Checkout: Will Golding

Unabomber’s tech skating sensation talks LA, Get Lesta and cool bosses.

© Matt Clarke

Nottingham has always loomed large in British skateboarding culture. Served admirably down the ages by the legendary Rollersnakes skateshop, whose 1991 video ‘540’ bridged two eras through skating’s doldrum years, and home to a once-famous Market Square spot; soon the subject of a skating ban.

The ban served to shift the Nottingham scene into a new direction, one where versatile hotshots like Will Golding picked up the mantle from the likes of Craig Smedley, Alan Rushbrooke and 'Harry' Cuthbertson to lift the Midlands skate scene to new levels of radness. The last trick in this edit is ridiculous by any measure.

We grabbed Will at work on Friday morning for a hushed natter.

Will Golding
Will Golding© Matt Clarke

Morning Will! Tell me what you are doing right now.
I'm at work at the moment. I'm training to be a Healthcare Assistant but I'm taking a few minutes out now for this interview!

Wow, how cool is your boss?
Very cool!

Let’s go back: I read an interview with you where you talked about ‘getting your name out there’, so let’s do that bit. What are your vital statistics and what do you want people to know about you? This is going out in four languages, by the way…
I'm Will Golding, 21 years old, I'm from Nottingham, England and I've been skating for 11 years. Some really kind companies help me out so I'll give them a shout out, if I can? DVS, Unabomber Skateboards, Mighty Healthy, Neff, Destructo, Supertoxic and 42 Skate Shop!

What’s the best place in the Midlands for skating?
The Midlands is good, there are a few good cities here, but Nottingham has some amazing spots that I skate every week and never get tired of. Derby is about 15 minutes away and there are some good spots there too. As long as I'm riding my skateboard with my friends, then I'm happy.

Will Golding Frontside Feeble
Will Golding, Frontside Feeble© Matt Clarke

Unabomber has strong historical ties to Nottingham. What was your introduction to the Nottingham scene like?
The Market Square was the place to be when I stared skating. Every Nottingham skateboarder would be there on a Sunday, so I got to know a few names that way. Then a skatepark was built five minutes from my house and I'd meet people there too. Nottingham has always had a good skate scene and I've loved Unabomber since it started.

Who is the best skater ever to ride for Unabomber?
Scott Whittaker. Best style and all-round best human being.

Can you explain the Get Lesta phenomenon for our foreign friends tuning in?
Leicester is about an hour south of Nottingham. A group of us skaters and a filmer would meet up at the weekend and film. Callun (Loomes) decided to call it Get Lesta and it stuck. Now we have T- shirts and we filmed a full-length video about six months ago.

Some of the footage from your Checkout is shot in LA. How was that whole experience for you?
LA was the best; amazing weather and perfect skate spots. I'd love to move there one day. We met one of the filmers at The Berrics, so we got to skate there most mornings which was cool. We'd go street skating in the afternoon when it wasn't too hot. We're planning a Get Lesta trip there at Easter, actually. Should be fun!

Will Golding Front Crooks Fakie
Will Golding, Front Crooks To Fakie© Matt Clarke

What did you think of the standard of skating there versus elsewhere that you've been or seen?
Everyone in America is good. We spent one day at the Venice Beach skatepark and the local kids are ridiculous. I watched them skate a huge pool like a miniramp. I suppose it's the same everywhere - If you were to spend the day at MACBA you'd see the locals destroy it just the same.

Josh Kalis recently said he feels bad for young skaters trying to come up right now, presumably because the standard is stratospheric but the windows of opportunity are a lot narrower. What is it like from your point of view?
I agree; the standard has been upped a lot in the past few years. I think the best thing you can do is have fun and don't worry about it too much. Show your face at a few local comps and get yourself out there a bit. Maybe send some footage into a few companies, then it'll hopefully work out.

Is being a fully-fledged pro a dream of yours, even if it required moving to America?
Not really. I mean, I'd love to, but I couldn't see it happening. Turning pro is hard in England, I'd love to skate every day for the rest of my life but my body - and the weather - wouldn't let me. At the minute I'm working full time and skating three times a week after work and both days at the weekend. As long as I'm enjoying skateboarding, then I'm happy.

The last trick in your part, the hardflip backtail 270 shove out. How many tries, truthfully?
That was the first one I had filmed, actually. I'd say it took about 10 to 15 tries. You get kicked out of that spot pretty quick, so you have to get it and go.

I’ll let you get back to work Will. Any last thoughts for us?
Just thanks to everyone; friends, family, sponsors. Go skate! Hope this was all right!

Will Golding 50 50
Will Golding, 50-50© Matt Clarke