The Countess of Wessex and her daughter, Lady Louise Windsor, visited the National Sports Centre training grounds at Bisham Abbey in Buckinghamshire to meet members of England Hockey.Embed from Getty Images
Sophie has been the patron of England Hockey since 2006 and has visited the various teams – and attended matches to support them – over the years. The teams Sophie visited on Tuesday are currently training for the upcoming Summer Olympics in Tokyo.
Sophie’s visit also coincided with training for the FIH Pro League season, which is “hockey’s annual global women’s and men’s leagues involving the best teams and players in the world,” per England Hockey’s website.
“The nations at the top of the tables at the end of the season, having battled it out against all eight teams, will be crowned champions and receive the coveted FIH Pro League Trophy.”
Both the men’s and women’s teams currently train at the grounds of Bisham Abbey. Hockey in the United Kingdom has been a near constant fixture, though it wasn’t until the mid 1940s that a formal board was created to oversee the sport. Since then, it has made great strides to champion the sport and include women.
On Facebook, England Hockey noted that Sophie met with coaches and captains during the visit, and Lady Louise trained with Tess Howard.Embed from Getty Images
Lady Louise took to the hockey field and participated in a practice drill with the women’s team, hitting the ball a few times while her mother watched from the sidelines. It wasn’t previously announced that Lady Louise would join Sophie on Monday, and marks a rare engagement for the young royal.
Lady Louise has previously joined her mother at sporting engagements, including attending the Hockey Women’s World Cup final in 2018 as well as meeting teenagers working towards the entry-level course with the Royal Yachting Association.