League Rules

Written by Administrator on 01 November 2011.

Five Counties Women's Hockey League

Rules (updated August 19)


Red card offences must be reported on the appropriate form immediately - please contact Herts and Beds Umpires Association. (

1. Name

The League shall be known as The Five Counties Women's Hockey League. If the sponsor should change, the League will take the name of the new sponsor. If no sponsor is present its title shall thereafter be referred to as The Five Counties Women's Hockey League.

2. Management/Liaison

a. The League shall be governed by a committee comprising of a minimum of five members.

b. An A.G.M. shall be held at the end of each season and any club having an item for the agenda must advise the league secretary 14 days in writing before the meeting.

c. Rules may only be altered at the A.G.M. or at an E.G.M. An E.G.M. must be requested either by the committee or by a minimum of 30% of clubs involved in the league. At least 14 days notice in writing must be given to all clubs together with the business to be transacted at the meeting. Each club will have one vote and at least 30% of clubs must be present at the meeting. A motion will be carried by a simple majority of votes.

3. Membership

All clubs participating must be affiliated to the League and have paid their League subscription.
If subscriptions have not been paid, League matches will be played but no points will be awarded to the non-subscribed teams.

4. Subscriptions

a. Payable to The Five Counties Women's Hockey League by 1st October, 10 per team, should be sent to:- Mr Dan Heydon, 137 St Neots Road, Sandy, Herts SG19 1BP.

b. Failure to meet this deadline will result in a fine of 5 per month after the closing date.

c. The amount of the subscription shall be reviewed annually.

5. Structure

a. For the 2019/2020 season there will be 6 divisions, a premier division and divisions 1-5, each with its own winners trophy. Div 4 & 5 will be development divisions where player rules will be relaxed. Misuse of this compensation will result in it being withdrawn from the offending team.

b. Any club wishing to resign or join the league shall notify the League Secretary by the 31st March.

c. In the event that 2 teams end on equal points, in line with the East League Rules, the following method shall be used:-

i. goal difference
ii. if still equal - most goals for
iii. If still equal - least goals against
iv. If still equal - result of the game between the 2 sides
v. if still equal - play-off between the 2 sides

6. Scoring

Win    = 3 points
Draw  = 1 point
Loss   = 0 points

7. Umpires

a. As amended at the 16/17 AGM the general principle will be that Home teams provide both Umpires who must be capable of officiating within the League system. Teams wishing to bring their own Umpire or who have limited resources to provide two ie no Mens club support or single team clubs need to liaise with their oppositions in a timely manner prior to the fixture

b. Umpires must not change during the game, except through injury to an umpire. (Penalty - 10 Fine and a deduction of 2 points from the offending team. If the game is played the result stands).

c. The Premier and Divisions 1-3  must have the minimum of a Level 1 registered umpire.(Div 3 may have a Probationary Umpire as long as the 2nd Umpire is an experienced Level 1). Div 4-5 must have a Probationary umpire (referred to as a Level 1 Candidate by Herts & Beds Hockey Umpires Association) ie passed the written Level 1 exam but not yet assessed at Level 1. (Penalty - 10 Fine and a deduction of 2 points from the offending team. If the game is played the result stands.)

d. Umpires must collect the team sheet from both teams before the start of the match with the list of players already filled in.

8. Players

All Clubs must select their teams on playing strength so that the strongest available side is put out at each level commencing with the first team. A club may not gain, or seek to gain, unfair advantage by dropping a player or players to a lower team than that for which they would normally play. If any of a Club's league teams are not involved in a league match, the Club shall not endeavour to strengthen its lower sides by selecting the members of that team and thus potentially gaining an unfair advantage.

a. All players must be individually numbered and must display the number on their shirt. Clubs must register all their players names and numbers with the Results Secretary by the Saturday preceding the 1st League date. Players can only be registered with one Club at any one time. Breach of rule 8a will result in a 10 fine.

b. All clubs must nominate 6 players from their highest team in the Five Counties League, 7 players from their team in a Territorial League, or if in the National League they shall name 11 players from their team in the National league plus 7 players from their next highest team, who cannot play for a lower team, from that for which they were nominated, in a League game.

These lists to be submitted to the Results Secretary by the Saturday preceding the 1st League date.

If any dispensation is required regarding this rule (e.g. injury) clubs should contact the league committee for verification prior to the game.

