Ice-skaters are set to be a Christmas fixture at a Bury St Edmunds shopping centre in December as plans are unveiled to bring a synthetic skating rink to the town. Our Bury St Edmunds, which runs the Business Improvement District (BID) and arc Shopping Centre are working with partners to install the feature over the festive period.
The synthetic ice rink, provided by Odin Events, will be one of the most advanced available giving the closest possible experience to real ice but without the environmental impact and high energy use of keeping the rink frozen.
Chief Executive of Our Bury St Edmunds Mark Cordell said: “The ice rink we installed at arc Shopping Centre for Christmas 2015 was incredibly successful – despite the fact that we had unseasonably warm weather while it was here. We are mindful of the environmental effect as our winters get warmer and the very high energy costs now and were delighted when we discovered how much more advanced the synthetic rinks have become since then.”
The rink which will be able to cater for up to 25 skaters per session will be located in Charter Square. It will be part of the Christmas In Bury St Edmunds Experience which will see a partnership host a variety of events from mid-November and through December.
Allan Hassell who manages arc Shopping Centre and is also Vice-Chairman of Our Bury St Edmunds is looking forward to the attraction. He commented: “I know how popular ice-skating in Charter Square was last time and I’m really excited to be able to offer it here again. With the Christmas lights twinkling all around it will be a marvellous festive treat for all ages.”
The exact details of skating times are still being arranged and it is the aspiration of the organisers that all sessions are free of charge, so businesses can give something back to the community. In order to achieve this goal there will be a need to source additional funding hopefully through grants, donations or commercial sponsorship, which are currently being explored.
Bethyn Barrass from Odin Events is delighted to be working with Our Bury St Edmunds and arc Shopping Centre on the project and added: “We travelled the world to find synthetic ice that is as close to the real thing as possible – but is, of course, much more environmentally-friendly. We’re also providing the skates and skate-aids to help beginners glide safely around the rink.”
The skating rink is expected to be in place from December 14 to January 3. Find out more at www.ourburystedmunds.com
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