As the very proud Chairman of Sheffield University Bankers Hockey Club, I should like to bid you all, a most cordial and friendly welcome to one of the North's oldest and biggest Club's. Formed in 1925, it merged with the University of Sheffield in 1999, in which time much success was achieved but certainly not at the expense of its friendly and hospitable reputation for which awards have been won!
Whilst this is the time of the year we look forward to seeing new faces - perhaps more than ever after the BEST OLYMPICS ever staged - it would be most remiss of me not to thank and acknowledge all the hard work put in by last year's Executive Committee and the newly elected one which has had to overcome some serious setbacks, and not of the Club's making. The new Committee has been beefed up by the appointment of a Youth Development Officer and a Communications Officer, both young but totally committed to SUBHC and both have already made their mark.
Last season, in playing terms, was one of the best and as such, the bar has been raised for 2012/13 - a bronze medal will not be enough! National League status from the Men's 1's and promotion to Yorkshire League Division 1 by the Women's 1's will be well within our reach, for starters......
The senior part of the Club is made up of seven Men's and three (one new) Women's teams, each of whom contains a set of core players who did us proud last season and I extend my welcome to them, once more. As we are all know however, no organisation can survive or, better still, move forward without a good influx ofnew andcommitted members and we are no exception. I am therefore really pleased to say we shall be joined by one of Australia's best under 21 players - a guy called Hugh Purvis, who has committed himself to not only playing but coaching, umpiring and socialising - he seems to be the perfect fit! He will be additional to those who have already joined us and started training!
Apart from the seniors, we have a small but successful Youth section many of whom have already progressed through to the higher teams, with one young 14 year old showing, shall we say,a degree of real promise!
Finally, SUBHC has a terrific relationship with the playing members of Sheffield's top University, both on and off the pitch, including a significant involvement with the BUCS and Varsity games, played in midweek. So, if I may, I'd like to reserve my final,warm welcome to all theHockey Freshers, who I know will have a wonderful time here in this proud, gold medal City of ours and would take this opprtunity of inviting them to come and join SHEFFIELD UNIVERSITY BANKERS HOCKEY CLUB, this season.
A truly friendly reception awaits.....