The last Monday training this season is 23rd April
The last Monday training this season is 23rd April
Congratulations to the Mens 3rd, 4th and 5th teams who all achieved promotion from their leagues this season, making it a huge step forward for the club.
The rest of the club also had success with 3 other teams finishing in the top half of their league and no relegations from any of our 7 senior teams.
Well done everyone
** CANCELLED** Juniors Hockey Training 26/02/2018
Watch for free at www.eurohockeytv.org
EuroHockey Indoor Championships, Men, Antwerp 12/14 January 2018 will be streamed live!
A very Happy New Year to everyone! I hope you had an enjoyable festive season and that like me, you are really looking forward to the second half of the hockey season.
Looking back at my Message at this time last year reminded me that at that time the men’s first team were riding high at the top of the league. Happily, they then powered on to secure promotion, just as the ladies’ had done the season before. However, other teams were not faring so well and it was a pretty tough end to the 2016/17 season for some.
Over Christmas I had the pleasure of chatting to the Club Captain over a beer or two, and he told me that he thought that this year was shaping up to be a very good one indeed across the whole club. As a result, people were in general “happy”. The reason for this rush of endorphins is on the face of it simple, all of our teams are highly competitive in their leagues and led superbly by their captains.
That got me thinking, surely the most important measure of a club’s success has to be the happiness of its members? Get that right and success naturally follows. So if Rob is right and I think he is, it should be very gratifying to all those members and volunteers who work so hard to make it happen. It may be a simple thing, but it’s not at all easy to achieve.
Of course there will always be individual exceptions for one reason or another, but overall I think that Bristol & West Hockey Club is a great thing to be part of as we head into 2018. That said, we can never rest or be complacent and one area that I want us to focus on this year is supporting and developing our umpires, some of whom have not always been blissfully happy this season.
I am in the process of arranging an umpire’s evening with a guest speaker which I hope will be well supported and help bring the team together. We are also acquiring headsets for all club umpires to use (thank you Danco for sponsoring this). Remember, our umpires are fundamental to our club both in terms of enabling us to play and to our reputation, so please do your part to encourage and help them. Abuse and inappropriate criticism of umpires damages your club in so many ways.
Turning to operational matters, it has been busy as ever for the committee this season but one thing I want to mention is “shirts”. I know some of you are patiently awaiting a new one and we desperately need a set of away shirts. You might think, like me, that ordering new sets of shirts that match our current strip and at a reasonable price, would be a very straightforward thing to do? Therefore, quite how the committee has managed to discuss this for hours beats me - but please bear with us, it will happen!
Finally, I’d like to once again thank Karen Bryant for organising another Christmas party. I had a great time and once I’d woken up the DJ (literally) and given him my playlist (available on request), the evening was a roaring success. Next year we are looking to do something a bit different as we have done the hotel-dinner-disco thing for quite a few years now. I would be really grateful for any suggestions?
The last men’s games before Christmas are Saturday 16th Dec.
The last ladies game is Saturday 25th Nov.
The last Badgers game is Sunday 3rd Dec.
The last training is Monday 18th Dec for the juniors and Wednesday/ Thursday 13th/14th Dec for the Adults.
Training resumes on Monday 8th Jan for the juniors and Wednesday/Thursday 3rd/4th Jan for the Adults.
The first men’s and ladies games are Saturday 6th Jan.
The first Badgers game is Sunday 7th Jan.
Have a great Christmas and New year!
When it was looking like it was never going to happen, the planets lined up and all five B&W teams who played yesterday won:
B&W 4 v 3 Swansea City
Taunton CS 1 v 2 B&W A
Bath Buccs F 1 v 2 B&W B
B&W C 4 v 0 North Somerset B
B&W D 2 v 1 Westbury E
Not only a fine set of results but the long-standing Chairman’s Pledge was triggered. Following four wins earlier in the day, players were huddled around the wireless at Hambrook Social Club, eagerly awaiting the outcome of the last game of the day, the 3s away at Bath Buccs. At the final whistle which signalled a 2-1 win, fingers moved feverishly as a plethora of text messages were sent to the Chairman, reminding him of his reckless pledge made two or three years ago to buy everyone in the club a drink if all the teams won.
Even though a technicality could have been claimed that the 6s and ladies had not played, the Chairman has graciously agreed to honour his pledge to the teams that won. The condition is that the drinks must be claimed at Hambrook Social Club in person at the next home game for the Men’s 1s-5s, one drink per player, if not already done so. Captains should pay for the drinks out of match fees, noting the total on the match envelope for reimbursement by the Chairman.
