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Memories of Twickenham Riverside funded by HLF

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Heritage Lottery Grant
‘Most Famous Ice Rink in the World’ memories project awarded Lottery grant

The Richmond Environmental Information Centre (REIC) is pleased to announce that the charity has been awarded a Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) grant of nearly £30,000 to carry out a Memories project about Richmond Ice Rink, which closed down in 1992.

Known as the “Most Famous Ice Rink in the World” the rink was not only a world centre of excellence for ice skating but was also part of the fabric of the social life for many in the borough. It seems almost impossible to mention Richmond Rink, either locally or further afield, without hearing “I skated there”.

The £29,300 grant will enable The Most Famous Ice Rink in the World project to concentrate on the memories of former skaters at Richmond Rink, producing a video, a book, and a collection of photographs which will be available on a dedicated website and at project exhibitions.

As well as world-class skaters, members of the Royal family and the Richmond Ice Hockey team – the ice rink saw countless families learn to skate and even a tradition of brides skating in their wedding dresses.

A member of the REIC said “Richmond Rink is a legend in the London Borough of Richmond and now its story will be told”.

Sue Bowers, Head of Heritage Lottery Fund London, said: “Considered by many as the spiritual home of British ice-skating, Richmond Ice Rink was an important part of the local community, and further afield. Thanks to money raised by National Lottery players’ personal accounts and memories of the social hub will be told for the first time.”

Riverside War Memorial

On 19th June 1944 during the Second World War a doodlebug fell on the corner of Water Lane and the Embankment in Twickenham bouncing around 37 feet destroying Gotham Villas. The six people living in the house died in the explosion and by the riverside four others, including Frederick Hammerton, were also killed.

The REIC committee has decided to raise funds for a memorial on the riverside and this is being discussed with the Council.

There will be various fundraising events to further this cause.