News 2016

Enquiry  Donate

BarryMiddleton01In boxes, suit carriers and a suitcase came a collection commemorating the hockey history of Barry Middleton, England and Great Britain international and Olympic competitor. It showed just how diverse are the collections which we are given to preserve for posterity at The Hockey Museum.

Sorting through the many and varied articles donated by Barry Middleton and his mother, Sheila – herself a hockey player of some note – we found many things we would have expected. There are photographs and programmes tracing the progress of Barry’s career through the various levels of hockey; from Doncaster HC to the North East Under 14s and from junior and senior internationals to the dizzy heights of the Olympics.

Barry's collection contains a large quantity of items of kit: from the Athens Olympics in 2004, the Beijing Olympics in 2008, the Commonwealth Games in Melbourne in 2006 and Delhi in 2010. The range of kit items issued for major events, particularly the Olympics, was evidently extensive: vests, shorts, track suits, waterproof suits, blazers, shirts and formal suits. Fashions evidently change, but a cream blazer in a light cotton weave which did not seem to hold its shape, with black piping and patch pockets...? Another surprising feature was the pinstripe in the suit issued to the Athens 2004 Olympic team, which comprised woven repetitions of the words "GO FOR GOLD"!

In the pocket of this suit were the crested invitation cards for Barry to attend a royal event. Perhaps a garden party at Buckingham Palace? In the Aladdin's suitcase (also part of the official Olympic kit from Athens 2004) there was also an official waterbottle. Who would guess that the kit for an Olympics included such things?

One of the vests from the Beijing 2008 Olympics had the signatures of 16 of the squad; a wonderful and unique memento, but one which poses the problem of how to conserve marker pen on polyester...?

A 'hoodie' from Barry’s days at Loughborough University shows a lighter side of the game of hockey. On the back are all the names of the team which won the BUSA Championships for the 3rd time in a row, complete with nicknames. From this distance, we can only wonder how Barry got the nickname 'Report to Lost Property' and some of his colleagues theirs, such as Phil 'Filthy Spider' Wilkinson. Perhaps more obvious was that of Rob 'Couldn’t Hit a Bee in a Hive' Playford!BarryMiddleton02

Most of the items of kit have badges: on the breast of the shirts, blazers and track suit tops; on the legs of shorts and track suit bottoms and even inside the collar of a dress shirt. All have to be laboriously described in detail as the items are booked in so they can be clearly identified with the correct event. Some of the stylised logos challenge the volunteers' powers of description more than others, but the lion motif on most of the England kit is fairly straightforward. When it comes to other badges in other donations it is not so easy, even if you can identify the origins of the badge in the first place.

We also had to remember to book in, complete with description and numbered label, the suit carriers and even the suitcase itself. Perhaps Barry will be pleased to know that his kit is kept together for posterity very appropriately in the suitcase he used to travel to Athens over 10 years ago.

Photograph 1: North East U14 team 1997. Barry is in the front row, second from left.
Photograph 2: Great Britain shirt from the 2008 Beijing Olympics, signed by the squad members.

Evelyn Somerville, August 2015


AnotherWow002It is not often that we learn of international matches that we are unaware of.

We recently received an enquiry from a regular contact in Dublin, asking if we had any information on the British teams that visited Europe in 1935 and 1937. We certainly had not as, in our records, the first British team was at the London Olympics of 1948 and, even then, not without a great deal of persuasion. Participation in the 1908 and 1920 Olympics had been as England and until 1948 no agreement could be reached to enable a British team to take part.

Research in the Museum discovered a four-page article by EAC Thompson in the 6 September 1935 issue of Hockey World on a European international tournament between 4-11 May, held under the patronage of the Brussels Exhibition that year. The event was organised by the Belgian Hockey Association and 'controlled' by the International Hockey Federation (FIH). The British team was organised by the Hockey Association (HA).

