Nottingham based Beeston Hockey Club and Dutch club, HC Rotterdam, are delighted to formally announce a ground-breaking new partnership which aims to transform the development of club hockey in Europe. The clubs, both recent league champions in their respective countries and regular participants in Europe’s premier club competition, joined forces on 1st February.
Beeston and Rotterdam are both clubs which have successfully integrated high performance sport with an inclusive family-oriented approach which caters for all. Both have prioritised investment in exceptional hockey facilities and share an ethos of continuous improvement. The partnership, believed to be the first of its kind, aims to develop both clubs, whilst establishing cross-border links which will help to foster and protect the wider interests of European club hockey. The twinning arrangement will include sharing best practice on the pitch in terms of player and coach exchange and development, as well as supporting off-pitch activities such as facility development, event hosting, administration, finance and sponsorship.
Links between the clubs have grown in recent years as former Beeston and England penalty corner ace Simon Egerton joined Rotterdam, quickly establishing himself as a leading goal scorer in the Dutch Premier League. He was joined at Rotterdam for the current season by former Beeston league winners and Rio Olympians Adam Dixon and Harry Martin. At the same time, goalkeeper Sofie ter Kuile from Rotterdam is currently playing for Beeston whilst studying at Trent College.
Beeston Chairman, Graham Griffiths, commented, “With all the changes at international level that are taking place in the next few years, it is essential that club hockey continues to play a major part in the development of our players. This partnership brings two national giants together as we strive to strengthen club hockey in Europe.”
Rotterdam Chairman, Edwin Brouwers, commented, “As a club, we constantly seek for new and innovative ways to deliver value to our membership, both for performance and for recreational players. With Beeston we have found a club that shares our passion for club hockey and the development of teams and players. I am convinced there is a tremendous potential in our partnership.”
As part of the first stage of the partnership, we are delighted to announce the following immediate action:
- Mark van Rijn (Head of Performance Sport, HC Rotterdam) has joined Beeston’s Board of Directors as an advisor and David Griffiths (Director, Beeston Hockey Club), has joined the Rotterdam Board as an advisor also.
The combined membership of the twinned clubs is a total of 3,200 members.
In addition to this immediate change, the twinned clubs intend to introduce the following benefits in the coming months:
- Player exchange – an opportunity to give our top hockey players experience in a different hockey culture and country.
- Educational opportunities for members to study and play abroad.
- Touring opportunities for all teams.
- The opportunity for coaches from the two clubs to share best practices and exchange ideas.
HC Rotterdam captain and Dutch Olympic star, Jeroen Hertzberger commented, “This is a fantastic initiative for the two clubs to work closely together. Beeston have a reputation of producing quality international hockey players in the UK so this is a great opportunity, particularly for our younger players to experience and develop their hockey abroad with the option to study as well.”
Former Beeston captain, Great Britain Olympian and current HC Rotterdam player, Adam Dixon commented, “I’m delighted that my two clubs have entered into this partnership. This is a fantastic opportunity for players from Beeston to experience hockey in the Dutch league and players at Rotterdam to come over to the UK. Beeston are one of England’s strongest clubs and Rotterdam are probably the biggest club in the world so there is much that we can learn from each other.”
A special plaque will be unveiled at both clubs to mark the beginning of this unique twinning arrangement.