No slippery start as work begins on Cambridge ice rink

PUBLISHED: 16:12 29 November 2017 | UPDATED: 16:14 29 November 2017

New Ice Rink ground breaking, Newmarket Rd, Cambridge . Picture: Keith Heppell

New Ice Rink ground breaking, Newmarket Rd, Cambridge . Picture: Keith Heppell

Iliffe Media Ltd

The new ice rink is expected to be open this time next year.

Artists' impression of Cambridge Ice Arena Picture: SBW ArchitectsArtists' impression of Cambridge Ice Arena Picture: SBW Architects

Construction work on a new Cambridge ice rink was officially started in Newmarket Road yesterday (Tuesday).

The ice rink has been planned for 20 years, funded initially by £1million bequeathed by former Cambridge University ice hockey captain, the late David Gattiker.

Professor Bill Harris, chairman of Cambridge Leisure and Ice Centre (CLIC), which will own the venue, said: “Twenty years of campaigning for this community ice arena, which will be home ice for the Cambridge University Ice Hockey team, one of the oldest ice-hockey clubs in the world, has been one of the great rides of my life.

“I am so happy that we have reached this point, and it is thanks to the tireless work and generosity of scores of like-minded people in many sectors of the greater community who appreciate the multitude of benefits that such a facility will bring to Cambridge.

Cambridge Ice Arena - an artist's impression of the rink Cambridge Ice Arena - an artist's impression of the rink

“I now can’t wait for its doors to open in the autumn!”

Construction work will take place with CLIC and its development partner Cool Venues anticipating a completion date of autumn 2018. The new rink will boast a 340-seat arena, with room for several hundred more standing spectators, and will be one of the most energy efficient ice rinks in the UK.

The 56 metre by 26 metre ice pad will meet the requirements of the International Ice Hockey Federation, allowing visiting teams from around the world to play matches. It will also provide space for figure skating, ice dancing, speed skating and ice discos, as well as many other events for people of all abilities and ages.

South Cambridgeshire District Council is providing a £1.85million loan to CLIC for the new venue, which will be on land leased by Marshall of Cambridge.

Cllr Simon Edwards, South Cambridgeshire District Council’s cabinet member for finance, said: “It was fantastic to be on the site where this time next year we should be skating.”

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