Rotherham Hockey Club, which celebrates its 90th anniversary this year, is delighted to announce that it will be returning to Rotherham to play home fixtures at a brand-new hockey facility at West Bawtry Road, Rotherham.
The club, founded in Rotherham in 1927, has had a number of bases in the town during its long history but, following the closure of the Firth Rixson Aurora sports ground and clubhouse, four years ago, and due to a lack of suitable alternative venues in the town, was forced to relocate to Westfield Sports College in Sheffield for all playing and coaching activities and home games and to The Belfry public house for post-match hospitality.
However, all this is set to change as the Club’s management committee has worked hard to secure a partnership which will provide a home for the Club, in Rotherham, for years to come. The new facility, which is on the site of the old Aurora sports ground, is part of a joint venture with Sheffield Hallam University. The pitch will be ready for the coming 2017/18 season with league matches due to start at the end of September.
In addition to a dedicated artificial hockey pitch, which will meet England Hockey’s standards for top-flight hockey, the new development will include disability access to pitch side, refurbishment of spectator stand, welfare facilities, floodlighting, landscaping and car parking. The club will also make use of the excellent Graham Solley Pavilion at the nearby Sheffield Hallam University Sports Park for changing rooms and post-match hospitality.
This move back home to Rotherham provides the club with a first-class base from which to focus on its core activity of providing competitive hockey for men, women, and young people whilst at the same time implementing the club’s objectives of promoting the game through education, involvement of the local community, and player development for all ages and abilities.
Phoenix Ladies Hockey Club, who are a single team club playing in the Yorkshire League, have also agreed to be partners in this venture and will be using the facility. It is also expected the new facility will provide opportunities for Sheffield Hallam University students to join the club as players, coaches, umpires, volunteers and extramural roles linked in with their studies such as sports science. The facility will also be used for competitive British University and College Sports Hockey matches.
Club Chairman and veteran player James Swinscoe said: “Rotherham Hockey Club are delighted to be involved in this joint venture. We have worked very closely and collaboratively with Sheffield Hallam University to bring hockey back into the Rotherham Borough, thereby providing tremendous opportunities for both Rotherham Hockey Club and its wider audience. We are very excited about the future.”
Rotherham Hockey Club would like to thank Westfield Sports College in Sheffield for the use of their pitch over the last few seasons which has allowed the club to continue with its games programme and to the Belfry Public House for hosting.
In addition, the Club would also like to thank all the external funding partners, Sport England, England Hockey, The National Hockey Foundation, as well Sheffield Hallam University and the generosity of the clubs own members and supporters for contributions received to help fund this venture.
The club is continually looking for new membership across all age ranges and abilities so why not get involved. It will also be running ‘Back2Hockey’ sessions for those looking to start hockey and are actively promoting ‘ways to play’ looking to introduce a new format, small sided midweek league! For more details follow the club on Twitter @RotherhamHC, join them on Facebook or see www.rotherhamhc.org.uk.
- Hockey Fest
Saturday 9th September,
12.00pm to 6.00pm
Hockey Fest in association with England Hockey. Open to all players and non-players of all ages to join in. there will be a nominal charge for non-members. All are welcome for games, skill tests and fun activities. Refreshments will be available throughout the day.
- Youth Tournament
Sunday 10th September
Junior training from 10.00am to 12.00pm, then Youth Tournament at U12 and U15 boys and girls or mixed from 12.00pm to 4.00pm with invited clubs.
- RHC ‘Club Day’
Saturday 16th September,
Mixed inter-club tournament for men’s and ladies and development teams over 13 to veterans past and present including guests who have contributed to pitch funding, with a buffet afterwards.
- Showcase Event
Sunday 17th September
To celebrate the opening on the new pitch and the club’s 90th anniversary there will be invitational matches for veterans, legends and past masters followed by buffet at Graham Solley Pavilion.