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Everything you need to know about Ice Skating in Tunbridge Wells ~ Christmas 2019

December 23, 2018

When?

The ice rink is open from Friday November 15th until Sunday January 5th 2020.

Tip: Sessions are open every day within that period but will get very busy in the run up to Christmas. It is advisable to book well in advance if you’d like to skate in the days leading up to the big day!

Where?

Calverley Grounds in the heart of Tunbridge Wells.

A short walk from the train station or adjacent to parking at the Great Hall.

Booking Tickets

It’s best to book tickets in advance through the Assembly Hall theatre website. In the run up to Christmas sessions can get booked up so leaving it until the day can be a gamble. The website is simple to use and easy to navigate. Adult tickets cost £15 and a child ticket costs £10 for an hour session.

Tip: Some sessions are run as Saver Sessions where tickets are priced slightly cheaper at £12.50 for adult tickets, £8 for a child or £39 for a family skate.

Events

There’s LOADS going on at the ice rink this year. Here’s a lowdown on some of the key events:

Relaxed / ASD friendly skate sessions Weds November 20 & Weds 27

Live Music Sessions hosted by the Forum every Thursday evening from November 21st

Neverland Skate Sessions featuring Tinkerbell Sunday 24 November & Sunday December 8th

Skate with the Snow Sisters Sunday 1 December

Curling

New for 2019 you can now book your very own Bavarian Curling session for groups of 2-8 people.

New for 2019!

Toddlers can now enjoy the safety of learning to skate in their own mini skate area away from the crowds. Please note all children aged 4-7 must be accompanied by an adult on the ice.

2018 Review

It’s become an annual tradition in the Juggling on Rollerskates household to indulge in a festive skating session in the run up to Christmas. It’s an activity the whole family enjoy together to celebrate the start of the Christmas holidays and an event we all look forward to.

Last Christmas we visited the outdoor ice rink in Calverley Grounds in the heart of Tunbridge Wells. We had skated here before a couple of years previously and really enjoyed it so had our fingers crossed this would be just as good.

TIP: The skating experience is a lot more enjoyable in dry weather. If you are planning to skate over the next day or so I would advise you check the weather is favourable around the time of your desired session.

Arrival

Throughout the festive period Calverley Grounds is set up like a pretty Winter Wonderland. You can hear the Christmas tunes as you approach making it incredibly difficult not to be caught up in the excitement. Along the side of the ice rink is a row of market stalls…one of which is clearly labelled ‘booking office’. Here you can book or collect tickets for your skate…or address any questions you may have to a member of staff.

Skates

Skate hire is included in the price of your ticket. Toddlers can wear skates that fit over their own footwear. Everyone else gets to wear the standard skate that fits like a ski boot. On our visit we found the skate hire staff to be incredibly helpful and even though it was a busy session all hands on deck meant that we received our skates within a few minutes. The skates looked new this season and were very comfortable.

Seal skate aids are also included in any toddler skate ticket.

TIP: Consider wearing thick socks if you’re feet are prone to rubbing. I also find tighter fitting trousers fit better with the skate boots rather than boyfriend style jeans.

Skate session

The ultimate Christmassy family fun experience! We all had the hugest grins for the hour long session and I always leave the ice feeling up lifted and ready for the festive season! In practical terms the ice can get busy, especially near Christmas Day so be aware of other people giving others plenty of space. We saw several helpers out on the ice for who needed a bit of support. The hour goes quickly once you’ve got your skating legs sorted, so make the most of the festive tunes and the giggles whilst you can.

TIP: The ice is quite wet so if you fall over you may need a change of trousers.

Food and Drink

The ice rink has it’s very own coffee shop where you can warm up with a hot chocolate and cake. Or there’s The Polar Bar if you’re looking for something a bit stronger. There’s also a large seating area under cover where non-skaters can watch the action in the warm.

Verdict

A truly enjoyable Christmas experience for the whole family all taking place in a beautiful setting. Yes, it’s a bit pricey but well worth the money for a festive treat and something the children will be raving about until next year. The rink is open for sessions right through until January 5th 2020. Book it while you can!

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