Planet Ice Updates

Friday 12th March 2021 | 14:00

Planet Ice Roadmap back to Ice Skating

On the morning of February 23rd Planet Ice met with its compliance department as a result of the Government Announcement on February 22nd and from that meeting determined that we would be opening on April 12th for U18’s Educational Activity. From that Planet Ice began the process of a roadmap back to ice skating immediately which resulted with the online sales for Skate Excellence, Hockey Excellence, Patch and Training ice for U18’s going live from the start of March.

Whilst Planet Ice will continue to be in discussions alongside IRMA with the DCMS – it was clear from the announcement on Feb 22nd what would be possible for our skaters from April 12th and also from the secondary date of May 17th. It is Planet Ice priority to get skaters on the ice as safely and as quickly as possible. All of our skaters have suffered enough over the previous lockdowns, this has had a direct impact on their mental health and well being and it is absolutely key that we offer all of our skaters clarity over the roadmap as soon as we possibly could.

You can book any of our Learn to Courses including the new Skate Excellence levels 9 and 10, Patch and Private Hire as a provision for Under 18’s at planet-ice.co.uk.


Friday 5th March 2021 | 14:00

Planet Ice Reopening Update

Planet Ice are Happy to welcome you back skating from Monday 12th April.

As per the latest government announcement, Planet Ice will be re-opening to Lessons, Patch, and Private Hire for under 18s only from Monday 12th April, should the roadmap not be delayed.

For anyone with an existing booking, you will be personally contacted by your rink over the next few weeks with an update on your course dates and to rearrange new dates that are convenient to you.

REOPENING UPDATE

Tuesday 5th January 2021 | 10:00

Rescheduling Your Booking

Once the government gives an indication as to when we can re-open, we will contact all customers with existing bookings to move their booking to a date and time that meets your convenience.


Monday 4th January 2021 | 21:00

National Lockdown Announced

Due to the Government Announcement 20:00 January 4th, all Planet Ice rinks will now close from midnight on Monday 4th January 2021. Planet Ice are extremely disappointed that those rinks that were still operational under Tier 3 will now also have to close but understand the importance of protecting the NHS and saving lives which has to take precedence at this time.

We ask that customer enquiries are made via our official social media platforms as rinks are now closed and there will be no one available in the rink to deal with your questions. We aim to deal with all enquiries within 24 hours or receipt. We will be contacting customers with Skate Excellence and Hockey Excellence course bookings over the next few days with an update to course dates.


Thursday 31st December 2020

Tier 4 Regulations Update

Whilst undertaking our due diligence earlier today, Planet Ice became aware of changes in the COVID regulations which were published yesterday evening on the .gov website, which removed the opportunity for organisations to provide Out of School activities to young people who are not able to attend school due to the extended school closures that the Government announced yesterday. This means that the Planet Ice rinks situated in Tier 4 (Blackburn, Altrincham, Cannock, Uttoxeter, Solihull, Coventry, Milton Keynes, Peterborough, Hemel Hempstead, Gosport, Basingstoke, and Gillingham ) will, regretfully, not be able to open for Public Skate, Training (Patch), Skate Excellence, Hockey Excellence, Ice Penguin, or Learn to Skate in 3 days courses and we apologise if this creates any issues in relation to childcare.

*Note: Currently, Planet Ice in Widnes and Leeds can operate under Tier 3 exemptions for those people under 18 before August 30th 2020 or for people with a disability and therefore extended patch sessions and Learn to Skate courses will be available for those customers within that exemption. These opportunities to skate can be booked online at planet-ice.co.uk.

Whilst we appreciate this is a change from yesterday (30th December 2020), unfortunately we have to respond to any changes to government guidance in a timely manner and as information becomes available. The next formal Government review date is January 13th 2021 however we want to assure our customers that Planet Ice will continue to remain responsive to Government Restrictions and Guidelines with a primary aim to get you back skating again and we will continue to ensure we maximise any opportunities that allow us to do so.


