Hainford Village Games


Local athlete selected to represent the UK in the April 2018 Commonwealth Games in Australia

Yesterday, on October 24th, the wonderfully exciting news came through that the City of Norwich Athletics Club athlete, Iona Lake, has been selected as a member of “Team England” for the Commonwealth Games in April 2018, which will be held on the Gold Coast in Australia.

The “Team England” squad comprises 75 athletes. Coached by City of Norwich Athletics Club Coaches Pauline and Tim Ash, 24 year old Iona will be England's representative in the Women’s 3,000m Steeplechase. Iona began her education at Hainford Primary School where even as a very young girl, showed grit and determination as a runner.

Our community extends heartiest congratulations to Iona on this richly deserved selection which comes as a result of years of hard training and commitment.

Always supported by the love and practical help of her family, Iona has travelled extensively to train and compete around the world in an effort to achieve her goal of national recognition in her event. Whilst at home, Iona has been seen training around the village of Hainford and shows such total dedication to her sport. We send our very best wishes to Iona and will continue to watch her progress in athletics with great interest and admiration. We hope her preparations for the Commonwealth Games go well.

Norfolk Sport Awards. Iona was one of 5 nominees in the Norfolk Sports Personality of the Year category for the Norfolk Sport Awards 2017. Following the recent public vote, Iona has been shortlisted in the category and will attend the event at The Open in Norwich, on November 14th as one of three to await the Judges’ final decision. Good luck, Iona!


Village Games : August 2017 News

Our newest group - Folk Dancing sessions in Hainford Village Hall are most enjoyable - lots of laughter and shared effort! Chris Davis is a super dance teacher - has endless patience and is introducing us to a wide variety of dances from around the world.

The Rounders season is coming to a close - many thanks to Helen, Lynsey and families for organising the games on the field at Hainford Village Hall throughout the Spring and Summer. The evening light is now beginning to fade, so drawing the sessions to a logical end, so do get in touch with Helen or Lynsey before venturing down there on a Tuesday - in case the sessions have concluded.

We now have a good selection of activities available to the community. Check the Hainford and Stratton Strawless Parish News for details of timings. As you are aware, due to a change in direction from Active Norfolk, there was no County Games event this summer but what I find incredibly rewarding, is the number of clubs and activities set up "on the back of" the Village Games initiative - so a HUGE THANK YOU to all the volunteers who organise and run these clubs on a regular basis. Your efforts are very much appreciated and this is reflected by the number of participants you engage. Thanks also to all who have been along to participate and try their hand at new activities. Well done. These activities bring welcome revenue to both our Village Halls.

If you have been in the Village Hall at Hainford recently, you will have seen the Trophy Cabinet proudly displaying all of Hainford and Stratton Strawless Village Games trophies - a wonderful achievement by all since we first dipped our toes in the water in 2013. Since that date, we have appreciated the support given by both Parish Councils and Village Hall Committees.

Perhaps one of our most notable achievements being to retain the County Small Village title in 2016. How we had grown in confidence since first taking the Broadland title at Aylsham in 2013. What incredible memories we have of setting off to the UEA in July 2016, with a squad of almost 70 people, ranging in age from 8 years to 70 + years and taking part in all 13 events. The feeling of mutual support and encouragement was astounding as we became more and more excited as the day progressed, believing we could actually do this! We had so much fun! We raised the roof when we were announced as winners and were thrilled and proud to be sporting our Team Tee shirts!! Truly remarkable and I thank all participants and supporters for your enthusiasm. Well done everyone - our involvement grew from the very first "come and try" Roadshow we held in Hainford Village Hall in January 2013 - when we all made new friends from around the community.

Another proud moment came for our communities in 2015 when Hainford and Stratton Strawless were announced as winners of the “Sporting Village” category at the Norfolk Sport Awards held in The Forum, Norwich. The award recognises the effort and enthusiasm of all who took part in competitions, in addition to celebrating our sustainable Community Clubs. Photos and news of Village Games are displayed in the Village Halls at Hainford and Stratton Strawless.

Updated total from David and Sarah Smith - £3,660.00 raised following the sponsored walk along 47 miles of the Norfolk Coastal Path, for the Colney Unit and Big C charities. Fantastic support shown for these worthy causes. Our thoughts go to David, Sarah and family and all families who find themselves in a similar situation.