It was described as "The most important of its kind yet held in Europe in the history of the game as, for the very first time, all the hockey countries in Europe were competitors": Austria, Belgium, a British International XI, France, Netherlands, Germany, Spain and Switzerland. The grounds used were the Heysel Stadium and the Stade de l'Union St Gilloise.

The British team comprised 15 players, including four Irish and one Scot.

The article stated: "It was the first time a representative British hockey team had participated in a tournament comprising all the other European hockey playing nations and so carried a world-wide hockey interest. This tournament, of course, easily transcended in general interest the past Olympic hockey games, in-as-much as, although the Indians were absent at Brussels, a representative International British XI was included, thus creating the main interest."

The British team won all their games, beating Belgium 2-0, Austria 4-0, Spain 4-0 and Holland 1-0 before winning the final against Germany 3-2 with a goal in extra time. After 70 minutes the score was 2-2 with two ten-minute periods of extra time producing no further goals, and during which the Britons lost a forward with an eye injury. Bowing to the pleas of the spectators, it was then decided to play on until a goal was scored and R Whitlock obliged.

The article's author placed the teams in order of playing merit: the British and German teams equal, 3rd Holland, 4th France, 5th Spain, 6th Belgium, 7th Switzerland, 8th Austria. However, the FIH official classification was 1 England, 2 Germany, 3 Netherlands, 4 Spain, after semi-finals, 3rd place and final were played.

A similar tournament was held in 1937 in Paris in conjunction with the Paris Exhibition but it was impossible to collect a representative British team. An effort was made to raise a wholly English team but the HA were unable to accept the invitation as a consequence of a previous ruling that only one foreign international match per annum could be played.

The German Hockey Association’s statistics also record a game in Munich in June 1938 between a British team and Germany, won 2-1 by Germany, but we have so far been unable to discover any more information on this event.

Although the Great Britain Hockey Board was not formally set up until 1947, in preparation for the London Olympics, all of the matches above appear in the international records of the countries concerned. These results are also verified and recorded by the FIH in their annual report of 1949. It is therefore a matter of very important debate as to how these matches are treated.

Photograph 1: The1935 British International team.

Photograph 2: The British team, about to board a German-built aircraft of SABENA, the Belgian airline.

Mike Haymonds, August 2015

The Hockey Museum (THM) Trustees are delighted to announce that the FIH Foundation for the Promotion & Development of Hockey (the FIH Foundation) and THM have signed an agreement (a Memorandum of Understanding) that formalises the collaboration between them to work together to preserve hockey’s heritage. The key aims are as follows:

  • To provide opportunities to increase the visibility of the sport and to effectively celebrate the achievements and progress of hockey;
  • To preserve an accurate story of hockey and provide access to authoritative historical archives and statistical data;
  • To preserve and make available historical information and materials for use in a wide variety of ways e.g. for educational purposes and enquiries from hockey fans; and
  • To work towards creating an international hockey museum and archives.

The agreement was signed in Antwerp during the recent ‘Road to Rio’ Olympic Qualifying Tournament and where THM had been invited to present to the FIH Foundation Meeting. This presentation outlined our vision - Giving Hockey’s History a Future - and key aims for the next five years. The presentation also detailed proposals for projects that will put THM on a sound and professional Museum footing and give us more clarity for how we take on the new international dimension to our remit.

The official press release can be found on the FIH website.

The FIH had considered setting up an FIH Museum in Lausanne but when their President, Leandro Negre, visited us in Woking during 2014 and saw what the Museum had already achieved through the efforts of an enthusiastic, knowledgeable and professional volunteer team with a ‘can do’ mentality there was a rethink. He then encouraged the FIH to put its support behind The Hockey Museum setup to take a lead in tackling hockey’s worldwide heritage challenge. The fact that the FIH, hockey’s world governing body, has gone into partnership with us is a fantastic vote of confidence in THM and its ability to bring something unique and worthwhile to the table.

The Museum’s first task under this new partnership will be to review the current position worldwide in relation to the collection, cataloguing, preservation & display of hockey’s heritage with a view to developing a collaborative approach to ensuring that more of our sport’s fascinating heritage is saved and made available to the wider hockey family and beyond. The work, to be led by an academic, will also set the framework for an exciting project to research, collate and publish an authoritative history of hockey ahead of the FIH Centenary in 2024.