Wednesday 30th December 2020

Planet Ice to support Parents and Skaters in Tier 4

After a review of the changes in Tier 4 regulations Planet Ice will continue with Patch Activities and its Educational Activities i.e. Skate Excellence, Hockey Excellence, and Ice Penguin activities on the basis of complying with the DCMS advice on out of school Sessions defined as follows:-

“Providers who run community activities, holiday clubs, breakfast or after-school clubs, tuition and other out-of-school provision for children are now able to open for both outdoor and indoor provision provided that they follow the protective measures set out by government in this guidance.”

What is an out-of-school setting?

“Out-of-school settings are organisations or individuals that provide tuition, training, instruction or activities to children (those who were under the age of 18 on 31 August 2020) in England without their parents’ or carers’ supervision…”

These will be coach supervised activities that comply with current Government Guidelines for people with disabilities as well as young people who were under the age of 18 on 31st August 2020. For availability please consult with your local Planet Ice rink and booking can be made online at planet-ice.co.uk.


Wednesday 30th December 2020

Skate Excellence Learn To Skate Update

Skate Excellence Learn to Skate programme will be extending their learning pathway by introducing 2 new levels to the existing syllabus.

We will introduce levels 9 and 10 to provide the skater with a greater skill set to improve control and stability.

Further to these 2 new levels, we are also introducing the next stage of learning called ‘Skate Excellence Advance’.

‘Skate Excellence Advance’ covers all the aspects needed to pass the SKATE UK STAR criteria plus additional exercises to prepare the skater for competition.


Wednesday 30th December 2020

Planet Ice response to recent Tier 4 changes for Skating Rinks.

In response to concerns raised via social networking regarding Tier 4 regulations and how it affects Skating Rinks, Planet Ice feels it is important to note that we received notification of amendments to the Tier 4 restrictions, including amendments to the legislation placed on Skating Rinks in particular, and responded in the best interests of our ice users.

Having read the legislation which was updated over the Christmas period, and notably The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (All Tiers and Obligations of Undertakings) (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2020 (1611) – https://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2020/1611/made/data.pdf it would appear that there has been an amendment to the legislation which would allow U18’s and disabled people to access indoor sports facilities for certain activities. This amendment was laid before parliament after the advice on the Sport England website was published. Please note there is an amendment 1646 which added the words skating rinks in relation to 12e.

As a result of these amendments and changes Planet Ice felt it was important to respond to the changes immediately. We have had an overwhelming reaction from Coaches and Skaters on the run up to Christmas concerned about their development and their income as a result of Skating rinks being closed due to the Tier 4 restrictions and the amendment would give huge relief to those concerned. We are a 365 day a year operation and if legislation changes that impacts our skaters and their coaches then we will respond immediately – we do not close for Christmas and review amendments and changes from January 4th onwards as other organisations have chosen to do.

Our primary aim is to put people on the ice and if we receive notification that Government legislation now states that we can do this under certain conditions then we will respond straight away. Equally, if further restrictions or changes to this latest legislation dictate the buildings will have to close again, then as before we will respond immediately.

We have consulted with our legal team regarding our response to the legislation and they have agreed that our actions are correct. We are a responsive organisation dictated by government legislation and have acted within the best interest of our skaters and coaches at an unprecedented time.

Finally, we have contacted the NGB’s over these changes in legislation over the last few days to make them aware of how we intend to respond and received no response from them to our calls or emails. It is not the role of NGBs to change or dictate to Ice Rinks and their operators how and when they can respond to government legislation that affect our industry.

We do thank the Ice Rink Managers Association for being available via calls and email and the support they have given. These changes could have made a huge difference to skaters and coaches all over the country and not just those within Planet Ice rinks and there is a view that given these unprecedented times we should be looking to NGBs to be more responsive to change whether it be Christmas Eve, New Year’s Eve, or any national holiday period.

May we wish all ice users a Happy New Year.

