The Club history can be traced back to Owai Rovers Hockey Club, which was affiliated with the Auckland Hockey Association on March 27, 1939 with three teams, won it's first Championship in 1940 and reached Senior Status in 1942. A Ladies team was entered in 1940, but only lasted for three seasons.
In 1954 a few players from the Club decided to form a Club of young players who had attended Avondale College. This club was affiliated on April 21, 1954 as Avondale College Past Pupils Association, and had one team in the third grade. This team won the championship in it's first year, and again the year after! In 1956, the Club's name was changed to Avondale College Ex Students, which quickly became ACES. This Club won every grade that it entered for the next four years. However it did not manage to achieve promotion to Senior Status.
Meanwhile, Owai Rovers had continued, but was finding difficulties in fielding teams of strength in some grades. The club could also see the problems of ACES, and an approach was made about the two clubs amalgamating. Both clubs also knew that another group in Henderson was proposing to form a new Club, so this group was approached, in the hope of forming one strong Club.
As a result, Western Districts Hockey Club was formed at a meeting held March 1, 1958 by an amalgamation of the three groups. Affiliation with the Auckland Hockey Association was granted on March 13, 1958, and affiliation with the Ladies Association was granted on March 15, 1958.
The new Club immediately proved successful, and in the decade of the sixties became one of the strongest clubs in Auckland, winning many Championships in both Mens and Ladies Hockey. In 1983 the Club opened the Rob Henry Pavilion, which is the only all weather, fully enclosed Hockey Training Facility in New Zealand. This Pavilion is a great asset, allowing training to be carried out indoors, on turf, at any time of the day or night, no matter what the weather is like.
In 1999, the new Avondale College water based turf was opened on Rosebank Road, Avondale. The Club moved their home premises to the Avondale College Pavillion to take advantage of this fantastic facility and we have been there since.
Along with a brand new clubrooms facility, the water-based turf changed the game of hockey to a fast paced, skill based game which has attracted a host of new players to the game across Auckland. The Club has gone from strength to strength, with Western teams representing most grades in the Juniors, Youth and Senior divisions. Throughout the nineties and noughties the club has had an enthusiastic membership. We celebrated our Club's 50th Jubilee in 2008 and had a weekend of festivities to mark the occasion.
We have had many players travel to New Zealand to play hockey for our Club teams, including international representatives. We have also played host to several Black Sticks representatives who often transfer to our Club for an Auckland base during the NZ selection process, including Kyle Pontifex the former Black Sticks goalkeeper.
The Club highlights of the past decade include the Auckland Hockey Association Championship win by our Premier Ladies team in 2016 and Danielle Jones representing New Zealand in the Black Sticks team.
We look forward to continuing to grow our membership in the years to come and fostering a love of hockey amongst the local community.
Here are some words from international players who’ve played for Western in the past
Hola, bueno les cuento que mi experiencia en Western hockey club fue muy buena y la gente es muy calida y social a la vez, desde que arrive a este pais siempre tube mucho apoyo de todas las personas tanto en lo afectivo como en lo laboral, es como una gran familia. Tambien encontre que es un pais que le encanta tomar cervezas despues de los partidos y asi seguir con la parte social entre los equipos y a la ves seguir disfrutando de otros partidos.
I first played for Western in 1995 whilst enjoying my University summer holidays. I found the club to be extremely social and very similar to the hockey clubs in England. I enjoyed the hockey and the Western "family" so much that I decided to return in 1996 for a second season. In 2002 I moved permanently to NZ and found that the Western tradition of work hard, play hard had not changed and would thoroughly recommend the club to any hockey player of any ability.
Western is een erg gezellige club, waar goed hockey wordt gespeeld. Wat ik vooral leuk vind aan Western is het internatiale karakter; zoals je hierboven ziet komen onze spelers overal vandaan. Western is verder een club waar ze wel een pintje lusten, dus dat is natuurlijk ook altijd mooi. Als je meer wil weten over hockeyen in Nieuw Zeeland, stuur ons dan gerust een email en we helpen je verder!