Memories of what has been dubbed 'the most famous ice rink in the world' are shared in a new book, published to coincide with its now annual resurrection.

Richmond Ice Rink was opened on the site of a former munitions factory in Clevedon Road in 1928, and since it could boast a longer ice surface than any other indoor rink in the world, it soon became London's premier rink.

Arnold Gerschwiler, who coached numerous World, European and British champions, was both head coach and director at the rink, while Betty Callaway, who coached Olympic champions Torvill and Dean, was another who held the head coach role at Richmond.

N-ice move: Skaters at Richmond Ice Rink

Other famous names to have skated there range from the Queen herself to Second World War German foreign minister Joachim von Ribbentrop, who bought a house next to the rink when German ambassador to Britain.

It was also home to top flight ice hockey team the Richmond Flyers, but in 1992 the much-loved venue was closed and soon after demolished, to make way for luxury waterfront flats.

Although the rink had become somewhat dilapidated in its final years, it was hoped that an agreement struck between the local authority and property developers who had bought the venue would see a new rink built in the area.

Eyes down: Speed skaters at Richmond

However, a somewhat murkier deal struck between the same two parties saw this clause later removed from the planning permission, and while the flats went up, a new rink never emerged.

But there is skating in Richmond once more this winter, with a temporary rink at Strawberry Hill House, having opened for business on December 5, and remaining open until January 24, with an accompanying exhibition of photographs from the old Richmond rink.

This follows temporary rinks which have cropped up at York House two years ago and in East Twickenham last year.

Pep talk: The Richmond Flyers

Reading the book, which is titled The Most Famous Ice Rink in the World - Memories of Richmond Ice Rink, you can see just how much the place meant to many generations of not just people from Richmond, but from across the capital.

From international ice-skating stars to people who just liked to don a pair of stakes for pleasure, their voices can al be heard within its pages, and it's clear to see that the return of the rink, albeit on a temporary basis, evokes real passions in Richmond.

To book a session at Strawberry Hill House, visit, or to buy a copy of the book, visit