As part of our Sport Industry Spotlight on Events - Reducing Risk in association with Miller we are looking back at some of the fantastic work shortlisted in the Event of the Year category at the BT Sport Industry Awards 2019.
Event: The Vitality Hockey Women’s World Cup
Tell us about yourselves...
England Hockey (National Governing Body) is driven to increase participation, achieve international success and increase the visibility of the sport whilst enhancing the national infrastructure and operating as a strong and respected custodian of the sport.
The Vitality Hockey Women’s World Cup was a massively ambitious project and an overwhelming success. Over 16 days, our events team, supported by an army of Hockey Makers, delivered 36 matches, in the company of over 120,000 spectators. We generated £3.16m of public ticket sales, an incredible £2.16m above what was originally forecast in our bid to host the event.
Following our women’s team winning Gold in Rio 2016, the phenomenal success of this event really has proven the direction of travel for the sport evidenced by Hockey being the only team sport that has recorded participation growth for ten consecutive years.
Why do you think you made the shortlist?
The scale of the event in comparison to previous Hockey events hosted in the UK. We had ambitious targets and went on to smash them.
Selling over 120,000 tickets making this one of the biggest ever women’s only sports event to be help in the UK.
The event was run by an in-house team who set new standards for quality, expectations, teamwork and endurance. Their mantra, #oneteam.
What made this year fun?
This was an opportunity for England Hockey to position the Vitality Hockey Women’s World Cup as the pinnacle competition for our sport, outside of the Olympics. We set out to deliver an event that set new standards for excellence, for future hosts to aspire to. We are very happy that we achieved this objective.
Being delivered internally, the whole organisation got behind the event and more specifically, behind the events team. The level of teamwork, collaboration, support and empathy shown across the organisation was a joy to see and has certainly been continued as we embark upon our next major project, delivering the FIH Pro League.
Who was your MVP?
Sue Catton – Head of Events, EH. Led our event delivery team superbly giving fans a great experience and ensuring operational excellence.
Our successful delivery of the Vitality Hockey Women’s World Cup was a result of fantastic teamwork, both internally at England Hockey and with the support of specialist partners and 650 volunteers.
Internally, we operated under the mantra #oneteam, with employees from across the breadth of the organisations all striving to achieve the same goal, to deliver a World Class event on a scale not seen in women’s sport in recent times.
Whilst there are many thanks deserved across the whole England Hockey team, specific mentions should go to Sue Catton, EH Head of Events who was instrumental in the planning, coordination and execution of the event. Also, Nicky Milford, EH Event Manager, not only managed the recruitment of over 650 Hockey Maker volunteers but was integral in the operational delivery of the event; and EH’s Communications Manager, Craig Mortimer-Zhika, who designed and ran a communications strategy that enabled the Vitality Hockey Women’s World Cup to record an unprecedented reach across broadcast and media.
Given our ambitions for delivering an event on this scale, we engaged with a number of agencies to provide expertise and assistance. England Hockey would like to give a special mention to Matta, CSM Live, See Tickets and Kevin Bonner for their work in delivery of the Vitality Hockey Women’s World Cup.