸 © Tim Bowditch

UCL Lunch Hour Lecture

We are honoured to have been invited recently to take part in the prestigious UCL Lunch Hour Lecture series, alongside Professor Iain Borden @iainborden , Vice Dean of Education at The Bartlett School of Architecture and chaired by Professor Paola Lettieri, Academic Director of UCL East.

Click on the link here to watch our UCL Lunch Hour Lecture, covering the recent history of the City Mill Skate project, the challenges we have faced along the way, and what we have learned so far! 📈


Free Skate Lessons!

Stuck for something to do over the half term holidays? Are you aged 10 – 16 and either attend a school in Newham or live in Newham? 📍

City Mill Skate, Change Grow Live and Here East have teamed up to offer just the thing for you! 😁

From Monday May 31st to Friday June 4th, City Mill Skate in conjunction with Change, Grow, Live are pleased to offer a programme of free skate lessons provided by our partners at Learn To Skateboard – and kindly hosted at Here East in the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. 🗓🛹📈

We have 2x lessons on offer per day: taking place at 10am – 12 noon and then 1pm – 3pm, with tuition offered to riders of all abilities by the experienced instructors from the team at Learn To Skateboard. ⏰😃

If you are worried about the terrible weather we’ve had recently, we are pleased to announce that the team at Here East have also kindly let us use the Undercroft area, so we are protected from the elements 🌦☔️

All skateboards, obstacles and safety equipment will be provided – and so if you fancy a chance to learn from some of the best, please follow the link here to sign up via the Change, Grow, Live website to take part!📲💻✔️

Looking forward to seeing you there 👀👋

City Mill Skate Dots and Lockdown – Short Film

As some of you may have noticed, we’ve been a little quiet here at CMS lately – but that’s mainly due to us being busy behind the scenes on a number of plans that should hopefully come to fruition soon!

We’ve also been busy working with the fantastically talented Tom Lock @locktomlock and Rich Maskey @richmaskey to produce a short film called ‘City Mill Skate Dots and Lockdown’.

Our new film tells the recent story of our project – and the best laid plans, the crises, and the quick thinking that resulted in us overhauling our entire programme in order to find meaningful ways to still connect with a wide range of skaters in a world turned completely upside down.

To explore the ideas in the film a little further, we also sat down with Henry Kingsford from the ever-superb Grey Skate Mag @greyskatemag to chat about the impact of lockdown on skateboarding communities of all kinds – and how our project has hopefully helped to provide a useful and inspiring creative outlet for many people whose lives inside and outside of skateboarding have been profoundly affected by the Covid pandemic.

Click on the link here to read our interview and watch ‘City Mill Skate Dots and Lockdown’ here.



UCL freshers lecture event – public art and City Mill Skate

As part of the 2020 UCL freshers’ week events, we were invited to present an online lecture covering the history of the City Mill Skate project, our responses to lockdown, and the thinking behind the skate dot ideas we had received so far.

To give our audience a first-hand experience of how a skate dot design and model could take shape, we were kindly assisted by Daryl Nobbs and Dom Alden from the Betongpark team, who put together a live model making demonstration 😃⚡️.

To watch the recording of the whole lecture event, click on the link here. We hope you enjoy it! 👀📈.



Esther Sayers in discussion with Josh Sutton for Slam City Skates.

Esther from the City Mill Skate team was recently interviewed by Josh Sutton for the Slam City Skates blog.

In the course of their discussion, Esther and Josh share many insightful thoughts on the rewards that skateboarding brings to older skaters, and the reactions that their decision to take up skateboarding has elicited from friends and family.

Read on for some inspiration on how to use skateboarding to escape the confines of adulthood!


Hackney Bumps featured in Grey Skate Magazine

Our friends over at the nearby Hackney Bumps project have an excellent feature in Grey Skate Magazine, documenting all their hard work over the course of the past year to renovate and transform a long-overlooked skatepark into a vibrant new facility.

Click on the link below to read the feature that includes interviews and archival photos – and tells the story of how the Hackney Bumps project has grown from a grass-roots idea into an initiative that has brought the entire local community together.