Katie Dodd, 15 July 2015

THM FIH MOUJean-Pierre Strebel (FIH Foundation Treasurer), Katie Dodd (THM Chair) and Leandro Negre (FIH President) sign the MOU.

On 10th June a sports exhibition titled Team Spirit opens at the Orleans Gallery in Richmond. We have provided some material relevant to their area. Also, at the moment, we have material in an exhibition in Alford Manor House in Lincolnshire to celebrate their local patron who was a hockey enthusiast. So, very soon our little museum will be helping two exhibitions with their displays. Not bad, in my opinion; and in August it will be three.

Mike Smith, 2 May 2015

FIH President Pays Whistle Stop Visit To The Hockey Museum

EA57817Players in the Mercian Home Counties Colts Hockey League Finals at Guildford received a surprise visit when the International Hockey Federation (FIH) president, Leandro Negre, called in to make some presentations. He then went on to Woking to visit The Hockey Museum, where he toured their new premises and met volunteers.

The visit, which was masterminded by Mercian League President and founder of Mercian, Mike Smith, was as a result of his asking Leandro if he would consider an award to recognise the work of Mercian League Secretary, David Gunn, and Treasurer, Janet Gunn, who have been organising the Mercian League for 40 years. The FIH President was due to fly to India via Heathrow and offered to make the presentations himself whilst in England. Before leaving for India Leandro returned to Heathrow via The Hockey Museum.

Mike Haymonds, 1 May 2015



Leandro Negre meets some of the team at The Hockey Museum. From left to right: Mike Smith (Curator), Marcus Wardle (volunteer), Lynne Morgan (Chair of the Management Committee), Leandro Negre (FIH President), Martin Ellis (volunteer) and Doreen Brown (volunteer).

Sharing Heritage: THM Completes Its Oral History Project Funded By HLF

29 December 2016
Sharing Heritage: THM Completes Its Oral History Project Funded By HLF

THM Oral Histories Lead, Evelyn Somerville interviews Howard Davies. Image credit: Mike Smith The Hockey Museum was one of the first groups in the UK to receive a Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) Sharing Heritage grant for an exciting project to collect Oral Histories from past players, umpires, officials and administrators....

Merry Christmas From The Hockey Museum - It's Newsletter Vol.10

16 December 2016

In a year when the Great Britain women’s hockey made history by winning the Olympic Gold Medal, 2016 has also been another very successful and exciting year at The Hockey Museum. We took on our first paid staff, organised two very successful exhibitions at The Olympic Hockey Venue and the...

THM Seeks Webmaster, GSOH, DTE, PDA

24 November 2016

The Hockey Museum is seeking a volunteer Webmaster to develop and oversee its website and advise on web and IT progress generally. Interested parties should have a working knowledge of PHP language and MySQL. Experience of Content Management Systems (The Hockey Museum uses Joomla) would be ideal but not essential....

THM Job Vacancy: Collections Management Officer

21 November 2016
THM Job Vacancy: Collections Management Officer

The Hockey Museum, Woking, Surrey.Collections Management OfficerAverage 3 days a week - flexibleExpected remuneration: c. £20k pro rataFixed term 1 year, with potential to extend. Freelancers welcome to apply. The Hockey Museum is a relatively new Museum having opened in late 2011. It achieved charitable status later that year and...

Volunteers' Day 2016

08 November 2016
Volunteers' Day 2016

The second annual Volunteers' Day was held at the Hockey Museum on the afternoon of Wednesday 26 October 2016, with around 25 people in attendance including special guest Peter Savage, long time hockey photographer and journalist, his wife Stella and family members. Curator Mike Smith opened proceedings and Chair of...

