Remnants HC's story:
The club was first founded in 1991 and gained its name from the fact that members had left other north Kent and S.E. London clubs with a desire to play hockey in a more accepting environment. It was not originally formed as a gay hockey club and not all the founding members were gay. It took three seasons to join the league, form a governance committee and establish a constitution marking the club as a gay ladies hockey team.
Nationally hockey was in the headlines as the GB men's team had gained the gold medal at the 1988 Olympics and both the men and women were fourth in the world. The following year the women's team would take the Bronze at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics. In the Kent league, Maidstone Hockey Club and Sevenoaks Hockey were top of their game with nine divisions in operation. Hockey was played mainly on grass with only the 1st division being played on the new Astroturf.
In terms of the UK gay scene, Brookside had not yet screened the first pre-watershed lesbian kiss on UK TV, which was aired in 1994. In education, Section 28 was still in force, banning the use of public funds to buy materials promoting homosexuality; civil partnerships were 13 years away and the 2010 Equality Act was 19 years away. However, the London lesbian social scene had moved on from underground house parties as gay clubs sprung up in South London as well as Soho. The development of an openly accepting gay hockey club was new and unique.
Remnants formed an outlet for LGBT women to not just play hockey together but also to socialise together. Communication was in a pre-social media age, but the club managed to grow in membership: they advertised in the Kenric lesbian newsletter and eventually, the club was able to field two teams. All teams started in the lowest division in the Kent league but eventually were promoted. Remnants achieved success in March 1994 when they won the Blackheath Tournament. The team took part in several international and national tours in Belgium and nationally Penzance, Southampton and the Isle of Wight. They won the Oranje Brussels Hockey Tournament when combined with Surrey's Maori Vamps team.
In 2008 the club's first team were promoted to the first division in Kent and player Strings became the highest end of season scorer with 23 goals in 2009. The club has benefited over the years from ex-national squad players joining but none as famous as two of the club's longest-serving members whose gay wedding featured on the Living TV programme Four Weddings in August 2009; they also featured the same month in Woman magazine.
.Some clubs are forced to merge or close, but Remnants HC remains an active gay organisation, about to celebrate its 30th anniversary, continuing to play and have an active social scene. We played in Division 5 of the Kent League until April 2021 and we have players from England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland, as well as from France, South Africa, Peru, Spain, Slovakia, and Poland. As always we welcome all abilities and experiences. So come and join us!
From September 2021, the team is joining the new London League (South East) as the club turns 30! This is an exciting time for our club and we can't wait to meet new teams all over London and hopefully recruit more players.