Club History

Club History

Early Days Of Vancouver Hockey Club

1895: Vancouver Hockey Club founded. Club Captain: Reverend W.J.K. Flinton
1896: Vancouver Ladies Hockey Club founded. Coach: Reverend W.J.K. Flinton

Both clubs were active on the pitch for the period up until the Great War, with social interaction in the form of picnics, end-of-season banquets and similar occasions.

1902-03: A famous early photograph of Vancouver H.C. (now deposited in the archives of the B.C. Sports Hall of Fame and Museum, Vancouver) depicts the team with the caption:

Vancouver Hockey Club 
League Team 1902-3 
Champions of British Columbia

1911: Inception of the Challenge Cup which bears the inscription:

Presented to the British Columbia Grass Hockey Association
by the Officers and Patrons of the North Vancouver Hockey Club 1911

1912-13: Vancouver Hockey Club wins the Challenge Cup in its second year of competition.

1914-19: WWI & Influenza Pandemic. No hockey played.

1920: Men's League re-forms with Vancouver Club as one of the 6 teams in the league.
1929: Women's League re-forms. NO Vancouver Ladies team.

During the Inter-War period, Vancouver HC won the Challenge Cup six times:
1927-28 / 1928-29 / 1929-30 // 1937-38 / 1938-39 // 1940-41

1941-45: World War II. No hockey played for four seasons.

1945: Men's League re-forms after WWII with Vancouver Club included in the league.

Vancouver HC won the Challenge Cup in the third year of post-war competition (1947-48) and again (playing under the name of Bulldogs) in 1948-49 and 1949-50.

[Vancouver HC fielded two teams in the late 1940s, many of the players returned servicemen. As a symbolic gesture to the tenacity of war-hero Winston Churchill, the club's first team was called Bulldogs, this name appearing on VFHL's Challenge Cup on the last two occasions when Vancouver HC won the League. By the 1950s, reference to Bulldogs had disappeared from the records and Vancouver Hockey Club, as such, whilst maintaining two or three teams in the VFHL, never won the Challenge Cup again - end of an era!]

 

1960s: In the early 1960s, most of the young lads who were to form the nucleus of Hawks HC were introduced to hockey by Dr Harry Warren, founding President of CFHA, considered the father of the game in Canada.

1963: Hawks Club founded with a junior boys team playing in lowest division of Men's League

1966-67: HawksA wins Div 2 of VFHL and gains promotion to Div 1 (top division)

Hawks Club fields 4 teams in VFHL (Men's League) and several teams in Junior competition

1967-70: Hawks A wins 3 consecutive VFHL top division premierships:
1967-68 / 1968-69 / 1969-70

1969: Hawks '69 Team tour of Australasia
[An event which stands out in the century-old history of the Vancouver Hawks club is the Hawks 69 Tour, an epic journey of Australasia (Asia and the South Pacific) in which 19 young players played 38 matches in 8 countries over a period of 9 weeks. Almost half of the Hawks69 contingent are still actively involved with the Vancouver Hawks FHC]

1973-77: Hawks A wins 3 more VFHL top division premierships:
1973-74 / 1975-76 / 1976-77

Amalgamation - Vancouver HC and Hawks HC

1977: Amalgamation of Vancouver Club & Hawks Club to create Vancouver Hawks FHC

1977(circa): Creation of Greater Vancouver Junior Field Hockey Association; development of boys' field hockey under the leadership of Brian Seymour of the Vancouver Hawks FHC.

1980-81: Vancouver Hawks FHC HawksA team wins VFHL top division premiership, three decades after the Vancouver Hockey Club had last won the title.

SYNTURF PITCHES

1970: Empire Stadium: Several Hawks members amongst those who established Empire Stadium as a CFHA National Training Centre in SEP 1970; Hawks instrumental in, and supportive of, the Empire Stadium League
[first synturf hockey league in the world], entering a team in inaugural 6-team competition JAN-MAR 1971; and two teams when the Empire Stadium League expanded to 10 teams in subsequent seasons.

1987: Hamber: In 1979, delegation from Vancouver Hawks FHC visited Vancouver Park Board to spearhead a drive for improved hockey facilities. This initiative culminated in 1987 with the installation of Hamber, first municipal synturf pitch in BC for amateur sport; first synturf pitch in Canada installed primarily for hockey.

1995: Livingstone: In the early 1990s, Vancouver Hawks FHC led successful effort to up-grade proposed sand-filled pitches at Livingstone to watered unfilled synturf pitches; also to include changing facilities [not incorporated in original design] as part of project. Livingstone was opened for use in early May 1995.

2002: Wright Field: In 1998, revitalised initiative to install a hockey-primary synturf pitch at UBC proposed by club stalwart, Lee Wright. Project supported by members of the Vancouver Hawks FHC (many of whom were also UBC Alumni) and, by virtue of direct financial support from the Club, Vancouver Hawks FHC became a Donor Partner of the Wright Field Project. Wright Field was completed at the end of May 2002.

2002: Hamber Up-grade: In January 1999, a proposal initiated by members of Vancouver Hawks FHC for the up-grade of Hamber to a hockey-primary watered synturf pitch was presented to Vancouver Park Board for implementation in the 2000-2002 Capital plan. Following representations from Hockey's Hamber Up-grade Committee, comprising predominantly members of Vancouver Hawks FHC, the proposal was accepted by Vancouver Field Sports Federation and Vancouver Park Board in October 2001, and the Hamber Up-grade was completed in October 2002.

