Chairman’s Newsletter

Hello to all WHC Members,

I hope you’ve all had a restful and relaxing summer break, but now it’s time for the fun to really begin. Welcome to September and the start of our 2023/24 season! For those of you who played in the Summer Hockey League at Deeside, well done, some good results against some strong opposition and while not all fixtures could be fulfilled, to be unbeaten in those we played is an excellent showing. To the ladies who took part in the Telford League and only went and won the whole thing a huge congratulations – we are very proud of your achievement.

First league fixtures are on 23rd Sept but there are 1 or 2 friendlies and other things leading up to then, I’ve listed these below but get on to TeamApp and see what else is happening around the club. I know there are plans afoot for drinks and a curry after the club day so speak to your captains and get signed up.

Dates for your diary:
Training starts w/c 4th September (see TeamApp for more details)
Academy starts Saturday 9th Sept. at 10am
Club Day on Saturday 9th Sept. (12 – 3pm @ SJT – please sign up on TeamApp)
Race Night coming up in October – more information soon
Xmas Do on Saturday 16th December – save the date and get your sparkle on!

As a committee we have been working tirelessly over the summer to ensure the club provides what our members expect, and ensure that facilities and the club itself are ready for this new season. We remain affiliated to Whitchurch Rugby Club and I would always encourage our members after games to get over there and show our faces, the more we do this the more it begins to feel like a combined sports club and our home too. I know many of you are hoping for a new pitch at SJT and we are aware it’s seen better days. We’re working with the school, local council, Shropshire council and England Hockey to try and make this happen. When we get closer the whole club will have a role to play so we will be in touch with more information as soon as we have it, but I might advise not holding your breath – these things can be a drawn out affair.

This club is run purely on volunteers and their support is what makes hockey happen for us and this town. Maybe there’s something you can do or would like to try and support the club with. Please reach out to one of the committee and let us know how you might be able to support. Any and all help is always welcome.

We are pleased to say that, in these financially uncertain times, the membership fees and match fees for this season will not increase on last year. However, it is important for the continuity of the club that we pay on time and when asked. Membership fees are available to purchase right now on TeamApp and Whitchurch Hockey Club remains one of, if not the cheapest club to play at certainly in the region and maybe even in the country. Should you be impacted by financial hardship at this time then please I urge you to speak to your captain or one of the committee so that we can help – we do not want to lose anyone from the club and financial hardship should not be a barrier to playing sports ever.

There have been some changes to the committee so as a reminder I share the below positions:
Chair – Martin Beecher (me)
Vice-Chair – Cath W-Gresty (also Ladies 1’s team captain)
Treasurer – James Partington
Secretary – Alex Fry (also team and academy coach)
Development Officer – Craig Hockenhull
Protection Officer – Suzanne Foulkes

If you have any comments or suggestions for the club please reach out to one of us as we are always happy to receive feedback and improve the club for all.

I look forward to seeing you all on the 9th at the Club Day, if not earlier at training and wish you all the very best for the upcoming season.

Martin Beecher