Following the NIHL South section meeting on Sunday 7 May, the the format for 17/18 season has been agreed after more than 6 hours of discussions.

The applications from former EPIHL sides Basingstoke Bison, Bracknell Bees, Peterborough Phantoms and Swindon Wildcats were accepted and they take the place in NIHL South 1 next season. In addition Cardiff Fire has been voted into NIHL1 having won the South West NIHL2 Conference last season.

In total there will be 12 teams in Division 1, split into two conferences of six teams.

Conference A
Basingstoke Bison
Bracknell Bees
Cardiff Fire
Milton Keynes Thunder
Oxford City Stars
Solent Devils

Conference B
Chelmsford Chieftains
Invicta Dynamos
London Raiders
Peterborough Phantoms
Streatham IHC
Swindon Wildcats

Teams will play others in their own conference twice home and away, and teams out of conference once home and once away.

This gives the Thunder a 32 game league season, there is an NIHL S1 Cup competition but Thunder is not entered in that.

Also, coming in this season is 3 on 3 overtime for tied games. The 5min OT will be followed by penalty shots if required.