THM Seeks Partner In An AHRC Collaborative PhD

17 October 2016

As part of the Sport in Museums Collaborative Doctoral Partnership (CDP) consortium, The Hockey Museum (THM) has been given the opportunity to submit an application for a fully-funded PhD studentship from the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) starting in the 2017/18 academic year. This PhD will be jointly supervised...

100 Year Milestone for Des Simon

11 October 2016
100 Year Milestone for Des Simon

David Balbirnie with Des Simon and his family at his 100th year birthday celebrations.   On Tuesday 20 September 2016 Des Simon, a Past President of the former Irish Hockey Union and Hockey Ireland Honorary Life Member, celebrated his 100th birthday. Des, a long standing member of Cliftonville Hockey Club, has...

The Hockey Museum Calendar For 2017

15 September 2016
The Hockey Museum Calendar For 2017

The Hockey Museum (THM) has launched a limited-edition calendar for 2017. It covers 16 months (September 2016 to December 2017) so that if fully incorporates the hockey season – and you can start using it right away! Featuring a stylish and clean aesthetic in-keeping with THM’s branding, the calendar is illustrated with...

GB & England Hockey Announce New Performance Director

02 September 2016

Following a worldwide search, Great Britain and England Hockey is delighted to announce the appointment of Dr Ed Barney PhD as Performance Director. Dr Barney's track record of maximising performance, talent identification and strategic thinking made him the outstanding candidate for the role. With international experience in hockey, cricket and...

Danish Discoveries Pose Intriguing Questions

24 August 2016
Danish Discoveries Pose Intriguing Questions

I thought I might share a recent happening you just as an example of some of the work and occurrences at The Hockey Museum. It never ceases to amaze me how the happenings continue to happen! Recently we received a contact from a player in Denmark who is interested in...

Olympic Gold Medalist Helen Richardson-Walsh Donates To THM

20 August 2016
Olympic Gold Medalist Helen Richardson-Walsh Donates To THM

After visiting the Museum in April to help its Communications Lead Lynne Morgan with her research on the total number of Great Britain capped female hockey players, GB & England International and four times Olympian, Helen Richardson-Walsh kindly agreed to lend the Museum her bronze medal from the London 2012...

THM Supplies Old Rules For ELHC Anniversary Match

17 August 2016
THM Supplies Old Rules For ELHC Anniversary Match

Recently, The Hockey Museum (THM) had an enquiry from East London Hockey Club. They have been celebrating their 25th anniversary this summer and as part of the celebrations wanted to put on a match played to the rules of their inaugural 1990/91 season. ELHC contacted THM to request the rules...

Olympic Hockey Exhibition At Surrey History Centre

08 August 2016
Olympic Hockey Exhibition At Surrey History Centre

Members of THM and SHC teams pose with Olympian John Peake and decedants of Olympian Gerald Logan.  2016 is an exciting Olympic year with the Games taking place in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil from 5 to 21 August 2016 and the Paralympics in September. To celebrate, The Hockey Museum (THM)...

Let Us Explain About Our Shane

31 July 2016
Let Us Explain About Our Shane

The Hockey Museum is delighted to announce its second professional appointment. Shane Smith has been appointed as Curatorial Assistant on a one-year contract and begins today. He joined the Museum in October 2013 as Volunteer Curator of Art and later as Digital Content Editor of the website. His wide ranging skills...

Reel-y Good News: THM Wins HLF Support To Digitise Films

24 July 2016
Reel-y Good News: THM Wins HLF Support To Digitise Films

The Hockey Museum has been awarded a grant of £15,300 by the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) to enable it to digitise its collection of nearly 100 old hockey films dating back to the 1930s. This project will preserve the films and also make them available for viewing by a wide range...

Bollywood And Hockey

21 July 2016
Bollywood And Hockey

Alia Bhatt at premiere of 'Udta Punjab'. The recently released Bollywood movie Udta Punjab has something special for the hockey lovers. The movie, which focuses on the drug abuse problem in the Indian state of Punjab, has hockey as a major influence with actor Alia Bhatt playing a role of a...

