Welcome to the 3rd edition of Hillian Buzz where we are putting BHTFC into the diary for historical purposes.  You might recall we started this exercise in January 2024 in conjunction with the new order around the Homecall Community Stadium. Hopefully BHTFC and this journal will flow through the Isthmian South East and into the Isthmian Premier taking some Cups along the way.  But for now, there is work to do as we see out the remaining ten games.

Cooling of Play Off Hints. Feb through March.

We left Edition two with a discouraging reversal at Merstham which left us one point from 15.  A result which virtually took the club away from any lingering 2023/24 playoff discussions.

02/03/2024  Heavy Rain disrupts Sheppy Visit.  Isthmian South East 33 points  12th Place.

With all eyes looking towards an exciting fixture against our new friends from Sheerness heavy rain across Mid Sussex meant a 9.30am pitch inspection.  It was no surprise that the game had to be postponed.

07/03/2024   U18s Produce Exciting Game at the Home Call.  BHTFC U18s 4  Hastings U18s 3

Under clear skies and mild temperatures, a fascinating football match ensued as Hill ran out ready winners. Joe Overy scored a brace with Taylor Edwards and Austin Potter grabbing the others.  Under 18s Coach Adie Clayton told me ‘we played some excellent football and deserved to win the game, I was very proud of the team!’

With 8 Isthmian Youth South games to go our U18s still harbour Title ambitions but will need to win them all and hope Worthing lose a few.

09/03/2024 Chi secure another clean sheet and score three! Isthmian South East 33 points 12th

Travelling to inform Chichester City FC was always going to be a tall order for out of form Hill especially as Chi were nursing 4 clean sheets in a row.  Hill unveiled new defender Nico Jones and played U18 keeper Elliott Dailly.  There werea good smattering of away fans packed into Oaklands Park making a right old din through the 1st half.

However, a couple of defensive lapses saw the hosts ghost into a two nil half time lead and they made it a comfortable three nil win in the 2nd half.  Hill did show belief in scoring a goal but in truth were well beaten on the day.  And makes it one point in 18!

Manager Gary Mansell told waiting press ‘another disappointing result, the difference today was the quality in both boxes. It’s the responsibility of both the Management team and the players and we will work hard to get it right!’

12/03/2024  Constant Rain see’s Sheppey postponement.

Heavy and persistent rain during 11th March meant a mid-day pitch inspection on 12th.  Unfortunately, the weather won again, and the game was postponed.

16/03/20 Narrow defeat at home to the Rams  BHTFC 1  Ramsgate 2 Isthmian SE 33 points 13th

Over 600 fans passed through the Homecall turnstiles to welcome top of the league Ramsgate here in Mid Sussex. A good atmosphere prevailed but it was the visitors who stormed into a two nil half time lead the 2nd right on half time. Dan Perry halved the deficit in the 2nd period, but the Rams had done enough to win and remain top of the South East.  Assistant Manager Lewis Taylor wowed the fans with his 1ststart of the season. He is a firm favourite and deservedly walked off with the mom award.

Mansel said ‘while not pleased with the result we are very pleased with the performance and we took a good side all the way to 95 mins’  As to the remainder of the season ‘we are looking to get as many wins on the board but also have an eye on next season and how that might look’

Co Owner David Corney said ‘there is a real buzz around the place, we have been speaking with councillors about our future plans including laying that artificial pitch. We are feeling more positive than ever about the future. I felt there was a brilliant atmosphere around the ground today!’

17/03/2024 Under 16s win the John Davey U16 Cup at Culver Road

It was all smiles at Sussex Fa headquarters as our U16s won the coveted John Davey Cup against AS Eastbourne.  Manager Berty Oliva and a crowd of 189 witnessed a thriller as Hill keep their noses in front.  Luca Oliva scored a brilliant brace with Joshua Herbert and Justin Sibanda also scoring in a four two victory.

Huge congratulations to the squad.

It was rather fitting that our President Peter Miles was there to watch the event unfold.

