Fylde Coast Ice Arena closes

Fylde Coast Ice Arena has announced on its web page and Facebook page that it has closed because its refrigeration plant is beyond economic repair.

The rink had been experiencing issues with its plant, and the website now states that: “The equipment needed to make the ice is beyond repair. The logistical and technical challenges that this site presents, particularly the reliance upon external diesel power generation, have taken their toll on our chiller plant. As replacement equipment would be subject to the same conditions we have been advised that it is not viable to continue operating from this location. We have instructed contractors to dismantle and remove the rinks and as a result the Arena on Bristol Avenue will be closed permanently.”

The rink is the second to close in the area in recent years. Just a few miles away, Cleveleys Ice Arena, formerly known as Sub-Zero and as Jubilee Ice Arena, ran from 2011 to 2014 when it closed. It was re-opened and run by a community interest group but shut permanently in October 2015. At the time that Fylde Coast Ice Arena was proposed, concerns were raised during the planning process that the scheme would put the Cleveleys rink at risk.

Skaters in the area still have Blackburn rink and the tiny Blackpool Pleasure Beach rink.

Link: www.fyldecoasticearena.com

Fundraising campaign for Grimsby rink

The community group trying to save Grimsby ice rink has a fundraising campaign under way on Just Giving at https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/grimsby-ice-rink

The group is trying to raise £50,000 to ensure the continuation of ice skating in North Lincolnshire. Grimsby rink is at risk from council cutbacks, and in February the community group was given six months to present an acceptable business plan.

Green light for Reading rink plan

Reading Chronicle reports that Reading Council has approved a £500 million development at Madejski Stadium that could include an ice rink along with homes, shops, a hotel and a conference centre.

The scheme, Royal Elm Park, has to go through the final stages of the planning process. Construction could start in early 2018.

Link: www.readingchronicle.co.uk

£10 million rink plan for Derby

Derby Telegraph reports on plans to turn the eyesore site of Duckworth Square in Derby into a 56 x 26 metre ice rink. The £10 million development will also include a gym, dance studio, changing rooms and café bar.

Redevelopment depends on the acquisition of the Debenhams building in Victoria Street, part of the Becketwell area of the city that includes Duckworth Square, by Derby City Council. Acquisition is due to happen later this week, and the aim is to have the rink up and running by 2020.

Link: http://www.derbytelegraph.co.uk/derby-s-biggest-eyesore-site-could-be-turned-into-a-10m-indoor-ice-rink/story-30183593-detail/story.html

Work begins on Slough rink refurb

Slough Observer reports that work began last week on the £7.7 million refurbishment and extension of Slough ice rink.

Work on the rink is expected to be completed by November this year and work on the extension by early 2018.

The Observer also reports that the temporary ice rink in the car park of Montem leisure centre at long last opened on Saturday.

Link: www.sloughobserver.co.uk

Fate of Grimsby rink lies in hands of community group

Grimsby Telegraph reports that the future of Grimsby Ice Rink has been secured for at least six months after North East Lincolnshire councillors agreed at a full council meeting to find a way to keep the rink open for the benefit of the community.

Within six months the Ice Rink Community Committee, the group that wants to take over full-time running of the rink, must present a business plan to be accepted by Cabinet, before a final community asset transfer can be completed.

The group potentially has to raise up to £250,000 to keep the rink running into 2018 and has appealed for support from local businesses.

Link (council meeting): www.grimsbytelegraph.co.uk

Link (future funding): http://www.grimsbytelegraph.co.uk

Grimsby rink decision to go to full council meeting

Lincolnshire Reporter says that the decision to close Grimsby ice rink has been deferred to a full meeting of the council following a tourism, leisure and culture scrutiny panel meeting on 25 January.

All North East Lincolnshire’s councillors will now have an opportunity to consider the decision.

The council’s Conservative group has challenged the Labour-controlled cabinet’s decision to close the facility.

Members of the scrutiny panel also agreed to set up a working group to look at a business case to keep the rink open put forward by campaigners.

Link: http://lincolnshirereporter.co.uk/2017/01/fate-grimsby-ice-rink-decided-full-council/