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Club History – Avon Hockey

Club History

The Avon Hockey Club was formed in February 2001 with the amalgamation of the Woolston and Pegasus Hockey Clubs. Both clubs operated in the eastern suburbs of the city and in reasonable proximity to one another.

Woolston Hockey Club

Woolston, originally the Marathon Hockey Club started in 1940 as a men’s hockey club. The club was based on the Marathon Rubber Mills which were and integral part of Woolston. The club went into recess at the end of the 1941 season to 1945 due to World War II. It changed its name in 1949 to Woolston Hockey Club to identify with the district in which it was based. During the 1950s, the club had a reputation for producing New Zealand representatives – these included Ross Gillespie, John Abrams, Noel Hobson, Bruce Judge, Doug James, Roy Lapworth, Kevin Kiernan. In 1968, the club affiliated with the Woolston Working Men’s Club. In 1978, the club amalgamated with the Rawhiti Women’s Hockey Club (a club with a history dating back to 1923) which enabled it to field both Men’s and Women’s teams in the local competitions. Rawhiti produced two NZ representatives – Heather Turner and Norma Lennie. Since then, Woolston Hockey Club produced further NZ representatives, being Isobel Thomson, Chris McAuley, Chris Arthur and Sue Duggan.

Dave Coulter was a large part of Woolston Hockey Club and Avon Hockey Club, serving as an administrator for the club for over 60 years, as President and Manager for several club teams.

Pegasus Hockey Club

Pegasus arose from the amalgamation of Hagley High School Old Boys and Shirley Women’s Hockey Club in 1977. Hagley High School Old Boys was formed from an amalgamation of Technical Old Boys and Christchurch West Old Boys Hockey Clubs in the early 1960s, and produced several NZ representatives – Keith Thompson and Bill Thompson being some.  Pegasus Hockey Club based itself at Burwood Park with the Shirley Cricket Club and both clubs built clubrooms at the Park. The club fielded both Men’s and Women’s teams in a range of grades and being strong in the junior area.

There were three grass fields at Burwood Park used for Hockey, however as artificial turfs at Porritt Park and Nunweek Park were built, the grass hockey and use of the clubrooms slowly declined.

Avon Hockey Club

Avon Hockey operated through the 2000s with Porritt Park turfs acting as a home ground for the club. Unfortunately, the Canterbury earthquake of September 2010 damaged both Porritt Park turfs beyond repair. Player numbers initially suffered as a result, however the club has rebuilt itself since.

Several club members were instrumental in the development of Masters Hockey in Canterbury. These included Lloyd Hughes, John Maunsell, Robin Cox, and Graham Brosnahan.

In 2012, Avon Hockey also commenced what is now a very strong partnership with St. Michael’s Church School and junior co-ordinator Michael Graveston. Our junior division has gone from strength to strength since.