Hockey's Military Stories

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George Routley

The Routley family recently contacted THM asking for information about their great grandfather, George Routley, who they had heard might have played for England in the 1920s.

THM’s Archivist Marcus Wardle searched through the international match records and hockey magazines held in Library and he was able to confirm that Routley was awarded six caps playing in goal for England between 1922 and 1923. There were several references to his selection in the official International Selection Committee book, in match reports from the hockey magazines of the day, and even a profile of Routley published in Hockey World.

George Routey international selection book 11th Mar 1922 vs Wales

International Selection Committee book for England, March 1922


The family were delighted with the information and have been able to identify a cloth badge that they still possess as the embroidered ‘England rose’ badge George is wearing in the photos.

GE Routley pic Hockey World    George Routley rosejpeg 
Photograph of George Routley from Hockey World magazine
and the rose cloth badge owned by his family. 

 

Elementary, My Dear Holly!


We recently received an enquiry through our friends at Surrey History Centre asking for information about Hindhead Hockey Club. A researcher had contacted them enquiring about the existence of Hindhead Hockey Club following the discovery of a letter from Sherlock Holmes author Arthur Conan Doyle stating how unfortunately he was “quite unable to be of any use to Hindhead Hockey Club”.

Arthur Conan Doyle letter feat Hindhead HC
The letter from Arthur Conan Doyle, discovered on an online auction site in 2018.


No one at the museum had heard of Hindhead Hockey Club prior to this and so the game was afoot – could we find a record of the club? We know that Arthur Conan Doyle lived in Hazlemere prior to the World War 1, so our Curatorial Assistant, Holly, trawled the Hockey Association handbooks for the relevant years, searched our archive for references as well as our club history folders, but to no avail. We could find no reference to a club in the Hindhead area.

We do know that there is a Hazlemere Hockey Club which formed in the 1940s, and it is possible the clubs could have merged, but any record of this has alluded us. So, we are calling on our own Baker Street Regulars, the ‘Hockey Family’: please get in touch if you have any knowledge of Hindhead Hockey Club.

Hockey's Military Stories: An Introduction

This research project was prompted by the enormous interest and publicity that has surrounded the centenary of the start of WW1. We knew that many, indeed thousands, of hockey players were involved and that many lost their lives. The stories do not just relate to serving men but also those...

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Lieutenant Eric Walter Poyntz Westmacott RN

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Perhaps the first Naval hockey player to become a casualty of the Great War? Lieutenant Eric Walter Poyntz Westmacott RN was on the left wing for the Royal Navy in 1912 and in 1914 he was reported as "the best player in the Navy team". That was to be his...

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