These rules govern North East Hockey League competitions.


The Organisation shall be called the “North East Hockey League” (with any sponsor’s name to be prefixed in all publicity), hereinafter referred to as “NEHL”


The objective of the NEHL shall be to promote men’s outdoor hockey through the organisation and administration of a league.


Membership of the NEHL shall be restricted to those Clubs that are affiliated to England Hockey Board, North Hockey Association and its appropriate County Association in the relevant season.


All clubs in the NEHL are required to have a Child Protection Policy and to appoint a Child Protection Officer.


The League shall be divided into 2 sections: the league proper, and the Club Development League (CDL).

The league proper shall consist of a number of divisions with a maximum of 12 teams per division playing fixtures home and away.

The lowest tier of the structure shall form the CDL. The format of the CDL shall vary, according to the number of teams under consideration.

Any decision to alter the number of teams in the league structure shall be the responsibility of the Hon. Secretary, in conjunction with the NEHL Committee, and shall be done in relation to the number of teams available.

If a division contains more than one team from the same club, the Hon. Fixtures Secretary shall arrange the fixtures so that any intra club matches are played as early as possible in the first of each block of League fixtures.


Any application for membership of, or notice of resignation from, the NEHL shall be made in writing to the NEHL Secretary not later than 30th April of the year in which the club wishes its application or resignation to take effect. Applications will be considered at the first subsequent NEHL Committee Meeting and subject to the club fulfilling the conditions. The NEHL Committee shall be responsible for the approval, or otherwise, of any new teams.

The team(s) of a new member club, or the additional team(s) of an existing club, shall normally be placed in the CDL unless the application requests entry to the league proper. Both requests are subject to the NEHL Committee’s approval, and the feasibility of accommodating the new team within the League structure.

Any team wishing to be considered for inclusion in the league proper shall request promotion, in writing, to the Hon. Secretary not later than 30th April of the year in which the promotion shall be considered.


The league proper shall be formed of teams whose clubs shall guarantee full commitment to formal league hockey and complete acceptance of these Rules as they apply to the respective leagues. The CDL shall exist to promote club and junior development and, to promote this, shall be formed of teams whose clubs cannot guarantee such a degree of commitment but nevertheless wish to be involved in competitive hockey.


All member Clubs of the NEHL must provide details of their club officers, for the coming season, to the NEHL Secretary by 30th June, to ensure inclusion in the NE Hockey Handbook. Among its officers each Club must appoint a nominated Club Email Contact, who shall be the main point of contact for the League for all general matters, and an individual Fixture Secretary.

The Fixture Secretary [or an individual delegated Match Secretary] shall be the main point of contact for Clubs for the match arrangements covered in Rule 4.11.


University based clubs must appoint a locally based ‘Mentor’, acceptable to the Committee, who will ensure that understanding of the League’s requirements are passed on to successive student administrations. This individual's contact details must be provided, as under Rule 2.6, to ensure an out of season point of contact.

Failure to provide term details by due date: £20 fine.

Failure to provide details of Mentor: £20 fine.


Any club or team may be expelled from the NEHL by a decision of a Special General Meeting (SGM), General Meeting, or at the AGM. Upon expulsion by the NEHL Committee, the club has the right of appeal to the next SGM, GM, or at the AGM. Expulsion from the NEHL shall be effective from the end of the season and shall normally be for one season. Re-application for membership of the NEHL shall be the same as that for a new club [see 2.4 above].


On completion of the League proper fixtures, promotion and relegation between the respective leagues and divisions will be subject to promotion and relegation to/from the next higher League as laid down in Appendix 1.

Promotion from the league proper divisions will be open to the two highest placed teams whose clubs can provide assurance of commitment to the Rules as they apply to the league proper and acceptance of this assurance by the NEHL Committee. There will be no promotion from the CDL.

Relegation from the league proper divisions will only take place if teams are promoted. In circumstances where a team from a particular club gains promotion ahead of another team or teams with nominally higher status from the same club then for the following season the promoted team will assume the status of the highest club side it has been promoted ahead of, playing in the NEHL, with all other lower teams redesignated as necessary.

A club may elect for one or more of its teams to be relegated to a lower league when it can no longer guarantee the required level of commitment. Similarly, the NEHL Committee, in pursuance of Rule 5.2, may decide that a team should be so relegated.

Subject to the constraints above further teams may be promoted within the NEHL structure to balance the Divisions as covered in Rule 2.3. All decisions regarding promotion and relegation shall be agreed by the NEHL Committee.


The NEHL shall be administered by a Committee consisting of the following: (a) Chairman, (b) Honorary Secretary, (c) Hon. Handbook Editor, (d) Hon. Fixtures Secretary, (e) Honorary Treasurer, (f) Honorary League Administrator, (g) A minimum of 3 additional members, (h) A representative of the Northumberland and Durham Hockey Umpires Association, (i) A representative of the Durham County Hockey Association, (j) A representative of the Northumberland County Hockey Association.

All positions shall be elected at the AGM, or a GM in the event of a position becoming unfulfilled because of resignation or other circumstances

Positions (b) to (f) shall be in receipt of an annual honorarium (to be agreed at the AGM). All positions shall be in receipt of approved expenses.


The NEHL Committee shall have the power to co-opt additional members onto the Committee.


The NEHL Secretary shall have executive responsibility for the administration of the NEHL and in this regard shall manage the day to day activities of the League Administrator and co-ordinate those of the Hon. Handbook Editor and Fixtures Secretary.

