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ST AUDRYS GOLF CLUB A Shorter Course for Shorter Days Two play for one green fee offer for February and March ring 01394 380200 to play

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During the winter months, the tendency for many golfers is to limit their golfing activity . This could mean playing only one round a week, if this is not foreshortened by the weather, or more likely the early darkness of a winters day. For the less abled golfer, the prospect of hunting errant balls in waist deep wet gorse, or plodding endlessly down a soggy fairway into an icy gale, can be one character forming challenge too far. (Especially for those whose characters are beyond improvement already!) One way to still enjoy winter golf is to play at, or better still join, St Audrys, where a round can be comfortably accomplished in a winter’s afternoon, making use of some of the best conditions. St Audrys, although quite short, at just over 4,000 yards, has all the elements of longer courses, but with the emphasis less on driving power and more on skillful approach shots and green work. The layout is gently contoured and the distance between holes never more than a couple of minutes stroll. Set out in park like surroundings, sheltered by many mature trees, the golfer is never totally exposed to the elements. The clubhouse is strategically placed in the middle of the nine holes so a hasty retreat is always possible. Aside from the usual Club fixtures, the very active Ladies and Senior Sections meet on Mondays and Wednesdays respectively, all through the year and hold their own competitions regularly. If this sounds like more fun than hacking round a 7,000 yard monster, in the gale driven sleet of a winter evening, come along and try for yourself. Please contact 01394 380200 for the Secretary, Peter King or The Club Captain John Richardson, Ladies Captain Margaret Ramsey or Seniors Captain Doug Devonshire via the club website or email

ST AUDRYS A Shorter Course for Shorter Days!

and Dinner Dance was held as usual at Waldringfield Golf Club. Captain Ashley Keeble assisted by next year’s captain John Richardson After the busy season of presentations and presented competition winners over the year with dinners, St Audrys seniors held their annual their prizes. It was a splendid evening much Christmas lunch where a cheque for £1800 was enjoyed by all who attended including a fair number presented to John Wilson of EACH by Peter Dell the Seniors Captain. This sum has been raised by of golf widows! the Seniors from their very successful Charity Day The AGM was held with three new committee members, Murray Staines, Howard Needham and and raffles at home matches. Peter Tinsley being elected. The financial summary was given by new treasurer Tony Ramsey, it Peter Dell on the showed a secure position, helped by careful cost left presents the control and a marked increase in visitors green EACH cheque fees and new memberships. The following The mild weather so far has seen much more play week the than was the case last year, keeping the Annual greenkeeper very busy dealing with the effects of presentation this increased traffic on the greens.



Suffolk Golf Union WELCOME FROM RON KENT Greetings everyone and a Happy New Year to all our readers. For me, this is the fourteenth time since our first publication in July 1999 that I have made a few New Year resolutions and, true to form, it is the fourteenth time that every single one looks destined to be broken by the end of January. Or is it? Admittedly, there are only two of mine remaining intact out of what looked, on January 1st , to be an impressive list, albeit greeted with profound disbelief and no little scoffing by friends and family. It presented a challenging exercise in self-discipline and determination, perhaps not qualities which I possess in abundance. But with two, I have another eleven months to go and time is, therefore, very much on my side. Surviving the wreckage of several highly commendable but utterly stupid resolutions already, there remains, firstly, the determination to play more golf in 2012 than I did in 2011. Well, playing more than twenty-seven holes should be a breeze and, I suppose, that is the thing I have learned, at long last, about resolutions. Make them ridiculously easy to achieve and you can sit back smugly next New Year’s Eve. The second may be a bit more difficult, namely to resuscitate my handicap. Having consulted The Oxford Dictionary, it defines resuscitate rather disturbingly, among other definitions, as “return or restore to vogue, vigour or vividness” In which case, that one looks, on all three counts, to be in jeopardy from the off! Searching for another easy replacement, perhaps I can merely resolve to enjoy any golf I do play. I doubt, however, that it will be “in vogue” or vigorous but it could well be very, very vivid!

... Enjoy your golf Anyone wishing to submit articles or comment about golf matters generally should write to Ron Kent, 77 Bennett Avenue, Bury St Edmunds, IP33 3JJ. e-mail:

Suffolk Golf Union Current Officers and Members of the Executive Committee President: Mike Rees (Rookery Park) Tel: 01502 568941; Vice President: Ron Kent (Hintlesham) Tel: 01284 705765; Honorary Secretary: Charlie Wilderspin (Rookery Park) Tel: 01502 588028 Treasurer: Geoff Henney (Woodbridge) Tel: 01728 685525 Executive Committee: Ray Baines (Felixstowe Ferry) Tel: 01394 276076; Bill Darling (Stowmarket) Tel: 01449 615854; Colin Firmin (Ipswich) Tel: 01206 298742; Jon Marks (Woodbridge) Tel: 01394 384232; Phil Platten (Woodbridge) Tel: 01394461246; Tony Tyrrell (Fynn Valley) Tel: 01473 785463 Other positions: Chairman Suffolk Junior Golf: Mike Stevenson (Rookery Park) Tel: 01502 569765 Team Captains: 1st Team: Mike Rees (Rookery Park) Tel: 01502 568941 2nd Team: Andrew Collett (Bury St Edmunds)Tel: 07919 250396; Seniors: Jon Marks (Woodbridge) Tel: 01394 384232; Seniors Manager: County Referee: Mike Rees (Rookery Park) Tel: 01502 568941 EGU Delegate: Charlie Wilderspin (Rookery Park) Tel: 01502 588028; SE Group Delegate: Ron Kent (Hintlesham) Tel: 01284 705765; Chairman Suffolk County Golf Partnership: Colin Firmin Tel: 01206 298742; Ecology Officer: Michael Thomas (Ipswich) Tel: 01394 283973.

