Huge ice rink to open in Kensington Palace grounds before Christmas


A huge ice rink is set to be installed in the grounds of Kensington Palace this Christmas.

Kensington and Chelsea council approved plans for the festive fair in Perks Field despite security concerns raised by the Ambassador of Finland, whose official residence is next to the site. The Russian ambassador also lives next door.

James Husband, chairman of the planning committee, said on Wednesday that councillors were supportive of the application after conditions were added “to ensure the safety and security of members of the Royal family and diplomats living nearby”.

The fence that separates the event and nearby embassies will have to be at least three metres high, the town hall added.

Up to 10,350 visitors a day are expected to flock to the Christmas fair, which will open to the public from November and run until January 2024 in the palace grounds.

It will include food and drinks stalls, fairground rides and a 2,800sqm ice rink with capacity for 750 skaters.

Kensington Palace is Prince William and Kate’s official London residence and Perks Field is used as a helicopter landing place for the Royals.

Buckingham Palace first began renting out the space a decade ago as a way to supplement the Royal households income and it has been used for a design festival and to host Burberry fashion shows in the past.

The ice rink will have capacity for 750 skaters at a time (K&C)
The ice rink will have capacity for 750 skaters at a time (K&C)

The Prince and Princess of Wales and their three children relocated to Adelaide Cottage at Windsor Castle last year.

Cllr Josh Rendall, Kensington and Chelsea’s lead member for local economy and employment, said: “It’s brilliant to have another amazing space in our borough with this new winter ice rink for everyone to enjoy.

“My hope is that this will be a real boon for local business in the lead up to Christmas and the festive season.”