WORLD GRAND PRIX RETURNS TO LLANDUDNO IN 2016:
THE return of snooker’s World Grand Prix to Llandudno has been hailed as a “real boost for tourism”.
The tournament, which involves some of the best snooker players on the planet, was new to the calendar last season and received a fantastic reception in North Wales.
It proved a great success as fans flocked to Venue Cymru to see an array of green baize stars including Ronnie O’Sullivan, Judd Trump, John Higgins and Mark Selby.
The 2016 World Grand Prix runs from March 8-13 at the same venue.
Businesses say they are looking forward to the trade and tourism boost the tournament will bring to the area.
Geoff Lofthouse, general manager of the Imperial Hotel in Llandudno, said: “We had Judd Trump, the winner staying with us last year.
“It’s a good result all-round that it will return as it gets a lot of people interested and the hotel was very busy. This is good for tourism and our customers.”
Nathan Cousins, sales and marketing manager at St George’s Hotel, said: “We had a number of players and members of the media staying in the hotel last year.
“It’s good for our trade and for tourism in the town. I welcome it – it’s a real boost for tourism.”
Esther Roberts, managing director of North Wales Tourism, said events such as this provide a “substantial contribution” to the economy by attracting new business and giving people another reason to visit the area.
She said: “The fact that this tourna- ment is returning to Llandudno reflects Conwy Council’s commitment and funding for staging events.”
The tournament will be a ranking event for the first time, with money earned to count towards the world ranking list.
The field for the ITV4-televised event will comprise 32 players chasing the trophy and a top prize of £100,000.
A unique ranking list will run from the 2015 Australian Goldfields Open until the 2016 Gdynia Open, with the top 32 players on that list eligible to enter the World Grand Prix.
Young potting sensation Judd Trump, who won the title last season, coming from 7-4 down in a superb final to beat Ronnie O’Sullivan 10-7, added: “The World Grand Prix is a fantastic addition to the calendar. I’m pleased to see it become a ranking event because that means there is more at stake and it will help the tournament grow.”
Tickets aree on sale now and are already selling fast. For a limited time only, there is also a half price offer from just £5 for standard tickets for the first three days of the tournament.
For more information on booking a ticket, call 01492 872000 or visit www. worldsnooker.com/tickets.
Graham Dott in action against Ronnie O’Sullivan (main), winner Judd Trump (inset top) and The Imperial Hotel’s Geoff Lofthouse (inset, bottom)