How Our Association Started :

Before June 11th 2001 when the Women's, Mens and Mixed Hockey Associations were amalgamated, a Leicestershire Mixed Hockey Association (LMHA) had existed for over 50 years and before that, the Mixed Hockey Association (note no "Leicester"). This brief overview of our history has been put on this web-site to recognise the services of its officers, some who had served since the LMHA formation in 1948. If you can add anything, please drop me an e-mail.


 This picture (click for a larger view, pity about the quality!) is a flashback to the 1920's and shows Leicester Casuals mixed hockey team, which won the Mixed Hockey Associaions trophy in the 1924-25 season.
They travelled to Nottingham, Boston, Woodhall Spa and Skegness for some of their fixtures and their number included some familiar faces of the day. One member of the team was Norman Black, a TT motor cycle rider and racing car driver.

The team from left to right was:
Front row - Norman Wright, Harold Griffin, Doris How, George Boyes, Marjorie Northcott, Douglas Boyes.
Back row - Reg Boyes, Ella Wright, Norman Black, Lucy Parker, Stan Capey, Ethel Poole, Ernest Smith, Nora Carr, Gordon Hall and Florence Griffin. 

LMHA Days:

 Mixed Hockey matches were played during the war years, mainly by two teams: Holy Apostles and KRR Meths. Matches were against RAF personnel at the various aerodromes that existed in Leicestershire at the time. With rationing still with us, not only were these attractive fixtures, but a sit-down tea after the game was an added incentive to being selected to play.
After the war ended, more teams were being formed and in June 1949, a meeting was held at the Foresters Institute, High St, Leicester and the LMHA was formed, main Committee members being:

George Steeples (President)
Phil Thurman (Chair)
Peter Barkby (V/Chair)
Bill Sandbrook (Secretary)
Freda Stevens (Treasurer) and representatives from Clubs.

The original Committee.

George, Freda, Myself (Jim)

and Phil.

One Division was formed and the Fixture Secretary arranged the matches. Each team supplied one Umpire. Being the only County Mixed Association in the Country, the LMHA had to produce its own Playing Rules book, as there had to be a variation from the Mens and Ladies Rules to cover mixed games. Older members will remember the Pink covered Rule Book....
 Within two years so many other teams were being formed that two and very soon three Divisions were necessary. Although there were a few Private Clubs, the largest input was from factory teams, well known names such as Mellor Bromley, John Bull, Dunlop, Symingtons, Wadkins, Bentley Engineering, English Electric, Ashwell, Nesbitt, Gimsons, Brush, Morris, Holwell and Rest Assured. Sadly most have fallen by the wayside although a few have re-formed as Private Clubs. Division 1 & 2 teams played for the Senior Cup and Division 3 and Friendly teams played for the Junior Cup. All teams played in the 7-a-side Tournament.
These were the Bentley A & B Triple Winners of 1960.

Is that me on the right?

 With an Association being formed in Northamptonshire, County matches were played between the two Associations followed later by matches against a newly formed Berks & Oxon Association. These are the two oldest County opponents and both still exist today. With the formation of the England Association in 1979, further County matches were arranged with Surrey, Yorkshire, Essex, Manchester, District, Northwest and Humberside.
 The first ever International Mixed match was played against Wales at Milton Keynes in 1971/2. A now Annual event, several LMHA players have been selected for the England Teams.

 Today, with fourth and fifth Divisions being formed, the LMHA is the largest County Association in the Country. In 1999, to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Association, a Tournament was held at Loughborough University, and was reported on at the time.

Jim Burford

Site supported by LRHA members Copyright Mick Morgan 2009