A Boost For THM's Worldwide Hockey Heritage Study

27 June 2016
A Boost For THM's Worldwide Hockey Heritage Study

Katie Dodd addresses the FIH reception during the Champions Trophy; credit: Jon Rye. The Hockey Museum (THM) was delighted to welcome Leandro Negre, the International Hockey Federation (FIH) President, to its reception to promote the current Worldwide Scoping Study, held in THM exhibition marquee during the Women’s Champions Trophy. The...

When Alice Met Helen

23 June 2016
When Alice Met Helen

Alice Hannan, aged 10 from The Holy Family Catholic Primary School in Surrey, met Great Britain star Helen Richardson-Walsh on Tuesday. Alice, the winner of The Hockey Museum's (THM) Art of Hockey competition, was presented with art materials, a signed copy of her winning artwork and a signed miniature hockey...

The Hockey Museum At The Champions Trophy In Olympic Park, London

22 June 2016
The Hockey Museum At The Champions Trophy In Olympic Park, London

We are now into the second week of the Men’s and Women’s Champions Trophy Events at the Lee Valley Hockey & Tennis Centre in the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and The Hockey Museum (THM) marquee and exhibition have again been a great attraction for many of the spectators who braved...

Feast Your Eyes On Newsletter Vol.8

20 June 2016

Our latest newsletter is now available to download. Catch up on all the latest going ons at The Hockey Museum by following this link. You'll also discover an archive of all previous newsletters. Shane Smith, 20 June 2016

HRH Queen Elizabeth's Birthday Honour For Pat Rowley

20 June 2016
HRH Queen Elizabeth's Birthday Honour For Pat Rowley

Pat Rowley; credit: Dil Bahra Pat Rowley, one of our co-founder Trustees, has been awarded the British Empire Medal for Services to Hockey in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List published on 11 June 2016. One of the most senior hockey writers in the world, Pat has been involved in hockey...

Winners Announced For The Art Of Hockey Competition

09 June 2016

With just eight weeks to go before the Rio 2016 Olympic Games begin, the winning piece of artwork has been chosen from a bumper batch of entries in The Hockey Museum’s Art of Hockey competition. The competition, supported by The National Hockey Foundation, invited children to design their own piece...

What Can You Tell Us About Hockey’s Worldwide Heritage?

18 April 2016

This is an exciting time for hockey’s international heritage. Over the past five years, The Hockey Museum (THM) has established itself as the lead organisation to support hockey heritage in the UK. The museum is now working with the International Hockey Federation (FIH) to expand this work worldwide. The aim...

Less Than One Month To Enter The Art Of Hockey Competition

08 April 2016
Less Than One Month To Enter The Art Of Hockey Competition

Primary schools have less than one month until The Hockey Museum’s Art of Hockey competition closes. The Hockey Museum’s Art of Hockey competition, supported by The National Hockey Foundation, is open to primary schools across the United Kingdom. Children are invited to design their own piece of two-dimensional artwork about...

A Marathon Effort

29 March 2016

Financing the setting up and the running of our museum has been a very interesting exercise over the past five years. The money came initially and mainly from our Volunteers and Friends, without whom there would never have been The Hockey Museum. More latterly our endeavours have been rewarded by...

Irish Olympic Silver Medal: Oh No It Isn’t!

15 March 2016
Irish Olympic Silver Medal: Oh No It Isn’t!

In January we thought that we had found one of the 'Holy Grail' items of hockey when it was reported from Dublin that one of the 1908 Olympic Silver Medals had been discovered. We only had a small photo to go on but, as Ireland took the silver medal in...

Centenarian Still Going Strong

08 March 2016

Former Royal Navy hockey player Admiral Dick Wildish has celebrated his 101st birthday. He played in the Inter Services hockey matches in 1939 and again in 1946 and is currently the longest serving Vice President of the Royal Navy Hockey Association (RNHA), having been elected in 1970. During WW2 he...

Situations Vacant

25 February 2016

The Hockey Museum (THM) is a volunteer-led organisation and our fifty volunteers are responsible for everything that the museum achieves. Yet, as more people hear about THM and our reputation grows, there is more to be done. Not everything happens at the Museum itself in Woking. Whilst we are actively...