Carolyn Atherton

New Sports Opportunities

  • Get fit and have fun with Lady & the Trampettes.
    Rebound fitness sessions every month at Burroughes Hall, Stratton Strawless.
    Just £4.00 per session.
    Burn hundreds of calories, tone up and enjoy better body confidence.
    Bounce your way to better health in 2017.
    Contact Amy for dates and more info: Mob. 07813 320484, e-mail amybarratt@ymail.com.
  • Floodlit Walking Football, 6-7 p.m. every Thursday at Erpingham Multi-Use Games Area (NR11 7QD - next to Village Hall). 
    £2 per session - just turn up and play or call Bill on 07979 633000 for more info.
    A good workout for all ages / abilities: please wear trainers (no studs) and comfortable clothing.


Individual Sports


Sunday 10th July 2016

And the winners in the Small/Medium Village category are... Hainford and Stratton Strawless! And for the second year running, although regrettably this will be our last, as the Village Games in their present form are being discontinued.

Hainford & Stratton Strawless Village Games - our winning team 2016 at the presentation

Well – we did it – we retained our Small Village County Champions title in the Norfolk Village Games competition today (10th July 2016) at the fantastic facilities of the UEA Sportspark.

Thanks go to the staff of Active Norfolk, led by Ellen Vanlint and the staff of UEA for organising such a wonderful day – the last in its present format.

Huge, huge thanks and congratulations to all our players and supporters on a fantastic achievement. As ever, we were carried along by our camaraderie, sense of fun, enthusiasm and determination not to let our title slip away. There were some extremely tight competitions contested during the day with shows of mutual encouragement and support and a brilliant team spirit displayed throughout. We arrived in force – a squad of 50 players ranging in age from 9 years to 70+ years, to take part in 12 competitions.

My grateful thanks also go to those who took on the role of selecting and organising the squad for their sport:-

The results – full details and photographs will be on the Active Norfolk website within a day or two.

Points awarded and positions other than 1st were not announced.

Our team members and achievements:-

Overall result in the Small Village category:-

We raised the roof when we were announced as winners !! What a day!.

With many thanks for your support,
Carolyn Atherton
Co-ordinator for Hainford and Stratton Strawless


Wednesday 11th November 2015

A group of 12 from 'Village Games' attended the 2015 Norfolk Sport Awards' Evening at The Forum last night. We had been shortlisted, along with Fakenham and Downham Market, in the "Sporting Village" category. Our nomination came from not only our County Title at the Norfolk Games in July but from the wide range of activities we now have on offer for our community - thanks to the time, enthusiasm and commitment of those volunteers who now run regular clubs. I am very grateful for the support they give, making my role as Co-ordinator extremely rewarding.

We were both surprised and delighted to be declared winners of the category. It was a fabulous evening where we heard inspirational sporting stories from around the County. What a wonderful accolade for Hainford and Stratton Strawless.

Hainford & Stratton Strawless Village Games representatives at the Awards



Sunday 12th July 2015

Well.... we did it!!! County Champions of the Small Village category at the County Final today at the UEA! Over 1,000 competitors were present and we were up in a category of 10 small villages. The results were a tense time and the roof was raised as our village names were announced. Gold medals - many congratulations to all.

HUGE THANKS to all who took part today and gave their time and skills so generously. I very much appreciate the support you give to Village Games. We entered all 11 competitions with full squads - I look forward to seeing a breakdown of the results because I think our squads must have performed consistently well to accumulate the points. We know of several 2nds and 3rds. Our Junior Archery team took the title again - well done Adam Sarsby and Maggie Mayo.

Once again - we shared a tremendous team spirit. As well as the title - today's players have the prize of an activity day at the UEA which I will investigate and let you know about.

Hainford & Stratton Strawless Village Games - our winning team at the presentation


Many congratulations and thanks to all for your spirit and enthusiasm. What a great team spirit. Everyone encouraging each other to do their best. Thanks also to our team photographer Kevin Saggers. We are also grateful for the very vocal and enthusiastic support provided by our families and friends on the day - it certainly spurred everyone on.

Carolyn Atherton


Our winning team with trophy and medals!

