Manchester Storm break annual attendance record as UK ice hockey crowds continue to grow

The North remains at the forefront of growing the sport's following here in the UK.

Danny Jones Danny Jones - 3rd January 2024

0161 continues to help champion the growth of ice hockey on this side of the Atlantic as Manchester Storm and the Elite Ice Hockey League (EIHL) at large managed to break respective record attendances.

The Altrincham-based team, who play out of Planet Ice over in the thriving Trafford town, currently sit eighth in the EIHL and even at times when the results are going their way, they continue to pull in some of the biggest and best crowds from around the UK.

Welcoming a total of 52,823 fans into the ‘Storm Shelter’ in 2023, Storm have boasted their best-ever numbers and ticket sales over the past calendar year and the fan base is only getting greater. Massive.

Better still, as per a press release on the club website, 80,745 filed into stadiums across 20 fixtures between Christmas and New Year, with Manchester Storm’s attendances also helping set a new league record for the festive period.

Not only was the league-wide tally a 5.5% increase on the same set of games last season (26 December 2023 -1 January 2024) and a whole 12.9% compared to the 2019/20 campaign, but the current average attendance per game now sits at over 4,000.


A solid foundation that the British and Irish supporter base just keeps building on.

Outside of Greater Manchester, Glasgow Clan set a franchise record crowd of 3,577 on Boxing Day against the Belfast Giants and then went on to beat it again just days later with 3,602 fans turning up to the Braehead Arena for the game against Fife Flyers on 30 December.


Meanwhile, the Dundee Stars’ crowd of 2,342 against the Giants was also a club record Belfast and are now aiming for their an unprecedented trio of consecutive games with attendances over 2,100. It’s a really good time for ice hockey in the UK right now.

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The Storm, Giants, Nottingham Panthers, Sheffield Steelers and Cardiff Devils all enjoyed sell-out games over the holiday season, regardless of the weather and public transport obstacles that fans often face around this time of the year.

With four months left until the end of the regular season and plenty of time to secure a spot in the playoffs, now is as good a time as any to get behind the premier squad of Manc skaters.


They face the Devils at home at 7pm on Saturday, 6 January who are currently second in the standings in case you want a fun and affordable night of live sport that’s easy to get to.

We’re happy to say that Manchester Storm is just one of several teams that have made Trafford an international sporting destination.

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Featured Images — Manchester Storm (via Instagram)