EDITORIAL/ADVERTISING: 150 Fronks Road, Dovercourt, Harwich, Essex CO12 4EF Tel: 01255 242141 E-mail: Front Cover: Publisher: Linda Basham ST AUDRYS Opinions, comments and reports in Suffolk & Norfolk Golfer Magazine are not necessarily those of the SUFFOLK or NORFOLK COUNTY GOLF UNIONS.



Around The County

attired in various shades of pink, reflecting Rani’s With Ron Kent passion for clothes and fashion. Rani smashed Despite the lack of Championship activity right now, a good shot 134 metres there is no shortage of news around the County. down the fairway despite a noisy crowd Three items have arrived from Stowmarket Golf Club, determined to put her for which I am indebted to the club’s Vice-Captain, Ron off. Money collected Woodham. on the day will go to Motor Neurone Perhaps not good news for the club is that Secretary/Manager Alan Feltham has secured the post of Disease, Rani’s chosen charity for her year in Secretary at Bruntsfield Links Golfing Society Ltd and office. leaves for Edinburgh around the middle of February. Bruntsfield, boasting fine views over the Firth of Forth, Rani arrives is the fourth oldest golf club in the world and has hosted in all her glory a number of R and A Championships and Scottish Golf Union events. In 2011, its 150th year, it became a Regional Qualifying venue for the Open Championship. The usual crop of holes in one continues to arise and Alan’s appointment represents an exciting and major once again I am grateful to our ubiquitous golf writer development in his career, particularly as he has only Tony Garnett for news and a picture of a rather unusual been a club Secretary for some 3 years, having one. previously run his own electrical contracting business in A Hole in One is exciting enough at the time but for Hampshire before coming to Stowmarket. Frank Pooley of Waldringfield Golf Club, things quickly The club will be very sorry to lose someone who has made a significant contribution in such a short time but wish him every success in this new challenge. Applications to find his replacement are now being considered.

got better than usual. Frank achieved his first ever ace in December, just a few days before his 89th birthday. Not content with one, he proceeded to conjure up another just one month later, at the same time shooting a score equal to his age of 89, a rare feat in itself.

Still at Stowmarket, the club’s junior organiser, Beverley Waspe was presented with the prestigious Suffolk Golf Partnership’s GolfMark Club of the Year at the Suffolk Golf Partnership’s AGM and conference in November. Beverley is seen here Beverley receives her award receiving her award from Colin Firmin from Partnership Chairman, Colin Firmin, reflecting her efforts in achieving High Achiever status during the accreditation procedure.

Frank, a founder member of the club, usually plays three times a week, going round in a buggy and playing now off 24, having once played off a handicap of 14. Before WW2, Frank often caddied at Woodbridge Golf Club and recalls that the caddy fee was one shilling and seven pennies, one penny of which went to the caddie master.

Finally with drive-ins common around this time of the year, Stowmarket’s new Ladies Captain, Rani Pearson, commenced her year in office well and truly in the pink. Not so much a drive-in but more of a shop-in, Rani arrived at the first tee in a golf buggy, suitably bedecked in designer shopping bags. Many of the watching crowd of friends and fellow lady golfers were also suitably

True to tradition, Frank left a bottle of Bells Whisky behind the bar at Waldringfield on both occasions. Frank Pooley

A Vice-President’s Notebook Ron Kent shares a few thoughts

I must admit, however, that I am somewhat disappointed that no mention has been made of any links between railways and golf, at least not that I have so far seen.

The 17th hole at St Andrews once required players to drive over a railway tram shed but that particular building has since been replaced. Coming closer to home, I have mentioned in earlier issues the railway line which carried Cambridge University boys to their home course at Royal Worlington, the line running through to Mildenhall. At first there was no railway halt at Worlington and stories abound of boys throwing their clubs out of the carriage and Understandably, discussions had been protracted, an then walking back (illegally!) along the railway track to the agreement between the two Boards to open negotiations club. There is even a suggestion that, on a few occasions, having been taken as far back as February 2010. the boys would jump out of the train after their clubs as it In the numerous corridors of power, whether at national, conveniently slowed down, thus saving the long trek back, but I am not sure if that is true or false. regional or local level, all shades of opinion were expressed and right up to the very last minutes, no-one Like many other resorts, Felixstowe’s holiday trade could be sure which way the vote might go, a 75% benefited greatly when the railways arrived and the club’s majority being required to see the proposal through. informative pamphlet describing the period of 1880 to Somewhat anxious about the outcome, English Golf 1980 claims that the founding of the club and, indeed, the Union Chief Executive John Petrie had taken to the road rapid growth of the town, was made possible by Colonel personally to speak with Counties. Tomline’s railway, which established a direct link with On the very day when I needed to submit copy for the November/December 2011 issue, a momentous vote was taking place at the headquarters of both the English Golf Union and English Women’s Golf Association. It was to decide whether a merger of the two organisations should go ahead or not.

