Jillean Hipsey (neé Porter)...Netball legend

Jillean played either centre or goal attack.
Markham Chase School Netball Team

Jillean was born in 1948 and lived in Pound Lane, Laindon until 1963 when the family moved to Berry Lane, Langdon Hills following compulsory purchase by the Basildon Development Corporation. She went to Markham Chase School then Fryerns Grammar School.

Gill HardyValerie SargentDorothy WatsonJillean PorterSandra Johnson
Jean MarkwellBrenda FowlesSheila WilliamsSylvia Watts?Sue CowellLinda Cowell

Played and captained both school netball teams and was a founder member of the Laindon Netball Club operating out of Laindon High Road School. Later joined New Cambell, Dagenham and was selected for Essex in 1970 and became captain.

She got married at St. Nicholas Church in 1972.

Was selected for England in 1977, made vice-captain the following year and captain in 1980.

Basildon Sports Personality in 1978; Evening Echo Sports Personality of the month in 1982 and appeared on the Tate and Lyle Sugar Bags. Television and Radio interviews with Ron Pickering followed.

Her greatest claim to fame was when Ian Botham failed to recognise her on ‘Question of Sport’. She has never liked him since!

She played her last game for England at the 1987 World Tournament in Glasgow – it was also her 100 cap. This got her in the Guinness book of records as the most capped England player.

She now lives in Maylandsea with her husband Peter and plays a mean round of golf.

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  • Re – By Jan Jones (02/02/2019)
    Yes you are right Janet, I am Dorothy Blake (nee Diver) and I also remember that match and if I remember correctly it was against Billericay who were always our nemesis, but we beat them that day!! Yes Janet it was a very very long time ago.

    By Dorothy Blake (09/10/2022)
  • I remember watching her in Trinidad in 1979 netball world cup. she was the captain and played centre.
    A very good player.

    By DALE STUART (29/05/2022)
  • I have to tell you, you have mis spelled the name of one of the players in the photo, it is Brenda Fowles, not Fowels, a small but important point.

    Editor: Thank you Barry I have made the correction.

    By Barry Fowles (29/08/2021)
  • A small correction on the entry for Jillian Hipsey (nee Porter). As did I, Jillian attended Fryerns Grammar and Technical School as it was then, you are showing Fryerns Grammar School. I recently came across a sports day programme from Fryerns and saw her name there.

    By David Wood (08/06/2020)
  • I don’t know whether Jillean remembers playing for Fryerns Old Students who won the Basildon Netball Leqgue’s Gaywood Cup (probably 1964/65). I have a photo (not very good one as it is cut from a newspaper) with the team of Linda White, Linda Hayes, Carol Isles and Janet Metcalfe (me) with two others, one of whom may be Dorothy Diver? and A.N.Other. A very long time ago!

    By Jan Jones (02/02/2019)
  • I wonder if Dorothy Watson (a member of the Markhams Chase netball team 1959) ever looks at this Laindon History site. For a while in January/February 1963 we went out together. It was an intensely cold winter but we found ways to keep warm. Such a brief time and so young, I was 16 during that year she must have been 15, brilliant times I wonder where she is now ? Innocent days never to return.

    By Richard Haines (26/01/2017)
  • Hi All

    My sister, Jillean Hipsey (née Porter), has just been inducted onto England’s netball ‘Hall of Fame’.  Cheers.

    By Ken Porter (07/06/2015)
  • Just thought I would let Richard know Dorothy Watson lived at Brook Mead on the King Edward estate.

    By vivien gannon (14/07/2012)
  • Thank you Vivien Gannon for reminding me about where Dorothy lived, although it was 1962/3 when I knew her I should have remembered it was Brook Mead. It would be good to turn back time.

    By Richard Haines (14/07/2012)
  • A small point but needs correcting. In the names for netball team Sandra Rattenbury was still a Johnson in 1959. Thanks Ian

    By Eric Pasco (21/12/2011)
  • Hi Sandy, well done on the names. I have asked editor to send you our email address and look forward to hearing from you. 

    By Eric Pasco (09/12/2011)
  • Sandra, thank you for this. The netball photo at Markhams Chase shows Dorothy as a tall girl, whereas I remember that she wasnt that tall when she was in the 4th year at LHR. Certainly there can only be one Dorothy and I can only guess the others caught up in height! Anyway thanks again, I always wondered what happened to her after I left Laindon at 16, she was a lovely person – happy times.

    By Richard Haines (30/11/2011)
  • Markhams Chase 1959 Netball team (top row/left to right) Gill Hardy, Valerie Sargent, Dorothy Watson, Jillean Porter and me – (bottom row/left to right) Jean Markwell, Brenda Fowles, Sheila Williams, Sylvia Watts?, Sue and Linda Cowell.

    By Sandra Rattenbury (née Johnson) (29/11/2011)
  • Sandra, well done for naming that 1959 netball team, you must either have a good memory or have it written down!! Now can you tell me did Dorothy Watson go to Laindon High Road school after leaving Markhams chase and did she live in Powell Road or somewhere on the King Edward Estate?

    By Richard Haines (29/11/2011)
  • Sorry Richard she was in my class at Laindon High Road but I don’t know whether she lived on the King Edward Estate.

    By Sandra Rattenbury (née Johnson) (29/11/2011)
  • While Ken P. rightly remembers Jillian for her sporting achievements, there are some who remember her for lesser contributions to sport, although a necessary function, that of tea lady for Laindon CC at the time her husband Peter was captain. It is said an army marches on its stomach and it would also seem to apply to cricket teams.

    By W.H.Diment (09/10/2011)
  • I recognise some of these in the netball photo front right: Linda Cowell (living in Belgium) and next to her cousin Susan Cowell (living in Perth, Australia). Back right: Sandra Johnson, holding the year Sheila Williams. Faces of most others I know but not the names.

    By Eric Pasco (06/09/2011)

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