Breach of rule 8b will result in a 10 fine and a 2 point deduction from the offending team. The result will be overturned with a 3-0 win awarded to the opposition

c. No player may play for more than one league team per weekend, at any level, except when a second game is as a goalkeeper. If a goal keeper plays twice (in goal) then they are not permitted to play more than one team below that which they normally. Breach of rule 8c will result in a 10 fine and a 2 point deduction from each team. (Exception being Div 4 & 5 Development games)

d. Named substitutes count as playing a game even if they do not participate in the game. Any resulting weeks suspension from play, through gaining a card will count as having played for that many games. Breach of rule 8d will result in a 10 fine and a 2 point deduction.

e. A player may not play for a team more than one below the highest team for which she has played in the same season, eg a player who has played for a 1st XI may not subsequently play for a 3rd XI in the same season. Dispensation may be granted as above. Breach of rule 8e will result in a 10 fine and a 2 point deduction from the offending team.

f. Once a player has played 6 league games for a team , if she subsequently has to play in a league match for a lower team in the same season, the committee must be notified prior to the game for verification. Breach of rule 8f will result in a 10 fine and a 2 point deduction from the offending team.

g. If a player transfers to another club mid-season, they must notify the league before playing any further league matches. Breach of rule 8g will result in a 10 fine and a 2 point deduction from the player's "new" Club. A player may make one move per season unless granted special dispensation by the Committee.

h. If a player should change their name during the season i.e. they get married, they must inform the league before playing any further league games. Breach of rule 8h will result in a 10 fine.

i. In the event of a colour clash, shirt or socks, the away team MUST change their strip, the game cannot commence unless both umpires and captains agree. Breach of rule 8i will result in a 10 fine.

9. Conduct

The Disciplinary Code of the E.H.A. shall be observed at all times. In the event of a red card being given by any umpire whether qualified or not, a form must be filled in and sent to the league.

10. Matches

a. All games will be arranged by the league results secretary on the dates decided by the league committee.

b. Matches must be confirmed 14 days prior to the game, by the home team.

c. Matches must be arranged by the first name team giving the time, surface and venue.

d. Premier and Division 1 games must be played on astroturf.

e. Pitches must comply with the E.H.A. regulations.

f. The league reserve the right to insist that a team whose pitch does not comply with rule 10e plays all home fixtures away.

g. Clubs should endeavour to play matches between 10am and 4pm.

h. Teams wishing to rearrange a fixture, to an alternative date, must endeavour to give their opposition at least two weeks notice. If the opposition is able to agree a mutally convenient date then the results secretary must be notified immediately.

i. A game can only be claimed as a result of late arrival of teams or umpires when the game cannot be completed within the allotted time (this excludes the late running of prior matches). If the game is unable to be played it would be preferable that the game be rearranged rather than claiming the points. If both teams are agreeable then a reduced game with a minimum of 25 minutes each way would be allowed providing that sufficient time is available. A team cannot play with less than 7 players, and if, after every effort has been made to play has failed, then a 3-0 win will be awarded to the waiting team

j. A team who cancel a game during the week before the fixture, due to insufficient players or an Umpire, will forfeit the game, unless there are exceptional circumstances, in which case the committee will decide if the game should be re arranged.
Breach of rule 10 j will result in a 2 point deduction from the offending team.

k. If a team forfeits more than 2 games over the season then all their results will be made null and void and they will automatically be relegated the following season. Clubs with more than one team would be expected to be able to fulfil their highest team's fixtures ahead of their lowest team.

l. The league hopes that Clubs will respond favourably to requests for help to cover additional costs incurred for re arranged fixtures (minimum 50%)

11. Postponement

Postponement of matches shall only occur in the event of adverse weather conditions or unplayable pitches. Clubs must contact the league when a match is postponed and inform them of the rearranged date immediately. (Note: Rule 14 still applies as well.) Any outstanding games not played on or before the fourteenth day after the last weekend of fixtures, except where it includes Easter, will be voided i.e. no points, no goals to either side.

12. Abandonment

A game may be abandoned if either umpire feels that conditions have become dangerous. A report must then be sent to the league secretary who with the aid of the league committee will decide the action to be taken. (Note: Rule 14 still applies as well.)

13. Failure to Honour a Fixture

If a club fails to honour a match or forfeits the game, they will be deemed to have lost 0-3 and the opposing team will be awarded the points.

14. Notification of Results

HOME teams are responsible completing results sheets with the following information:-

Result - plus goalscorers
Names of carded players
Signatures (& printed names) of captains & umpires

Completed results sheets should be sent to the Division Reps, either by post or scanned by e mail  (addresses at the bottom of each Division Team Sheet)

They should arrive no later than the following Wednesday. 

EACH TEAM SHOULD EMAIL (OR TEXT) THE RESULT TO THE RESULTS SECRETARY BY 8PM ON THE DAY OF THE MATCH. (Contact details are on the Team sheet). Failure to do so will result in a 10 fine

15. Fines

Fines should be paid to the treasurer by 30th April. Failure to do so could result in points being deducted, demotion or expulsion from the League.

16. Failure to Attend the A.G.M.

Failure to attend the A.G.M. will either result in the club being fined, points being deducted from the following season or no longer being represented in the league.

17. Binding Force of Rules

Each club by its entry into the league shall be deemed to have given consent to the Rules of the League and to any amendments which may from time to time be adopted in proper form and shall be deemed to have agreed to abide by the decisions of the League Committee.

18. Disputes/Appeals

Any player or club shall have the right to appeal on any disputed point to the committee whose decision is final.

19. Publicity

Clubs should endeavour to put the league results in their local papers.

Club Representatives are responsible for maintaining their Club details on the Web site

Contact Us

5 Counties Women's Hockey League
Management Committee

See Details in the Club House