With endless speculation about which Counties would say yes and which might say no and therefore scupper a vote in favour, D-day was suddenly upon us. For EWGA, there proved to be no doubt that merger was a good idea. 100% said yes. The men were not quite so clear cut but, on the day, 86% said yes and England Golf was born. In due course, John Petrie (right) was appointed the Chief Executive of the new body and Nigel Evans, outgoing Chairman of the English Golf Union, became the first Chairman. These are clearly early days and much discussion will now take place as England Golf finds its feet and resolves some of the inevitable teething problems.

Ipswich and on to London.

A train steams by Sheringham's 16th A little further afield, Sheringham’s sixteenth hole travels alongside the railway, with the volunteer-manned steam trains of the North Norfolk Railway a familiar and appealing site as they steam their way to and from the charming Georgian market town of Holt.

The massive railway closures, recommended by former ICI Technical Director Richard Beeching, resulted in the demise of over 2000 railway stations and some 250 railway lines, thus severing most of the links between golf and At such an early stage, there has been no discussion of a railways which had existed. merger at County level, or at least in Suffolk as the Men’s County Secretary Charlie Wilderspin quite Finally, a comment from that thoroughly readable book, correctly stated recently. Should such discussion take The Golf Club Suggestions Book, compiled by Duncan place, they could well take as long as those involving Ferguson and John Wilson and published by STADIA, the governing bodies. Counties are not mandated to which I would recommend you seek out. An entry by a merge but could be encouraged to do so. In that case, it member of Burhill in Surrey suggests to the Committee remains to be seen what advantages might accrue. that the brake meets the 9.30am train arriving from London at Walton on Thames railway station to convey members ****** the few miles to the club. The reply stated that the brake Whilst not being that much of a television viewer, I have does in fact meet that train on Saturdays and Sundays but to admit to having become somewhat addicted to Great could not do so on weekdays as the horses were required for work on the course! Surely, that would have been British Railway Journeys, Michael Portillo’s excellent television programme, broadcast as I write on weekday worth a few minutes of Michael Portillo’s most enjoyable series. evenings at 6.30pm on BBC 2. 6

OPERATION BRIMSTONE by Michael Thomas The Brimstone Butterfly is a wonderful yellow creature, with just a tiny orange spot on each wing. It emerges in early spring and its rather slow flapping flight may well have been the origin of the name “butterfly”. Stuart Fletcher (Felixstowe Ferry) planting on the Kingsfleet

Past conservation initiatives have led to an increase in numbers in Suffolk, but the butterflies are still very scarce in the East of the county. This is thought to be due to the absence of Buckthorn bushes or trees which are the Brimstone’s only food source and site for egg laying. Now, in a project involving the county branch of Butterfly Conservation, the Suffolk Naturalist’s Society and Ipswich Borough

Council, free Buckthorn plants (whips) have been made available to the first 250 applicants in an endeavour to increase butterfly numbers. Seven golf clubs have responded to the challenge: Aldeburgh, Felixstowe, Rookery Park, Seckford, Ufford Park, Waldringfield and Woodbridge. Neal Sherman (Conservation Manager at Purdis Heath) who had already been involved in an earlier successful planting programme, drew my attention to this latest project which is being coordinated by Julian Dowding of Butterfly Conservation. The plants have been donated by Crown Nurseries at Woodbridge. Well done Suffolk golf clubs! Contact will be maintained to record locations, any signs of eggs or caterpillars and of course the wonderful butterflies themselves.

Rabbit guards protect plantings at Seckford

St. Clements Golf Club Foxhall Road, Ipswich IP3 8LS

St Clements Golf Course is an established 9-hole course with scenic fairways lined with mature trees. We are a ‘Members only’ Club

Full Membership from January 2012


This includes Social Club Membership & Affiliation Fees

For membership enquiries please contact The Secretary on 07549 170172 7

Things you ought to know about

The most significant is that there is now to be no restriction on the value of By Ron Kent a Hole-in-One prize which an amateur golfer may accept, without causing loss of his amateur status. About Handicaps Previously this was strictly forbidden and most County Secretaries will have spent countless time, advising Normally, in these pages, I include an article on some clubs that the chance of winning that £40,000 car was aspect of the often-vexed subject of handicapping. In the company of our County Secretary Charlie Wilderspin just not allowed. Some players said they would take the car, if they aced the hole in question and to hell with I attended a seminar at Gog Magog Golf Club on 12th the amateur status. Unfortunately, under the old rules, January where James Crampton, Handicapping the club itself staging a competition with that prize Manager of the English Golf Union, outlined a number of changes to the Unified Handicapping System in 2012 included, faced dire consequences, possibly leading to disaffiliation. which you need to know about. However, at the seminar I agreed with my good friend Peter Clarke, Treasurer and Area Handicapping Authority of the Norfolk County Golf Union, that he would give you chapter and verse on the changes, Peter being rather closer to the mechanics of the whole System than I am nowadays. So check out his article on page 25, which, hopefully, will bring you right up to speed with all the changes.

About The Rules of Amateur Status At the same meeting, James Crampton outlined the changes to the Rules of Amateur Status, coming into effect from January 2012.

