The Academy is now in its tenth year it was formed in 2001.
The Academy was the brainchild of the club’s late President, Derek Higgins, who set out the framework and aim of the Academy, which was to reinforce the idea to schools throughout South West Essex and East London that hockey was a real alternative to football and other mainstream sports.
Over the years we have established and maintained excellent links with local schools, building long term relationships with a view to providing their students with top class hockey coaching and hopefully the possibility of acquiring talented young hockey players who will join the club.
Initially the age range catered for was the 10 – 16 years age group. However, this has now been lowered to an entry level of seven years of age. This has been made possible by additional coaches, which are funded through a grant provided by The OL Trust. The youngsters now benefit from additional coaching to that received via the mini hockey section and for the older students it is of benefit to them to receive a high level of coaching before they are integrated into the eleven-a-side game.
In addition to Tuesday evening coaching there are a series of camps run during the Summer, Easter and Christmas holidays.
There have been many well known coaches involved over the years, namely: Nick Thompson; Jon Brown; Soma Singh and Julian Halls. Currently the Academy coaches are headed up by Ali Bray and assisted by Leroy Phillips, Ele Powell and Stuart Hendy.
It would be virtually impossible to run the Academy without the generous financial support from The OL Trust, for which we are extremely grateful.
Any youngsters who would like to attend the Academy should telephone the office on 020 8504 4010.