Heath Rhodes
Chief Operations Officer – Planet Ice


Tuesday 29th December 2020

Tier 4 Lockdown Restrictions

Over the Christmas period, the COVID legislation (https://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2020/1611/made/data.pdf) has been amended. The amendments allow U18’s and disabled people in Tier 3 & 4 locations to access indoor sports facilities for certain activities and specifically identifies skating rinks in a further amendment (https://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2020/1646/contents/made).

These amendments have been laid before parliament after the advice on the Sport England website was published and we have written to Sport England to ask them to reflect the amendments in their guidance.

As a result ice skating rinks currently in Tier 3 & 4 locations will now be able to undertake U18’s patch training, U18’s ice hockey training, U18’s Skate Excellence, U18’s Hockey Excellence, Ice Penguin courses, and U18’s Learn to Skate in 3 and 5 day from Wednesday, December 30th until further notice.

If you have any questions, please private message us on our official Planet Ice Facebook page.


Wednesday 23rd December 2020

Basingstoke Tier 4 Lockdown Restrictions

Due to the further government announcement on Wednesday 23rd December regarding the tier 4 restrictions, it is with regret and disappointment that Planet Ice Basingstoke will have to close it’s doors from 00:01 AM on Boxing Day until further review.

This means that we can no longer accommodate Public Skating, Skate Excellence, Hockey Excellence, Ice Penguin, Learn to skate in 3 days, and Patch Sessions from midnight 00:01 AM on Boxing Day

All other rinks in tier 3 remain unchanged and Widnes are still available for Public Ice Skating as well all other sessions.


Saturday 19th December 2020

COVID-19 Tier 4 Lockdown Restrictions

Due to the further government announcement on Saturday 19th December regarding the tier 4 restrictions placed on Planet Ice rinks in Peterborough, Milton Keynes, Hemel Hempstead, Gillingham, and Gosport, it is with regret and disappointment that we have to close our doors until further review.

This means that we can no longer accommodate Skate Excellence, Hockey Excellence, Ice Penguin, Learn to skate in 3 days, and Patch Sessions from midnight Saturday 19th December for courses/sessions taking place From Sunday 20th December.

All other rinks in tier 3 remain unchanged and Basingstoke and Widnes are still available for Public Ice Skating as well all other sessions.


Thursday 17th December 2020

COVID-19 Tier 3 Lockdown Restrictions

Due to the Government Announcement on Thursday 17th December, most of our rinks will now remain closed for public ice skating from midnight on Friday 19th December, excluding Basingstoke & Widnes which will remain open over Christmas. Planet Ice are extremely disappointed that we will not be able to bring Christmas to the general public at this festive time. All existing bookings will be moved to the nearest and most convenient time for the customer once we are allowed to re-open to the public. Until then we would like to take this opportunity to wish you all a Merry Christmas.

We ask that customer enquiries are made via our social networks as those rinks in Tier 3, are now closed and there will be no one available in the rink to deal with your questions. We aim to deal with all enquiries within 24 hours. Planet Ice will also be sending an email to all customers who have future bookings for rinks that will be closed.

All patch and learn to skate lessons will continue as normal in all tier 3 rinks for under 18s only.

We appreciate this will come as a great disappointment to some of our customers. If you have any questions, please private message us on our official Planet Ice Facebook page.


Wednesday 2th December 2020

Learn To Skate Update

We are pleased to inform you that following the recent government announcement regarding Planet Ice rinks that are currently in Tier 3, we have now been given clearance to re-open up for the Skate Excellence, Hockey Excellence, 4:2:1 and Show & Skate supervised sessions from Friday 4th December (with the exception of the Adults Skate Excellence and Show & Skate sessions).

Unfortunately Learn to Skate Ice Penguin lessons will remain cancelled until January 2nd 2021.

Based on current government guidance, these Skate Excellence Activities will only be available for those under 18. Unfortunately we will remain closed for adults.