A fine hole-in-one prize

Whilst it is still not an option to give a cash prize, there has been a change in the way prize vouchers may be used. Previously, they could be redeemed for goods from the professional’s shop or some defined retail outlet. Now the vouchers can be exchanged for goods or services from the club and could include payment of a bar or restaurant bill, subscription, entry fees or green fees, the hire of a buggy, lessons from the professional as well goods from his shop. The only proviso is that the organising committee should define what goods or services the vouchers may be used for. And, as far as the average golfer is concerned, that’s about it. There are other changes which might affect the elite golfers, perhaps looking to turn professional but those changes will not affect most of us.

About changes to the Rules of Golf The changes, effective from 1st January, are clearly laid down on pages 6 and 7 of the new Rules of Golf booklet, copies of which should now be available from your club. I am not going to spoil you all by listing what the changes mean as I am sure you all have a new rules book in your golf bag! In brief, the changes refer to the Definition of Addressing the Ball and rules 1-2, 63a, 12-1, 13-4, 18-2b, 19-1, 20-7c and Appendix IV. With the evenings still too dark to allow a few holes, maybe now is a good time for a little light reading in order to bring yourself up to speed on the changes. That way, you will be all ready to go when conditions allow. 8

You can have that putt Michael Thomas takes a look at a rules query On page 38 of your new rules booklet (I hope you have a copy by now), you’ll see that a player may concede his opponent’s next stroke at any time provided the opponent’s ball is at rest With minor provisos, a player may also concede a hole or match – have a look at Rule 2-4. The rule also states ”A concession may not be declined or withdrawn” This latter point gave rise to a potential problem recently. A&B were playing C&D in a four- ball betterball match. A&B and C were on a par four green in two, whilst D was struggling in the rough and eventually reached the putting surface in four. A&B conceded D’s next putt as he was not realistically in contention. However, D did not want to lift his ball as it so happened he was in a position to assist his partner by putting out and so giving C a better idea of line and pace. He is not allowed to do this and Decision 2-4/6 reads as follows: “Rule 2-4 does not cover the question of whether a player may putt out after his next stroke has been conceded. A player incurs no penalty for holing out in such circumstances. However, if the act would be of assistance to a partner in a four-ball or better-ball match, the partner is, in equity (Rule 1-4), disqualified for the hole If your next stroke is conceded, it is courteous and often in the interest of pace of play, to lift your ball whilst others complete the hole. If you must have a practice, do so after everyone else has finished.


With the Suffolk Juniors

The Under 18s, combining with the Under 16s, have their annual match against Essex at Warley Park in April. The Under 14s also have a busy programme which By Ron Kent includes a match against Sussex at Rookery Park in April, a trip to Bawburgh for the Keith Bass Trophy in As ever, 2012 looks like being a busy year for our junior July, a match against the old enemy, Essex, at squads with winter coaching already under way. Waldringfield and a friendly against Norfolk at Looking at the fixture list, boys mostly from the Under Swaffham, both in August. 18s squad contest some major events and will once Ian Woodhead has arranged two matches for the under again be involved next August in the South East Group 12s against Cambridgeshire, away in May and at Newton Junior Foursomes at Sandford Springs in Hampshire. It Green in September. should be a real treat for the team, the course boasting The Suffolk Junior Open this year is at Stowmarket in panoramic views over some spectacular countryside and August and throughout the year there is a whole host of situated close to Watership Down, the setting of Richard junior Opens at Suffolk clubs, most of which earn points Adams 1972 novel of the same name. for the Suffolk Junior Order of Merit. The South East Group 6-man qualifier is at Royal MidFirm dates for all these events can be found at Surrey in June. That should be another enjoyable visit to a course situated in Royal Parkland at Richmond on Thames and sharing a bend in the river with the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew. This Year the South East Junior Championship, for those who qualify on handicap, is at John O Gaunt near This growing force in amateur golf in Suffolk also has a Biggleswade in July. busy programme in 2012. The Anglian League Qualifier, against Norfolk and Matches include 2nd April v Kent at Rochester, 16th Cambridgeshire, is at Barnham Broom in July, the April v Suffolk Ladies at Rushmere, 23rd April v Essex winners going on to contest the final at Boston West in at Woodbridge, 14th May v Bedfordshire at John O August. Gaunt, 22nd May v Norfolk at Royal West Norfolk, 13th For those fortunate enough to qualify for the Carris June v Cambridgeshire at Ufford Park and on 13th Trophy, there is an exciting trip in store to Royal Cinque August v Cambridgeshire and Norfolk at Sheringham. Ports in Kent, the venue for the British Opens in 1909 Regional events include the Southern Counties and 1920. Foursomes Preliminary at Gog Magog on 10th July, a In June, the under 16s have their annual match against new Suffolk Seniors Foursomes Championship at the Seniors at Aldeburgh and one against Norfolk at Aldeburgh on 6th May, the 6-man South East Group Bungay then travel to Leighton Buzzard for the George qualifier at Moor Park on 19th June and our own Seniors Skevington Salver in July. Championship at Gorleston on 16th September. Our picture below shows the Under 16s squad at Aldeburgh This year Suffolk is also honoured to host the English recently: (left to right Back) Keith Preston (Head Coach), Tony Men's Senior Championship at Aldeburgh and Watkins (Manager), Lewis Staff, Jasper Johnson, Joshua Thorpeness on 31st May and 1st June and the prestigious Robertson, Joshua Murton, Michael Manser, Jack Forgan, South Eastern Group Championship for the Alan Hobson Liam Merritt, Jed Seeley, Robin Mann (PGA Coach) and Mike Trophy at Felixstowe Ferry on 25th September. Stevenson (Chairman, Suffolk Junior Golf. All in all, a busy and exciting programme for our young (left to right Front) Jack Phillips, Paul Waring, George and not so young golfers. Copsey, Jordan Bloomfield and Marcus Kent.

