Schools compete in tournament, in memory of Hemel netballer

The winners  from Bovingdon
The winners from Bovingdon

Eleven schools from across Dacorum played in a High 5 Netball tournament, in memory of a keen Hemel Hempstead netballer.

Netball lover Pat Bickel played from school age through to adult level, where she played in the Hemel Hempstead netball league and was league treasurer, and continued to play up to the age of 70.

After Pat sadly passed away last year, her family wanted to make a contribution to netball in Hemel in her memory.

Pat’s husband, Brian, worked closely with Clare McCawley, of Dacorum Schools Sports Network, and Sportspace to plan a community event that would celebrate Pat’s life and her netballing success.

They decided that a High 5 tournament for local schools would be the perfect event to reflect Pat’s love of netball.

Designed specifically for children aged nine to 11, High 5 netball differs slightly from the traditional form of netball.

It can be for mixed or single-sex teams, with a maximum of two boys on court at any one time.

A key part of High 5 is that players rotate round positions, so all young people get to experience every position on court, which makes for fitter, more adaptable players as they get older.

Brian’s family provided bibs and High 5 netballs for the schools that took part.

Eleven schools put 15 teams together for an afternoon of mini-matches, with Bovingdon Academy taking Gold in the final and St Pauls C of E, Chipperfield, securing Silver.

Although the tournament was planned as a one-off event, the event was such a success that Clare and the Dacorum Schools Sports Network team are keen to bring it back next year for a whole day, to carry on celebrating Pat’s life and love of netball whilst encouraging netball for all children in Dacorum schools.