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Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Wind Farm takes step closer

The Parish Council are holding an open meeting regarding Navitus Bay Wind Park at the Community Centre on Thursday 1st March 2012.  The meeting starts at 6.00pm and is scheduled for an hour.  The Parish Council have called the meeting to cover some questions that they hope Eneco can clarify before the Parish Council respond to the consultation.

The two website links below will give you more information on the proposals.  One is the developers site, the other as its name implies has somewhat opposing views.

Bernard Brewer, a local resident makes some personal observations.  “From a personal point of view the challenge Navitus site seems to focus on the visual aspect of the site, but it is the cost of the unreliable and therefore inefficient electricity it produces that is unacceptable to me. In simple terms if you used a month’s electricity generated solely from say a gas fired power station it might cost you £40 (and that already includes around 15% extra for so called green measures). That same amount of electricity provided purely from an offshore wind farm which gets a guaranteed 200% subsidy would be £120. I appreciate it would not literally happen like that as power comes from a mixture of sources (currently around 85% from coal/gas/nuclear) but you can see why this Dutch company which is owned by 61 Dutch municipalities is so keen to develop the site and get a nice guaranteed return for 25 years as does the crown estate and ultimately the government via the crown estate and VAT on the higher bills.

Milford is considered an affluent area and I am sure many can cope with paying higher bills but my concerns are for those who will be elderly and on their own in particular with perhaps a somewhat limited income who may be house bound for much of the time and in winter will not be able to afford to keep their home as warm as it should be.

The problem is of course government policy which makes it attractive to firms such as ENECO/Navitus, but while we have a Prime Minister who supports such subsidies (indeed his father in law reportedly gets £1000 a Day from some turbines on his land again courtesy of our bills) nothing much is going to change unless of course as I suspect wind farms will become an election issue.”

If you would like to add your views, for or against the Wind Farm, please do so in the ‘comments’ section below this article.

Navitus Bay Wind Park

In January 2010, The Crown Estate awarded Eneco a 279 square mile area of the seabed located off the Dorset and Hampshire coasts (& due south of Milford on Sea) and to the west of the Isle of Wight to explore the most suitable place to locate a wind park with an approximate capacity of at least 900MW. Over the past year, Eneco has been appraising the area and concluded that a project of between 900MW and 1200MW of capacity could be located in the northern part of the awarded area, a site which covers 76 square miles.

Navitus Bay Wind Park will have the potential to make a contribution to meeting national targets for the increased use of renewable energy, reducing the country's dependency on fossil fuel imports and help to address the causes of climate change. 

School Field Development

A proposed development to land adjacent to Milford on Sea School is meeting with local opposition.  To hear the case against the 30 proposed dwellings, and/or to sign the objection petition, please click here.

Any new signatures for the petition or any registered objections must be received by NFDC by Friday 2nd of March.  So, if you have an objection you wish to be heard, you will have to be quick!

Thursday, 23 February 2012

Free Food Week Programmes in Shops

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The full printed programme for Milford on Sea Food Week in now in all of the village shops, and free for all.  This year we have changed our publicity strategy and are printing 32,000 free programmes.  Yes, 32,000!  The concept is too spread the word far and wide!

As well as being available in the village shops, the programmes as being left at other key locations within 10 miles.  Plus, a programme will be delivered to every house across the New Forest as an insert with The New Forest Post.  Yes, 26,000 copies going to Milford on Sea, Highcliffe, New Milton, Lymington, Brockenhurst, Lyndhurst and everywhere in between!

Not only is Food Week on a mission to put Milford on Sea on the map as a ‘Foodie Destination’, and to provide a week full of fun and culinary delights for villagers, we are also keen to draw in holiday makers, and people from surrounding towns and villages.  The more people we can have actively visiting, the more it helps to keep our village centre, and village life, to remain sustainable for us all.

Grab a programme, - and getting booking!

New Menu at Zaika

I am not an expert in many things, but one thing I do know is a great curry!

Having visited Indian Restaurants across the length and breadth of the country, it is easy for me to say how good Zaika is, indeed Milford on Sea is very fortunate to have such a good Indian restaurant in the heart of the village.  My wife is quite right when she says that I would be happy to sleep in a giant naan!

