History of Redcliffe Hockey Club

Hockey is extremely popular on the Peninsula. Mary Nairn describing hockey in Redcliffe in 1957 as "a way of life down here"

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From the Archives - Bella Sim, by Eileen Grealy for BWHA

It would not be an exaggeration to say that in the records of the Brisbane Women’s Hockey Association, Queensland W.H.A., Redcliffe and Metropolitan Women’s Hockey Clubs (the latter based at Merchant Park, Chermside), the name of Bella Sim is etched indelibly – not only for her unswerving loyalty, but also her ongoing service to women’s hockey both on and off the field.

By courtesy of Mrs Doss Buchanan, long-time friend and sporting associate of Bella, we offer the following profile:

As a teenager, Bella joined the Redcliffe Women’s Hockey Club, and under the coaching of Mary Nairn (nee Brown) played fullback for that Club during Country Week carnivals and Sunday social games. I might mention here that Redcliffe was the wartime weekend home of many Brisbane players, with hospitality never in doubt. In retrospect, a very happy time in our lives.

Membership of the Brisbane based Metropolitan Club as goalkeeper and Captain followed, also selection as goalkeeper in the Queensland State Team to play in Perth in 1947, and a member of the Queensland TOURING Team (again as goalkeeper) to Tasmania and South Australia.

Bella’s long service to women’s hockey – generally – included:

*Delegate: Queensland Women’s Hockey Association, Brisbane W.H.A, and Bundaberg.

*Umpiring Badges: All Australian W.H.A., Queensland and Brisbane W.H.A. Bella also made time to encourage younger players who showed an interest in umpiring. Whenever and wherever an umpire was required, she was “on the spot”.

*Life Memberships: Redcliffe Women’s Hockey Club, Metropolitan Club, also Brisbane and Queensland Women’s Hockey Associations.

Along the way, her contribution to field maintenance at Downey Park was unstinting, culminating in working bees all designed to present grounds worthy of their annual opening of the season and visitors who graced the occasion.

On then to our fiftieth year of Brisbane hockey, when a building fund was established with a view to making the present BWHA Clubhouse and facilities a reality. Bella weighed in with clubhouse furnishings, preserves sold on-site and the responsibility for flag posts, flags and pennants again went to our loyal member.

To sum up, Redcliffe’s Doss Buchanan writes – “Hockey is so lucky to have had Bella Sim in those formative years.” And, she is still contributing in her own way. Thank You, Bella Sim.

Bella’s response? “It has been a pleasure and an honour to be part of Women’s Hockey.'
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