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Paisley ranked in Europe’s top 42 hockey towns

Paisley has been named among the top 42 hockey towns in Europe.

The home of the Paisley Pirates, which is bidding to become UK City of Culture 2021, was ranked 41st in the list of top destinations to watch an action-packed game on the ice.

Paisley ranked in Europe’s top 42 hockey towns

The list was compiled by Canadian online travel agency Flight Network as it examined the growing popularity of ice hockey across Europe.

It ranked each location based on in-depth analysis of its hockey team, league, arena, fans and unique hockey culture.

Paisley was placed alongside a host of iconic hockey locations on the list, including Moscow, Zurich and Helsinki.

The Paisley Pirates were founded in 1946 and play their Scottish National League home games at Braehead Arena with neighbours and Elite Ice Hockey League side the Braehead Clan.

The Pirates were the Scottish Cup winners in 2016 and were crowned Scottish National League champions in the 2012-13 campaign.

The site described the Pirates as “the only hockey team we’ve met that are run entirely by volunteers from the town”.

It added: “They do this because the Pirates are a labour of love run for their community, in the community and by the community”.

The list also took a closer look at the town’s striking architecture and rich heritage to encourage hockey-loving travellers to visit.

Flight Network wrote: “Paisley reminds us of walking onto the set of a period movie, you half expect to see a few hobbits walking around. Although most tourists don’t find an attraction to small countryside towns, they’re never lacking in history, or stories.”

Renfrewshire Council Leader Mark Macmillan, Chair of the Paisley 2021 Partnership Board, said: “We are delighted to see Paisley recognised as one of the top locations in Europe to watch a hockey match.

“We take pride in all of our local sports clubs and the UK City of Culture bid is part of a wider push to showcase the range of cultural activities and assets Paisley has to offer.

“Being featured on such a list will help put Paisley on the map and will hopefully encourage visitors and hockey fans to visit the town.”   

Find out who else joined Paisley on Flight Network’s Top 42 Hockey Towns in Europe list here.