Things are about to get a bit more exciting, as Kalam has told me they are launching a brand new menu on the 1st of March.  The team have been working on the new dishes for some months, and everything is now ready to launch.

To make things a bit more special, Zaika will be holding a ‘New Menu Preview Night’ on Wednesday 29th February 2012.  This provides a great opportunity to try a variety of the improved recipes and new authentic dishes on offer.

To ensure that you can enjoy as much as you like, the evening will be an ‘All You Can Eat Buffet, with a Free Glass of House Red/White Wine or half a Cobra’.  All this will only cost each diner £14.95pp

The team at Zaika are always first to support any community events, so it would be nice if everyone popped in to give the new menu a try.

Sadly, I cannot make the ‘New Menu Preview Night’, as we are dining at 'Dinner', Heston Blumenthal's new restaurant in London that day.  I know, my wife is lucky to have me.  However, do not be too concerned, as I fully intend to try out the new menu at the earliest opportunity.  The day after sounds a good idea to me!

To book for the ‘Zaika New Menu Preview Night’ on Wednesday 29th February 2012 please call: 01590 643084

Food Week Open Meeting

We are holding an Open Meeting at 6pm on Wednesday 28th March. 

The meeting is for all Food Week Volunteers and any Participants running an event.  New volunteers are also welcome.  Indeed, anyone is welcome, even of you fancy just coming along to see what is happening.

There is no formal agenda, the purpose of the meeting is run though any questions people might have, and to give a brief overview of the things happening during Food Week.  The meeting is not expected to last longer than one hour and will be held in the Community Centre.

For those that get bored, or are looking for a better reason to come along, the bar will be open on the night!

Please feel free to just turn up!

Food Week Volunteer & Participants Open Meeting
Wednesday 28th March - 6pm to 7pm

Community Centre | Bar Open!

Get Cut in the Village

Our very handy Hardware store in the village has just installed a new key cutting service.

This little Aladdin’s Cave of DIY bit and bob’s often proves a godsend.  Indeed my wife is a regular visitor to get stuff for when she is unblocking our sinks, fixing electrics, decorating or laying a new patio.  I occasionally pop in for a bar of chocolate.

Lionel’s welcome is always warm, although I think he was a bit shocked when my wife told him where she intended to stick the plunger she had just bought when she got home!

If you are looking for any DIY needs, key cutting, tools, kitchenware, plumbing, electrical, light bulbs, paint, gas, car accessories, toys, gardening equipment, crab fishing nets or beachgoods, don’t forgot it can all be bought in the village Hardware store.

Hardware @ Milford: 20 Keyhaven Road, Milford on Sea, SO41 0QY | Tel: 01590 641684
Open 8.30am: Mon to Saturday

Library Love Day!

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Our village Library had a very successful ‘National Love Libraries Day’, on 4th February 1012. 

Around 103 people attended during the day, the kids had great fun on the Bear Hunt, and the adults enjoyed the delicious cakes, baked by the girls from the WI, plus a chance to have a good chat and exploration of the varied services the library offers.  As a result, 10 new people joined our village library.

The prize draw winners were Mrs Shute and Lucy Webb, winning War Horse and Where's Wally? books respectively.  Christine Minifie (Assistant Manager at Milford on Sea Library) sends extra special thanks to the Milford on Sea WI who, as always, gave us their support, valuable time and help on the day, plus of course baked all of the mouth-watering cakes!

The Boys are on their Bikes!

If anyone has seen an exhausted looking estate agent riding through Milford on Sea village resplendent in retro cycling trousers, do not be alarmed.  You have probably seen Jason Withers from Collins & Butler.

Jason is full on training for a rather special charity bike ride with a group of friends, including Josh Lines, who’s mum & dad (Paul & June) run the Red Lion.  Josh is athlete of the group and probably best suited to the job in hand.  A keen rugby player, gym enthusiast, surfer and cyclist. (Very much like your editor)  Jason is the musician of the group and will hopefully be serenading the team each evening after a hard day on the saddle.  Jason has plenty of previous cycling experience having cycled from Lymington to Newquay in Cornwall (with Josh), just for fun. He likes nothing more than surf in the morning to start the day followed by an afternoon on his motorbike cruising around the New Forest.  The rest of the team are made up of their friends Dan, Hannah and Bligh.

