The island of Jersey was graced with the presence of twenty two members and wives of the England LX Club on their annual pilgrimage for the hockey challenge against the Jersey Hockey Club Veterans Team.
Friday 9th May was the celebration of the liberation of Jersey in 1945. Many of the LX contingent went down into St Helier under a clear blue sky to watch the activities and the parades. In the afternoon 11 members of our party played golf at Les Ormes Golf and Country Club in glorious sunshine, leading on to a wonderful evening at the Greenhills Hotel for a really excellent four course meal.
The following morning several members played golf on the Wheatlands Hotel golf course courtesy of the management, once again we were blessed with glorious sunshine.
Our first hockey match against Jersey Vets commenced at 4.00 p.m. under the captaincy of John Longden. The LX team gelled together and played some very impressive hockey, especially as the assembled players very seldom play as a team, they were a credit to the LX Club; the half time score being 2-2. The Jersey vets realising that they had a battle on their hands especially playing against a team approximately 20 years their senior, started to put pressure on the LX team. But, with a strong defence, they were thwarted in their attempts. The three man LX defence of Hazel, Longden and Mack together with the gnome of goalkeepers Alan Dures who really made a number of outstanding saves, were ably supported by the midfield of Lomas, Rowbotham and Spencer Knott, and the Jersey team were held at bay. As a result of the pressure the Jersey team were putting on the LX they became very vulnerable in defence which the LX forward line took advantage of making a final score of 4-2 to the visitors. Scorers for the LX team were Adrian Money 2, Graham Martin 2. After the match the Jersey team entertained the guests at a local hostelry to quench their not inconsiderable thirst.
In the evening the LX team hosted the Jersey Vets and their wives to a four course meal at the Bistro Soleil. Once again we feasted on an excellent meal in good company with the Jersey side licking their wounds from the afternoon game.
On Sunday, the LX squad took advantage of a late 11.00 a.m. pass back with a leisurely breakfast in the hotel.
The LX were expecting a much harder game as new faces appeared in the Jersey side. Our hosts immediately put a lot of pressure on our defence and within 20 minutes we were 2-0 down. With some serious talking from our Captain and one or two positional changes, the LX took the game to the Jersey Vets in the second half. One of the more spectacular goals was scored by Gilbert Grace; who deftly scooped the ball over the prostrate form of Tim Pollard who was attempting to block Gilbert’s route, it was brilliant to see. Graham Martin levelled the score with a solo run into the D putting the ball past Tim which brought the final score to 2-2. This time it was the turn of the LX team to host the opposition to drinks at the Wheatlands Hotel.
Seven members of our squad had to leave in the afternoon whilst the remainder were entertained by June and Tim Pollard in their lovely home on the other side of the island. To most of the visitors it was awesome to see Tim’s pride and joy, his extensive layout of a Hornby 00 train set and tramway coupled with street lighting and lights in all the houses. A truly magnificent sight both for those who had seen it before and those who had not.
On Monday 4 golfers played at the Royal Jersey Golf Club, whilst others toured the island taking in some of the sights that Jersey has to offer.
A most memorable tour to Jersey enjoyed by all who participated. Our sincere thanks go to June and Tim Pollard who worked so hard to ensure that the weekend was so enjoyable for everyone and also for their excellent hospitality on the Sunday evening, we all had a great time.
Tour Organiser & Reporter : David Robson (who we must say did a very good job accompanied by Judy