WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP BRINGS FINANCIAL BOOST TO DUMFRIES

The IIHF Under-20 World Championship Division II Group A came to a conclusion in Dumfries at the weekend with Japan beating Great Britain to win the gold medal.

Korea finished second in the group and took home the silver, while GB claimed the bronze medal with three victories from their five matches.

Dumfries and Galloway Council have revealed that the week-long tournament benefited the local economy to the value of £180,000.

The tournament was the fifth World Championship to be held at Dumfries Ice Bowl in just five years.

The tournament continued the highly-successful partnership between Dumfries and Galloway Council and Ice Hockey UK to develop the sport in South West Scotland and bring World Championship tournaments to the region.

Thousands of fans, many new to the sport, have taken in the action since the World Championship started on Sunday 10th December.

The council estimates that hosting this event has created an economic boost for Dumfries and Galloway of more than £180,000.

Great Britain and Korea spent five days in Dumfries before their first fixtures began to aid their preparations and many local businesses secured contracts to provide services for the event.

Councillor Adam Wilson, the council’s events champion, said: “This ice hockey championship has been professionally run by all concerned and provided exciting viewing for spectators.

“It has been a privilege for the council to welcome so many gifted young ice hockey players to Dumfries and to host our national team at under-20s level.

“It is great to see another World Championship take place at the Ice Bowl and make use of the facilities it has to offer.”

The project manager was Struan Tonnar, who is captain of the Solway Sharks and works for the council as a health and fitness instructor.

Struan said: “We’ve had a really great week, the level of hockey has been fantastic and I really think we have given the hockey fans a great event to support.

“The Ice Bowl is one of the best facilities of its kind in the country and we continue to deliver top level tournaments with the confidence of Ice Hockey UK.

“This is due to the exceptional effort of all the staff involved and the small army of volunteers who give their time to help out. We look forward to bringing World Championship to Dumfries again in the near future.”

Andy French, general secretary of Ice Hockey UK, said: “I’m delighted at how the whole week has gone and how we have advanced the sport of ice hockey.

“Great Britain took Japan to the wire and really enthused the crowds who came along to Dumfries from all over the country.

“The tried and trusted working partnership we have with the council enabled Ice Hockey UK to deliver this World Championship to the same high standards as previous tournaments.”