History of the league 1978 – 2018
The South West Dorset Netball League was formulated in 1978 following a tournament held on 15 January 1978 in Dorchester. Ten teams entered the tournament with Bridport winning and Radipole runners-up. The summer season then began on 12 March 1978 and the winter season on 7 September 1978.
Various venues have hosted the league: Westfield School, Dorchester Modern School, Westham School & Weymouth Grammar School (now Budmouth College), the Youth Activities Centre (now the Weymouth Outdoor Education Centre), and Royal Manor School.
The first “Presentation Dance” was held at Nino’s Function Room on 12 September 1981 and attracted a crowd of 147 with tickets priced at £1.
In the late 1980’s the League had grown to 32 teams with 4 Divisions. The existing venues of the YAC and Royal Manor School could no longer accommodate the League and the Committee set to work to provide floodlit courts for the League. A fundraising target of £30,000 to surface the courts and install floodlights at Budmouth School was set. Fundraising events were organised by individual teams including quiz nights, car boot sales and a race night. Grants were applied for by Denise Camp and Christine Gould and the overall project provided the League with four floodlit courts and changing facilities and the league transferred to this new venue.
At the beginning of 1993 the League set up a partnership with Budmouth Technology College (now Budmouth College) and with funding from The Foundation for Sports & Arts, West Dorset District Council and Chickerell Parish Council, two additional new courts were provided and opened by Jean Cockerell the then Chair of WDDC on Sunday 13 June 1993. As part of the opening day the England U21 squad played an exhibition match followed by a League tournament.
In 2008 a new school building was planned for the site of the courts, as part of the building project new courts and floodlights were built within the school grounds. Now, in 2018 the league continues to run winter and summer seasons each year on these floodlit courts at Budmouth College, with 21 teams competing in the current winter season.
The Committee are now considering ways in which to enhance the court surface so keep your eyes peeled on future minutes as it is highly likely a further fundraising drive may be required should it be decided to proceed with either a form of deep cleaning or re-surfacing.
Over the years representatives from the League have been involved with both the former West Dorset County Committee and the current Netball Dorset Committee. At a playing level players, coaches and umpires have been involved in netball at County and Regional level.
Many players represented the former West Dorset County teams. An Echo article from 2003 reported that the West Dorset team would play home matches at Budmouth College in the 2003 English Counties League season and that the following players from the league were included within the squad: Kelly Browne, Becky Fagg, Sue Lee, Sally David, Nicky Marsh, Lucy Yates, Kathryn Reed and Felicity Roper.
In more recent years the English Counties League has been replaced by the Regional Clubs competitions. League players have been, and continue to be, involved in coaching and playing in this competition at both Open and age group level. It’s always a challenge to name individuals in case someone is left out, however the list includes: Lou Bugler, Sue Lee, Emily Conning, Amelia CorrieFairhurst, Leanne Holmes, Jaimee Browne, Tia Chaloner and Skyla Erskine.
The England Netball Performance Pathway for age group players has also featured youngsters from the area, many of whom have progressed to play in the League. The area is well represented at the Weymouth Satellite and Dorset County Academies and there have also been successes with past and current players being involved in the former Regional Academy at Bath and now in the Team Bath and Severn Stars Performance Hubs: Jasmine Franklin, Leanne Holmes, Katherine Wilberforce, Jessamy Baker, Skyla Erskine, Jaimee Browne, Tia Chaloner, Millie Hambleton-White and Frankie Harris.
Hopefully one day soon we will see faces we recognise from our league playing in the Super League and in the red dress of the England Roses.
The League’s longest serving player is Sue Lee who began playing in the League in 1978, she missed a few seasons when she moved away for a short period but on her return re-joined the League and still plays and umpires for Waterside in the Premier Division every week. Sue also plays and umpires for Yeovil Netball Club in the Somerset County League and is working towards her B Umpire Award.
Finally, on behalf of the League the Committee wishes to extend their thanks to the many sponsors that have supported the teams over the years, and to those that continue to support the current teams in the League, it really is greatly appreciated and gratefully accepted.
