Club Directory

Hollands & Blair



CLUB NAME Hollands & Blair
CHAIRMAN Paul Piggott
SECRETARY Richard Firth


CLUB PASSES 231-236 and 237-238

Ground Name and Directions

Star Meadow Sports Complex, Darland Avenue, Gillingham, Kent, ME7 3AN.

Via M2, Junction 4 to Gillingham, Follow A2 towards Chatham, after 1 mile, Darland Avenue is on the left.

We are located next door to ‘The Star’ public house.

Hollands & Blair – A History

It was in 1967 that a Twydall-based factory team named Hollands & Blair started out and they were to become quite successful as they won the Rochester & District League Division Five in 1968-69, following that up with the Division Three title the following season.
Then in 1970 the current club as it is now, was formed under the banner of H & B United and they began life in Division Six.
Their first ever game on September 12 1970 ended in a 4-2 away defeat at Halfway House but just seven days later a first win was recorded when R.N.S.T.S were beaten 5-3 on their home pitch of Beechings Green.
At the end of that first campaign H & B United finished ninth having collected 20 points (eight wins and four draws) from their 24 games.
The original side continued their upward spiral, winning the Rochester & District League Division Twotitle in 1971–72 and they followed that up by being runners-up in Division One the next season (1972-73).
Then in 1973 the two clubs merged, initially on a first team/reserve team basis but after just one season the Blair first team folded and H & B chose to continue under the Hollands & Blair moniker, competing in Division Four for the 1974-75 campaign.
Throughout that season, which saw Blair end as runners-up to Fleur having lost just once, against Priestfields, they scored 137 goals in 27 league and cup games which included a 17-1 victory at Borden.
Promotions continued in the next two campaigns, finishing runners-up in Division Two (1975–76) and then Division One in1976–77.
It was following this promotion that the club stayed in the Premier Division for 17 years, winning the championship twice and finishing runners-up three times.

Then the 2003-04 campaign saw the club reach new heights, winning a treble. They lifted a fourth Rochester & District League Premier Division title success, their second on the bounce, plus the Kent Junior Cup Group A and the Quarter Century Cup. It was at the end of this season that the club gained promotion into the Kent County Football League where they were to start in Division Two East.
However the step up proved no major obstacle as Blair went on to be promoted twice as champions in as many seasons to reach the Kent County Football League Premier Division for the 2006-07 campaign.

It wasn’t too long before they were winning this league too, on their way to yet another treble. Their first Premier title came in 2008–09, when they also won the Inter Regional Challenge Cup for the first time when defeating Orpington 2-1 after extra-time at Tunbridge Wells. Add to this the Kent Intermediate Challenge Shield, another 2-1 victory but this time against Rusthall at Chatham Town.
They retained the cup the following season, this time beating Fleet Leisure 2-0 in the final but they were to finish second in the league. However they did become champions once again in 2010–11.

Negotiations to form a new Step 6 division, to make promotion/relegation between the then Kent League (Step 5) and the Kent County League (Step 7) had begun in 2009 and these plans came into fruition for the 2011-12 season when the Kent Invicta League began – Blair being one of the 16 clubs invited to participate.
On the opening day of the inaugural season re-formed Ashford United were the visitors to Star Meadow where Nick Smith’s 57th minute effort clinched the points for Paul Piggott’s men.
At the end of that first season Blair, who won 17 and drew four of their 30 games, finished third, five points behind champions Bly Spartans with Phoenix Sports finishing runners-up.

In April 2012 Hollands & Blair collected their biggest ever prize when captain Ross Brookes lifted the Umbro Kent Senior Trophy which followed a 2-1 victory over Sevenoaks Town in front of a crowd of 350 at Park View Road thanks to a Nick Smith double.

Blair improved league-wise in 2012-13 and eventually finished runners-up to Phoenix but eight points clear of Ashford in third place but they did add another piece of silverware which came in the shape of the Kent Invicta Challenge Trophy.

The 2013-14 campaign was a two-horse race for most of the season with Hollands & Blair and Lydd Town holding top spot at various times but it was Paul Piggott’s men that eventually eased clear during the last two month’s to claim the title by an impressive 10 points.
Unfortunately promotion wasn’t forthcoming despite the SCEFL agreeing to admit the club because the F.A deemed that Star Meadow was not up to the required standard by the March 31 deadline. Even though the club appealed it was not enough for the F.A so we had to go through it all over again.

