A COUPLE got the chance to realise their dream of getting trained to ice skate by champion Robin Cousins and Dancing On Ice coach Mark Naylor.

The figure skating supremos spent yesterday morning teaching Brighton-based couple Darren Fell, 48, and Clare Devlin, 42, at the Royal Pavilion Ice Rink.

The lucky couple bid for the opportunity to take part in an exclusive ice skating session at an auction held by local children’s charity the Starr Trust.

Entrepreneur Mr Fell said: “It has been a brilliant experience and we are both very proud to be doing this and also helping the charity.

“I was just trying to stay on my feet.

“The first thing I said to Robin is that I felt free, it is just a beautiful feeling being on the ice.

“Clare had a permanent Cheshire cat grin from ear to ear the whole time.

“What I wanted to do is accelerate the momentum of people bidding for the experiences on offer at the auction.”

His partner Ms Devlin, an interior designer, said: “It was challenging for me with limited body strength and we haven’t skated for around 30 years apart from when we came two weeks ago for a little practice.

“We got lucky today with the weather. It was just really good and they are both such great teachers.

“When we were spinning around together I was looking into Mark’s eyes to keep our balance and it was very fun to experience that.

“I think we will definitely take up more skating.”

The couple put in a bid of just under £500 to win the chance to spend the morning skating in wintry conditions.

Mr Cousins, who is the main patron of the Starr Trust, said it is all about getting into a rhythm on the ice and relaxing while skating to get a natural flow.

The figure skating Olympic gold medallist said: “It is wonderful to impart information and talk about stuff not to do with skating while on the ice and then you relax into it and enjoy it a lot more.

“It is really good to see them both having a lovely time and it is always nice to introduce people to something you love and have done all your life.

“We just have to make them feel as comfortable as possible and you see them really coming on as a skating pair. It was just great.”

Trish Starr, founder of the charity which gives grants to disadvantaged children, organised the auction at the Hilton Brighton Metropole.

Ms Starr said: “The boys gave up their very precious time to come and do this which is just brilliant.

“It is just absolutely phenomenal for us. They are both so supportive.

“They are both working on huge projects at the moment.

“I think it was the couple’s dream to do this and it has been wonderful to watch.”