And the Seniors


Henry Longhurst Ron Kent continues the life of the acclaimed golf writer, TV commentator and undoubted bon viveur

Others included Lord Brabazon of Tara who raced down the Cresta Run at the ripe old age of 74 and well-known cricket commentator and writer, Jim Swanton.

In 1943, Henry stood for parliament as a conservative candidate I must admit when I first conceived the idea of writing for Acton and won the about Henry Longhurst, I thought a couple of articles would enable me to cover his life, albeit in brief detail. seat. With his skill at writing he was sent to That must remain the case although, being halfway through a third book about him, I have no doubt I could many parts of the world to produce several reports for the cabinet. His book write so much more than what is, in effect, no more mentions a horse show in Darfur with 2000 men riding than a potted history of this great character from the past, each with a 9ft spear, and a visit to Niagara Falls past. where he recounts Blondin walking across a tightrope Henry was no mean golfer playing off scratch for high above the raging torrents with his manager on his several years, being Captain of Cambridge University back! Henry also did “service” in India, Egypt, Africa and winning the German Amateur Championship in and numerous other far-away places. 1936. It is said that his golf career came to an end when he developed the “twitch” on the putting greens. His parliamentary career came to a premature end in 1945 and Henry was free to pursue his burgeoning His writing career took off when some articles he had career in golf journalism. The rest is history as they written for a publication called Tee Times came to the say although, perhaps, not quite. attention of the Sunday Times editor who quickly took Being somewhat eccentric, in 1953 Henry moved his him into the newspaper’s “stable”. Henry was to family into one of two windmills perched on the Sussex contribute to that paper for the next forty years or so. Downs. Named Jack and Jill, they were nearly He also contributed regularly to Golf Illustrated, a monthly magazine which later on also included articles derelict, with no running water or electricity. Eventually, some ten years later, they built a modern by the well-known coach and television commentator, house between the mills. Henry planned the living Alex Hay. Alex went one better than Henry, being rooms upstairs so that they could enjoy the able to illustrate his instructional articles with his own magnificent views. expert drawings. A move into television seemed inevitable for Henry and he was present at the first televised outside golf broadcast from the 14th fairway at Moor Park in the late thirties, an experience which he described as a “splendid and most entertaining shambles”! Invitations from America quickly followed and he became a regular at the Augusta National and other US majors, thoroughly enjoying an average of four trips a year across the pond. He became firm friends with a number of celebrities and golfers, including Cotton, Hogan, Nicklaus, Palmer and Alistair Cooke, whose regular Letter from America was broadcast weekly here for several years. In this country, Henry did not relish climbing some death-trap of a ladder up to a wind-swept perch above the action and greatly appreciated the American system which provided a broad set of stairs up which to ascend. In the “trade”, they came to be known as Longhurst Ladders. Here at home, Henry could count among his many friends Viscount Castlerosse, who led the initiative to build Killarney, the only Golf and Fishing Club in the world and claimed by Catlerosse to be “the best and most beautiful course in the world”

He enjoyed his final years at Pycombe Golf Club, being President there from 1975 until his death in 1978. It is reported that he visited the club every evening and often at lunchtime on Sundays, when he tended to alternate with the New Inn at Hurstpierpoint. His favourite tipple was reported as a gin at lunchtime and a whisky in the evenings. Lack of space does not permit us to repeat the numerous quotations and opinions on golf which emerged regularly during his career. Perhaps his television colleague Peter Alliss, no mean purveyor of the spoken word himself, summed him up beautifully. “I also admired the three Henrys: Henry Cotton (a friend and acquaintance of HL), Henry Longhurst and Henry Cooper. Cooper was a great boxer. Longhurst was just a mess – like Compo in the Last of the Summer Wine without the woolly hat. Collars at all angles, ties that had seen better days, trousers which had never been to the cleaners. A complete contrast to Cotton, who was always immaculate, and charged £5 per lesson”. One thing for sure, Henry was a one-off, the like of which we shall not see again or remember with such affection. 11

Matchplay News Ron Kent takes a look at the 2012 first round draws As has become the custom for the past few years, our President, Mike Rees, and County Secretary, Charlie Wilderspin, interrupted their New Year revelries to make the draw for round 1 of this year’s competitions. The Hambro Cup, the County’s oldest established matchplay competition, dating back to 1931, has attracted 25 clubs this year, seven clubs receiving a bye. Holders Southwold, last year’s winners of the competition for the first time in the club’s long history, have declared their determination to retain the trophy this year and there should be a battle royal on the Common against Hintlesham. Last year’s beaten finalists, Waldringfield, have a tricky match at home to Fynn Valley. Ipswich, fancied to return to the winners’ enclosure for the first time in four years, have a bye as do Beccles who have entered for the first time ever. Newton Green will be setting their alarm clocks in readiness for an early departure for the long journey to Gorleston.