The remaining 3 week lessons in December will run on the following dates:
Friday lessons 4th, 11th & 18th Dec
Saturday lessons 5th, 12th & 19th Dec
Sunday lessons 6th, 13th & 20th Dec
Wednesday lessons 9th, 16th & 23rd Dec
Tuesday lessons – 8TH, 15TH, 22ND & 29th Dec (Uttoxeter & Cannock only).

Only one adult spectator per family will be allowed to access the rink to accompany the child participating in the lessons (please do not bring siblings who are not skating to the patch sessions).

Please notify your rink as soon as possible to confirm your attendance, if for any reason you cannot attend these dates we can offer you a rollover to the start of the new term starting January 2nd 2021.

There will be no lessons scheduled on the following dates in December.

No lessons on the 24th, 25th, 26th, 27th December.


Wednesday 2th December 2020

Patch Update

Following the recent government announcement regarding ice rinks that are currently in Tier 3 locations, we have now been given clearance to open up for Patch. This means that, based on current government guidance, we will be able to open from Thursday 3rd December for Patch for those under 18. Unfortunately, we will remain closed for adults, with the exception of adults who are registered as inclusive skaters at their chosen rink.

Only one adult spectator per family will be allowed to access the rink to accompany the child using Patch (please do not bring siblings who are not skating to the patch sessions). The patch session must be supervised by a coach at all times and any sessions that a coach is not present will be cancelled.

Due to the short notice given by the government unfortunately we have missed the cut off date for the reinstatement of your membership. We will have to continue with the freeze on your membership however your membership will be automatically resume from the 1st January 2021.

We will however be taking a December monthly payment of £65.00 at the rink for your patch members only (children).

We are continuously monitoring the situation and in talks with the DCMS and will keep you updated on any developments relating to your Patch as soon as we have them.

In the meantime, please stay safe, and please stay active. Thank you for your ongoing support, it means a lot to us.


Monday 30th November 2020

COVID-19 Local Lockdown Restrictions

Planet Ice are pleased to announce that rinks in tier 1 & 2 locations will be re-opening from Wednesday 2nd December, this includes; Basingstoke, Gosport, Hemel Hempstead, Milton Keynes, Peterborough and Widnes. Our Winter Learn to Skate courses will continue as they were before lockdown and Public skate will be in place based on guidelines issued by both the government and associated governing bodies in Ice Sports.

Skate Excellence courses, Hockey Excellence courses, Ice Card and Patch memberships will resume once our rinks re-open.

Any customers who have existing public skate bookings that were due to take place over the lockdown period, will be contacted in the next few days with their new date and time. These dates will take place in our first week of our rinks opening (only the rinks in tier 1 & 2) if you wish to change your existing booking to a date that suits you, please contact us on our official Planet Ice Facebook page. and we will be happy to help.

We would encourage our customers to pre-book via our online booking system for both public skate sessions and learn to skate courses, these are available to book via planet-ice.co.uk. We recommend customers take advantage of pre-booking their sessions to avoid disappointment on the initial days of opening.

For those buildings that currently remain closed, we can only say to our customers that we share your disappointment and look forward to seeing the doors re-open soon. We will ensure we keep you up to date with any changes in the tier system as it happens and thank you to everyone over the recent months for your support. We look forward to welcoming you all back onto the ice, in our skate safe environment.

In the meantime please ensure you use the social channels for all communications whilst we prepare those buildings for re-opening.

Before you visit, don’t forget to visit our Skate Safe page


Monday 2nd November 2020

COVID-19 Lockdown Restrictions
Planet Ice will remain open until Wednesday 4th November with our last public skating session being, on Wednesday night. Our team will be in contact in regards to bookings made from Thursday onwards.

Skate Excellence courses, Hockey Excellence courses, Ice Cards, and Patch memberships will automatically be frozen and will resume once we re-open.

We want to say a big thank you for your support over the recent months and we look forward to welcoming you back on the ice, in our skate safe environment.

We appreciate this will come as a great disappointment for all our customers. If you have any questions, please private message us on our official Planet Ice Facebook page.

