BUCHANS

Hockey in Buchans has been a favourite pastime since the mines started operations in 1927. During the long, cold winters, players and fans alike thrilled to the playing and watching of the game of hockey.

In 1929, the Buchans Mining Company converted an ore storage shed into a hockey rink. It had a small ice surface, maybe as long as a regular-size rink, but considerably narrower, being only 59 feet wide. The rink had a natural ice surface and depended on the cold weather from late November until late February or early March.

At first, the old rink had a dual purpose. When there was enough frost to freeze the natural ice surface, ice hockey and skating were the main activities. After the hockey season ended and as soon as the ice had melted, the shed reverted back to its original purpose as an ore storage shed. This was done as soon as the hockey boards were taken down from the shed. This conversion continued until around 1935 when renovations were made to erect and repair all side boards, providing gates and openings wherever required for team benches and penalty boxes. Wire matting was placed around the end boards, and two large spectator stands, with the necessary approaches and guardrails, were built at the western end of the rink. A second dressing room was constructed, and benches and extra lighting were added to the building. At one time, flashlights were used to signal a goal. Later, this was changed to a red light system.

The Buchans Miners competed in the Newfoundland Western playoffs in 1936. That year they defeated Grand Falls by a score of 6-5 and went on to play Corner Brook in a two-game series, losing by scores of 5-4 and 4-3.