Three of our archers
L-R : Maggie, Adrian, Niamh

Adrian - Archer (Seniors)

Maggie - Archer (Juniors)

Ian - Badminton

Dee - Short Mat Bowls

Trevor - Short Mat Bowls

Sasha - Long jump

Sasha - Shot Putt

Tug of War (1)
Photo by Carolyn Atherton

Tug of War (2)
Photo by Carolyn Atherton

The Alternative Village Games

The Alternative Village games were held at the UEA in February [2015]. Hainford and Stratton Strawless entered a team, proving that we have a wide range of talents within our two villages, and that we cannot be found wanting!

Indoor Cricket Team (from the left)
Carolyn Atherton, Lilian Parsons, Louise Hutcheon
Helen Page, Annabel Le Mesurier
Alex. Le Mesurier, Gina Atherton

Photo by Andrew Howes

Kurling team (from the left)
Sue Fuller, Trevor Stannard, Irene Stannard, Mick Monk

Photo by Carolyn Atherton

Click on photographs to view full-size image...

Award for Carolyn from Broadland District Council

Carolyn attended an award ceremony at Broadland District Council Offices on the 26th February, to accept an award on behalf of everyone in Hainford and Stratton Strawless who has been involved in the Village games.

Carolyn receiving her award and a locally-produced hamper of food items

All of the Award Winners at the presentation ceremony

Click on photographs to view full-size image...

Christmas message from Carolyn

Hello All,

A very Happy Christmas and a peaceful and healthy 2015 to all.

Many thanks for the wonderful support and enthusiasm you've given to Village Games throughout the year. We are going from strength to strength in Hainford and Stratton Strawless, embracing more and more events and activities. Village Games is certainly great for community cohesion. We appreciate the support and interest of both Parish Councils and Village Halls in addition to Active Norfolk.

I hope you agree there is something for everyone - whether you like to read the newsletters to hear what is going on, or get involved with sports and activities on offer, supervise children or take part in competitions. There is a great feeling of community spirit whenever we get together. Our season culminated on July 13th when we came away from the Village Games County Final as Bronze Medallists in the Small Village Category (12 small villages in the final). What a massive achievement. We entered full squads in all 13 events- 55 competitors and plenty of supporters. It was a fantastic day. Well done everyone!

It's tremendous that we are involving ourselves with other competitions. I have recently entered our squad into the Village Games Indoor Rounders Competition at UEA on Sunday January 11th. Huge thanks to our squad of volunteers - Helen and Andrew Howes, Lucie, John, Lily and Joe Bates, Matthew Germany, Lynsey, Gavin and Bradley Constable.

Good Luck !!Have a super day of fun and competition.

We hope to enter the Alternative Village Games at UEA on Sunday February 8th. Don't forget to let me know if you would like to put your name forward for any of the competitions listed in a previous email. We will work on this after Christmas.

A new game!!! - Several people have expressed an interest in New Age Kurling so I have borrowed a set (thank you, Gina) ,for us to have a practice session which will be on Monday January 12th, 2.00p.m. - 4.00 p.m. in Hainford Village Hall. Do drop in and try out the game if you would like to.  £1.00 per person please.

Another list I hope to add to - if you are interested in attending a 6 week archery course at Hainford Village Hall please get in touch. I have to date, 6 names on the list.

A round-up and reminder of all we have shared and enjoyed under the umbrella of Village Games during 2014.

Two 6 week blocks of Dodgeball in Stratton Strawless Village Hall (Spring and Autumn). The sessions were enjoyed by approximately 20 enthusiastic young people. It was brilliant to see the level of individual skill, understanding, game etiquette and competition increase week by week. Thank you Gina for coaching the youngsters and for your support.

Two 6 week blocks of Family Table Tennis and Short Tennis in Hainford Village Hall. These were very successful and enjoyable shared Sunday mornings. Money raised at the Scarecrow Festival was put towards the purchase of a table tennis table and equipment. On the back of these sessions, Ron and Helen Butler have set up a Table Tennis Club for the over 14s in Hainford Village Hall on Thursday evenings.  The club ran through the Autumn and the dates for the Spring are :- Jan. 8th, 22nd, Feb 5th, 19th, March 5th, 19th. We meet from 7.00 p.m. - 9.00 p.m. and the cost is £2.00 per player per session. Thank you Ron and Helen. All standards of player are welcome. Lots of fun and laughter is shared.