Please note, there will be no staff within the rinks from Thursday onwards to take phone calls or emails directly to the rink box office.


Wednesday 2nd September 2020

Planet Ice Altrincham Update…
Planet Ice are devastated by today’s government announcement regarding restrictions in the Manchester area which means that Planet Ice Altrincham has to cease operations until further notice. We appreciate customers will be saddened by this news and we want to assure customers that all bookings will be honoured when we are able to reopen and we apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.

Unfortunately it is outside of our control. We will keep customers notified of any updates on the re-opening via our social networking and website at planet-ice.co.uk.


Tuesday 1st September 2020

Planet Ice Altrincham Reopens
The announcement you have all been waiting for…

Planet Ice Altrincham will be reopening their doors tomorrow from 10:30am! You can now book online for Wednesday, Thursday & Friday public skating sessions this week by following the below link;

Book Online Here

Customers with existing bookings will be contacted in the next 24 hours with your new dates, which will be from Saturday 5th September.
This includes public skating sessions, patch ice, and lessons.


Planet Ice Refunds Update
The government has now announced the opening of ice rinks from Saturday August 15th. This is great news for all Planet Ice customers. Obviously with such a short turnaround time we will work towards giving the customers the best ice skating experience possible for this weekend.

Our online booking system is now open. iceaccount.co.uk/ice-skating/

Please do not call the rink over the weekend for refunds. Due to social distancing guidelines, we will not be able to deal with this provision at this time. Please do not call the rink as we are presently on skeleton staff dealing with arrivals. We will specify days in the week for the refund process and contact those affected by email.


Friday 14th August 2020

Coach & Patch Update

Any existing bookings made on the coach portal or via the Patch online booking system, your booking(s) will be moved 14 days ahead from the original start date that you will see on your existing booking confirmation, for example, if you had a booked ice time with us on the 1st August at 6:00am, your booking will automatically be moved to 15th August at 6:00am. If you wish to move your existing bookings to another date or time please contact your the rink you have booked with directly. You can find their contact details at planet-ice.co.uk


Friday 14th August 2020

Planet Ice Altrincham Update

Unfortunately we have just been informed that due to the continued lockdown restrictions in Greater Manchester, Planet Ice Altrincham will not be allowed to open this weekend which means we will remain closed. We will make a further announcement next week regarding the opening of Altrincham Ice Rink, but we hope to welcome back our Manchester customers very soon.


Friday 14th August 2020

Planet Ice Opens Saturday August 15th
The government has now announced the opening of ice rinks from Saturday August 15th. This is great news for all Planet Ice customers. Obviously, with such a short turnaround time we will work towards giving the customers the best ice skating experience possible for this weekend.

PLEASE NOTE BLACKBURN ICE RINK IS STILL NOT ALLOWED TO OPEN DUE TO LOCAL LOCKDOWN. THERE WILL BE A FURTHER UPDATE ON WEDNESDAY 19TH AUGUST

All customers who have existing bookings will be contacted today (Friday 14th August) and will be given a new valid date. If you are unable to attend your new date, instructions will be provided in the email telling you how to move your existing booking. To anyone who has booked Patch & Private Hire, you will also be contacted today to confirm your new date.

We would like to thank our customers for their patience and understanding over the last few months and we look forward to seeing you all back on the ice.

Our online booking system is now open >> https://iceaccount.co.uk/ice-skating/


Tuesday 11th August 2020
Planet Ice have been working with the governing bodies for ice sports, the Department of Culture, Media, and Sport, and the Ice Rinks Managers Association to ensure we get clarity over when ice rinks can re-open. According to the statement made by the Prime Minister on Friday July 31st,

“On Saturday 1 August, you’ll remember, we had hoped to reopen in England a number of higher risk settings that had remained closed. Today, I am afraid we are postponing these changes for at least a fortnight.

