Exciting plans for Halton's new ice rink revealed

Runcorn and Widnes World: Skaters Amy Nicholson, aged 17, Charlotte Ryan, aged 16, Council leader Rob Polhill, managing director Mark Johnson, group operations manager Vernon Neil and Team GB sledge hockey player Steve Midghall, aged 33 Picture:Dave Gillespie DGB210912 Skaters Amy Nicholson, aged 17, Charlotte Ryan, aged 16, Council leader Rob Polhill, managing director Mark Johnson, group operations manager Vernon Neil and Team GB sledge hockey player Steve Midghall, aged 33 Picture:Dave Gillespie DGB210912

EXCITING plans for Halton’s new ice rink, set to open in December, have been revealed.

The team from Silver Blades, the company which will operate and manage the rink, gave The World an exclusive preview of the venue.

It will be the final unit to open at the £10 milliion Hive leisure complex in Earle Road, beside Widnes Superbowl, The Reel cinema, Nando’s. Frankie & Benny’s, Premier Inn and Brewers Fayre restaurant.

Building work starts on Monday and will take 10 weeks.

Managing director Mark Johnson is confident the long-awaited ice rink will open before Christmas.

It will have 800 seats and host ice hockey and sledge hockey matches, public sessions and private classes.

He said: “Although it may look like nothing is happening, a lot is going on.

“It took 18 weeks from order to delivery for the barrier to come.

“We are installing a low emission ceiling which will save energy and be environmentally friendly.”

At present all you can see is a giant hole.

The latest technology will transform it into a first class regional ice rink, creating 30 new jobs.

Mr Johnson himself started as a trainee.

He said: “My first job was sharpening the skates. I’ve worked in every department. My motto is there is nothing I wouldn’t do. I am very hands on. I love this job.

“We will attract people from a 30-mile radius so it will be good for Halton’s businesses.

“We will be training 16-19-year-olds. It is a great career opportunity.

“This will be our HQ. We will have our board room and offices here.”

 

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