Suffolk Golf Union Junior



Managers Under 18s

Under 16s

Under 15s

Under 14s

Tolly Cup holders Felixstowe Ferry

Full Hambro Cup draw: Waldringfield v Fynn Valley, Brett Vale v Halesworth, Aldeburgh v Seckford, Woodbridge v Thorpeness, Haverhill v Ufford Park, Southwold v Hintlesham, Gorleston v Newton Green, The Suffolk v Diss and Rookery Park v Stowmarket. Byes: Bungay & Waveney Valley, Bury St Edmunds, Flempton, Ipswich, Beccles, Felixstowe Ferry and Rushmere.

The Tolly Cobbold Cup, dating back to 1969, involves mid-handicappers with thirty of our thirty-two clubs competing this year. It means just two clubs Committee 2011 get byes into round two, the lucky ones being Rookery Park and Haverhill.

Mike Stevenson 485 London Road South Tele: 01502 569765 Lowestoft Mobile: 07778 576008 Suffolk NR33 0PD E-mail: Charles Wilderspin 10A Chestnut Avenue Oulton Broad Lowestoft NR32 3JA Trevor Mason Fells Cottage 72 Ferry Road Felixstowe IP11 9LU

Holders Felixstowe Ferry travel to the delightful Flempton course whilst 2011 runners-up Woodbridge face a stiff task at Tele: 01502 588028 Fynn Valley. Several of the smaller clubs have Mobile: 07921 102826 E-mail: been favoured with home draws, Seckford, Beccles, St Clements and St Audrys all receiving a great chance of progressing to round Tele: 01394 274331 two. Mobile: E-mail:

Tony Watkins 43 Bull Road Foxgrove Gardens Ipswich IP3 8GN

Tele: 01473 713748 Mobile 07710 763091 E-mail:

Ian Woodhead 29 Spire Close Sudbury CO10 0PZ

Tele: 01787 378733 Mobile: 07818 403020 E-mail:

John Morcombe The Old Chapel Calder Road Melton IP12 1TP

Tele: 01394 386515 Mobile: 07899 791028 E-mail:

Head Coach Keith Preston Aldeburgh Golf Club Aldeburgh Suffolk IP15 5PE

Tele: 01728 453309 E-mail:

County Child Stuart McCallum Protection Officer


01473 782780

Local derbies do not come much closer than Aldeburgh making the two-mile journey along the coast to Thorpeness. Full Tolly Cobbold draw: Brett Vale v Bury St Edmunds, Seckford v Diss, Beccles v Rushmere, Thorpeness v Aldeburgh, St Clements v Stowmarket, Halesworth v Bramford, Ipswich v Aldeburgh Artisans, Fynn Valley v Woodbridge, Waldringfield v Ufford Park, Flempton v Felixstowe Ferry, Cretingham v The Suffolk, Southwold v Bungay & Waveney Valley, Hintlesham v Newton Green and St Audrys v Gorleston. Byes: Rookery Park and Haverhill. The Stenson Shield, dating back to 1985, is now regarded by some as the premier County

match-play competition, being played off scratch and comprising foursomes and singles.

Cretingham, Halesworth, Seckford, Felixstowe Ferry, Bury St Edmunds and Southwold.

Following the move of past regular winners Stoke by Nayland to Essex, Ipswich have now become a major force in this event, winning three of the last five years’ competitions and are the current holders.

The Beaumont Trophy, introduced in 2010, is popular with longer-handicap seniors. Holders Stowmarket receive a bye in round 1 but 2011 beaten finalists, Ufford Park, have a very difficult task at Rushmere.

With some of the smaller clubs unable to field a strong enough team, twenty-two clubs will fight it out this year, the holders receiving a bye as do Hintlesham, narrowly beaten in last year’s final.

Inaugural winners, Brett Vale, travel over to The Suffolk, Gorleston entertain near neighbours Southwold and Beccles have an interesting match at home to Thorpeness.

Match of the day should involve Rushmere who travel to Fynn Valley. Rookery Park, with a number of talented juniors at their disposal, receive Haverhill, who could have former County Captain, David Quinney, and 2011 Suffolk Junior Champion, Chris Vince, in their squad.

Full Beaumont Trophy draw: Waldringfield v Diss, Bury St Edmunds v Cretingham, Fynn Valley v Newton Green, Ipswich v Felixstowe Ferry, Seckford v Hintlesham, Beccles v Thorpeness, Haverhill v St Audrys, Rushmere v Ufford Park, St Clements v Bramford, The Suffolk v Brett Vale and Full Stenson Shield draw: Gorleston v Southwold. Waldringfield v Woodbridge, Fynn Valley v Rushmere, Byes: Rookery Park, Stowmarket, Bungay & Waveney Halesworth v Gorleston, Aldeburgh Artisans v Southwold, Valley, Halesworth and Woodbridge. Thorpeness v The Suffolk and Rookery Park v Haverhill. Byes: Aldeburgh, Bungay & Waveney Valley, Hintlesham, Newton Green, Ipswich, Felixstowe Ferry, Flempton, Diss, Bury St Edmunds and Stowmarket. With seniors now a major force in our golfing structure, the popularity of the Parks and the recently-introduced Beaumont Trophies is not surprising and has attracted significant entries this year, twenty-four entering for the Parks and twenty-seven participating in the longer handicap Beaumont. The Parks Trophy, started in 2002 at the instigation of former County President Maurice Parks, sees eight clubs receiving byes. Rookery Park, winners in 2010 and 2011, are at home to Ufford Park whilst last year’s beaten finalists, Gorleston, are drawn to receive 2009 beaten finalists Haverhill. Both will be looking to go one better this year. Thorpeness, twice previous winners including the inaugural year, travel across to Brett Vale and will enjoy some spectacular countryside. Full Parks Trophy draw: Diss v Ipswich, Gorleston v Haverhill, Newton Green v Fynn Valley, Rookery Park v Ufford Park, Flempton v Bungay & Waveney Valley, Brett Vale v Thorpeness, St Audrys v Stowmarket and Hintlesham v Rushmere. Byes: Woodbridge, Waldringfield,

