Ipswich Cranes & Castaways Back To Hockey

Ipswich - Back To Hockey
Back to Hockey is fun, social and informal, meaning it’s a great way for clubs to attract new or returning to the sport. Along with extra players, Back to Hockey can benefit clubs, by providing additional incomes, extra publicity and new volunteers. 

Ahead of our National Back to Hockey campaign taking place 13 May to 23 June, Ipswich Cranes Mens Hockey Club tell us of the positive impact it has had for their club over the last 12 month. 

Two years ago the club lost one of their teams and then this time last year were struggling to field a full team each week as several other players had left. Jason Spring the club’s Captain, openly admits there was a possibility the club might fold having been established in 1953.

The club had been training with a local ladies hockey club, Castaways for the last couple of years to try and help with costs and player numbers, with both clubs only being one team clubs. In the build up to the Vitality Women’s World Club, Castaways HC attended an England hockey Club Forum, promoting the event and how clubs could use it to their benefit. After a conversation with their local Relationship Manager, Back to Hockey was a great option for Castaways HC who then contact Ipswich Cranes to be involved in joint sessions to support each other and hopefully attract new members for both clubs.

After contacting the local Borough Council to discuss how they could work together to increase hockey in the area and in turn help both clubs too, they secured a tiny bit of funding to run six sessions last summer. The funding contributed to pitch hire, coaching and an advertising banner.

Jason tells us;
Both clubs worked hard to promote and run the sessions, with existing members ensuring good attendance; one week we had 35 people!! Ladies, men and children attended and all said what great fun they had. We even gave away goodie bags to the newcomers, which they said was a really nice touch!

With the help of Back to Hockey, Ipswich Cranes HC secured several new players, some of whom were completely new to hockey, as well as a couple who had previously played for the club a number of years ago and decided to return. With a bit of encouragement a few existing members also stepped up to take on new roles within the club to help push it forward.

We are looking forward to holding some more Back to Hockey sessions again this year!

Are your club interest in joining the National campaign, visit www.englandhockey.co.uk/backtohockey for more info.