News 2014

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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

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15 December 2014

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First THM Quiz Winners

15 December 2014
First THM Quiz Winners

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Mrs Belchamber, Miss Bettine And Miss Ellis

15 December 2014
Mrs Belchamber, Miss Bettine And Miss Ellis

I was in The Hockey Museum one Tuesday morning and was asked to look up some information to help answer an enquiry from a man researching his family tree, whose mother, Mrs Belchamber, played for England in the 1920s. He had some information and a letter dated 23 October 1920...

Lord Gets Off The Bench And Picks Up His Hockey Stick

14 November 2014

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Robert Watson Collection

19 September 2014
Robert Watson Collection

The recently acquired Robert Watson collection contained three unusual items (pictured). Two are silver hallmarked pin badges from the 1996 Atlanta and 2000 Sydney Olympics. The third is believed to be a cufflink from the 1948 London Games but we are missing its partner. Mike Haymonds, September 2014

Lost Collections: Bill Malherbe Of South Africa

07 September 2014

Probably the first real collector of hockey material was Bill Malherbe of South Africa, although the claim might be hotly contested if anyone knew what was in Ken Howells’s (of Teddington Hockey Club and Wales) collection. Sadly, his total and vast collection was thrown away shortly after his death, so...

Museum Stand At The Investec Cup

02 August 2014
Museum Stand At The Investec Cup

The Museum’s stand at the Investec London Cup held at the Lee Valley Hockey and Tennis Centre in the Olympic Park was a great success, attracting even more visitors than last year’s stand and proving a hit with adults and children alike. The display of sticks is always popular with...

The Cine Films Mystery

08 July 2014

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Investec London Cup, 9-13 July

01 July 2014

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Memories Of Wembley Stadium

23 June 2014
Memories Of Wembley Stadium

Nan William’s work to uncover the full history of the playing of hockey at Wembley Stadium continues and she has recently received some fascinating stories from former internationals Karen Brown, Sue Slocombe and Val Robinson. In an attempt to also find some local knowledge of this annual hockey event, she...

Even The Gods Played Hockey

20 June 2014
Even The Gods Played Hockey

This mosaic, an image of the god Pan from a Roman villa, was recently seen by The Hocket Museum volunteer Evelyn Somerville in the Archaeological Gardens at Paphos, Cyprus. It was created during the 3rd century AD.

Club Mugs

18 June 2014
Club Mugs

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War Stories

09 June 2014
War Stories

The Hockey Museum calls for hockey military stories as the centenary of WW1 approaches. Click on the image for the full article.

Museum Volunteers Needed

27 March 2014

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Let's Make A Date!

26 February 2014

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How Old Is Your Club?

18 February 2014

How old is your club? Guildford Hockey Club were not really sure. They celebrated their 50th in 1975 on the understanding that they had started in 1925. Local club Woking then suggested that they might be older than that. Their club chairman, Chris Basly, contacted us and we had a...

The Oldest Club Archive

10 February 2014

Surbiton Hockey Club are not quite the oldest club in the world but they do have the oldest and most complete ‘club archive’; unless you know better, of course! Their minute books go back to 1874 together with copious press cuttings and a complete collection of their club newsletter from...

The Hockey Museum Visits FIH HQ In Lausanne

03 February 2014

The International Hockey Federation (FIH) are very impressed with what we are achieving at The Hockey Museum after their two top executives visited us at Woking last July. A special 'there-and-back-in-a-day' visit made us realise that they were serious. The FIH's mission statement includes a commitment to history and heritage...

20 years in Storage

02 February 2014

By Mike Smith Two collections that have arrived at the Museum have actually been with us for over twenty years. They were collections given to us as a ‘fledgling set-up’ but, with the loss of our first home in Milton Keynes, they were never updated and sorted. This fascinating job...

Initiatives To Promote The Museum

01 February 2014

By Mike Smith The NHM website will be "upgraded" in the near future as we have just about reached the capacity of the old one. Under the direction of our new Webmaster, Allan Jobling, and our Publicity Officer, Mike Haymonds, we are hopeful of significantly increasing the potential to share information and...

FIH President visits the Museum

25 January 2014
FIH President visits the Museum

By Mike Haymonds Leandro Negre, FIH President, made his first visit to the Museum on Wednesday and pronounced himself “very impressed” with what he saw after a guided tour with Chair of Trustees Katie Dodd and Curator Mike Smith. He spoke with many of the volunteers about the work they...

More Lost Collections

24 January 2014

When we met with Leandro Negre, President of the FIH, at the Hockey Writers’ Club Luncheon last year, he said: ”This haemorrhaging of historical hockey material has got to be stopped.” Yes, Leandro, but how do we stop it? Within an hour we learned that the collection put together by Don...

Hockey in Morocco

22 January 2014

The Museum has started researching the origins and development of hockey in North Africa as we already know that ‘hockey-like’ games have been played in many countries in this region for generations. We have images of a game called ‘Genna’ being played in Ethiopia (see item in December’s newsletter), ‘oggaf’...

The Wagstaffe/Miroy Trunk

21 January 2014
The Wagstaffe/Miroy Trunk

Whilst collecting the Miroy collection and helping to clear the house we came across this old trunk in the loft. With the name Wagstaffe on it we realised that it dated from Barbara’s father who founded the Folkestone Hockey Festival. It was through the Festival that Barbara and Nevil first...

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