That means that, until 15 August at the earliest:

Casinos, bowling alleys, ice skating rinks and remaining close contact services must remain closed. Indoor performances will not resume.”

As a result, Planet Ice along with the others affected, have to remain closed until further notice. We do appreciate the support and positive comments made regarding the current situation and equally appreciate people’s frustrations too.

Planet Ice have played a very active role since the decision was made last Friday, by providing evidence to influence, and hopefully speed up, the government’s decision on allowing coaches, competitive skaters, hockey teams and recreational skaters to return to the ice. Whilst the feedback from the Department of Culture, Media and Sport has been positive, they have been clear that the decision to allow rinks to reopen is for the Prime Minister’s office to make and that any decision may not be made until Thursday or Friday this week.

We appreciate that customers have purchased sessions and as a result of the changes, had those session cancelled – in some cases twice now. Some have been happy to reserve their place, and others we are refunding. With this in mind we will only release further sessions for sale once we have a firm indication as to when our rinks will re-open and the moment this happens we will open up our booking system. This could be with very minimal notice so please check our social networks and website at planet-ice.co.uk regularly.

Planet Ice is committed to getting our customers back skating and we will do whatever we can during these very challenging times to make that happen.

Heath Rhodes
Chief Operations Officer – Planet Ice.


Wednesday 5th August 2020
Following the disappointing news that ice rinks could not open on the 1st August as originally planned, Planet Ice has been contacted by customers in regard to products purchased in anticipation of skaters being able to return to skating.

Planet Ice can confirm that purchases for public ice skating and exclusive hire will be moved to a more convenient date or refunded. We would ask for customers understanding as we are currently operating with a skeleton staff, due to the staff at all Planet Ice rinks being returned to furlough. This means we are limited in our ability to respond to queries.

We thank all our skaters for their support and understanding and we look forward to welcoming you all back to our rinks as soon as the government allow.

Heath Rhodes
Chief Operations Officer – Planet Ice.


Monday 3rd August 2020
After the Government Announcement on Friday July 31st Planet Ice would like to take this opportunity to thank our customers for their patience and understanding at this time. Unfortunately, we have no power to control or affect the decision made to keep rinks closed.

We understand this news has been met with disappointment and frustration and Planet Ice share your emotions at this time. All of our staff have worked so hard over the last few days to get the buildings ready for the opening on Saturday 1st August and I know I speak for everyone in our industry when I say how upset we are by this decision.

The Prime Minister has indicated that we could provisionally re-open in two weeks’ time on Saturday 15th August and Planet Ice will work towards that date. We will regularly post information and updates on our website and social media channels to keep everyone informed.

We understand that people have purchased skating and we would like to assure those customers that we will honour all admissions for a future date. You can contact us via our social media messenger platforms on Facebook or Twitter.

Please be patient with us at this time as we work towards the new date where we can re-open. Please note we are dealing with a high amount of messages currently and only a small team are managing all messages received across our Planet Ice social media channels.


Friday 31st July 2020
After the Government Announcement earlier today Planet Ice have to regrettably inform all our customers that the easing restrictions have been removed and we are no longer allowed to open from Saturday 1st August.

We understand this will be met with disappointment and frustration and Planet Ice share your emotions at this time. All of our staff have worked so hard over the last few days to get the buildings ready for the opening on Saturday 1st August and we know we speak for everyone in our industry when we say how upset we are by this decision.

The Prime Minister has indicated that we could provisionally re-open in two weeks’ time on Saturday 15th August and Planet Ice will work towards that date. We will regularly post information and updates on our website and social media channels to keep everyone informed.

The Government announcement has come as a surprise to all of us. We understand that people have purchased ice skating and we will ensure we deal with all customer concerns as quickly as possible. A further announcement will be made by us regarding moving bookings and we will honour all admissions for a future date and where relevant refunds. We will release a further statement after Monday 3rd August.

Planet Ice thanks you for all your patience so far and we will work towards the new date where we can re-open.

For updates, please follow us on our social media channels;

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