Tilbury Minor Hockey to Merge With Chatham?
A vote will take place Tuesday evening in Tilbury to decide whether the Tilbury and District Minor Hockey Association and Chatham Minor Hockey will merge their travel/rep hockey programs, or whether each will remain an independant entity.
Earlier this year, the Ontario Minor Hockey Association (OMHA) opened up boundary lines for travel hockey players to move up a division of play to nearby centres at the ‘A’ and ‘AA’ levels. Tilbury parents have been speculating that the new OMHA transfer rule will drastically impact the quality and viability of their minor hockey system as they are expected to lose players to Chatham (AA), Wheatley/Southpoint (A), Essex (A), and Belle River (AA).
Each of the four surrounding travel hockey programs, which technically offer travel hockey at a higher level, would be eligible to take players from Tilbury and District Minor Hockey for their ‘A’ and ‘AA’ travel teams.
The vote on the potential merger of Chatham and Tilbury’s travel hockey programs will take place Tuesday, May 31, at 7:30pm at the Knights of Columbus Hall in Tilbury. The Tilbury and District Minor Hockey website is encouraging all parents to come out and vote saying, “The merger will impact all hockey in Tilbury and it is important to get out and vote!”
In recent years, several girls hockey programs, including those in Blenheim, Dresden, Bothwell, and Ridgetown have merged to form the successful Kent Fillies program. This however, is the first such merger consideration for boys travel hockey in Chatham-Kent.