Welcome to the CHC Academy page, serving all players in the U16 and U18 age group.
Please register your interest with Phil Robson, who will supply any further information you need.
Players aged 13 can join the Academy section of Cheltenham Hockey Club (CHC). The Academy section oversees all U18 players in CHC. There are 2 other sections in CHC: the Ladies’ Section and the Men’s Section. There are opportunities for all standards of player to play for an Academy and/or an adult team. Here, we explain how the Academy section is organised and the opportunities for young players to train and play; how to join; and how parents can assist.
The Academy Section is run by the Academy Club Captain, Phil Robson. He is supported by an experienced coaching team and volunteer managers. Phil is responsible for competition entries, fixtures and booking pitches.
Each squad manager is responsible for communicating information to parents about training and matches, seeking availability from players, monitoring involvement and answering queries. Squad managers attend matches and are responsible for the kit and the collection of match fees. The lead coaches are responsible for overseeing the delivery of training and team selection. A coach will endeavour to be at each match. The Club Umpire Secretary (volunteer) will assist Phil with providing umpires.
Training starts in September, although there is pre-season training throughout August.
There is currently one U16 Boys squad. If numbers warrant it, then CHC will establish a second U16 Boys squad. The boys’ squads play competitive matches in the U16 Boys West League, and the Indoor and Outdoor National Championships. There are two U16 Girls squads and one U18 Girls squad. The U16 Girls Cobras and U16 Girls Cheetahs play in the West leagues and the National Championships. The U16 Girls Cobras also play in the Indoor National Championships. The U18 Boys and U18 Girls only play in the Indoor and Outdoor National Championships. Squads play the occasion friendly match against other clubs, schools or touring sides.
Outdoor England Hockey and West Leagues, and England Hockey National Championships
The West and England Hockey (EH) organises 3 different tiers of leagues and National Championships for each gender at every age group from U14 to U18. Further background is available on the EH website. Tier 1 is for clubs with large strong junior sections. Tier 2 is for clubs with smaller junior sections and the second teams of larger clubs.
An U16G team will be entered into the EH Tier 1 competition. The U16B team and a second U16G team will be entered into the West Tier 2 League and the EH Tier 2 National Championships. The U16G Tier 1 team will be the best available team for each match.
An U18G and U18B team will be entered into Tier 2 of the National Championships.
Indoor Super 6s
U16 and U18 teams of both genders will be entered into the Indoor Super 6s. These start with an area competition on a weekend in early December. There are usually four or five teams in the West competition, which is often held at CLC for the girls and Wellington School for the boys. The top team in the West qualifies for the National Finals in Nottingham on the second or third weekend in January. Training, which is self-funded, takes place on an ad hoc basis.
In recent years Academy teams have achieved national success as follows:
Availability for Training and Matches, Membership Subscriptions and Match Fees
Availability for training and matches along with membership subscriptions and match fees of £8 are collected through an application called Teamo.
Academy members also have the opportunity to train with adult members of the Club on a Tuesday and/or Thursday evening. Timings for the 2023-2024 season will be published in the relevant section on the website.
Academy players also have the opportunity to play in adult league matches on a Saturday. If they attend adult training, they can be selected to play in one of the 3 Men’s teams or 4 Ladies’ teams. Availability and match fees of £10 are managed through the Teamo application. The Men’s and Ladies’ 1st XIs play in the West Conference of the National League.
Other Playing Opportunities
In the summer, Academy players can play for female or mixed 6-a-side teams in the Hockey Fever Summer Leagues. They can also play for a mixed 11-a-side team that plays in the Gloucester Summer League.
Parent Opportunities to Assist
Academy matches can only be delivered with the support of volunteer parents. There are fulfilling opportunities for parents as managers, the umpire secretary, umpires, stand-in coaches, tea providers and committee members. You do not need to know about hockey to fulfil these roles.
The Club strip is supplied by Y1. Visit the CHC Y1 store. As a minimum, players are expected to buy the black CHC shirt and black CHC socks. A white shirt and socks can also be purchased. Players should wear a black skort or shorts.
The costs of running the Club are significant. Some very generous parents have previously sponsored the Club or provided a donation. If you feel able to assist in any way, then that would be very much appreciated. Please contact Phil to discuss.
At U16 and beyond we continue to develop individual skills but there is more concentration on small team games, sub-unit play and developing tactics as a team. Comradery amongst the players is excellent. Those who play league hockey learn to play with and against adults. We encourage players to participate in England Hockey’s Talent Pathway.