All that remains of the Royal Victoria Military Hospital is the tall red bricked tower of the chapel that looks out across Southampton's waters to Fawley power station. High running costs caused the hospital to close down 5 years before a fire seriously damaged it in 1963. 3 years later all 138 wards were torn down.
It had been used to treat soldiers who'd been fighting in campaigns like the Anglo-Zulu war of 1879, the Tirah campaign in north western India, as well as on the front line during World War I. In 1944 the hospital was under control of the United States Military and over 60,000 American troops who suffered injuries from D-Day and prisoner of war camps were taken there.
Below: Michael Caine - zulus sir, thousands of 'em.
By around 8pm on Wednesday 8th July Burridge would've completed their first pre-season training session at the former hospital grounds in Netley. The bodies of 20 men will be bent double gasping for air, wishing that the hospital still stood in order to give them the urgent medical treatment that they will doubtless require for exhaustion. Manager Pete Lyons sent out a text at noon on Saturday confirming the pre season start date, requesting that players bring their stamina. A St John Ambulance and some sturdy breathing apparatus wouldn't go amiss either.
The Burridge squad 09/10 to begin training at 6:30pm at Royal Netley Victoria Country Park on Wednesday 8th July are:
1.Rich 'Chinese-Monkey' Allan age 32
2.Paul Andrews age 30
3.Greg Baker (pictured left) age 30
4.Lee Fielder age 29
5.Kristian Hewitt age 29
6.Sam Hewitt age 19
7.Ben Hutton age 25
8.Ryan Jones age 19
9.Marc Judd age 28 or 29 who knows?
11.Justin Newman age 36
12.Mark Reeves age 31 or is it 32?
13.Mike Reid 18 or 19?
14.Ben Rowe 26
15.Luke Sanderson 27
16.Bryn Schwodler 30
17.Jay Schwodler 32
18.Sam Schwodler 26 or 27?
19.Kev Willsher 30
Deserters will made to perform an as yet unannounced forfeit without a valid excuse for not making an appearance at Netley.
All we need now is a goalkeeper. Anybody remember that young lad , Ross - who played a few games for us last season?