Return to Play for Senior Hockey in Kent

07/03/2021 20:10

Further to England Hockey’s (EH) press release on 6th March, the Kent Hockey Association (KHA) has decided to cancel this season’s Kent Open League divisions (for men) and Kent Ladies’ League divisions (for women).

East Hockey recently made a similar announcement, impacting Kent senior women’s teams.

We are still in discussion with the South Hockey League to agree plans for men’s South Premier, Kent/Sussex Regional and Kent Area divisions – watch this space for further news.

To be able to complete the half-season that was previously being proposed, the earliest finish date would have been 15th May, well beyond the normal end of the hockey season and into summer sport calendars.

Furthermore, the integrity of those matches would have been compromised by lack of players (whether cricketers or those cautious about returning to play), doubts over pitch availability (for both training and matches), and travel restrictions, for which EH does not expect Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS) guidance until shortly before 29th March.

Clubs are encouraged to follow EH’s published advice on intra-club activities from 29th March, prospectively moving on to inter-club friendlies from 12th April, details for which are yet to be agreed between EH and DCMS.

KHA attention now turns to planning for next season, for which separate announcements will be made in due course.

In the short term, under cover of the South-East Hockey Transition project, Kent Clubs should look out for our requests for information to help us ensure that the fairest possible structure will be in place for next season’s league divisions.

As ever, please direct any queries via your Club Chairman to your KHA Club Rep or the relevant VP – Loraine Bant for Ladies’ Hockey; Lindsay Hancox for Men’s Hockey. 

We are aware that clubs will be keen to know what is happening about fees.

This is under discussion, with many moving parts, and a separate announcement will be made shortly, so please bear with us.