I am pleased to inform you that the refurbishment work at the John Orwell has attracted an award, which you can read about here:
My Local Pitch Article
Members may recall that as recently as 2013, we were playing on a 27 year old sand base, with run down changing rooms, and no step free access. Whilst we were then able to secure Lee Valley in 2014, the original site still needed considerable work to make it fit for hockey.
We were delighted to play a role in brokering investment into the John Orwell, working closely with London Sport, England Hockey and Tower Hamlets Council, to improve the centre. In keeping with our philosophy of seeking to remove barriers to access and develop within our sport, our input into the designs meant this was not just a pitch relay, but new changing rooms, fencing, spectator seating, and step free access. It has even meant new doors, again with the aim of improving ease of access for those with restricted mobility (or goalkeeping bags to wield). New floodlights too, have both improved matters for us and reduced the impact of the centre on its neighbours - modern LEDs meaning more of the Lux reaches the pitch.
This upgrade meant, among other things, the facility became suitable for inspiring U18 hockey players in a way not seen for some years. We were able to start Wapping Kidds as a direct result (within a week of the pitch reopening), and we are working on setting up a disability focussed section too.
Also, by combining this refurb with our existing tenancy at the national stadium, we were also able to accommodate a significant increase in our number of senior sides - we now have 20! More and more people are enjoying our sport thanks to this investment programme.
I am delighted to see the work at the John Orwell recognised by My Local Pitch in this way.
Updated 08:43 - 14 Apr 2017 by Stuart Burnside