The burning question, of course, is whether the Chairman’s Pledge will get renewed……
A little while ago I made the rather rash promise that if all the club’s teams won on a single Saturday, I would buy everyone who came back to the Club a drink. In the season that I promised it we came close, but my money was safe. People seemed to have assumed that it was a promise made in perpetuity and so it was that last Saturday evening my phone was suddenly filled with texts and emails!
Well, I don’t mind a bit; in fact I’m absolutely delighted to deliver on that promise. So far it has been one of the best seasons I’ve known in recent times with all teams doing well and playing some great matches. This has in large part been down to the fantastic bunch new members that have joined us this year – it’s great to have you with us and many, many thanks for your fabulous contribution.
Chairman’s new Season Message Autumn 2017
This “start of season” message is going out to you a little late this year. My excuse is that for some reason, there seems to have been an endless list of things to sort out which I could never quite get on top of. However, as usual our hard working committee has got most things running smoothly.
Worth a special mention in this regard is our long suffering Club captain, Rob Ledger who has had a frantic few weeks arranging (juggling?) squads in order to field teams for our friendlies; I think he is a bit stressed (he hides it well beneath that calm exterior) so if you get a chance, give him pat on the back, or even a hug. With patchy availability at this time of year it is always tough, so please also continue to help him and the captains by communicating promptly - and by making yourselves available!
I’m pleased to say we’ve already had a good influx of new members this year, especially juniors & ladies and I’d like to extend a very big welcome to all of you. We never, ever take it for granted that you choose to join B&W, given the multitude of excellent clubs in the Bristol area – so “THANK YOU” and we hope you love being with us!
Those of you who attended the AGM and Awards Night at the end of last season will have heard me talk about personal development and the importance I place on it. Hockey these days is a multi-generation game like never before, with some players continuing into their 70s. At the same time, it has become a far more physically demanding game and many of the key skills have changed. The club expects you to take full advantage of the training sessions that it provides to continue your development over your playing career. One of the greatest contributions you can give to your club (and yourself!) is by taking personal responsibility for maximising your level of achievement, whatever your age or experience. I think the key areas are;
• Body condition, fitness and flexibility
• Learning and mastering new skills
The first is obvious, but not easy to achieve as it requires self-discipline and just plain old hard work. The second is so often overlooked by older players but in this category I include the forehand slap, the reverse slap and the reverse hit – everyone should master these! To do these successfully requires a good degree of flexibility (see point 1) and for most, a lot of practice. Our coaching team are always more than happy to assist you mastering these key skills. You simply can’t play modern hockey well without them!
The juniors have got off to a flying start this year with a big boost in numbers at our training session on Monday evenings. The Badgers have been in action already (see Junior Section of the website) with two great matches and our U12 have their first festival next weekend. At the other end of the club, the Masters have their first EH competition game the week after that.
Finally, continuing on the subject of personal development, you should be aware that your club commits to fully fund courses that people wish to attend to help them give back to their club. As an example, over the next few weeks we have no fewer than 9 people doing EH coaching courses! We always, need umpires and coaches so just ask – the answer is (probably) yes!
I hope you all have a very enjoyable and of course, successful season.
Forthcoming events at Bristol & West Hockey Club:
• Club Day:- 1pm - 5pm Saturday 2nd Sep at Ridings. This will include a BBQ and drinks, see here.
• Fitness Training:- 7pm – 8.30pm Wednesday 2nd – 30th Aug outside Hambrook Club on the grass.
• 1s/2s Training:- 7pm – 8pm Monday 7th – 21st Aug at Ridings
• 1s/2s Training:- 6.45pm – 8.55pm Thursday 31st August at Colstons, Stapleton, BS16 1BJ
• Men’s/Ladies Training:- 6.45pm – 8.55pm 6th September at Colstons
• Junior Training:- 7pm – 8pm 4th September at Ridings
• Hockey games start:- 9th September
Christmas party 25th Nov 2017, bookings now available.
Buy your tickets here
Bristol & West Hockey Club’s
Saturday 25th November 2017 7.30pm til 1am
Festive Punch on arrival
Three Course Dinner with Coffee or Tea
Half a Bottle of House Wine per person
Disco to party the night away
Free Car Parking
£26.95 per person – rooms available, please book direct.
Holiday Inn Bristol City Centre
Tel: 0117 9245000