Opening of New Sports Pitch for King’s Gloucester and the City

23 Apr 2019

Staff, pupils, invited guests and wider members of the Community came together on Saturday to celebrate the opening of the much anticipated All Weather Pitch at The King’s School, Gloucester.

Six hockey matches were held throughout the day including games against Rendcomb and Christ College, Brecon as well as Junior School games and the Boys’ 1st XV vs a Headmaster’s Invitation Side which consisted of Alumni, former King’s teachers, Gloucester Hockey Club and Cheltenham Hockey Club players and England players.

The Guest of Honour was Gloucester City MP Richard Graham, who played in a very competitive match between pupils, parents, staff and guests before officially saying a few words and cutting the ribbon to declare the new pitch open.

The Headmaster, David Morton, spoke of King’s rich sporting history which spans 96 years, and went on to say “the addition of the new All Weather Pitch, together with warm up area and floodlighting, will allow pupils to reach the next level of success in hockey and many other sports besides. It’s about health, fitness and friendship – key qualities which will last children for life.”

This £1 million investment also meets the School’s aims of increasing their outreach programme to the wider community, enabling other local schools and sports clubs to benefit from King’s resources.  The pitch will be available to external groups for up to 50% of each year, helping children to develop a love of sport, and a Community Use Agreement has been drawn up.

Gloucester City Hockey Club are planning to use the pitch next season and Chairman Anton de Leeuw, commented: “The opening of the new King’s School All Weather Pitch fills me with great excitement for the future of Hockey within the wider community of Gloucestershire. The commitment in the new facility provides both a wonderfully appropriate and sustainable facility to not only connect, but also develop strong community connections by providing different ways to meet Hockey players’ needs, in a County where much focus is often on the success of other sports.”

Cheryl Stennett, Hockey Development for Gloucester City Primary Schools, is also planning to use the new pitch.  She commented, “During the past 10 years I have been involved with the development of hockey across the local Gloucester City Schools. We hold an annual festival which attracts over 15 local schools and have recently established a summer hockey league. One of our major challenges has been pitch time/ space and with this in mind the new King’s pitch will be a great support. We are planning to run a new development festival aimed at ‘B’ team players and plan to host this at the school.”

Philip Dancey, Chair of Governors at the King’s School, thanked the South West companies that helped to build the new pitch, including Keyway Excavation, Allstones Aggregates, Verde Recreo and renowned Gloucester Architects, Roberts Limbrick.