From October 2013 to June 2014, a Saturday Morning Family Football Club was organised by Fiona and Jim Pamment, Adam Mayo and Louise Hutcheon , Sarah and Jonny Wright, and Gavin Constable. Thank you for giving your time to enable so many youngsters to learn and enjoy football skills.

Tag Rugby practice sessions were organised and run by Gina Atherton enabling us to enter a junior tag rugby squad in the Village Games competitions this year.

Family Rounders. Games of Rounders have been organised and run on a fortnightly basis throughout the Spring and Summer on the field at Hainford Village Hall by David Sarsby, Helen Page, Lucie Gibbard, John Bates and their families. Many, many thanks to you all. These have been wonderful sessions, shared by up to 40 players (!) of all ages - it painted a brilliant picture of village sport for all. As the competition season approached, "squad practices" were also arranged to ensure we gave our volunteers the best possible chance in games against other villages. A Rounders Set has been purchased for our village from money raised at the sessions.

Long before we entered the arena of Village Games, two very successful groups have been running in our village. Short Mat Bowls Club, led by Chris and Dee Wilkinson meets on Tuesdays from 2.30 p.m. - 4.30 p.m. in Hainford Village Hall. Call Chris or Dee on 890233 if you are interested in going along.

Pilates / Keep Fit sessions with Gwen Brooks meet in Hainford Village Hall on Wednesdays from 7.15 p.m. Do contact Gwen - 07774753350 / gwen.fitzone@live.co.uk if you'd like to join in.

Very best wishes to all. I look forward to seeing you in the New Year.

Happy Christmas! 



Sponsored and supported by 'Active Norfolk'

2014 - Finals - Sunday 13th July

A huge "thank you" to all who put themselves forward to represent Hainford and Stratton Strawless at the Village Games Broadland Heat at Aylsham and / or the County Final at UEA. Every single competitor was striving to do their very best, whilst enjoying the fun, sense of occasion and camaraderie......... and what a day we've shared today!

Finals day today! We all enjoyed a superb day at the UEA - we had a full squad out, having entered all 13 events. At the end of a hotly contested day, we joined the rest of the villages and towns in the Sportshall for the results. As individual event winners were read out, the roof was raised as the excitement built and built to quite a pitch! Full results will be on the Active Norfolk website - http://www.activenorfolk.org. Out of 12 Small Villages, we were 3rd!!!! An incredible result thanks due entirely to the efforts of everyone who took part. Bronze medals for everyone in our team! We made our way to the presentation table amid shrieks of delight, thrilled at how everyone had pulled together to make this possible. Each event we entered today, gave points for our villages. Hainford and Stratton Strawless took top honours in the Junior Archery - well done Adam and Andrew - county champs for the second consecutive year. Many congratulations also to Tim and Katie who won the badminton competition. We'll await full results with interest.

If you had to leave before the presentation, I'll have your medal for you at the next family Rounders session on July 23rd.

At the risk of repeating myself, I never cease to be amazed and inspired by the level of support and enthusiasm shown by so many who wish to join in the fun and challenge of Village Games - we have a unique spirit of shared passion for which I am extremely grateful.

There was very good coverage of the run up to the Games in the EDP and Kevin's fine photograph was published for our villages.



The results from the Village Games County Final and photographs are now on the Active Norfolk website – http://www.activenorfolk.org.

The results make very impressive reading and go to show what a complete team effort it was to gather sufficient points to gain the Bronze medals – it was an amazing result. If you do a little calculation, as Gina and I have done, you will see that, incredibly, we were only 2 points off a Silver Medal!!!! Wow!!! Well – you know what our target for next year is!!

We have received a message of congratulations from Tony Cowles, Chairman, on behalf of Hainford Parish Council. The Parish Councils are extremely interested and supportive of our efforts.

Run down of our results :- with many congratulations to all. I do hope the footballers who sustained such nasty injuries from the playing surface are feeling a little more comfortable today and that indeed all of you were able to get out of bed this morning with relative ease. FYI there were 12 Small Villages in the Finals.

Be very proud of the whole team achievement and celebrate all the individual successes.