19/03/2024  Ashford visit Mid Sussex under lights and go away empty handed! SE 36 points 13th

In a hugely exciting and entertaining Isthmian South Eastencounter the Hillian’s claimed a clean sheet as MOM Goalkeeper Fin Holter made some fine saves. Dan Perry sprung the offside trap on 50 mins sending a fine cross for Beckford to nod home.  Ashford remained a distinct threat, but it was the hosts who rallied with two late goals from Hallard and that man Perry. BHTFC 3 Ashford 0

21/3/2024  BHTFC Under 18s 3 Lewes U18s 0  Isthmian Youth South

Austin Potter (2) Joe Overy were on target for a rampant U18s squad as they made it 7 wins from 11 games thus far. The team remain in 3rd place but have games in hand on the top two.  With 7 matches left there is still a small chance of the title but things will need to fall squarely into place.

23/03/2024  Five Star Hill put EG to the Sword.   Isthmian South East 39 points 12th place.

Hill made it back-to-back wins at East Court to secure their Isthmian South East status for another season. Fin Holter was on hand to save an early EG penalty as Hill. That was the needed wake up call as Hill showed no mercy scoring five goals.  Dan Perry with a brace, Box, Hallard and Honore with the others.

Easter Campaign Goes a Little Flat.  30th through 1st April.   One point in Six  SE 39 points 13th place

Under sunny skies and warming temperatures BHTFC travelled to Wellings ground on 30th April to face Erith and Belvedere who were fighting for their Isthmian South Eastlives.  The hosts pinged the lids to score on 17 seconds with a well place header.  The Hillians responded well and it was that man Martyn Box who scored a screamer left foot top corner.   However, instead of taking the game by the scruff Hill allowed the hosts another lifeline as they scored a goal mouth scramble on 45 mins.

In a scrappy 2nd half Rob Strachan deflected in an own goal to gift the Hillian a point on the road. Two two.

Mansell said ‘we lacked urgency and intensity in the warmup which led us to conceding that early goal. But I was pleased for Boxy for what was a well worked free kick! On reflection the result was about right, and we now look forward to Three Bridges on Monday’

BHTFC 2  Three Bridges 3  01/4/24   Bridges move into the play off spot.

For the 2nd match running Hill were guilty of fluffing the start as Bridges scored with just 2 mins on the clock.  A back stick header.  Hill also started the 2nd half in the same vein as TBs made it two on 46 mins.  However, Anderson with his Hillian debut goal and a fine Goodman header set up a frantic finale. However, it was the play off seeking Bridges who landed the spoils on 87 mins when Callum Donaghey flung himself at a deep cross to head home.  Que wild delight from the travelling support.

Dan Perry goes to 150 Appearances.

Fans favourite and our goal poaching machine has now completed 150 appearances for the club and he was quite rightly awarded a tankard to honour the achievement. He said ‘It’s a nice accolade to look back on especially coming through the youth system. Hopefully there will be more appearances and goals to come!’

Dan has scored 67 goals with perhaps the most memorable his strike against Aldershot away in 2014 in a one nil Fa Trophy win.

Cray Valley Show Title intentions.  Its five !  06/04/24  Isthmian South East 14th place.

Hill concede very early for the 3rd game running as Champions elect go on to score five with out reply.  As our match summariser suggests ‘Hillians endured a tough afternoon on the road’

U18s Enjoy Two Isthmian South Youth Wins in 3 days.  9/04 and 11/04/24

Our youngsters enjoyed home soil on 9th and 11th April picking up two valuable league wins.  Four three against Bognor and a close two one against Three Bridges. A smiling U18s Manager Adie Clayton told me ‘we have played really well this week and we will have a good chance of finishing 2nd in the league!’

No Goals but plenty of Zest around the Homecall. 13/04/24 Isthmian South East 13th Place.

With the pitch looking as pretty as a picture, sun out and a real pre match zip about the Homecall Broadbridge Heath paid a visit. There was a hive of activity and an enticing smell of pasties in the oven as we looked forward to the latest Sussex derby.

