The fortunes of the Saracens FHC have ebbed and flowed over the years. Its members have toured far and wide, playing and umpiring in: numerous festivals in Vancouver and Oliver; provincial club tournaments in Edmonton & Winnipeg; a recreational tournament in Bermuda; & Golden Oldies tournaments in Victoria, Australia, Vancouver and Fiji. Right now we are perhaps the largest club in Calgary with two or three teams entered in both indoor and outdoor competitions.
The History of Field Hockey in Calgary
A nice account of the history of field hockey in Calgary is provided by the team brochure of the Saracens entry in the 1985 Golden Oldies tournament in 1985. We shall quote this brochure here
The League that Amby Built
Amby Gregg was a retired Physical Education Instructor who passed away some years ago. Amby organized the Calgary League in 1957 when a group of players gathered for mixed hockey in Boystown. The first executive of the Calgary Association seemed to consist of all the players in the League.
The mixed hockey, under the driving force of Amby Gregg, Jim Day, Margo Lock, Jill McLeod, Ken Craig, etc. flourished with four teams, moving from Boystown to Hillhurst Sunnyside and Highwood, until 1962 when the Ladies' League formed. The Gregg Shield, symbol of mixed hockey excellence, began in 1961 and became an exciting Calgary hockey social event.
Since 1985 hockey has continued to grow slowly in Calgary with about 6 teams competing in one division in the men's league and 20 teams in the women's league. In recent years, progress in the indoor form of the game has been particularly encouraging with some success for teams from Calgary in national tournaments. Expanding junior programs are beginning to develop some promising youth players. Probably the most exciting development of all is the completion of a world class outdoor playing surface at the University of Calgary which is featured in a separate page in this site here.
Calgary Saracens FHC
The Saracens field hockey club was formed in the early 1960s with Amby Gregg himself a prominent member and has been in existence continually ever since. The name Saracens may seem a little incongruous at first. The word Saracen is defined by Wikipedia as an Arab or a member of the Islamic faith. Although the league is has a strong international flavour, Saracens FHC have not generally been dominated by players of Arabic extraction. We believe that the Saracens FHC began associated with, and deriving their name from, the Saracens Athletic Club of Calgary a rugby club still going strong in Calgary. This club presumably derived their name from the older Saracens Rugby Club in England.
Golden Oldies Team 1985
Quite a bit of Saracens history here. The team that played in the international golden oldies tournament at Victoria in 1985.