Olympic gold hockey player opens new Ely astro turf pitch

PUBLISHED: 12:48 25 February 2019 | UPDATED: 14:35 25 February 2019

Ely Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSE

Ely Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSE

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An Olympic gold athlete joined the family of a former hockey enthusiast for the official opening of a new astro turf pitch costing £198,000.

Gold Olympic athlete Helen Richardson-Walsh with Kate Hopkinson, widow of Trevor, at the opening of the new Ely astro turf. Picture: MIKE ROUSEGold Olympic athlete Helen Richardson-Walsh with Kate Hopkinson, widow of Trevor, at the opening of the new Ely astro turf. Picture: MIKE ROUSE

The new Trevor Hopkinson pitch replaces the old one which athletes say had become too dangerous to use.

GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh officially opened the new pitch and afterwards mingled with young hockey players.

Julia Gilbert, director of Ely Outdoor Sports Association, said: “What a lovely tribute to one of the driving forces behind getting the new astro pitch and that his widow Kate and the family could be there to see him honoured.

“It was a wonderful day, made even more special by the glorious weather. Not only were we honoured to have the lovely Helen officially open the pitch for us, we were also able to honour all that Trevor had done for the club.”

Ely Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSEEly Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSE

Paul Massey, chairman of Ely City Hockey Club, said: “The sun shines on the righteous, and the righteous are shining on us today,” referring to Trevor, who devoted years to the club and made it the place it is today.

Helen said: “When I come back to clubs and I see all of you, it reminds me of where I stated. I can see the pride that you have in this club, I can really feel it.”

The midfielder has been a member of the England and Great Britain women’s field hockey teams since 1999, and a member of the GB team that won gold at the 2016 Rio Olympics.

Following the ceremony, members of Ely City Hockey Club ladies played a match against the Ely Ladies Legends and the Club men played a match against the Ely Presidents.

Ely Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSEEly Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSE

In 2017 a fund-raising appeal for £198,000 was launched to replace the old astro pitch which had become so worn it was dangerous to play on.

Grants were secured from Sport England, the Amey Community Fund, the National Hockey Foundation and East Cambridgeshire District Council, as well as generous donations from local companies including G’s Fresh, A L Lee Farming and J Gilbert & Son Ltd.

Local charitable trusts also gave support.

Julia said: “Together with various fund raising events we managed to reach our target last August and work started on the replacement pitch in October 2018.

Ely Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSEEly Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSE

“The pitch was finished in mid January 2019. It is a vital and much used community asset.”

Ely Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSEEly Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSE

Ely Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSEEly Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSE

Ely Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSEEly Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSE

Ely Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSEEly Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSE

Ely Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSEEly Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSE

Ely Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSEEly Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSE

Ely Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSEEly Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSE

Ely Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSEEly Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSE

Ely Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSEEly Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSE

Ely Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSEEly Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSE

Ely Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSEEly Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSE

Ely Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSEEly Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSE

Ely Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSEEly Hockey Club offically open their new Trevor Hopkinson pitch joined by his widow Kate and family. Also joining the event is GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh. Picture: MIKE ROUSE

Ely City hockey players vs Ladies Legends. Picture: ELY CITY HOCKEY CLUBEly City hockey players vs Ladies Legends. Picture: ELY CITY HOCKEY CLUB

Helen Richardson-Walsh opens the champagne at Ely City Hockey Club. Picture: ELY CITY HOCKEY CLUBHelen Richardson-Walsh opens the champagne at Ely City Hockey Club. Picture: ELY CITY HOCKEY CLUB

Ely City hockey players vs Ladies Legends. Picture: ELY CITY HOCKEY CLUBEly City hockey players vs Ladies Legends. Picture: ELY CITY HOCKEY CLUB

Helen Richardson-Walsh meets players after opening the new astro turt at Ely City Hockey Club. Picture: ELY CITY HOCKEY CLUBHelen Richardson-Walsh meets players after opening the new astro turt at Ely City Hockey Club. Picture: ELY CITY HOCKEY CLUB

The Presidents Team at Ely City Hockey Club. Picture: ELY CITY HOCKEY CLUBThe Presidents Team at Ely City Hockey Club. Picture: ELY CITY HOCKEY CLUB