Ice rink at Swindon's Link Centre could re-open by Christmas

The ice-rink will operate on a temporary timetable during December. Credit: Better Leisure

An ice rink forced to close after a "devastating" flood could be re-opened by Christmas.

Earlier this year, the Link Centre, in Swindon, was badly damaged following torrential rain which caused flash flooding.

The rink's lighting and electrical circuits were damaged by the floodwater, and the sand ice pad base had to be replaced after floodwater penetrated the rink itself.

It is now hoped the ice rink will be able to re-open on 18 December, with the first home matches for the Swindon Wildcats Ice Hockey team taking place on 16 December.

The rink was renovated over the summer and had only been open a few weeks when it was severely damaged.

The ice rink will operate on a temporary timetable in December, with a full reopening and new extended programme planned for the New Year.

Torrential flooding caused extensive damage to the Link Centre's plant room. Credit: ITV News

Jason Curtis, Better Leisure's Head of Service for Swindon, said: "The impact of September's floods has been devastating for the Link Centre and the ice rink was badly affected.

"Our operations team, alongside specialist contractors, have been working around the clock to get the rink open as soon as possible."

He added: "We’re hugely grateful for their efforts and the support of Swindon Borough Council, which has enabled us to include improvements to the ice base coolant system, rink hall insulation and plant as part of the restitution works."

Steve Nell, Managing Director of Swindon Wildcats said "Getting back on the ice before Christmas will secure the long-term future of the club."

He added: "This has been a very difficult couple of months for the whole ice hockey community in Swindon.

"We are extremely grateful to Better, SBC and the contractors on site that have worked around the clock to get the ice rink back open sooner than expected.

The Link Centre's swimming pool will be the final facility to reopen to the public, likely in January 2024.

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