Dorset

Bournemouth ice rink plan clears first hurdle

Artist's impression of ice rink
Image caption The council is looking for a private developer to fund the plan

An Olympic-sized ice rink has been given outline planning permission by councillors in Bournemouth.

The plans would also include indoor climbing and surfing facilities as well as a restaurant and floodlit synthetic turf pitches at the King's Park site.

Councillors backed the plan at a meeting on Monday despite some fears over the loss of football pitches, which will be relocated nearby.

The plans still need Highways Agency backing as well as a private backer.

'Strong demand'

The agency is awaiting further details about transport provision.

The town's previous ice rink in Westover Road closed in 1991.

The new facility would include seating for 2,500 spectators and be used for recreational and figure skating, ice hockey and curling.

It could also be used for basketball competitions and other events with the arena increased to accommodate 5,000 spectators.

The council has indicated admission will be about £5 for an adult and £15 for a family of four, with skate hire between £1.50 and £1.80.

Councillor John Beesley, deputy leader of the Conservative-controlled council, said: "Since the closure of the ice rink at Westover Road there has been a strong demand from Bournemouth residents for another ice rink in the town.

"I am thrilled that we are now one step closer to achieving this very exciting leisure proposal."

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