TWENTY-three years on from the closure of the Westover Ice Rink, there appears to be very little in the way of progress from those who have been elected to serve the people of Bournemouth to find a backer to build a replacement facility.
Maybe they could speak with the Lambeth Council who saw that the 1930s-built Streatham Ice Rink was in need of very expensive major repairs and took proactive steps.
It involved Tesco in a deal to build a large supermarket, affordable accommodation and leisure facilities (including an Olympic sized ice rink and a swimming pool which utilises a sharing of energy that creates the ice and uses the heat created to warm the water in the pool) on the site of the old rink and bus station.
Also, to keep the skaters’ skills up to date, they put up a ‘temporary’ ice rink in nearby Brixton for the two years it took to demolish the old site and build the new facilities.
Lambeth also kept its ratepayers fully informed via the web on the progress of the construction and held Tesco to an agreement that they could not open the supermarket until the leisure facilities were ready to open.
This is a wake-up call for our councillors. It’s time to get the priorities right and provide healthy recreation and social facilities for the ratepayers and university students, not more cinemas and fast food outlets.
Ice skating offers a unique way for all ages to mix and share a common interest that is both social and healthy.
ALAN DRING, Old Farm Road, Oakdale