Southampton Kendo Club

Southampton Kendo Club

The concept of Kendo is to discipline the human character through the application of the principles of the Katana (sword).

The club aims to provide a hard training and friendly environment to practice Kendo. The philosophy of the dojo comes down to us from Phil McLaughlin’s late teacher Mr E.J. Shaw and is summed up in the name he gave to his dojo Kagami Shin.

The club is run on a not for profit basis with no instructors taking any fees from the club.

Roles and responsibilities

The club is run by the senior members:-

Andy Bennett (3rd Dan, L1 Coach) is Dojo Leader, taking responsibility for Kendo in the club, in particular the training sessions.
Sean Ovans (2nd Dan, L1 Coach) takes the role of club secretary.

National Association

Southampton Kendo Club is a member of The British Kendo Association (BKA) which is our national governing body. They provide gradings, instructor training and insurance for all affiliated clubs. All club instructors are fully qualified and insured through the BKA

The Members

The club has a diverse membership with a wide range of ages, occupations, social backgrounds and outside interests. We have a number of social events and attend seminars, gradings and competitions throughout the year.

Who is Kendo suitable for?

Kendo may be safely practised by men and women of all ages. Currently we are only able to take students over 18.


Southampton Kendo Club was officially founded in October 2007 by Phil McLaughlin (5th Dan), Jarrett Lawley (2nd Dan) and Daniel Rowan (Ikkyu) from the ashes of the Southampton University Club. Our inaugural training session taking place on the 2nd October 2007 with a visit from Malcolm Goodwin Sensei.

The club initially trained at the Millbrook school. In 2008 we moved to our current home at Redbridge Community School.

The club has had a number of visits from high ranking instructors including Matsumoto Sensei (7th Dan) former GB Team coach and Terry Holt Sensei (7th Dan).

In 2011 Jarrett Lawley took over as Dojo Leader when Phil decided to move out of the area. In September 2013, Jarrett stood down as Dojo Leader due to work pressures and the senior members of the club took over the roles.