The England Hockey Leagues have been declared null and void ©England Hockey

England Hockey has confirmed the men's and women's England Hockey Leagues have been declared null and void for the 2020-2021 season due to COVID-19 restrictions.

Despite the United Kingdom Government's announcements allowing for a return to play, the governing body considered the continuing restrictions on car sharing as well as the number of matches still to take place when making its decision.

Only five rounds of the season were played before it was suspended in October.

In early January, the majority of clubs favoured a shorter season with teams playing each other just once. 

But a consultation earlier this month suggested this was no longer the case, and fewer than 40 per cent of teams were in favour of continuing the season.

With the season now null and void, there will be no promotions or relegations in the league this year.

There will also be a change to the hockey structure with the addition of the England Hockey League Conference Division.

"Obviously the situation is disappointing for everyone involved but the main aim is to allow clubs and teams to be ready to return for next season and be able to make the necessary preparations," an England Hockey statement said.

"The England Hockey competitions team would like to thank clubs for their patience, pragmatism and perseverance this year.

"We are still hopeful of running revised tiered Club Championships for adults, masters and juniors later in the summer if demand remains.

"We all hope next year will see the England Hockey Leagues and Super 6s return in earnest."