Altrincham Ice Dome can be a great way to pass a few hours, provided you time your visit correctly. Don't visit here during the school holidays, as the queues are literally out of the door!
The ice rink is a great addition to Altrincham, as there aren't many of them in the Manchester area! It is fairly cheap to enter approximately £4 including skate hire.
Inside, the rink could do with a lick of paint. It is a little run down and worse for wear. The skates that are for hire are quite modern in design, which is reassuring to know you aren't skating around on 30-year-old skates! There is no real café inside the rink, which is a shame, just various vending machines selling cheap coffee and overpriced soft drinks.
The car park outside is pay and display and also used by the nearby train station. This can result in the car park being very full, and parking around the area is limited.
We had high hopes for this place, Ice Rinks are few and far between where we live so we were happy to drive to get here. Deeside Ice Rink was further away for us so we thought we'd try Altrincham.
First time ice skating since a trip to Deeside with school as a teen.
We went on a sunday at approx 12. I was shocked that it cost £9.50 ( about £7 of that being boot hire ).. we thought that was quite steep. Clearly Dancing on Ice has made rinks think they can up prices and people of course will pay the prices.
Car park is pay and display, but free on sunday so that was ok. I can imagine on very busy days parking spaces might be in short supply.
As soon as we arrived they told us that the ice was going to be cleaned or something like that so it wasn't worth getting on the ice yet, and that it takes about 20 mins 30 mins to do. We'd already put our skates on so we tottered to the cafe for a coffee to pass some time.
Was cold standing still to be honest. There are a couple of little heaters above head height ( only spotted about 4 in the entire place ) but didn't really give any real heat out and people stood beneath them most of the time, so no chance of getting near. When the ice cleaning process was done the ice had gone from a frosty white layer to wet sheer ice. Probably good for very good skaters, but terrifying for newbies.. it makes it a hell of a lot more slippy. The amount of people of all ages falling over was ridiculous in the first 20 mins after the wetting of the ice had been done.
Once on the ice we were unhappy to find that there was barely anything to hold on too. In ice rinks there is normally a thick wooden barrier all the way round, this barrier has tall perspex on the top of it which leaves you with about a centimetre of what was the barrier to put your finger tips on for balance.
So no real grip, no safety bar to grab just in case, and more annoyingly, nothing to use as leverage to push yourself off to get some speed to start trying to skate properly or dodge around the tons of people all desperately trying to clutch on to a barrier that wasn't there anymore!
This rink REALLY does need to get a the wooden barrier back to being accessible to hold on to if need be.
It put us off a lot and we are now planning to go to another rink instead.
We were not the only ones complaining about this.
Staff giving out skates to hire didn't seem to be able to answer any of my questions about the rink, both seemed to have half a brain cell between them, also scuffed my own boots when they shoved them in the shoe hole.
afternoon is very busy so i'd recommend morning time, and before the 'ice cleaning/wetting' process if you are a beginner :-)
Rink overall looks tired, and in need of a revamp. looked like it was 20 years old and never been re painted.
Cafe was as bad, food looked a bit lame and the coffee wasn't very nice.
not very impressed with the place, price, staff or the lack of barrier to hold.. but enjoyed ice skating and will go again ( to a different rink )
Home of the Manchester Phoenix Ice Hockey team playing in the EPL. Games on Sunday mostly at 1730. Good value, with a family ticket costing similar to 1 adult ticket to a premier league football match. The sport is exciting and family focussed. Been a season ticket holder this year and have used the rink for my sons skating practice to. love it.
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