Blair didn’t dwell on the matters of the previous campaign that had left a nasty taste in the mouth by going out and becoming Kent Invicta League champions once again finishing 14 points clear.
Lydd were the major challengers for the title but fell away towards the end of the season allowing Bearsted to snatch the runners-up spot on the final day of the season.
By that stage Paul Piggott’s side already had two other trophies under their belts. In November a crowd of 232 were present at Star Meadow to see the first game under the new lights which was Blair, the 2013-14 league winners, beating trophy holders Sutton Athletic 4-2 in the Kent Invicta Challenge Shield.
Then on Good Friday Blair edged past Bearsted in the KI Challenge Trophy winning 2-0 at Meridian VP FC.
Blair also reached the final of the Kent Senior Trophy but were unfortunately beaten 3-1 by SCEFL outfit Greenwich Borough at Bromley FC.

The 2015-16 saw Blair stepping up to their highest level (Step 5) and they took to it like a duck to water. They led the table for a long while but a disappointing run-in saw Paul Piggott’s side finish runners-up to eventual Champions Greenwich Borough.

On Bank Holiday Monday (May 2) Blair did pick up some silverware when beating Erith & Belvedere 2-0 at Park View Road in the Macron SCEFL Challenge Cup Final.

It was after the cup triumph that Paul Piggott called time on his seven-year spell as Blair boss. Following with tradition Blair made the decision to promote from within and named Bryan Greenfield as the new manager. The Scottish left-back he’d made more than 300 appearances for the team and had has the full backing of the club.

Although not a memorable season on the pitch, Blair finished down in eighth in the SCEFL table and quickly went out of all cup competitions. That said we did play in the FA Cup for the first time in our history, beating Horsham YMCA down in Sussex in the Extra Preliminary Round before losing to Ryman South Whyteleafe away in a replay.

The one big boost for the club was the progression of numerous youngsters from the U16 squad into Greenfield’s first team but after a promising start things unfortunately didn’t work out for Jock and after a poor start to the 2017-18 SCEFL season he departed.

Clint Gooding, formerly an assistant to Paul Piggott during his spell as manager of Blair, took over in November 2018 and the former Gravesend & Northfleet striker led the club, who only had two points on board at Christmas, to the safety of 18th in the table picking up 29 points to move above both Rochester United and Rusthall, quite a remarkable feat that he and the players should be proud of.

However following the end of the 2018-19 season Clint took the decision to step down as Blair boss with Reserve Team Manager Darren Blackburn being immediately installed as his replacement.

Unfortunately for both parties this didn’t work out, despite Daz putting his heart and soul into the job, the struggles on the pitch which saw Blair fighting another relegation battle, eventually saw him leave his role in March 2019.

Co-Chairman and former first team manager Paul Piggott took over first team duties for the remainder of the season and steered the club to safety.

Having confirmed their SCEFL Premier Division status with a 3-0 victory over Rusthall late in the 2018-19 campaign, Blair announced that former Herne Bay boss Simon Halsey will be the new manager for the 2019-20 season. So another chapter in the history of our club had begun…

After a few seasons struggling at the wrong end of the table, a new manager, aided by experienced assistant Luke Harvey, brought an influx of new players, a mixture of youth and experience, which gelled very quickly and the team spent most of the campaign, that was unfortunately ended early by Covid-19 in March, in the top six.

Unfortunately the pandemic continued into 2020-21 and the season was eventually curtailed a second time in November 2020 after just 11 games with Blair lying in seventh spot having picked up 21 points from six wins and three draws.

The start of the 2021-22 season saw the club struggling at the wrong end of the table, although a new club record attendance of 504 watched the home game against neighbours Chatham Town.

When Halsey departed in late October, Scott Porter was brought in to replace him after another caretaking stint as manager for Paul Piggott.

He quickly brought in a number of players he knew and had worked with previously and the revamped squad quickly gelled well. They went on to finish ninth in the SCEFL Premier and also reached the final of the Kent Senior Trophy where they were narrowly beaten by Sheppey United at the Gallagher Stadium, Jack Simon scoring a cracking free-kick in a 2-1 defeat.

The 2022-23 campaign was a struggle for everyone connected with the club as we groundshared at Lordswood for the first six months or so while the Invictus Sports Group renovated the ground which included the laying of a 3G pitch.

Blair returned to the superb Star Meadow Sports Complex in February 2023 and the first game against Deal Town attracted an amazing record attendance of 660.

While it wasn’t a great season league wise, a 15th place finish was below expectations, but the season did see the first silverware for seven years as two goals from club stalwart Ben Brown helped earn a 2-1 win over Fisher at Whitstable Town. The SCEFL Challenge Cup Final on May Bank Holiday attracted a crowd of 755.

Luke Jessup took the reigns during the 2023/24 season, in which Blair finished 15th and now leads the side out for the 2024/25 campaign.

Over the years a number of grounds have hosted Hollands & Blair. Having started out at Beechings Green they have gone on to use the Civil Service Ground, the APCM ground at Cliffe and Beechings Cross before finally settling into Star Meadow.


Click to download badge