With HockeyFest in full swing in the wake of Team GB’s Olympic gold medal success, we visited the grand opening of the new Bromley & Beckenham HC facility to join in the party. The nation’s new favourite goalie, Maddie Hinch, came along to test out the new pitch, coach the team and give some advice to the club’s young players…
We spoke to Maddie in the middle of her whirlwind fortnight since returning from Rio, making appearances on The One Show, Sunday Brunch, Radio 2, Sky Sports and The Johnathan Ross Show. Despite her new showbiz calendar, she told the crowd that it was the grass roots, local community events such as HockeyFest that she had been looking forward to most since winning a gold medal:
“To think that we’ve inspired a generation through the Olympic success is massive to us – it’s actually the main thing we want to do more than anything: to inspire the future and get hockey on the map, to get more people picking up sticks is really important, and the medal is just a bonus.” Maddie Hinch
What is HockeyFest?
HockeyFest is a series of events at hockey clubs all over the country during August and September. These social sports days, hosted by Great Britain Hockey in partnership with Notts Sport, are designed to encourage players of all ages and experiences to get involved, pick up a stick, and join in the hockey community. Everyone from pros to newbies are welcome to try something new and have a bit of fun in friendly atmosphere, with clubs organising BBQs, bake offs, off-pitch challenges, fancy dress and games.
“My favourite thing about HockeyFest is the fact that there’s people here picking up a stick for the very first time. It’s an easy opportunity for people to just come down and experience hockey without having to sign up for anything. You can just literally get down here and enjoy it and there’s a bit of a party atmosphere which makes it all the better!” Maddie Hinch
How can I get involved?
The easiest way to get involved is to come along to a HockeyFest near you, and give the sport a go for free.
“For hockey newcomers I would just recommend getting down there and make sure you try all the different positions. Don’t just focus on being a defender, goalie or forward, try it all, because you never know what you might suit!” Maddie Hinch
Find out where your nearest event is here, and join in the fun!