Council nominated for major sports award

The champagne is on ice for Dumfries and Galloway Council as it waits to hear if it has won a top sports award.

The Council, together with partner organisation Ice Hockey UK, has been shortlisted for best Sports Event, in the Scottish Events Awards 2014, for the December 2013 Under 20s World Championship Ice Hockey, held in Dumfries.

Hosting the World Championship was a huge undertaking for the Council, and attracted competing nations from as far away as Japan and Kazakhstan. Team GB took part and were a big draw for the public, attracting large crowds and securing their status in Pool 1B for Season 2015/6 with spirited performances. The Council has subsequently earned the rights to host the Women’s World Championship at Easter 2015.

The December 2013 event was worth a minimum of £170,000 to the regional economy and saw an upsurge of interest in the sport.

Councillor Colin Smyth, the Council’s Events Champion said, “This particular tournament left many legacies for Dumfries and Galloway. It helped increase local interest in playing ice hockey and became an engrossing and absorbing competition that spectators loved. The Council is committed to an ambitious programme of support to major festivals and events in our region, to create the kind of memorable moments and live sporting drama World Championship Ice Hockey generates. This work is bearing fruit and adding to the quality of life we have here in Dumfries and Galloway.”

Andy French, General Secretary of Ice Hockey UK said, “I’m thrilled at being nominated for this prestigious award. Ice Hockey is a fabulous sport to play and watch and the team at Dumfries Ice Bowl have worked their socks off to make it open and accessible to all. The rights to host World Championship ice hockey are hard earned but the Council has definitely delivered and it is pleasing to see this recognised in the Scottish Events Awards 2014.”

The Council will find out if they have won the Award at a Gala Ceremony at Glasgow’s Marriot Hotel on October 8th. Competition for the Best Sports Award is ultra-competitive, with other nominations in the Category including two Commonwealth Games rehearsal events; the 2013 Cycling National Road Race and swimming’s Duel in the Pool.