Carolyn Atherton

Our winning team - 2014


Some images from this year's Regional Heats and Finals

Click on any thumbnail image for a full-screen view...


2014 - Broadland Regional Heats - Sunday 22nd June

Competition week is upon us!! I received the associated paperwork from 'Active Norfolk' late last evening. Many thanks to all who have put themselves forward to take part, representing Hainford and Stratton Strawless. I'm sure we'll all enjoy a great day of fun and competition. We have entered every event this year - we will have a team of over 50 players which is a brilliant and very rewarding response to the ethos of Village Games. Team lists are below. Please bring plenty of supporters along to cheer everyone on.

4 Attachments for your information are : *Timetable of events. *Map of the venue. *Rules for each competition - please familiarise yourself with the rules that will be in place for your competition in Village Games. *Registration form for competitors (I will have copies of this with me to you to fill in on the day).

Wear your team tee shirt with pride - we'll look a formidable force!! If you haven't collected your tee shirt yet, - I'll have them with me at Family Rounders again this Wednesday 18th, 7p.m. or I'll bring it on Sunday for you. Huge thanks to the Parish Councils of Hainford and Stratton Strawless for purchasing tee shirts for competitors and well done supporters for purchasing tee shirts. Thanks also to local businessman , Matthew Lake of Samuel's of Norfolk, for producing the shirts for us.

If there are any under 16s taking part on Sunday and you do not wish to give photo permission for them - PLEASE LET ME KNOW.

Those who do wish to be on a team photo - kindly taken by Kevin, please meet at 9.30 a.m. on the playground at Aylsham High School (behind the main building) on Sunday June 22nd. The team and supporters photo will be taken before the events begin. Kevin will then pop up at various events during the day to take some action shots. Registration for teams will be from 9.30 a.m. I will have copies of the registration forms with me, for competitors from each sport to fill in. If you have been co-ordinating a sport and prefer, do print off the form and fill it in prior to Sunday.

There will be a BBQ and ice cream van at the event but do take picnics / snacks with you if you wish. Don't forget a bottle of water.

Teams for Sunday.

Archery - Adam Sarsby, Andrew Howes, Kevin Saggers, Adrian Fletcher.

Athletics - Alex. LeMesurier, Leestefan Drake, Louise Hutcheon, Adam Mayo.

Badminton - Tim Witting, Katie Witting.

Darts - Carl Watker, Pat Chamberlain, William Botwright.

Fitness Triathlon - Maggie Mayo, Louise Hutcheon, Adam Mayo.

5 a-side football - Jim Pamment, Keith Vertigan, Richard Mallett, Billy Carrick, Eric Mytton, Shaun Copland, Rylan Scales

Tag Rugby - Thanks to Teresa Watker for overseeing the squad on the day. Lily Bates, Joe Bates, Purdylee Drake, Darcey White, Grace White, Joe Veriod, Lewis Wilson, Magdalen Goodson-Body. Reserves - Katie Watker, Ellie Veriod.

Rounders - Thanks to David Sarsby, Helen Page and Lucie Gibbard for selecting and organising this squad. Helen Page, Andrew Howes, Adam Sarsby, Jasmine Sarsby, David Sarsby, Annabel LeMesurier, Francesca LeMesurier, Max LeMesurier, Jamie Goddard, Jack Goddard, Lucie Gibbard, Mark Body.

Short Mat Bowls - Thanks to Dee and Chris Wilkinson for selecting and organising this squad. Dee Wilkinson, Chris Walsgrove, Helen Butler, Heather Hewitt.

Table Tennis - Thanks to Ron Butler for organising this squad. Ron Butler, Henry Hunt.

Tennis - Gina Atherton, Brandon Lansdale.

Very best of luck everyone but most of all - enjoy the day. I'll see you at Aylsham on Sunday.

A table tennis table has been purchased from money raised at the Scarecrow Fest. Thank you for your support of the event. Together with the second-hand table kindly donated by Mr and Mrs Paul Rumsey and the 3/4 size table at the Hall - we'll be ready for the next block of table tennis club.

Thank you and best wishes, Carolyn

Please get in touch if you would like further information or to offer assistance.

Carolyn Atherton, 01603 897500. cgatherton@yahoo.com

Village Sport Co-ordinator

Page last updated 08/04/18 18:19