Preparations are well underway now for the new hockey season following the excitement of our participation in the Olympic Games in Rio and the extensive TV coverage for our near neighbours GB in winning the Gold medal in the women’s competition. There is a significant heightened awareness of our sport. I am hopeful that this will transfer into renewed interest, energy and respect from our members and our community in South County Dublin towards the club.

First of all I would like to give a very warm welcome to all the new members from Hermes following the merger together with a big welcome back to all of last season members and to all new members whether they were previously past members of the club or are new to our game.

This is an exciting season for our club with both our top Men’s & Women’s teams playing in the EY Hockey League and the ladies playing in the European Championships later in the season. I would urge all of you to participate as fully as possible in the Club, by doing this it will not only add to your enjoyment and the enjoyment of others but will it will also assist in the increasing burden of administering all aspects of club life. This can involve umpiring, coaching, managing and just being there when the club are hosting key matches and running competitions / tournaments at all levels.

We are delighted to have SoftCo as our headline sponsor for the Men’s and Women’s Senior Club and we look forward to developing a strong relationship with them over the coming years. We are also engaged in putting together a loyalty card that will be available to all members and hope to have local businesses signed up so Monkstown members will be able to avail of discounts with our partners.

This initiative is part of the fund raising / sponsorship campaign this season and I would urge you wherever possible to support club events, most of the events the club run have a significant social aspect to them and therefore will enable you to get to know as many members as possible. The fundraising campaign will kick off with a very social Golf Day to raise funds for our Ladies 1st team for their European Cup adventure. This takes place in Powerscourt Golf Club on 18th September and if you can join other members to make up a team or sponsor a team / hole we would be delighted to hear from you. Full details of other events will be posted on our website and Facebook page over the coming months. I would urge all new members and existing members who have not already done so to sign up to our Facebook community site and also our Facebook closed site, Monkstown Hockey Club to assist in communications. It would also be useful if you have changed your email address to contact the club to update your details.

The club now has nearly 850 members. Over the past few years we have made great progress in raising the awareness in our community of Monkstown. Work that has been done gives us a platform to take the club to new levels. To do this, everybody must play a part. We have a great facility at Rathdown and there are further plans including the resurfacing of the lower pitch and the building of a club house. I would like to thank Catherine Higgins, the Ladies Club Captain and Sam Farrar, the Mens Club Captain for the really hard work they have put in to the pre-season to set up all the structures for coaches, managers and captains so that everybody will have an enjoyable season.

I look forward to meeting you all during the season and wish you an enjoyable and successful season.

Trevor Watkins

Club President