• Phil Packer

Former GB Hockey Goalkeeper Coach & Manager, John Hurst, supports the BRIT Ambassador family

We are delighted that John is part of our BRIT Ambassador family and championing the annual BRIT Challenge to support and improve young adult mental health and fitness throughout the UK.

John amassed over 100 international appearances for England and Great Britain. He has been a member of Team GB as a hockey goalkeeping coach, Manager or Assistant Manager for six Olympic Games and Team England at five Commonwealth Games.

John Hurst - BRIT Ambassador

John has also been Manager and Assistant Manager of the England Senior Men’s Team, managing them to European Bronze in 1991 and European Indoor Silver in 1994. John was Manager of England & GB Women from 2013 to 2016, culminating in gold at the 2016 Olympic Games.

“Having been involved in hockey for over fifty years as an athlete, coach and manager, I have had the privilege of working alongside hundreds of elite athletes and young players. Maintaining good mental health and fitness is vital for our wellbeing and just as important, is the ability to ask for support and to know where to find it. I am encouraged that more and more athletes are able to talk openly about mental health to reduce stigma and inspire young adults who are struggling with mental health challenges.


This is such an important time to support the many young adults and students with existing mental health challenges or those who feel isolated and vulnerable. The British Inspiration Trust’s annual BRIT Challenge is an inspiring opportunity to help support and improve young adult mental health and fitness throughout the UK.


I hope every UK university, college, specialist college and Students’ Union enters teams in the BRIT Challenge and encourages their students and staff to take part; at home or on campus. It would be brilliant if members of our Great Britain hockey family, who currently work with universities and colleges, do all they can to embrace the BRIT Challenge and invite the students they coach and train to enter teams.


I urge Olympians, Paralympians and elite athletes to join our BRIT Ambassador family, promote the BRIT Challenge at a university or college of their choice, destigmatise mental health and champion equality, diversity and inclusion. Delivering encouragement and inspiration is vital right now and our retired and current Great Britain, England, Scotland and Wales hockey players have an opportunity to unite in support of young adult mental health. By coming together, their UK-wide impact would be extraordinary and benefit the lives of hundreds of thousands of students and young adults.”


John Hurst

Former Great Britain Hockey Goalkeeper Coach and Manager


John played for England, Indoors and Out, and Great Britain between 1977 and 1988. He amassed a total of over 100 international appearances and represented his Country at Champions’ Trophies, European and World Cups. He captained England on a number of occasions between 1979 and 1981. He was in England and Great Britain teams which won World Cup Silver, European Indoor Silver, European Bronze and Champions’ Trophy Silver Medals during his playing career.


John was in the Great Britain Squad in preparation for the 1988 Seoul Olympics, finishing his career as a non-travelling reserve for the Olympic Gold Medal winning team.


Since 1989, John has been a Consultant Goal Keeping Coach for the National Governing Body. During this time he has been a member of Team GB at six Olympic Games and Team England at five Commonwealth Games.


John regards England Men’s and Women’s European Golds (2009 and 2015), Great Britain Men’s and Women’s achievements at the 2012 Olympic Games and the Team GB Women’s Gold at the 2016 Olympic Games as particular highlights of his coaching career.

John with reserve GB Goalkeeper, Kirsty Mackay (left) & GB Goalkeeper & gold medallist, Maddie Hinch MBE (right)

John has also been Manager and Assistant Manager of the England Senior Men’s Team, managing them to European Bronze in 1991 and European Indoor Silver in 1994. He was manager of England & GB Women from 2013 to 2016, culminating in gold at the 2016 Olympic Games.


He has coached goalkeepers who have been internationally recognised and rewarded including James Fair, Simon Mason, Beth Storry, George Pinner and Maddie Hinch.


In recent years, John also held the position of Goalkeeping Performance Manager for England Hockey, managing the goalkeeper coaching throughout the Performance programmes. He has organised Goalkeeping Coaching Seminars for the FIH at both the 1988 World Cup in Utrecht and the 2008 Olympic Qualifier in Chile, as well as working with the Irish, Scottish, Welsh and other National Hockey Associations at various times in his coaching career.


John retired from managing the Gold Medal winning GB Women’s Hockey Team after the 2016 Olympic games, but still offers GK coaching when requested.