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Christmas ice rink's frosty reception

PUBLISHED: 21:38 29 September 2010 | UPDATED: 11:13 14 October 2010

A 300-SQUARE metre ice rink at Islington Green as part of a five-week winter festival will not be a commercial enterprise , says the firm behind the proposal. The proposed 37-day licensed event – also featuring a Santa s grotto, 26 market stalls and a ba

A 300-SQUARE metre ice rink at Islington Green as part of a five-week winter festival "will not be a commercial enterprise", says the firm behind the proposal.

The proposed 37-day licensed event - also featuring a Santa's grotto, 26 market stalls and a bar selling mulled wine and hot toddies - has been given a resounding "bah humbug" by some residents.

But Ben Pickering, director of events firm Anything Is Possible, has moved to allay fears over noise, late opening and the proximity of the rink to Islington's war memorial.

Mr Pickering said: "It's a little ice rink with a tree in the middle on the north side of the Green with a Santa's grotto. We're not trying to make it a commercial enterprise. It's almost a Victorian Christmas festival as opposed to a more German market thing. We're looking at closing at 10pm every day. They'll be no bands - carol singing will be the only type of live music.

"The main thing to emphasise is it's not a large all-singing, all-dancing and drinking thing. We want to work with the community so everyone is happy."

Mr Pickering admitted that the festival - due to run from November 25 to January 3 - would take up most of Islington Green but said the public reaction so far had been "very positive".

Members of the public have until Monday to comment on the proposals, due before Islington Council in November.


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