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Attendance at Lincoln Roses hockey club doubles in wake of Team GB success

By Lincolnshire Echo  |  Posted: August 20, 2012

  • Inspiring: Boston-born Crista Cullen was among the women’s team who won bronze in London

  • Pride: Doddington’s Georgie Twigg

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The success of Great Britain's women's hockey team at the Olympics is creating a surge of interest in the sport.

The women's team, which included Lincolnshire stars Georgie Twigg, Crista Cullen and Hannah MacLeod, bagged bronze after a hard-fought campaign in London.

And their heroics have inspired others, with Lincoln Roses hockey club revealing they have nearly doubled their attendance.

"We hoped that we would see an upsurge in interest," said Roses club captain Gary Johnson.

"The British teams stood a medal chance and we know that was going to get people wanting to take part.

"But thanks to a few programmes and the support of Hockey England, we have been prepared and are making the most of the interest with a number of schemes."

The club has been working on a range of initiatives aimed at getting all ages and genders into the sport.

The result has seen a club which has 128 members as it stands bring another 100 people into the game.

"We started two weeks before the Games with sessions for children and also for the parents – everyone gets involved," said Johnson.

"But during the Games there has been an extra peak of interest and the sport has been marketed really well.

"I went down to watch and it was a unique experience. The fact the Olympic pitch was blue rather than the traditional green was a nice starting point and made it different.

"And when I was there, I was chatting with people who had come to the hockey because that is what they got tickets for.

"They were discovering it for the first time and they were seeing some great sport and wanted to join in."

The club runs a number of schemes for different people.

For those who have never tried there is 'Give it a Go' and 'Rush Hockey'.

While those who want to return to the sport can look into the 'Back to Hockey' programme.

Johnson believes the hockey governing bodies have been pro-active in their approach.

"It has been a big commitment from the club to sign up to these schemes, but they have been beneficial," he said.

"We have seen that with the numbers and we are more than prepared and ready to welcome more.

"Hockey is a good sport, whether you are competing or doing it for fun, so we encourage anyone to come along."

To find out more about Lincon Roses hockey visit www.roses-hockey.com

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