Over the summer, some MUGSS members (and friends) meet for a bit of hockey (in the "jumpers for goalposts" sense) one night each week in Platt Fields Park (between Rusholme and Fallowfield). Then we retire to Hardy's Well. It's nothing formal - just some grass, a ball and some sticks. There's no umpire, and there's some debate as to whether there are any rules.

Anyone's welcome, from complete beginners to old hands. It's more about having a bit of fun than being competitive. The lumpy grass on the Field of Platt is a great leveller.

We'll be playing on Wednesdays until September or thereabouts, starting at either 6.30pm or 7pm. Times will vary as the summer progresses (we can start later when the sun sets later).

If you want to play, you're more than welcome to come along. The time and day change occassionally, but are always posted to the banter list ahead of time. We play in Platt Fields, more specifically, this bit

map of where we play hockey

Hockey Questions

Who organises it? I'm Mahinda - one of the Old Soaks. While I've not actually been in MUGSS this year, you'll probably have met me at one (or more) of the socials. I've been organising the Summer Hockey thing for something like five years now.

Am I welcome? Of course! Bring a friend, too.

Where is it? In Platt Fields - see the map on http://www.mugss.org/society/hockey. It's in the bit pretty much next to Wilmslow Road, between Fallowfield and the bright lights of Rusholme. We just play on a patch of grass - it's definitely not a proper pitch. It was literally jumpers-for-goalposts, but I've bought some cones now!

When is it? Wednesdays, starting at either 6.30pm or 7pm (depending on the amount of daylight we'll get). We typically play until it gets dark, then head to the pub. Any changes will be emailed to the Banter list - if you're not on Banter, let me know and I'll add you to my "non-Banter hockey" email list.

Where do you meet? We usually meet up next to a big stone benchy thing near one of the entrances to the park. It's pretty obvious, and is marked on the map (see above).

What if I'm late? Just turn up, pick up a stick, and join in. Being on time really doesn't matter.

But I'm a complete beginner! Not a problem. The level each year varies from complete beginners upwards. There are usually a few people who've never held a hockey stick before, too. Honestly, it's the taking part that counts.

Do I need my own stick? Nope. We have plenty of spares.

Do I need anything else? Shinpads are a good idea. Apart from that, comfy sporty clothes and trainers will be fine.

What if it rains? We'll play anyway! If it's really bad, we'll retire to the pub (Hardy's Well) early.

Who plays? Well, there's me! Other MUGSS regulars include Si Glass, Justin, Gareth (aka MightyG), Malcolm, Jordan, and Alison Pickering. It's usually a fairly mixed bunch - there are a few ex- and non-MUGSS types as well, but they're all friendly enough ;o)

How will I spot you lot? There really aren't many groups of people wandering around Platt Fields with hockey sticks. We'll usually start off by chucking a frisbee around.

How will I know what's happening? There'll be an email out to the Banter list every week (if one doesn't go out, just assume that it's the same as last week). If you're not on Banter, let me know and I'll add you to my "non-Banter hockey" email list.

What if I'm thirsty afterwards? We'll almost always retire to Hardy's Well afterwards. That's the big pub on the corner of Wilmslow Road and Dickenson Road, just as you're heading into Rusholme. On Manchester Ceilidh days, some of us will head to Jabez for some strip-the-willow action.

Do you play outside term-time? Yes - we keep going right through the summer, until the end of September or so, when it becomes too dark to play.

I've got some obscure question that's not answered here. Try the Banter list, or give me a shout - hockey@mahinda.net