Today, iowskaters celebrates 10 years of reporting on the achievements of Isle of Wight ice skaters. Our first news item was coverage of the Bristol Open Competitions on 27 February 2002.
Ten years ago today, we wrote:
Four skaters from the club took part in Bristol Ice Skating Club’s open free style competitions on Wednesday 27th February 2002. The competition was the first in which competitors from the club have skated under the new grading system laid down by the National Ice Skating Association.
Thomas Eklund and Matthew Russell were placed second and third respectively in the Boys Novice competition (formerly Inter Silver level).
Gemma Marsh took second place in the competition for girls aged nine and under at Level 1 (formerly under Prelim level).”
Matt and Tom are, of course, now coaches at Planet Ice Ryde. Gemma went on to captain IW junior synchronized skating team the Wight Jewels in the 2010-11 and 2011-12 (co-captain with Izzy Coeshott) seasons. The future of Bristol rink, and indeed the future of skating in Bristol, is now in doubt as the owner plans to redevelop the site into student accommodation.
The 2002 Bristol Opens involved one other name still involved in IW skating: Mikki Graham, now in the Wight Jewels, represented Birmingham in the beginners girls aged 9 and under.
Of course, iowskaters has changed in that time too: from a hard-coded HTML site, to the current blog format that presents news far more readily; and from being the official site of the local ice skating club, to an independent news site about skating on the Isle of Wight.
Last month on 25 January the site also reached the landmark of its 100,000th unique hit from visitors.
So, happy 10th birthday to us.