Unfortunately for the 452 paying guests both keepers had a good day out leading to a nil nil draw. While not the result we were looking for it’s a certainty that Gary Mansell would have been very pleased with a clean sheet against a team who are on a good run of results. It’s a point!

Sheppey Utd win under the Homecall Lights.  16/04/2024  Isthmian South East 13th Place.

A hugely attractive Isthmian game unfolded under the lights here in Mid Sussex.  After a goalless 1st half Sheppey scored twice early in the 2nd half.  Hill threw the kitchen sink and hit the woodwork twice before Marcus Allen scored in the 87thmin. It wasn’t to be, Hill going down two one.  Noah Hoffman was adjudged our Man of the Match.

Under 18s Run Riot at Whitehawk.  18/04/2024

It was an excellent evening for our U18s as they swamped the Hawks by five goals to nil.  1st team striker Alex Brewer with a hat trick.

Let’s forget about Littlehampton.  20/04/2024  Isthmian South East 14th Place.

Little went right for the Hillians in a day to forget on the West Sussex coast.  It’s a four one loss!

U16s Go toe to toe with Eastbourne Borough.  One nil loss League Cup Final at Oakwood 21/04/2024

A fabulous U16s Cup Final ensued at Oakwood with both teams showing real attacking flair. Eastbourne scored a great goal in the 1st half. During the 2nd half Hill dominated possession and won a penalty kick.  Unfortunately, the Borough keeper made a splendid save to keep his team in front.

Our Club President, Peter Miles was at the match and said later ‘I am very proud of our U16s they played extremely well!’

U18s Win at Pilot Field Two One   22/04/2024.

That long mid-week drive down to Hastings was well worth it as Hill completed a two one victory. Hastings scored on 8 mins but Hoffman quickly equalised calmly slotting a rebound. Alex Brewer won it with a brilliant 72 min lob for his 27th goal of the season.

Anderson and Rowe Goals Beat Becks on the Final Day. Isthmian South East Final place 12th with 44 points. 27/4

There was joy for most of the 545 fans as Hill took command of their final league match of the 2023/24 campaign.  In pouring rain Tahjae Anderson smashed home the opener on 51 mins and then Kieran Rowe volleyed home a spectacular 2nd late on. There were smiles all around the Homecall as Hill players saluted the fans. A brilliant way to end an Isthmian South East season.

U16s Complete a Brilliant season with the Mid Sussex U16s Div One Title.

Our U16s beat Eastbourne Borough three nil on 29th April to complete the League Title.  Huge congratulations to Manager Berty Oliva and his squad.

U18s Third in Isthmian Youth South Division.

With no less than 11 wins under their belt from 18 games our brilliant U18s can reflect on a progressive season. Huge congrats to Manager Adie Clayton and has talented squad.  Itsclear that with our U16s and U18s there is a huge conveyor belt of young players coming through the ranks.

Presentation Evening  27th April 2024.

Our Club House was decked out for the end of season Presentation Evening and it was a packed with Officials,Managers,Players and Fans alike.

The ever-popular Keiran Rowe was the big winner picking up the coveted Supporters Players of the Year and Players Player of the Year.  Striker Dan Perry joined an illustrious group of players when picking up the Management Player of the Year award.  Harry Lawson won the Young player of the year award.

Our U18s were loudly applauded for their achievements.  Striker Alex Brewer won the Players player award, Theo Maryon the Management award. Skipper Taylor Edwards won the Outstanding Contribution award.

Off the pitch it was a great night for Amanda Lippett who won the Jack Lake Shield Clubperson of the Year.  Only the 3rdwoman to have won the award. Monday Morning Club boss and former Hillian star Tommy Manneh picked up the coveted John Buck award.

Club Secretary Tim Spencer was presented with a special award after completing 20 years in the role.

Congratulations to all our winners!

Well, the 2023/24 seems to have gone around in a blink of an eye as we settle into summer around the Homecall Community Stadium Mid Sussex. We hope you have enjoyed our three editions of Hillians Buzz BHTFC in the Diary.

We will be back with the next edition in the Autumn.