The team will set off from Largs Yacht Haven, on the West Coast of Scotland on Sunday 6th May 2012.  They then face a 6 day cycle to Lymington Yacht Haven, covering around 475 miles along the way. (And no doubt will suffer from considerable ‘saddle rash’!)

The primary aim of the cycle is to raise money for The Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust.  The Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust is a nationwide organisation that takes young people aged between 8-24 sailing to help them regain their confidence, on their way to recovery from cancer, leukemia and other serious illness.  The Trust is a charity that gains all funds from donations and fundraising activities such as the challenge the guys are planning.  They are hoping to raise something in excess of their £5k target.

I did of course offer to join them, but my bike still has a puncture and my wife is too busy installing our new kitchen to fix it just yet.

If you fancy watching how Jason & Josh get on, you can track their progress as they upload info and photos on the move to the website below.  Most importantly, if you would also like to sponsor them, you also can do it on the link below.

Pet Shop Birthday

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Our village pet shop has come a long way in just 12 months.  When ‘Jaws, Paws & Claws’ opened on Church Hill on the 19th February 2011 owners, Nici & Lionel Illgner, did not know what sort of response they would get from the good people of Milford on Sea village! 

Nici now happily tells me that: “The support we have had has been phenomenal! We grew so quickly I could hardly keep up with the demand. It's only because of the support from the village that I was able to increase the stock holding and product range, and we are still growing.”

Starting any new business is of course stressful, particularly doing so in the middle of a recession!. But Nici is thrilled all of the extra hours and hard work is paying off.  Nici went on to say: “We have gone from strength to strength,  I try to keep prices low and competitive, if we don't have what someone is looking for I will order it in for them and we deliver for free!!”

Jaws, Paws & Claws stock all manner of essential supplies, toys and goodies for whatever you pet might be.  They are also the only stockist of the Symply range of natural dog food in the area, and now also have a new food range for dogs and cats called Barking Heads / Meowing Heads which is doing well.

Nici says a warm ‘thank you’ to all the customers who have been so welcoming and supportive.  If you need anything at all for your pets it is great to know that there is no need to leave the village.

Jaws, Paws & Claws, 4 Church Hill, Milford on Sea, SO41 0QH  |  Tel: 01590 643837

Lunch for the Carnival

Many of you are aware and were saddened that the carnival procession did not take place in 2011. However, the VCC are delighted to announce that a subcommittee has been formed to assist the Milford on Sea Village Community Committee to organise and run the procession in 2012.

They are in the process of organising and fundraising for the 2012 procession and are getting great support from the local community which is very encouraging.

The committee are delighted to inform you that their second fundraising event is the 'March First Friday Charity Lunch' held at Milford Community Centre. Some of you may know all about the First Friday Lunches that are organised by dedicated team of volunteers and raise money to support many charities.

The team would love to see as many of you as possible on Friday 2nd March 2012 at 1pm where you can feast on a main course and desert for only £4.50 per person.

Everyone is very welcome and no booking is necessary. Just show up, have a tasty meal and support a local community event.

If you would like further details about the First Friday Lunch Club or helping to support the carnival procession please do not hesitate in contacting Sean Reeves of Hugh Whitlock Solicitors at

Friday, 17 February 2012

NHS Protest from Milford!

We have heard that a protest song has been published on You Tube by a group of Milford on Sea village residents.  Your editor is naturally A-political, based mainly on his inability to understand grown up issues.

However, Joey has explained the reason for their song: “As the health professions one by one came out in opposition Alan Lansley’s deeply divisive Health and Social Care (“NHS reform”) Bill, most people in England hadn’t a clue what the row was really all about. So, lifelong health service researcher, John Gabby decided to try and help put that right by writing a catchy song about all the things that incensed him about the Bill.”

The catchy song was created in the kitchen on a cold Milford on Sea night by John, his daughter Joey Owen, accompanied by her husband Mark, brother Michael, and neighbour Nick Gill.  Nick then mixed the song the next day, while John and his wife Andrée le May, a nurse, added the graphics. 

Early next morning, February 7th, the video was on You Tube.  Within a week, the ‘Song for Lansley and His Pals’ had nearly 8000 views, and was already being hailed on the internet as the campaign song for the opponents of the Bill.