Recent Developments

1980s: With Hamber (and later Livingstone) as home-base pitches and KitsYC as social centre, club continues to build under inspired leadership of talented & dedicated members of the Vancouver Hawks FHC Executive. Doves and Hawks tour to Holland and Germany, 1982.

1990s: VanHawks efforts to development junior girls hockey throughout the 1980s and 1990s is very successful. As players mature, teams enter Women's League as Hawks1, Hawks2, etc., to distinguish from men's teams: HawksA, HawksB, etc.

1994: Vancouver Hawks FHC arranges league fixtures to mark VFHL's 100th season. VFHL's oldest clubs [Victoria - 1897 / UBC - 1923 / India - 1933 / VRC Jokers - 1964] participate in ceremonial matches with VanHawks teams at Hamber on SAT 15 OCT 1994.

1995: Throughout the Summer of 1995 (May-Agust) Vancouver Hawks FHC organises festivities to acknowledge its 100th Anniversary. Centenary Celebrations include:

International Invitational Club Tournament (the first VIT) held on the May long weekend. 
FHC National Championships Men & Women - first combined M&W Senior Championships.
Canadian Masters Men & Women (First CM Tournament to include a Men's competition).
International Masters Hockey Tournament comprising Masters (10 teams), Senior Masters (6 teams) and Women's Masters (4 teams). (First IMH Tournament to include a Women's competition). [Centenary Celebration events held at Livingstone - world-class synturf double-pitch complex]

1999-2000: Vancouver Hawks FHC A Team wins VFHL top Division (now called Premier) for the first time in over twenty years.

2002-2003: Vancouver Hawks FHC A Team again wins VFHL Premier Division. [This marks the 100th anniversary of the famous photo of 1902-1903 "Champions of British Columbia"].

2003-2008: Vancouver Hawks FHC runs 5-6 Men's and 6 Women's teams in the Vancouver Leagues with at least one team in each division; as well as numerous junior teams at every age level for both boys & girls; VanHawks players gain selection to regional, provincial and national teams at every level of competition for men, women, girls & boys; members of the club serve on executives of associations from local leagues through provincial/national associations to FIH.

As a multi-cultural, gender-balanced club, providing opportunities for players of all ages and levels of ability, Vancouver Hawks FHC is a model Hockey Club - indeed a model sports club.

Club Presidents

1963-1966 Dr. Harry Warren
1967-1969 John McBryde
1970 Eric Donegani
1971 Lee Wright
1972 Keith Purchase
1973-1974 David Johannson
1975-1977 Antonie Schouten
1977-1981 Richard Fletcher
1981-1985 Ken Beckett
1986 Jon Ronan (interim)
1986-1988 David Johannson
1989-1993 Brian Seymour
1993-1997 John Green
1997-2000 Andrew Shirkoff
2000 Mike Caruth (interim)
2000-2001 John Lehmann
2002-2007 Patrick Oswald
2008-2013 Anne Thompson
2013-Present Ian MacKenzie

Women's Teams

1970-72: Hawks Club fields 2 women's teams in VWFHA Women's League.
Nucleus of teams comprise girlfriends & colleagues of Hawks men.

1970s: Vancouver Club member, Bill Dove, coaches women's club in VWFHA League.
Teams become known as Bill's Doves.

1979: Shiaz Virjee, a member of Vancouver Hawks FHC takes over as coach of the Doves. Bearing olive branches, Hawks woo the Doves with view to creating a mixed Men's & Women's Vancouver Hawks FHC.

1980 (circa): Hawks and Doves teams travel together to Holland, Germany, CalCup at MoorPark (May) and GoldenGate at Berkely (September). Courtship extends to girlfriend - boyfriend interaction, relationships develop and marriages ensue.

1980s: VanHawks Club actively fosters development of junior girls hockey. Over time, more club women's teams entered in VWFHA Women's League.

1981: VanHawks Club agrees to retain Doves as the name of the club's top women's team.

1990s: Doves grows from 3 teams to 6, entered in the Vancouver Women's League. The Doves Premier team win the playoff or League titles for every year they are entered.

2004: Doves agrees to change their name to Hawks.

2005-present: The domination of the Hawks Premier team continues under the leader ship of Rick Roberts, coach.

Club-House

1978 (circa): Following back-to-back VFHL games involving Hawks A and Hawks B at Empire Stadium, two dozen VanHawks Club members meet at apres-game social function to discuss concept of a Club-House. Each member present pledges $100 towards Club-house project.

1979 (circa): With about $2,000 as capital, VanHawks FHC negotiates with Kats RFC to share a house in Kitsilano (at MacDonald Street and 8th Avenue West) serving the purpose of a Club-House.

1984 (circa): VanHawks Club amicably severs partnership with Kats RFC and, through Don Paterson's role as Commodore of Kitsilano Yacht Club, negotiates a club social membership with KYC.

Club Colours

1977: As the original Vancouver Club and Hawks Club colours were both black/white, Vancouver Hawks FHC colours naturally became black/white.

1990 (circa): As Doves colours were red/white, for inclusivity it was agreed that Vancouver Hawks FHC would adopt club colours White/Black/Red (white shirts; black shorts/skirts; red socks ). A long-standing convention of colour-coding at the Junior level (GreenHawks, BlackHawks, RedHawks, etc.) is maintained. Somewhat tongue-in-cheek, GreyHawks conforms with this long-standing tradition and adopts appropriate colour-code in lower division of VFHL Men's League.