Each year Berkshire Hockey Association runs Development Centres (DC) for playing squads in the under 13 to under 17 categories at venues across the county.  Development Centre’s for the U13 and U14 age groups take place during the summer term, starting in May and those for the under 15, 16 and 17 age groups take place in the autumn term, starting in September.  In 2017 over 600 young people from over 100 different schools and 22 different Hockey Clubs attended these Centres.

Equipment

Outfield participants must bring their own stick and must wear shinpads and gum shields.  All outfield players are provided with a coloured and numbered bib which must be worn over other clothing.  All players will be required to wear sports clothing suitable for the conditions.  NB the programmes takes place on astroturf pitches and astro shoes/trainers are therefore preferable to standard sports trainers.

Goalkeepers are required to bring their own kit which must include the following:

  • Kickers
  • Leg guards
  • Abdominal guard/pelvic protector
  • Padded shorts
  • Chest protector body armour
  • Throat / neck protector
  • Helmet
  • Hand deflectors
  • Smock
  • Arm Protectors (preferred although not essential)

The sessions are physically demanding so all  players must bring plenty to drink, with water being the preferred option.

Cancellation and Non-attendance

In the event that it is necessary to cancel a session, we will endeavour to give as much notice as possible.  Sessions are rarely cancelled due to adverse weather conditions.  Players should wear clothing appropriate to the conditions on the day, which may mean additional layers.

If your child cannot attend a session, please inform the Team Manager at the earliest possible opportunity.  Whilst we understand that on occasions it may not be possible to attend a session, players are assessed throughout the programme with a view to selection to the next phase in the process.  Low attendance may reduce the efficiency of such assessments, thus lowering the chances of progression.

For Players

We’ll keep the player information nice and short:

  1. Listen to the coaches – they will explain the sessions and are looking for opportunities for you to show what you can achieve.
  2. Be a team player – we are looking for players who work hard as part of a team.
  3. Try new skills – it’s a Development Centre.
  4. Have fun!

As a reminder to parents about the "fun" part, please take a moment to watch this video:

Video called My Magic Sports Kit

Development Centre - under 13 and under 14 age groups

Nominations and registrations for the U13 and U14 age groups are now closed for the 2019 programme.  Most of the squads were at capacity at the time of closure, with some operating waiting lists.  It is highly recommended for the younger age groups to register as early as possible in future to avoid disappointment.  Nominations and registrations for the 2020 programme will be opened in late February 2020.

Development Centre - under 15, 16, 17 age groups (2005, 2004, 2003 birth years)

Registrations are now open for the older age groups. and we are inviting players born in the following years (please note England Hockey works on a calendar year basis, not school year):

  • birth year 2005 - under 15 (U15)
  • birth year 2004 - under 16 (U16)
  • birth year 2003 - under 17 (U17)

The programme will comprise a series of training sessions run on Friday evenings as follows:

  • September - 13th, 20th, 27th
  • October - 4th, 11th, 18th
  • November - 8th, 15th 

These sessions are designed to improve core hockey skills at an individual level and all exercises are delivered in game play situations. The sessions normally last for 90 minutes and can be physically demanding, but no more than would be expected at a competitive school or club match level. 

The training sessions will largely take place at Reading and/or Sonning Hockey Club (RG4 6ST).  Each has the same address and the pitches are alongside each other, but separate car parks are available, allowing for additional parking and facilitating a slightly easier exit route.

Timings are:

  • Under 15 girls (U15G) - 6:30pm to 8pm
  • Under 15 boys (U15B) - 6:30pm to 8pm
  • Under 16 girls (U16G) - 6:30pm to 8pm
  • Under 16 boys (U16B) - 8pm to 9:30pm
  • Under 17 girls (U17G) - 8pm to 9:30pm
  • Under 17 boys (U17B) - 8pm to 9:30pm

In order to attend the Development Centre programme and be considered for selection into county age group squads, please complete and return the Player Registration Form to Berkshire Hockey Association's Registrar at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., also confirming the payment reference used (please see below for details) so that we may reconcile payment with your application.

The cost of the Development Centre programme is £90 per player.  This is non-refundable except in the case of proven long term injury.  Please pay by bank transfer inserting the payment reference as shown on the example below:-

Account Name:  Berkshire Hockey Association (Barclays)

Account Number: 13603539

Sort Code:  20-65-20

Please include the payment reference of player's initial + surname + birth year, eg 'B SMITH 2003'

We may be able to offer assistance to families in financial hardship.  Please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for further information.

There are limited places at these sessions and these will be allocated as soon as both payment AND a completed registration form are received.  Anyone applying after maximum numbers have been reached will be placed on a waiting list.  If we are unable to find a space for a player, payment will be returned, or if we are sufficiently oversubscribed, additional dates/times may be considered for those remaining on the waiting list.