The ‘Gabbay family and friends team’ have designed the song to convey their main concerns about the proposed reforms of the health service.  The video describes how, in their view, the NHS will become fragmented, how private corporations will undermine the control intended for GPs, and how high quality patient care will eventually cease to be freely available.

If you fancy listening to the song please click below:


With Food Week fast approaching, and free programmes arriving next week for everybody,  we are now starting to look for helpers! 

This year we are giving Milford on Sea Food Week a focal point by have the ‘Shorefield Trailer’ on the village green as a ‘Food Week Information Centre’.  This will give locals and visitors somewhere to go the collect a programme and to find out what is happening. 

We already know we will need a large volunteer team to cover the ‘Food Week Information Centre’, as the trailer will be arriving to open every day as follows:

Food Week Information Centre Opening Times:
Good Friday 6th April until Sunday 15th April
AM Shift: 10am to 1pm – PM Shift: 1pm to 4pm.

The plan is to have two shifts a day, with at least two people on each shift.  It would be great if anyone out there would be willing to do a few shifts?

Amanda Tanner has kindly been pressganged volunteered to coordinate the rota for us, so if you are happy to do some shifts, (and/or can persuade some of your friends to get involved as well!), can you please drop her a line to let her know.  (She will be very relieved, as she is worried we won’t get the quantity of volunteers we need!) 

Contact details: Amanda Tanner:

Food Week Volunteer Team: If you are not already on our ‘Volunteer List’, and would like to help out for a few hours at various events, please feel free to let me have you details:

Youth Drama Group is Back

We have been informed that the Milford Youth Group's Drama and Film Making Project is finally back!

Last Summer's workshops and the final event that took place last Autumn and were a great success .  The young participants showcased their performance and screen production skills to a wide audience from Milford's community, while revealing plenty of their views and ideas on what it is to be young in Milford on Sea in 2012.

Needless to say it was quite an insight for some of the audience's members!  The bridging of young and old was great to see, when followed by some yummy cake and tea and a talk laid on by the young group themselves.

The youth group are now running another project for two age groups once a week at the Community Centre with massive thanks to Artswork and Hampshire County Council who have awarded the grant to make it possible.

For extra inspiration the project will also involve trips and workshops at Winchester University's Performing Arts Centre, visits to youth clubs in Southampton, and cultural trips to places such as Medina Mosque and Arts Asia.

The project is FREE to join (however donations are always welcome to support village youth work), and will run on a Wednesday from 4:.30pm until 6pm (for school yrs 5 and 6) and 6.15pm until 7.30pm (for school years 7 to 10).

If you are interested in joining please contact Joey at the youth group, 01590 644961 or 07557 658495, or email

Winter at Hurst Castle

Maintaining Hurst Castle is, as you may imagine, quite a complex and ongoing job.  Being at the end of end of the spit in Milford on Sea it is also not the most accessible of locations in winter.

English Heritage, who own the castle, have employed contractors to undertake some major renovations this winter.  The castle is managed by Sean, Mary & Jason of Hurst Castle Ferries and this winter has been a busy time for all of them and their team.

Amongst the larger jobs was making safe and rebuilding parts of the searchlight emplacement at the end of the West Wing, Re-rendering the emplacement on the South side of the West Wing, replacing the rotten timber framework that supported the steps outside the centre keep, rebuilding the chimney above the guardroom, plus some smaller jobs.  The work was awarded to Banks builders from the I.O.W. and Hurst Ferries have been employed ferrying men and materials from Yarmouth.  The main bulk of materials and scaffolding were transported down the beach by the Hurst Ferry tractor and trailer, with over 30 ton delivered so far.  The work is progressing well and will be completed by mid-March.

There was also funding for exterior painting which was undertaken by the ferry staff and will recommence as soon as the weather warms up a little.

The latest really good news is that funding has also been acquired for a new generator to replace the 40 year old Lister.  The Contract has been awarded to Hurst Castle Ferries and the work has to be completed by 31st March.  This is tight for time but they are optimistic it can be completed.  The new set is a 40kva prime power generator powered by a John Deere diesel all in an acoustic container.

Apart from the above works, the ferry team have now almost finished the winter fleet refits and are currently working ferrying men and materials to The Needles and Nab Tower lighthouses.


