Turn the disused school site into a multi-use sports facility (to include HOCKEY USE)
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The Shetland Hockey Association wanted to take this opportunity to propose a new multi-use sports facility which includes use for hockey to be built at the now disused school site at the Knab.
The need for an adequate playing surface for hockey in a Central location in Shetland is bigger than ever. We think this is an ideal development for future use of the site that will also enhance Lerwick.
Shetland Ladies Hockey has progressed so much these past few years, in particular their progression in the Scottish District Cup, reaching the finals last year and well on there way to another final in 2018. Shetland are also making great achievements, narrowing the gap each year in the Senior Inter county against Orkney, with this years game being one of the best we have seen Shetland perform. An additional pitch in Shetland to play on will even better their chances. We also have our Shetland Mixed team, made up of both male and female players, now playing in the Association leagues for the first time, there is now, more than ever, a huge pool of players interested and playing the sport. With the game having progressed to the point where grass is no longer suitable, we only have one facility in mainland Shetland, being the Midway Pitch in Brae. We are extremely grateful to have this great facility, but it does mean players making endless trips to Brae for both competitive matches and training sessions costing a lot of money, time and effort to get there. A particular concern of ours is potential players living in the South Mainland of Shetland who require even more of an effort to make the trip to and from Brae with many coming back to us saying they just cannot commit to making the 100 mile journey to and from the Midway Pitch.
We also have junior development groups throughout Shetland and unless you are an adult/parent with a car, your child or yourself cannot really activity take part in hockey if you live further south of Lerwick. Most parents don't have the luxury these days of staying home to ferry children to and from after school clubs. So when it comes time to progressing boys and girls in hockey, after the fundamentals stage, unless we can get them to Brae, which at this moment is near impossible, then unfortunately their hockey has to stop, and they aren't given the equal opportunity to play on a appropriate surface.
Lerwick would be an ideal area for an additional pitch.
As the main town, transport links are more frequent and timely (the last bus leaves from Brae to Lerwick around 6pm which means getting back to Lerwick after training or games by bus not possible). With many people also working, or travelling through on a daily basis, it seems to be the preferred area for a new pitch.
There is an excellent all-weather rugby pitch at Clickimin, along with several football pitches including a separate kick-about area. There is also a running track, bowls hall, swimming pool, indoor sports centre, squash courts and the new 60:40 artificial surface. One thing is obviously missing - a hockey facility.
Shetland sport has so much potential, all you have to do is give it a driving force to make it better.
Please sign our petition - let's make some noise and hope our voices for a new facility are heard!
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