East Grinstead Hockey Club and East Grinstead Ladies Hockey Club formally merged in December 2005, having shared the facilities at the Sports Club in Saint Hill since 1989.
A brief history of EGHC
East Grinstead Hockey Club was founded in 1897 and it’s stature and influence has grown steadily ever since, initially in Sussex and the South of England, then from the 1980s onwards, on the National and International scene. Throughout this time the Club has worked hard to develop the facilities and opportunities available to junior and senior members alike and has earned a reputation as a ‘family club’ of which it is rightly proud.
The Club’s first national outdoor title came in 1983 as winners of the National Club Championship. This was swiftly followed in 1986 when the National Indoor KO Cup was secured for the first time. As winners of the South Premier League, East Grinstead HC took part in the top Division of the first English National League when it was formed in 1988, finishing as runners-up just one year later.
Using a combination of talented ‘home-grown’ players, experienced internationals and top quality coaches the Club has constantly striven to improve and develop in order to compete at the highest possible level and during the last three years their efforts have steadily born fruit.
In 2006 the men's Indoor squad were the National Indoor Champions, so that the 2006/7 season saw East Grinstead competing in Europe for the first time in many years. The Club represented England at the European Indoor Champions Trophy in Brussels, winning Silver medals, and securing promotion to the A Division of the Indoor Championship next season. In 2007 the indoor squad became National Indoor League Champions for the first time in our history, and finished runners up in the National Indoor Championship. EGHC won the BBC South East Club of the Year Award.
The 1st XI finished 4th in the Slazenger EH Premier League and were finalists in the EH National Cup for the second successive season. In order to gain experience of playing in a more competitive environment the men's 2s and 3s both made their debut in the London League with outstanding results. The 2nd XI finished in top half of the Premier Division, while the 3rd XI entered the League in Division 2 and won promotion to Division 1, finishing just two points behind the League winners, losing just four games from 20. The U21 boys were Sussex Champions for the 4th year running; the Men's 2s and the Vets both won the Sussex Cup. Five of our 1st team squad and the team manager were selected to take part in the inaugural GB Super Leagues at the end of the season.
In 2008 EG successfully defended their National Indoor League title, were finalists in the English National Cup in 2006 and 2007 and obtained their highest ever placing in the Slazenger English Hockey League in 2007/08 as runners-up.
more to follow soon...
Ladies Hockey Club
The Ladies' Hockey Club has gone from strength to strength since moving with only one team based at West Street, to the present Saint Hill site with its grass pitch and “upturned boat” clubhouse 17 years ago. Our sand-based pitch came into operation in the early 90s and an additional water-based one was opened in 2002. We were able to add a fourth team to the three already in the Sussex League in 1999 and produced some very honourable results.
Our Junior Section is particularly strong with many players being regularly selected for the senior sides as well as tasting success in their own age groups. The section has always been well represented at County level and has in the past boasted a full Under 16 and Under 21 England cap as well as two players in the U18 squad and several in Junior South sides.
The First XI have been Sussex Premier Division champions on several occasions, most recently two seasons ago, but sadly failed to gain qualification for South Division II during the playoff weekend. This season the team is aiming to finish in the top three in order to gain promotion to a newly created interim League designed to bridge the gap between the County Leagues and the South. The side is also particularly successful in the Sussex Knockout Trophy Competition, generally reaching the semi-finals or finals and winning the Plate.
The 2nd XI plays in Sussex Division II, the 3rd XI in Division IV and the 4th XI, created in October 1997 and combining youth and experience, looks forward to another season of competition in Division V.
The achievements of the Ladies' Section are due to hard work, loyalty and commitment on the part of its players as well as all those who help with coaching both the seniors and juniors. We would like to take this opportunity to thank all those concerned as well as those involved behind the scenes.
Sponsorship too over the years has enabled us to enjoy more success and we are enormously grateful to all those who have helped us, in particular Rydon Homes who sponsored us for many years, as well as several individuals who have so kindly made personal donations.
The Section runs a very popular midweek evening league both in Summer and Winter in which teams from Surrey, Sussex and Kent participate and which tends to be more light-hearted than weekend fixtures! Many players also enjoy the various tournaments which are held at the club throughout the year, be it men’s, ladies’ or mixed.