2012 Championships Ron Kent takes a look at the major Suffolk events this coming season The opening event of the Championship season, the Suffolk Amateur Foursomes, takes place at Woodbridge on 29th April and this much-sought after venue looks likely to attract a strong field, not always the case in seasons gone by. The title was won last year by the Haverhill pair of then County Captain David Quinney and 2011 Suffolk Junior Champion Chris Vince. It proved to be Quinney’s fourth success in the event, previously winning in 1997 with Neil Meadows, in 2003 with John Maddock and in 2009 with Will Wright. Having proved to be a highly successful venue for last year’s Suffolk Open Championship at Halesworth, the County were more than happy to arrange for this year’s Amateur Championship to take place there on June 10th this year. By tradition, the sixteen top finishing competitors in the Championship, who are available, meet over the same course the following weekend to contest the Suffolk Matchplay Championship for the President’s Mashie.

Hopefully, last year’s Champions, Nathan Overton (Strokeplay) and Jack Cardy (Matchplay), both from Hintlesham, will be available to defend their titles on a course which promises major changes under the now ownership of Jon and Lois Hunt. In August, the Suffolk Open Championship takes place at Bury St Edmunds, with the qualifying round taking place on Saturday, 11th August, with the top forty finisher's, plus ties, plus, if any, those finishing within six shots of the first day leader, progressing Patrick Spraggs to Sunday’s thirty-six holes. If available, Patrick Spraggs (Stowmarket), now back at Stirling University after a year in the States, will be looking to complete what would be a fine treble, having won in 2010 and 2011. Only two other players have achieved managed to do so, L.B. Ayton winning in 1955 to 1958 (for four consecutive years) and Robin Mann, who carried off the trophy in 1993 through to 1995. Two County players, Andy Collett (2nd Team captain) and Dean Fairweather, playing over their home course, could well be in the shake-up on Saturday evening. The Suffolk Mid-Amateur Championship, for golfers aged thirty-five and over is scheduled to take place at Rookery Park on 30th September but recent entries have been disappointing with the 2010 and 2011 events cancelled due to lack of support. 2012 could be one last attempt to keep the Championship going. With senior golfers playing an ever-increasing role in golf generally, no problem exists in attracting entries for the County’s Senior Championship, which also features the Seniors Team Championship for the very handsome and much-prized Trophy, presented by Michael Thomas (Felixstowe Ferry), a winner of the Championship himself in 1992 and 1993. The current Champion is Jon Marks (Woodbridge), who has won on six previous occasions. There are, of course, a number of Club Opens which qualify for points in the Suffolk Order of Merit as do the Suffolk Amateur and Suffolk Open Championships. Details of what promises to be another busy season for players and officials alike can be found on the County’s website at


Woodbridge - Annual Presentation Dinner Woodbridge held their annual awards dinner hosted by Club Captain, Derek Hill and Ladies Captain, Eunice Gray. The most prestigious trophies were presented in front of friends and family to ensure that the worthy recipients received the full recognition that they deserved. Some familiar names were prominent and the Juniors at the Club were well represented by Monty Scowsill, Jordan Lawrence, Tristan Finbow and Jasper Johnson. It has been another outstanding season for ‘young’ Chris Ginn. He is the winner of the inaugural Woodbridge Seniors’ Championship, the Bentwaters Cup, he won the Rupert Fisons Cup (top 8 matchplay from the Club Championship) and travelled to Italy and finished 7th in the Italian Seniors’ Championship against a quality international field. The ladies section is extremely competitive at Woodbridge with large fields playing in every competition which makes winning particularly rewarding. Well done to Anne Trueman who featured several times as did Debbie Golding who won several cups including the Ladies Championship. The final word goes to the men; the Eastern Counties Cup stayed at Woodbridge with Jamie Summers and a new Club Champion was crowned in David Cockburn – well done to all the winners.