Award Winners for 2017 -2018 Winter & Summer Seasons
Winter 2017-18 Winners Runners-Up Premier Division Belle Construction George Bar & Grill Division 1 O’Jo’s GW Electrical Division 2 Coastal Cheese Allways Removals
Summer 2018 Winners Runners-Up Premier Division Belle Construction New Body Fitness Division 1 Gungho Marketing OTC Division 2 Beaminster Braves Basepoint
Award Winners for 2017-2018 Winter & Summer Seasons – announced on the night
PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Winner Runner-Up Premier Division Laura Osborne, GW Electrical Becky Hallett, Saints Security Division 1 Jayne Guppy, Cresta Leisure Tia Chaloner, Gungho Marketing Lynsey Pollard, OTC Emily England, Buglers Gilly Woodsford, Allways Removals Division 2 Olivia Conning, O’Jos B Ellie Stevens, Meraki
Overall Player of the Year LAURA OSBORNE, GW ELECTRICAL
Nominations Premier – Amy Jane Hunter Welch, Becky Hallett, Chloe Weldon, Emily Conning, Hayley Stanton, Jessamy Baker, Jodie Howell, Katherine Wilberforce, Laura Gardner, Laura Osborne, Lauren Banks, Mandy Grafton, Verity Batchelor Division 1 – Adelaide Elsom, Anna Mitchell, Carolyn Allgood, Catherine Simmons, Chloe Grier, Emily England, Frankie Harris, Gilly Woodsford, Jayne Guppy, Julie Naylor, Kate Sanderson, Lyndsey Pollard, Tia Chaloner Division 2 – Amelie Comben Lindsay, Candice Barton, Eleanor Lake, Ellie Stevens, Emily Clunes, Olivia Conning, Robyn Dennis, Tasha Reed
UMPIRE’S PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Winner Runner-Up Premier Division Laura Osborne, GW Electrical Becky Hallet, Saints Security Division 1 Jayne Guppy, Cresta Leisure Lauren Stones, Team Waikiki Amelia Corrie-Fairhurst, Wyke Smugglers Division 2 Olivia Conning, O’Jos B Tasha Reed, Café Oasis Donna Butcher O’Jos B Overall Umpire’s Player of the Year OLIVIA CONNING, O’JOS B
Nominations Premier – Becky Cousens, Becky Hallett, Caroline Goode, Charlie Naerger, Chloe Weldon, Dani Beals, Emily Conning, Hayley Stanton, Jessamy Baker, Kiera Boardman, Kirsty Winning Laura Osborne, Lauren Banks, Nicky Marsh, Rachel Senior, Verity Batchelor Division 1 – Amelia Corrie Fairhurst, Anna Mitchell, Catherine Simmons, Emma Bright, Gilly Woodsford, Jaimee Browne, Jayne Guppy, Jo Baldwin, Kate Sanderson, Lauren Stones, Lyndsey Pollard, Tia Chaloner Division 2 – Amelie Comben Lindsay, Donna Butcher, Eve van der Steen, Maisie Amos, Olivia Conning, Rosie Barton, Tasha Reed
UMPIRE OF THE YEAR
Winner Runner-Up Premier Division Louise Bugler, Belle Construction Sue Lee, Waterside Division 1 Mel Dive, Gungho Marketing Tracy Moore, Wyke Smugglers Division 2 Holly Fowler, Basepoint Jaimee Browne, Gungho Marketing Overall Umpire of the Year LOUISE BUGLER, BELLE CONSTRUCTION
Nominations Premier – Becky Hallett, Chantelle Halloran, Jo Baldwin, Kirsty Winning, Lou Bugler, Lou Hobson, Lou Taylor, Mandy Grafton, Nicky Marsh, Nicole Birley, Sue Lee Division 1 – Bryony White, Caroline Kellaway, Emily Park, Freja Ellis, Julie Bell, June Reed, Lorraine Kellaway, Mel Dive, Tracy Moore Division 2 – Alison Frampton, Annalise Dive, Cat Kelly, Donna Butcher, Emma Kellaway, Fiona Wilcox, Holly Fowler, Jaimee Browne, Mandy Langton, Sam Rees, Sarah Lewis, Sian Whitlock
SUE BARRAS AWARD FOR MOST IMPROVED TEAM: WINNERS = O’JOS Nominations – Allways Removals, Gungho Marketing, GW Electrical, O’Jo’s
DENISE CAMP AWARD FOR FAIR PLAY AND GOOD CONDUCT: WINNERS = BELLE CONSTRUCTION Voted for by the Committee and takes into account: Conduct scores; attendance at AGM; forfeiture of games; provision of umpires; provision of duty helpers; support to the league; willingness to progress to aid the league; positive promotion of netball in the area; Top 5 teams – Beaminster Braves, Belle Construction, O’Jo’s, Buglers, Gungho Marketing
LOUISE BEALS AWARD FOR SERVICES TO NETBALL: WINNER = BECKY BARTON Presented by last year’s winner Mandy Grafton
Chairperson Lynn Smith Secretary Ann Chipperfield Treasurer Margaret Ankers Umpire Secretary Margaret Blair Fixture Secretary Libby Meyers Voting Members Margaret Green Linda Sweeney Barbara Keast A Brennan
An extract from the Minutes of 14 June 1978 states: “cases of misconduct were discussed in the light of several reports of violence during matches”.
Nowadays they call it “Contest”!!
Chairperson Louise Bugler Secretary Lisa Martin Vice Chair Alison Holmes (also Safeguarding Officer) Treasurer Caroline Kellaway Umpire Secretary Kelly Browne (also Junior Development Officer) Fixture Secretary Mandy Grafton Senior Development Officer Vacant Social Media & Website Officer Chantelle Halloran County Rep Sam Rees Voting Members Jo Baldwin Jane Dunford Janet Parker Vicky Winter Lynsey Gardner Charlie Naerger
Do you remember …….. Bob Pitt’s typewriter Matches of 2 x 20 minute halves at the YAC The Weymuffians Home-made bibs Playing in gale force conditions on Sunday mornings at Royal Manor Our first aid being a sponge and bucket