Lighting a Pump Track - The Solar Powered Solution

There’s a little controversy as to when the first skateboard was invented. Some say it was as far back as the early 20th Century, others claim it was in the 40’s in California when the skateboard really took form. Either way, it wasn’t really until the late 60’s early 70’s that the sport took hold. The craze quickly gained popularity across the USA, in Europe and other parts of the world. Alongside skateboarding, came the BMX bike. From the early 70’s, and again from California, kids inspired by motocross, began riding their bikes around dirt tracks, thereby evolving a craze that quickly became a sport to this day. Roller skates actually date back way beyond skateboards and BMX’s. In fact, they can be traced back to the early 18th Century with Dutch origins. Following a century of development, they ended up with a patent filed in London in 1823. Rollerblades are a much more modern creation. They haven’t changed much since 1979 when the Olsen brothers came up with the idea in Minnesota. At that time, they saw the need for the traditional roller skate to be modernized by moving all the wheels in-line. This new concept became known as the rollerblade. Whichever your preference, all these sports are still played to this day along with scooters and e-powered derivatives. Enjoyed by kids and adults alike, they’re here to stay.


The need for purpose-built, safe environments to participate in these sports has increased in demand. Many councils have set aside funding, or with the help of a grant, construction of facilities known as ‘pump tracks’ have begun popping up throughout the UK. These sites specifically encourage the use of bicycles (BMX’s), scooters, skateboards, and rollerblade use. It’s logical to group these similar sports together and create a safe, controlled environment. After all, it’s got to be better than these activities taking place on streets, pavements, parks, and other public spaces where themselves, other road users and pedestrians are put in danger.

Because many of these pump tracks are situated in parks, recreation areas, or more remote urban locations, there is often a lack of mains power. It’s very costly and time consuming to trench or mole underground cabling for power. It also doesn’t help with reducing a council’s carbon footprint either. So, that’s where the beauty of solar power becomes an option. Using clean, green, renewable energy (such as solar lighting) not only ticks those boxes as an ‘eco-friendly’ initiative, but it’s also quick and easy to install and often more cost effective. There are no operating costs either!

Bolehills Pumptrack - Sheffield - Photo: Google Earth

Why create a perfect environment for these great activities but then have their use restricted by daylight hours? In the UK, for half of the year it’s dark before the evening begins. In the winter, it’s dark before 5pm. A pump track should be illuminated so it can be used for a limited amount of time after dusk.

Solar Illuminations offers a selection of professional, commercial grade solar powered area lighting systems that are ideal for pump tracks. These systems can be supplied with a choice of column height, choice of LED power, and a choice in the way they operate. It’s not usually a requirement that the lighting should be on all night, so our systems can be timed, have motion sensing capabilities, have dimming controls, or any combination of these modes. Using solar powered area lighting with the latest in LED technology just makes sense. It’s easy to obtain a truly bespoke lighting solution.

Solar Illuminations will work with any council or parish council to develop and supply a lighting system that will meet their criteria and be suitable for the application. Free, no obligation proposals and quotes are available. A photometric rendering is also available upon request.

Contact Solar Illuminations now with details of your pump track plans and requirements.

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