The NEHL Secretary shall cause minutes of all proceedings of SGM, GM, AGM and Committee Meetings to be entered in a file provided for the purpose. When these minutes are signed by the Chairman, they shall be conclusive evidence of the correctness of the entries.


The Hon. Handbook Editor shall be responsible for matters relating to the preparation, printing and distribution of the NE Hockey Handbook and publication of the details therein on the NEHL website.


The Hon. Fixtures Secretary, or, in his absence, the Hon. Secretary, shall be responsible for all matters relating to the preparation and publication of annual NEHL fixture lists, and the management of any rearrangements necessitated in consequence of issues resulting from the annual Fixture Secretaries' Meeting and postponements throughout the season.


The Honorary Treasurer shall be responsible for keeping and preparing accounts and for presenting them at the AGM and shall present the said accounts for annual audit in advance of the AGM to a suitable person appointed by the committee for that purpose.


The Honorary League Administrator shall be responsible for the following: Updating information on the NEHL Website. Collating and monitoring of Club Player and Umpire registration details. Preparation, issue and subsequent receipt of Results Cards & Cancellation Forms. Entering results on ‘Fixtures Live’. Recording player appearance for teams and any yellow and red card offences. Recording details of all none or late submissions of, and incorrectly completed, Results Cards & Cancellation Forms.


The AGM of the NEHL shall be held, wherever possible, before the end of the second week of June each year. The NEHL Secretary shall give each club at least 14 days' notice of the meeting through the nominated email contact from each club.

The following business shall be transacted at the AGM:

To approve the Minutes of the previous AGM. To receive reports from the Chairman, Honorary Secretary and Honorary Treasurer. To fix the subscription and levels of fines for the following season. To receive a report from the League Administrator.

To present trophies. To reconsider the Rules for improvement for the following season. To elect officers as set out in section 3.1. To fix the level of remuneration for the League Administrator for the following season. To distribute and discuss fixtures for the following season (if available). To discuss “Any Other Business” - only that business stated on the Agenda of the meeting shall be discussed under this heading

Any member Club wishing to put forward a resolution or a matter of other business at the AGM shall submit the details in writing by 31st March to the NEHL Secretary, who shall place the resolution on the agenda for the Meeting.


All clubs must send a representative to the NEHL AGM.


Each member Club shall be entitled to send two representatives to the AGM, SGM and GM, but each Club shall only have one vote. The Chairman shall not vote unless there is a tie, in which case the Chairman shall have the casting vote.

Other members of the NEHL Committee shall only vote when acting as a member club representative. Representatives from five constituent Clubs shall form a quorum at the AGM, SGM or GM. In all cases, motions shall be carried by a simple majority of those present and entitled to vote.


In committee, all members of the Committee shall have one vote. The Chairman shall not vote except in the case of a tie. Four members shall form a quorum.

The Committee shall be responsible for administering and enforcing the NEHL Rules and resolving disputes. With the exception of expulsion from the NEHL, and the right of appeal under Rule 5.4, decisions of the Committee shall be final and cannot be revoked retrospectively at any AGM, SGM or GM.


A subscription shall be levied as necessary and agreed at the AGM. Payment of subscriptions must be made by 31st October of each season.


The NEHL Committee may call a General Meeting. A SGM shall be called if requested by at least 40% of the member Clubs.

At a SGM only business on the agenda or incidental thereto shall be transacted.

A minimum of 14 days notice must be given for such GMs and SGMs.


Rules of Play

All matches shall be played in accordance with the Rules of Hockey as issued by the Hockey Rules Board under the authority of the International Hockey Federation [copyright is held by the International Hockey Federation]. Any amendments to these rules considered necessary by the NEHL Committee to promote North East hockey, as laid out under Rule 1.2, shall be considered by the AGM and, if approved, form part of the rules of play for the NEHL.


Playing Surfaces

All matches must be played on approved artificial turf surfaces.


Player Registration

All NEHL clubs will be provided with a list of their playing members from the previous season prior to the 1st July, these lists must be confirmed before the first game of each season. During the season, before any new player plays for a club, a full name and date of birth must be provided in writing to the NEHL Secretary. If a new player has played league hockey for any other club, at any time and anywhere, then a transfer, as covered in Rule 4.4 below, must be applied for.

When completing the registration list, clubs with teams in leagues senior to the NEHL must provide a list of 11 starred players for each such team, selected on merit in each case. Starred players cannot play in any lower club team within the NEHL apart from in the CDL. Clubs are permitted to make a change to their starred list(s) by emailing the swap details to the NEHL Secretary and League Administrator before 8.00pm on the Wednesday before the next match.

The NEHL Secretary must be notified immediately it becomes apparent that any starred player is to be unavailable for more than 3 weeks. The movement of players will be monitored. The League shall have the power to change starred players and will notify the club concerned of any such change before 8.00pm on the Monday before the next league match.

Failure to submit correctly compiled registration list by due date: £25 fine

Fielding an unregistered player not subject to a transfer: £5 per player.

Fielding a starred player in a NEHL game: See rule 4.5 below.

Fielding a player in breach of Rule 4.3b or 4.5e,f,h,i,j or l: Fine of £25 (league proper); 3 points deducted from the lower team and match awarded to opposition by 5 goals to nil, or the original result if more advantageous to the offended team.