The Art Of Hockey: THM Launches Primary School Art Competition

23 February 2016
The Art Of Hockey: THM Launches Primary School Art Competition

This week, The Hockey Museum (THM) launches a UK-wide competition for primary schools, with the winning design being displayed at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. The Hockey Museum's Art of Hockey competition, supported by The National Hockey Foundation, is open to primary schools across the United Kingdom. Children are invited...

Gavin Featherstone Joins THM Team

17 February 2016

Well-known and well-travelled hockey coach and author Gavin Featherstone has joined The Hockey Museum volunteers team as the principle reviewer for our new website feature page Book Reviews. We hope to review at least one book per month and we have quite a backlog. Perhaps surprisingly to some there are...

Feast Your Eyes On Newsletter Vol.7

04 February 2016

Our latest newsletter is now available to download. Catch up on all the latest going ons at The Hockey Museum by following this link. You'll also discover an archive of all previous newsletters. Shane Smith, 4 February 2016

The Irishman Cometh: David Balbirnie Visits THM

01 February 2016
The Irishman Cometh: David Balbirnie Visits THM

Last week The Hockey Museum (THM) had the pleasure of welcoming David Balbirnie, the Museum's International Hockey Federation (FIH) nominated Trustee, to our Woking home. The appointment of Irishman Mr Balbirnie, the former European Hockey Federation Hon. General Secretary, to THM Board Of Trustees is a sign of the Museum's increasingly...

The Hockey Writers' Club Lunch 2016 And The Commemorative Pennant

26 January 2016
The Hockey Writers' Club Lunch 2016 And The Commemorative Pennant

At the annual Hockey Writers' Club Lunch on 20 January 2016, the International Hockey Federation (FIH) President, Leandro Negre, made his customary, 'The State of Hockey' address to a room packed with hockey media, candidates for the Hockey Writers' annual awards and hockey enthusiasts and supporters. It is always a...

THM Announces Study To Scope Hockey’s Worldwide Heritage

20 January 2016
THM Announces Study To Scope Hockey’s Worldwide Heritage

The Hockey Museum (THM) is delighted to announce that it has awarded the contract to scope hockey's worldwide heritage to the Justine Reilly Consultancy (JRC). The team will be headed up by Dr Justine Reilly, who has 15 years experience of managing large multi-partner heritage programmes and extensive experience of...

The Hockey Museum Launches First Ever Calendar

19 January 2016
The Hockey Museum Launches First Ever Calendar

The Hockey Museum (THM) has launched a limited-edition calendar for 2016. Featuring a stylish and clean aesthetic in-keeping with THM’s branding, the calendar is illustrated with highlights from the Museum’s varied and ever-expanding collection of artefacts and archives from across the centuries, as well as notable dates throughout the year...

Irish Silver Medal Discovered

18 January 2016
Irish Silver Medal Discovered

At the 1908 London Olympics, six nations participated in what was the first Olympic hockey competition. The gold medal was won by England who beat Ireland 8-1 in the final. We have seen several of the gold medals and indeed we have one in our collection at The Hockey Museum....

An Enquiry To Cap It All

08 January 2016
An Enquiry To Cap It All

Interest in The Hockey Museum is partly reflected in the ever increasing number of enquiries that we receive. Hockey is a very wide ranging subject and so are the questions. Invariably we find at least part of the answer but one recent question has us stumped. The photograph to the...


About Us & Visiting

Support Us

Contact Us

Subscribe To THM Mailing List



Artefacts & Archives

Oral Histories


Research & Study Topics


Quizzes & Games

International Focus

Our Partners

BathUni Library Logo     EH Logo on white    FIH Logo Large    HLF compact cmyk   Mercian BLACK 2011 12   WokingBC RGB logo     CMYK Portrait

S5 Box



You need to enable user registration from User Manager/Options in the backend of Joomla before this module will activate.