Talent & Player Pathway


The Player Pathway was introduced by England Hockey (EH) in 2017 and is designed to provide an environment which helps all junior players to realise their potential be that as a club player, volunteer, coach, umpire  or representing their county/sub-area, region, England or Great Britain.

Since the EH Governance restructure in 2021, London Hockey is responsible for the organisation of activity which form the first two levels of the Player Pathway for players aged U13 - U17 in the Greater London area.

Development Centres (DCs) are the first level in the Pathway. Players are nominated by their club or school to attend centres across London for a series of training sessions over the summer and in September where they receive coaching in core skills and match play following EH guidelines. DCs will be run at a number of different venues and players select the one which is the most convenient for them. 

Following the DC sessions, some players will be selected for further assessment for the Academy Centres. Anyone who is not selected for the next level will have the opportunity to be assessed again the following season if renominated.

Academy Centres (ACs) are the second level. Two ACs per age group & gender will be run, one in the north and one in the south of the London Area. Training will be held at different venues across London and will run from October/November to March on Sunday priority dates in the EH Centralised Calendar plus some Friday evenings. A match squad will then be selected to play a series of matches against other ACs in Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Hampshire, Kent, Oxfordshire, Surrey and Sussex which take place in March to May. Dates for the season can be found on the right hand side of the page.

The Talent Development strategy “A New Way Forward” will replace the Player Pathway at the end of the 2021-2022 season. Whilst parts of the Pathway will disappear, the DCs and ACs will remain and run alongside, and complement, the new Talent Centres and Talent Schools. A copy of the latest EH Document regarding the Talent System Framework is linked on the right hand side of the page.