Garrett Priestly (GK), Dan Barton (GK), Phil McVey (player/manager), Paul McVey, Nick Barton ©, Matt Barton, Jon Barton, Nigel Mills, Joe Wheatley, Peter Taylor, Richard Walker, Clive Bassom.
The HBU veterans team (aka Apex HBU) is a squad of players that enjoy both the competitive side of the game, as well as the social side. To qualify to play in the veterans you have to be over 35 yrs of age. The current crop of players are made up mainly of players who used to play in HBU’s first team who won the national division 1 title (back in 1990) and then started HBU’s domination of the national premier league (first winning it in 1993) with the club still dominating the competition today. (Winning 16 times over the last 18 years). Gradually younger members of the club replaced these players in the first team, although some of the veterans still feature regularly in HBU’s 1st team.
The HBU veterans (over 35’s) started competing 3 years ago in the annual UK veterans cup. Winning it twice in a row, and are the reigning national veterans champions (Competition was not held last year).
With their success at national level HBU began accepting invitations to veterans tournaments in Europe. First was a tournament in Heill Bronn (Germany) where they remained undefeated but ended up finishing 3rd on goal difference. Next was an extremely enjoyable trip to Berlin to attend a tournament being held by Olympic Sporting Club Berlin, itself a club steeped in tradition. HBU beat all comers to win the tournament.
On the back of these successes HBU were invited to join the EVRICUP (European Veterans Invitational Cup). This is the most prestigious Veterans competition in the world with 15 teams competing from all across Europe. (Teams include Barcelona (Spain), PFC Parede (Portugal), Darmstadt (Germany), HC Castiglione (Italy), Rolta (Belgium), Valkensward (Holland) & many more). HBU came a very credible 9th in their first outing, a 3 day tournament held in Castiglione Della Pescais (Italy) in October 2010.
HBU have accepted an invitation to attend this year’s EVRICUP in a 4 day tournament to be held in Sintra (Portugal) from 1st – 4th June, and are also looking to attend one or two invitational tournaments later in the year.
The HBU veterans see it as their responsibility to continue to promote the name of Herne Bay United. To build on already strong relationships with clubs throughout Europe, all the time developing new ties with foreign clubs to ensure Herne Bay United is known, respected and liked by clubs throughout the world of roller hockey.
The players, many of whom have been playing for HBU all their lives, are still keen to compete at the highest level, and veterans roller hockey gives them the opportunity to not only play against the very best of their peers, but also socialise with them. Whilst veterans hockey is still fiercely competitive, there is also a atmosphere of great friendship and camaraderie that exists between all the players from every nation.
Herne Bay Untied are aware that there are many other players of a certain age in this country who do not get the opportunity to play competitive roller hockey. If any of you would like to contact us in respect of joining us, or if you just want advice / help in getting a team set up, or contact details of other active veterans teams in Europe, please feel free to contact us. (We receive a number of invites to veterans tournaments all across Europe every year, we cannot attend due to work / family commitments). If there are any clubs out there that would like us to forward these invites on to them we will be happy to do.
HBU will continue to help in any way we can to help veterans roller hockey grow.
A message for all the veteran players out there from clubs who aren’t involved: GET YOURSELVES ORGANISED. ITS WELL WORTH IT!!!!!
HBU veterans train on Thursday nights at the pier. (9pm till 10:30pm)