Our ice rink is cool ... and our lights switch-on was the bright­est ever

Midweek Visiter - - Southport Bid -

BY the time you read this col­umn the con­struc­tion of our open air ice rink will be well un­der way.

It marks a change from pre­vi­ous years when our ice rinks were un­der­cover.

This year we or­gan­is­ing the ice rink as a joint funded ini­tia­tive with Sefton Coun­cil to help make Christ­mas in Southport that ex­tra bit spe­cial.

We took the de­ci­sion to do away with the mar­quee in or­der to cre­ate a more at­mo­spheric ex­pe­ri­ence.

And, yes, we know that by do­ing so we would be sub­ject to the weather.

That said, most ice rinks across the coun­try are open to the el­e­ments be­cause noth­ing quite beats the ex­pe­ri­ence of skat­ing in the fresh air.

The rink will be with us un­til the end of the school hol­i­days.

Ad­vance ticket sales are avail­able from the Visit Southport web­site at www.vis­it­south­port.com.

And then along­side the ice rink Sefton Coun­cil will be in­stalling some Christ­mas chalets sell­ing fes­tive food and drink.

We’ve had very good feed­back for our Christ­mas lights’ switchon.

The pride that peo­ple had in our town dur­ing the event was self-ev­i­dent with lots of pos­i­tive com­ments on­line and made in per­son.

Crowd num­bers for the ac­tual switch-on were es­ti­mated at 9,000.

Many of those came from across Mersey­side and Lan­cashire thanks to an ef­fec­tive dig­i­tal and so­cial me­dia mar­ket­ing cam­paign.

We doubt that Southport has ever ex­pe­ri­enced a Christ­mas cam­paign on such a scale ever be­fore. A spec­tac­u­lar switch-on, open air ice rink, food and drink chalets... all backed up with a strong dig­i­tal and so­cial me­dia mar­ket­ing cam­paign.

How­ever, it may well be the last that Southport sees.

Christ­mas 2019 will be de­pen­dent on whether the BID gets voted back in next year be­cause with­out the money that we raise there are no other fund­ing op­tions that we’re aware off that could pos­si­bly de­liver the same range of ac­tiv­ity.

CEO Hugh Evans

An ice rink is re­turn­ing to Southport

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