THE firm behind a new ice rink taking shape in Uttoxeter has confirmed the complex will open its doors later this month.
The Cinebowl in Dovefields Retail Park has recently been taken on by a Staffordshire- based leisure firm — the largest supplier of ice leisure in Europe — Planet Ice.
Work has begun to extend the cinema and bowling facility, which is still owned by Uttoxeter developer Malcolm Barrett, to ice skating, and the new rink called i- SKATE will be open to the public on Thursday, October 25.
Planet Ice managing director John Neville told the Advertiser how excited they are at the acquisition and the development of a new ice rink in Uttoxeter.
He said: “The Cinebowl is a great asset to Uttoxeter and we hope that by adding i-SKATE, Uttoxeter will be seen as a major local leisure destination.
“The rink will offer public skating every day, plus ‘Learn to Skate’ courses for children and adults that are endorsed by the National Ice Skating Association under the SKATE UK initiative, special sessions for parents and toddlers during weekdays and planned sessions specifically targeted for young people after school too.
“The new rink will be known as i-SKATE and we would like to stress to the local community that we aim to build on the existing service provided by the complex, and that it’s ‘business as usual’ for the Cinebowl.” The company are also bringing ice hockey to the new rink and will putting on a free taster session to ‘learn to play ice hockey’ on November 7, along with a series of ‘learn to ice skate’ taster sessions planned for Saturday and Sundays.
More information on taster courses and other skating sessions including birthday parties, can be obtained by going online at www.cinebowl.co.uk.
The Ice Rink Company managing director Mark Johnson, whose company has overseen many rink developments and builds, has confirmed the ice pad will be two-thirds the size of an Olympic rink.
The Ice Rink Company will be responsible for the fit out of the new rink, and Mr Johnson said he is very pleased with the work so far and confirmed everything is on schedule.
He said: “There are no plans to close the facility while work continues on the ice rink development and the Cinebowl will continue to operate as normal.” Uttoxeter Mayor Martin Blencowe also welcomed the news of the ice rink’s opening this month.
He said: “As a venture it is great to get any of these things into the town as it saves people from going out of Uttoxeter.
“It is also good to have access to these facilities to allow more exercise opportunities which is good for us all.”