Thursday, January 14, 2010

The ice melting story from Braehead

Here's the story that I referred to in a previous post:


BOSSES at Braehead have had to install HEATERS in a refrigeration plant room to make sure the ice stayed frozen on their curling rink for a prestigious international tournament. Ironically, temperatures outside had plummeted so low there was a danger that the refrigeration pipes would freeze and burst, causing the ice on the curling rink to melt.

Some of the world’s top female curlers are due to take part in the Glynhill Ladies International, at Braehead this weekend, Friday, January 15 to Sunday, January 17. Seven of the ten ladies teams competing in the Winter Olympics, in Vancouver next month will be battling it out on the ice at the Braehead curling rink. These including the present world champions, China and the Great Britain team - made up of Scots, Eve Muirhead, Jackie Lockhart, Kelly Wood, Lorna Vevers and Karen Addison.

Braehead’s leisure manager, Bruce Harley said, “No doubt there’s a certain irony that we used heaters to warm up our refrigeration plant room. “But the recent Arctic weather has meant temperatures in the plant room dropped to as low as minus ten and we were concerned that the pipes leading to the rink would freeze up and burst. There is a condenser tank directly above the plant room and in recent weeks we have been taking blocks of ice out of it.”

Bruce added, “The Glynhill Ladies International is one of the top tournaments in the Curling Champions Tour calendar, so we are making sure nothing goes wrong – especially as we’re having the worst winter weather for decades. And if that means having to heat up the refrigeration plant room, then so be it.”

Joint chairperson of the tournament’s organising committee, Kirsty Letton, said, “It might seem strange that people were heating a refrigeration room to make sure the ice on the curling rink stayed frozen solid. “We’ve got top curlers flying in from all over the world for the tournament and it would be a disaster if the pipes had burst, the ice melted and we didn’t have a rink to play on. But I’m sure that won’t happen since Braehead is pulling out all the stops to make sure everything goes smoothly."

Above: Braehead’s leisure manager, Bruce Harley, warms his hands at one of the heaters installed in the refrigeration plant room.

Thanks to Norman MacDonald for passing on the story and photo.