The Sheffield Raptors Skater Hockey Club started out back
in the fall of 1995. Initially just 4 or 5 would meet outside
in the car park of Toys R Us at the Meadowhall retail park in
Sheffield. Before long there were regular meetings on a Friday
night and the team began to take shape.
Some of those original players are still on the team today. The
images you see here are taken from video footage from a November
night in 95. At that time we had little in the way of equipment and were
perhaps typical of many other street hockey teams - just there to
have a good time and play hockey! Some of the players at that time,
played ice hockey for local rec teams.
Before long the weather got the better of us and we decided it was
time a sports hall was booked! Saturday mornings became the time,
Hillsborough leisure centre the venue. From now on things became a little
more official and we felt we should aim to join a league by September 1996.
Over the weeks everyone got kited up and we started to look more
of the part. More players joined the team and it wasn't long before the
squad was in excess of twenty. The team needed a name - many suggestions
were made but in the end we decided on RAPTORS. One of the guys ran his
own design business and he set about creating the shirts.
Players came and went but the overall numbers in the squad remained the
same. Several friendly matches were set up with other local teams and
most of them we won, we were ready for the league, or so we thought.....
RAPTORS Est 1995
During the next six months there became an obvious interest shown by local
kids, so in response to this, we embarked upon the formation
of a Peewee team. The team began to train in the spring of 1997. The Peewee
age category at that time catered for kids between the ages 10 to 13. To this end the
Sheffield Raptors fielded it's first Peewee team in the YLASH organised
league for the 97-98 season. Following an immense interest shown in youth
skater hockey and recent changes initiated by the sports council, the
Sheffield Raptors SHC have developed and formed two new teams in the recently
created age groups. Skater hockey has, for the past two years, proved to be
the fastest growing sport in Europe.