Less than a year since it fully opened, the Streatham Leisure and Ice centre is proving a great hit with some 400,000 visitors already. Ice skating’s proving particularly popular with 120,000 casual visitors to the rink, 550 pupils currently on the Learn to Skate programme and almost 500 pupils from local schools attending weekly skating lessons . Seven year old Alexandra Snowdon became the youngest ever skater to enter the British National Ice Skating Championships, which was won by Streatham’s Jessica Marjot.
A survey of users carried out during September and October produced some very positive comments about the centre, instructors and other staff and a growing demand for its activities ranging from ice skating to swimming, yoga and gym sessions.
The survey, which is being analysed in detail, provides a snapshot of impressions. People said they feel lucky to have such a facility in Streatham in a new, well-designed, airy building. Many commented on friendly instructors and teachers, good equipment and welcomed the 6am gym opening. The ice rink is very popular with a lot of competition for sessions and ice hockey matches, particularly when the Redskins are playing, attract many people. Streatham has one of the largest youth hockey provisions with over 150 registered players.
More than three quarters of those who took part in the survey were satisfied with the centre overall, however there were concerns raised about queues, the ‘fast track’ kiosks and reception service generally. People wanted reassurance that regular and proper maintenance would keep the centre and equipment up to scratch and Lambeth council is working with GLL to take some of these practical measures.. Some residents suggested a review of fees, particularly where people just used the centre for one activity.
Cllr Jane Edbrooke, Cabinet member for Neighbourhoods said; “ We knew Streatham’s new ice and leisure centre would be popular but to see this many people using it in under a year is fantastic. The feedback from the survey will help improve services but overall it’s a resounding vote of approval and a credit to the staff .”
Work is currently underway to improve the skate hire area, provide crèche facilities and more activities for under-fives .