YOUNGSTERS are calling on a council to build a freerunning park.

Jake Williams, from Brighton, has launched a petition for Brighton and Hove City Council to build an area to practise parkour.

The popular street sport sees runners aiming to get from one place to another as quickly as possible by performing acrobatic moves.

Jake, 15, said building a park would help reduce stigma around the sport.

He said: “It’s not just about jumping on buildings, which a lot of people think it is.

“It would be helpful to educate more people about parkour in the city.

“There’s a bit of a stigma towards it.”

Jake, who lives in Fiveways, said the sport helped him build friendships and has benefited his mental health.

He said: “Before parkour I never really had a sport, but I love parkour because it doesn’t have any rules.

“In football there are always rules, but with parkour you can just do things your way.

“I started getting into it and haven’t looked back since.

“It’s quite good for building friendships and it has really helped my mental health.”

The Varndean School pupil said a thriving parkour community exists in Brighton but it does not have anywhere to go.

Though many freerunners practise parkour on the seafront, Jake said a dedicated parkour park would be popular.

He said: “There are quite a few of us in the community, at a recent weekend meetup there were around 50 people.

“It’s great, if you see someone doing parkour you can just go and join them. You always have something to talk about.”

Jake suggested the old bowling greens in Preston Park would be a good location for a parkour park.

His petition on had more than 50 signatures as of 5pm yesterday.

It says: “We need to build an outdoor parkour park in Brighton as it’s one of the best places for freerunners and parkour athletes to meet in the UK.

“People need somewhere it is free to train and wouldn’t disturb the public.

“The park would be appropriate for anyone regardless of their ability and would help create a community.

“By building the park, it would benefit Brighton and there would be no need to kick people off various sites.”

A Brighton council spokeswoman said: “We currently have no plans for a parkour park in Brighton and Hove but it’s an interesting idea.

“We encourage Jake to speak to his councillors and consider registering his petition on the council website.”