Monday, April 15, 2024

Scotland Gear Up For 4 Nations As New Facilities Are In The Planning


A few days ago, the teams for both the Scotland Aspiring and Emerging squads Easter 4 Nations tournaments were announced, and hockey fans already knew the various destinations and teams that would be in play this year.

The Glasgow National Hockey Centre will play host for Scotland Emerging Boys as they face England, France and the Netherlands. Whereas, Scotland Emerging Girls head to Hradec Kralove, Czech Republic, to face Germany, the Netherlands and Czech Republic. A list of online bookmakers will carry plenty of differing odds on how Scotland may perform in these tournaments for those fans who like a small flutter.

Both Aspiring squads will complete over in Wiesbaden, Germany with the Girls facing Germany, England and the Netherlands, whilst the Boys face Germany, Ireland and the Netherlands.

The Aspiring Girls squad will also face Canada at the end of the month in a double header series to be held at Fettes and Peffermill.

Scottish Hockey fans will be watching on where they can and sending each squad their best wishes for success as they continue their own development in the game, and they will be naturally hoping that the improvements we have seen in the sport in recent years really come to further fruition at these competitions.

With all the changes that have taken place in the game during the tenure of the now outgoing Chief Executive Officer Barry Cawte, he moves on with the Scottish game at a high point right now given the firm focus on improvement and this is also now being further reflected at the grass roots level, with growing interest and fan engagement.

In the last 48 hours, it has now been officially confirmed that George Heriot’s School in Edinburgh have formally submitted plans for a new 3G hockey pitch on their site to boost sporting facilities, and that these proposals are now going to be considered by the city council.

The Goldenacre Sports Ground hosts George Heriot’s School’s playing fields, and is already the home of the school’s rugby and cricket clubs, but the extensive improvements plans will see a full sized artificial pitch with LED lighting and surrounding fences, if the plans now sent to the city council are approved. The plans also include a smaller practice area made of artificial grass, and the supplied documents in the application cite the new development will be a telling response to an increase in demand for all weather hockey pitches in the Scottish Capital, and will naturally further support the school’s own hockey squads.

Agents Smith Scott Mullen explained that the development formed an incredibly ‘important aspect of the school’s sports provision and their ability to provide safe, playable facilities.’

Their statement went on to further explain that the plans also provided space for ‘for dug-outs, storage and informal ground level standing space for spectator viewing to one side.’

Many will read into that as also meaning not just school use, but the obviously community outreach aspect that had previously been intimated. The school themselves went further by directly stating that the new facilities would be open for local clubs use, so that they could equally benefit in order to help the youngsters on their books, so in their mind there would be a double benefit from the facilities, that could only be finally offered if planning permission is approved.

For specific, and more general sporting clubs in the area, the extra provision of hockey at the site should go down well, and the school would point to taking the decision to bolster their sporting credentials by pointing out that plans to replace a cricket pitch with a hockey field were abandoned following objections from the cricket club.

So this really is a new provision, that in no way comprises their current offering.

Success for Scotland at the 4 Nations tournaments could well garner even further public support for these new plans.

Total Hockey

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