Bury St Edmunds Hockey Club want to lay the foundations of a lasting legacy for the sport by securing a permanent home at Culford School.
In a joint partnership, the two parties are launching an ambitious £600,000 project that would see a state-of-the-art, sand-dressed, floodlit hockey pitch with tiered standing for spectators installed at the school that would allow Bury to switch from having to train and play matches at various locations across the town and be based solely out of Culford.
It is a move that could be completed as early as September next year and is one club president of six years David Johnson believes will see the huge potential in the area flourish and finally realised, not just by people connected with the club and school, but the wider community.
“The potential in this project is incredible and we are over the moon that planning permission has been granted,” he said. “There will be an emphasis on all age groups, we have so many youngsters getting into the game and we just want to enhance those opportunities.
“Many of the Culford juniors are already part of our club and so that relationship will only get stronger.
“We also want to stress that we want to help build up the youngsters throughout the town, not just at this school, but throughout the borough and help grow together.
“I am so excited by the prospect of this project for the hockey community in Bury St Edmunds, it will be unbelievable, all we need to do now is raise some money.”
For the school, the move not only represents an opportunity to improve their own facilities with a second dedicated hockey pitch, but also the chance to build the foundations of a long-lasting relationship with the club and Bury itself as they strive to encourage sporting excellence.
“Hockey is one of the major sports of the school and although that will improve, the partnership with the club is the key thing for us,” said Dave Watkin, assistant head of Culford School. “We are like-minded people with the same sort of vision of sport for young people and we are committed to continue to develop that.
“We have a great partnership — that was the strength in this move and that connection to development of hockey in East Anglia is really exciting.”
n Contributions can be made through the Local Giving website at www.localgiving.com/charity/bsehc or cheques can be made payable to Bury St Edmunds Hockey Club.
For more information, email treasurer@bsehockey club.co.uk or visit www.bse hockeyclub.co.uk