Cheltenham’s popular ice rink returns for another magical festive season


Friday 17 November 2023 to Monday 1 January 2024

Venue: Imperial Gardens, Cheltenham

Cheltenham’s popular ice rink returns for another magical festive season

The countdown is on – the most magical time of the year is fast approaching, and where better to get into the festive spirit than right in the heart of Regency Cheltenham. From Friday 17 November 2023 to Monday 1 January 2024, Cheltenham’s Ice Rink returns to the magnificent surroundings of Imperial Gardens.

The under-cover ice rink will be open daily (excluding 25th December) from 10am until late, offering locals and visitors of all ages the chance to hit the ice. Whether you’re a seasoned pro or have never set foot on a rink before, the fun, inclusive and fully wheelchair-accessible ice rink can be enjoyed by all, plus there will also be relaxed skating sessions for SEND visitors, and discounts for school and group bookings.

But that’s not all Cheltenham has in store for the festive season! On Thursday 16 November, the town will be set aglow with thousands of twinkling lights and live performances at the town centre Christmas Launch, followed by two further festive events - The Brewery Quarter’s Christmas Launch Party and Pittville Pump Room’s light switch on – both events taking place on Saturday 25 November.

No festive season is complete without a beloved panto! From 24 November – 7 January, The Everyman Theatre will run hundreds of performances of its new panto, Mother Goose (featuring family-favourite, Tweedy the Clown MBE) and Cheltenham Playhouse will delight fans with a high-flying adventure – Aladdin, from the 15 – 31 December.

The ever-popular GWSR Santa specials will return again this year from late November up until Christmas. Take a magical ride on a steam train from Cheltenham racecourse station to the North Pole (Winchcombe Station) to see Santa’s Grotto and the singing penguins, meet Santa and receive presents and goodie bags with help from his elves, whilst adults can enjoy warm mince pies and mulled wine.

Or why not combine a visit to the ice rink with The Christmas Meeting (formerly known as The International) - a popular two-day horse-racing meet at Cheltenham Racecourse – due to take place on 15 - 16 December. Under 18s go free and, new for this year, Saturday will feature a Christmas Extravaganza themed race day, including Santa’s Grotto and Workshop (free entry to all Club/Tattersalls racegoers) and Got2Sing Choir will entertain with cheerful Christmas carols across the weekend.

There are plenty of opportunities to enjoy browsing for Christmas gifts, with leading market operator Cotswold Markets bringing two markets to Cheltenham’s Promenade – the Christmas Gift Market from 16 – 19 November, and a traditional Arts & Crafts Christmas Market from 14 – 23 December. The popular Suffolk’s Christmas Market returns 26 November, featuring Santa and festive carols, plus the Artisan Markets at Pittville Pump Room are returning to the iconic venue from 24 – 26 November.

Helen Mole, Head of Place and Inward Investment at Cheltenham Borough Council, said: “We’re thrilled to bring back the popular ice rink to the heart of Cheltenham this festive season. Come along and celebrate Christmas with friends and family in the beautiful Regency town, with one of the regions largest covered ice rinks….perfect whatever the weather.”

Tickets can be booked for the Cheltenham Ice Rink here -

To find out more about Christmas in Cheltenham, see


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