Friends of Hurst 

The castle is helped on a regular basis by the Friends of Hurst Castle.  The friends were was formed in 1986 to act as a support group.  At that time the Castle was managed by English Heritage, but since May 1996 there has been joint management; with English Heritage still in charge of the fabric of the building and general policies and the Local Management, Hurst Castle Services, running the everyday management and services.

The Friends’ aim is still to support in any way they can: physically and financially with any project, enhancement of the building, to assist educationally and in any research that they can. We arrange social events and from time to time Newsletters for our Members. 

Hurst Castle Ferries offer a 10% discount to Members when buying season tickets and free passage to any Friends who are going to work at the Castle. The Friends have a workshop at the far end of the West Wing for leaving belongings, tools, artefacts, etc. and for holding meetings. There is also a BBQ facility on arrangement with the Committee. 

The friends also produce the Hurst Tidings Newsletter, where members can rRead all the latest news from the Friends of Hurst Castle.

There is also a ‘Monday Volunteer Working Party’, which is a regular group of Friends and Association of Lighthouse Keepers members who volunteer at the Castle every Monday, working on restoration projects such as the Garrison Theatre, the Egypt Point optic and the Association of Lighthouse Keepers' room.  The Friends of Hurst Castle are also currently working on the following on-going projects: Castle Gardens, Exhibitions, Painting, Workshop and Castle Guiding. 

Annual Membership is £12 for a Single member or £19 for Couples.
If you would like to join for a very enjoyable and social day at the Castle (with free ferry and tea to all volunteers!) please contact: Dinah Le May on 01590 674921 or e-mail her at:

Saturday, 11 February 2012

There is an Elephant in the Village

Local Milford on Sea musician, Alex Hall, has launched a new single called 'Boom boom boom', under the stage name of ‘Elephant’.  Having listened to the track a few times now I have to say it is an enjoyably catchy number that just makes you want to smile.

You can hear the track below.  If you like it, the track is available online as a ‘name your price’ download, in other words you just pay what you like for it.

The accompanying video for Alex’s latest track, ‘Boom, Boom, Boom’, was filmed in the village, with the help of another village resident, Leighton Allen.

The video features The Smugglers Inn, Mark at The Village News, a brief visit to The Village Charity Shop (Where a lady customer looks quite taken aback!) and a wander along the High Street to New Seasons Florists.

Alex has grown up in Milford on Sea and is very proud of the village and the community he is part of.  Today he is a self-produced independent singer songwriter and naturally hopes his new track is enjoyed by many people.  He does shows around the UK and can even be occasionally found busking in Lymington.

To hear Alex’s (As ‘Elephant’) latest track please click here

To buy the track: please click here 

To visit Elephant's Facebook Page: please click here

Food Week Programme Announced

The full seven day programme for Milford on Sea Food Week has now been announced, you can view each day’s activities on the link at the bottom of this article.

A Free printed programme will also be available in the village shops from the end of February.  Tickets are also now on sale for all major events in the online ticket office.

Food Week is a celebration about local food, with all corners of the community taking part.  The event is designed to for people to have a lot of fun, and at the same time establish Milford on Sea as a ‘Foodie Destination’, which will create long-term sustainability for the village centre shops and its restaurants, for the benefit of local residents and visitors alike.

From Easter Bank Holiday Monday Milford on Sea Food Week celebrates all that is great about food for an entire seven days.  This New Forest seaside village is blessed with great places to eat and surrounded by quality local producers, so what better way to celebrate this, than to have an entire week dedicated to the joys of food!

Everyone at every age is welcome, and Milford on Sea Food Week has over 100 activities including: Themed Dining Evenings, Professional Cookery Theatre, Celebrity Shows, Cooking Demonstrations, Educational Talks, Film Shows, Cookery Competitions, Wine Tastings, Dining Offers, Kid's Events & a large Sunday Food Market, all are organised by local organisations, clubs, businesses and individuals.  A Programme detailing all of the events is on sale in the village shops.

This year’s Food Week celebrity shows include ‘An Evening with Tom Kerridge’, a two star Michelin chef and TV personality, a ‘Comedy & Cake Night’ starring TV & radio comedian Jo Caulfield and the ever popular ‘Big Cook Off’ between top chefs in the local area. The ‘Great Dining Bus’ is also taking to the road, transporting diners to eat a different course in four village restaurants.  Now that really is a dining experience with a difference!  Tickets for the large events are available from the online ‘Food Week Ticket Office’ as well as in the village.

