Hockey Tour 2014
Three teachers, eleven girls and a weighed down minibus, although slightly lighter once we removed Mr Fung-On, set off for a weekend of hockey in the New Forest.
Four games were planned to be played over two days, plus ample time for fun in the forest.
After three hours in the bus and a quick packed lunch, we arrived at Durlston Court School. Although the score didn’t go our way, we had a great afternoon with friendly opposition and staff. This was followed by ice-creams and time-out on the beach. We then made our way back to our idyllic converted barn, complete with a PYO vegetable patch, pigs, horses and chickens. PJs, pasta and card games were the theme of the evening, with the girls honing their Vegas skills at the expense of the staff.
A good night's sleep was had by all once spiders and bugs were removed (organically) from the sleeping pods. Breakfast was served and packed lunches were made in military fashion by three rookie staff. Once fed and watered, we were on the road heading for Stroud School in pouring rain. A valiant, but drenched Rose Hill team put in two great performances, winning one and losing one. Stroud were incredibly hospitable and provided a very welcome, and much needed, hot match tea along with time for socialising.
After lunch, it was back on the bus to West Hill Park, Titchfield, having just enough time to fit in some retail therapy at the shopping outlet.
A triangular fixture was organised for the afternoon with Rose Hill playing West Hill Park and neighbouring school St Johns Portsmouth. Throughout the afternoon, we won and drew against St Johns and West Hill Park B team, but lost one match in a display of fast, accurate hockey from West Hill Park A team.
After another match tea and good conversation, including Mrs Spence bumping into someone with Tunbridge Wells connections, we headed back to Lymington for a quick freshen up before our night out in the pizzeria.
We awoke to blue skies and a very chirpy cockerel on Sunday morning. The girls collected eggs for breakfast and salad for our packed lunches, and sat down for an english breakfast lovingly prepared by the staff. Before heading home, we set off on bikes from Burley along a disused railway track in search of milkshakes and strong coffee. Enough time was found for the girls to buy presents for their families in Burley’s tourist honey pot before taking to the Tunbridge Wells road. (Please note that staff had no input over quality control for purchases..!)
We can honestly say that the girls were an absolute pleasure to be with and we thoroughly enjoyed their company, although our ringing ears through the shrill laughter and chatter were not so sorry to hand them back to waiting parents.
AW DF SAS
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