Natural History Museum: say goodbye to the iconic ice skating rink

The popular ice-skating rink at the Natural History Museum is celebrating its last year as plans for an Urban Nature Project have been unveiled.

After providing Londoners and tourists with Christmas fun for the past 16 years, the space will now be dedicated to improving the city’s biodiversity.

The Urban Nature Project will cover five acres and offer an accessible green space where people can interact with nature.

But for now, visitors can still enjoy the fun of ice-skating around the beautifully lit rink outside one of London’s most iconic museums.

Check out what people think about the attraction, and their reaction that the skating rink is closing…

Are ice skating rinks bad for the environment?

Skating rinks have a large carbon footprint, with lots of energy needed to maintain the cold temperatures to keep ice from melting, says InHabitat.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the greenhouse gases created by skating rinks is equal to about 110,000 cars on the road each year.

While this includes rinks created for professional sports purposes, the flurry of ice-skating arenas that pops up around Christmas time is not likely to help.

With all the environmental concerns surrounding outdoor skating rinks, it’s likely that this new wildlife project can provide a greener solution to the space outside the museum.

Environmental effects of ice skating

Graphic: Sarah Chaffey. This classic Christmas past time may have an unknown environmental impact.

Where shall I go ice skating next year?

If you still want to celebrate the festive season with ice skating in the coming years, you can check out some of London’s other outdoor rinks.

Gizdem Albayrak from Voice of London recently visited Canary Wharf, check out what she got up to…

@voiceoflondon##fyp ##viral ##thingstodoinlondon ##canarywharf♬ Coming for You (feat. A1 x J1) – SwitchOTR

Looking for other festive things to do in London? 

Photos, Video and interviews: Catherine Chu | Words and graphic: Sarah Chaffey | TikTok:  Gizdem Albayrak | Subbing: Megan Milstead

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