Milford on Sea is fast becoming recognised as the South coast’s ‘Foodie Heaven by the Sea!’. This small seaside village boasts over twenty places to eat, offering everything from fine dining to boutique cafés. It is also a vibrant village with an extremely active community spirit, and is home to the ‘Hampshire Restaurant of the Year’ and ‘Hampshire Chef of the Year’.

All of the village restaurants are running themed evenings & special offers throughout the week.  There is also a full programme of events to entertain the kid’s on half-term holiday. The professional Cookery Theatre provides a varied programme of events and activities that should excite every ‘foodie’.

On the final Sunday, the Food Market takes centre stage with over 50 stalls on the village green & along the High Street.  Local producers from throughout the New Forest will be selling tasty treats, and various types of hot food will be available.  You can also visit the many village shops that will be open.  Last year over 6000 people attended the Food Market, and this year all visitors will be entertained by a jazz quartet and The Milford Strummers as they shop.

Our event is truly ‘By the community, for the community’.

To view the Full Food Week Programme, please click link:

New Cookery School in Village

Local chef, Christian Rivron, has open a new Cookery School in Milford on Sea.  The Granary Kitchen is in Newlands Manor Farm, and the first solo business venture for this award winning chef.  Christian is now bringing his skills from the kitchen to the classroom by offering a programme of courses, including subjects such as: Deserts & Pastries, Meat, Fish & Shellfish, Bread Baking, Vegetarian Meals and Soup, Bread & Dressings. (All can be viewed and booked on The Granary website.)

Christian has designed The Granary Kitchen Cookery School to mimic the relaxed feeling of cooking in your own home.  Christian aims to use the incredible range of fresh local & seasonal produce available throughout the New Forest, Hampshire and Dorset to their full potential.  The Granary Kitchen has also become a member of the New Forest Marque.

Starting the day with a coffee on the sofa, participants will then cooking a variety of dishes in a homely kitchen, before enjoying the prepared meal around the dining table.

All standards of cooks are welcome, from the novice gaining confidence in cooking, to an experienced cook looking to broaden their knowledge of different produce and techniques.  All ‘students’ help out and get a ‘hands on’ experience using easy to follow & understandable instructions.  The day is relaxed and informal as you learn new skills, techniques & tips from the professional world of cooking.  The cookery school aims to increase your interest in cooking & food, and to encourage people to try something different as they broaden their knowledge and experience for cooking at home.  At the end of the course there are take away recipe card for all dishes made on the day.

Already in the village we have the excellent Cookery Day’s offered by Dave Wykes, Hampshire Chef of the Year at Verveine.  Dave provides an fine insight into both the wonders of fish and his extraordinarily creative culinary mind.  Local people are now fortunate to have yet another opportunity to see inside the world of another professional chef.

The Granary Kitchen also offers Private Dining, where Christian can cook for you in your own home.  How impressive would that be having a professional chef cooking for your dinner party.  I might even consider giving my wife a night off!

You can contact Christian on: 01590 673040 or at:

Piers is a National Champion

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Milford on Sea now has a National hockey champion living in the village. Piers Everleigh was part of the winning Havant Hockey Club team at the end of January.  (Piers is the son of Garry Everleigh, local resident, forager and operator of Puffin Cruises in Lymington.)

The U16 Havant Hockey Club team played and won all six games in the National Indoor Championship tournament at Aldersley Stadium, Wolverhampton 21st/22nd January 2012.  A very successful weekend saw the lads of U16 Havant Hockey Club team become the only team in the two pools to win all of their pool matches.  In the semi-final the Havant boys beat Canterbury, who are the reigning National Champions. The final was against Ashmoor Hockey Club (National Schools Indoor Champions) with Havant running out 2-1 winners to become crowned U16 Boys Clubs National Indoor Champions.

Piers also plays for the County and  SE England Wessex Leopards. Nice one Piers!

Havant Hockey Club Team: Piers Eveleigh, Laurie Bowden, JJ Brown, Joe Budgen, Josh Darlington, David Jones, Tom Lavery, Ethan Levy, Robbie Mansell, Ollie Nail, Tom Penlington. Coach: David Faulkner.