The Ryde Arena Community Action Group share details of this upcoming event. Ed
At 10:30am on Saturday, 6th October campaigners fighting to save the Isle of Wight’s only ice-skating rink, Ryde Arena, will join hands and Link Around the Rink in protest of the building’s closure.
This event will mark two years since the building’s owners, AEW UK, controversially locked the doors on Ryde Arena, freezing out the hundreds of Islanders who used the space for sports and recreation every week. Link Around the Rink will see Island locals joining hands to encircle Ryde Arena, which remains empty.
Robina Marshall from Ryde Arena Community Action Group (RACAG) which is organising the event encouraged Islanders to join them at 10:30 on the 6th of October before stressing the importance of the arena to the Island community.
“Prior to its closure, this ice rink served as a hub for our community. It hosted everything from ice skating and ice hockey to discos, community fundraisers and arena events. There simply is not another venue like this on the Isle of Wight. When AEW locked the doors to Ryde Arena, they locked our children out of access to the opportunities afforded to their peers on the mainland and it simply is not good enough.”
“On Saturday 6th October, we want as many people as possible to join our Link Around the Rink and send the message that the fight for Ryde Arena is not a fight we will be giving up.”
Address by Isle of Wight MP
Following the Arena’s closure RACAG has taken on the charge to reopen the building, attracting the support of local councillors and Isle of Wight Conservative MP, Robert Seely, who will address crowds at the event.
Robina further added,
“We are delighted with the level of support we have received from our community in trying to save Ryde Arena. Our MP and many of our local councillors, have supported us in trying to find a positive way forward for what is an important asset to our community. Sadly, our negotiations with AEW have stalled but we are strong in our resolve. We want our ice rink back and we want it back now.
“We strongly encourage all Islanders who want to preserve Ryde Arena, to join us on Saturday 6th October between 10:30am and 11:15am and please visit the Website for further details.”
Images: © Andrew Nordbruch