Chris Ginn – Woodbridge Golf Club Seniors’ Champion 2011

COUNTY AWARD FOR MELODY Stowmarket Golf Club member Melody Aung received a County Bronze Medal for an amazing 9 under par 63 in a Medal round at Stowmarket last year. Melody was playing off of a handicap of 28 when she had her great score in the August Medal. Her handicap is now 24. The award was announced to the Lady members at a recent event at the club by Lady Captain Rani Pearson 15

by Julie Latimer-Jones

Nationwide knock-out golf competition A five-strong team of ladies from Aldeburgh Golf Club returned from south-western Spain in late November clutching a very large photograph and a stylish silvertopped claret jug, the runners-up trophy for the national 2011 knockout competition run by the Mail On Sunday. The team, captained by Lotti Edmunds, played their way through nine rounds to reach the quarter finals at Worsley Park, Manchester, where they beat Droitwich Ladies, earning a fourday trip to the wonderfully named El Rompido, the 5-star resort selected to host the semi-finals and final with luxury living included. There was an uproarious send-off from the golf club car park on a misty Sunday morning, accompanied by a capering, castanet-clicking, moustachioed figure dressed in poncho and Mexican hat. ‘Viva Espana’ has never sounded better and Sandra Ball might be a candidate for next year’s ‘Strictly’! Happily, the ladies left at home were lunching after a sociable morning’s golf when news of the semi-final against Northamptonshire County Golf Club hit the air waves on the Tuesday. First came the information that Blaize Esmond was about to win, Susie Manson-Bahr had won and Bunty Hunt was 3 up, had three holes to go and would receive a shot at each one. The next thing was a phone call, mid-

The Aldeburgh team (left to right): Philippa Collett, Brenda Burtenshaw, Carrie Spence (Ladies’ Captain), Blaize Esmond, Susie Manson-Bahr, Bunty Hunt.

Spanish Chicken because everyone, house staff and all, had swung into the mood: Bunty had put the winning point on the board and the team would meet Ganton in the final. The cheer probably echoed somewhere around The Dogger Bank. After a fantastic effort the next morning Aldeburgh’s team lost by a narrow 3-2 margin to take the runnersup spot. Back home their enthusiastic supporters were thrilled with their team’s performance. As Roger Kelly presented them with their prizes, he said Rudyard Kipling would have been proud of them for their smiles whether winning or losing. How nice! It was a great buzz for everyone.

EWGA & EGU merger - a view from here Quite a time was necessarily taken for EWGA and the EGU to agree on a merger. A chat with Suffolk’s Judi Walker who finds herself in the prestigious and exciting position of a Board Member of the Governing Body of England Golf, enables me to pass on the following information for those who have not been industriously checking on progress since 2009 when negotiations began. The most recent news was posted on the EWGA website on 8th January, following the first Board Meeting at Woodhall Spa during the previous week. Because the two merged organisations are now to be managed as one, EWGA’s CEO, Jim Robinson, left the Association on 31st December 2011. He departed with grateful thanks, expressed by Sylvia Perrins, the outgoing Acting Chairman of the Association, for his huge contribution of commitment, hard work and loyalty to EWGA during his tenure. So, perhaps more than anything, that move signals the real change in the organisation of golf in England and particularly from our point of view, ladies golf. The golfing calendar in 2012 will not be affected, however. The winter coaching programme and the Championships will take place as planned whilst the mechanics of the merger proceed behind the scenes. There are many business decisions to be made and exciting discussions to be had about branding. Currently the EWGA rose features as a strong possibility. We can look forward to the new logo launch in mid-February when County Voting members will be invited to Woodhall Spa to an open discussion forum, dinner, an overnight stay and attendance at the AGM on the fifteenth. Judi Walker says she has been delighted at the natural and easy way the men and women of the Board are working together for the game. Her lasting impression has been the size of the EGU and its influence in the golfing world. Its standing is enhanced still further by the addition of EWGA and EWGA can only benefit from its merger with such a major voice in the future of the game. 16

by Julie Latimer-Jones

SLCGA Annual General Meeting The Suffolk Ladies County Golf Association elected its new President at the Annual General Meeting held on 7th January. Mrs Judy Hamshere wound up her successful two-year term and presented the silver badge to Mrs Pippa Beak of Flempton Golf Club where she has been a member for thirty-five years which included a year as ladies captain. Pippa has always played a wonderfully consistent game of golf, rarely mis-hitting the ball to the envy of her playing partners. She plays to win but she invariably brings a charming manner and even temper to her golfing activities. She has represented Suffolk at first and second team level and organised the County Seniors for a very convivial two years. Her wish as President is for everyone to enjoy ‘this wonderful game of golf’!’ Much has happened in the life of the Association over the past twelve months and the achievements were duly noted. Lottie Whyman, an Ipswich Junior, won the silver medal with a nett differential of -8. The Bronze Medal went to Melody Aung of Stowmarket with a nett differential of -9. Second team County Colours were presented to Charlotte Double (Seckford), Claire Ferguson (Hintlesham) and Lily Kent (Ipswich), who also won her Junior Colours. Emily Rothwell received her Captain’s Jersey and will lead the Junior County golfers for 2012.

the Cranworth Trophy rules and regs for those of the Stearn Trophy. This idea did not prove popular but the possibility of changing the convoluted Cranworth Trophy scoring system to straight matchplay will be given serious consideration. Watch this space!

Pippa Beak, (Flempton) newly elected President, on the left, and Judy Hamshere (Bury St. Edmunds) past president.

Suffolk Ladies County Golf Association Current Officers: President: Mrs Pippa Beak Tel: 01449 781261; Captain: Mrs Sheila Jarvis Tel: 01394 448537; Hon Secretary: Mrs Jeanette Longman Tel 01394 450939; Hon Treasurer: Miss Hermione Scrope Tel 01359 232618; EWGA Representative: Mrs Anne Archer Tel 01728 685315; Handicap Adviser/Chairman of Governing Body: Ms Ann Graves Tel 01394 411020; Contact for Junior Golf: Mrs Judy Hamshere Tel 01284 386207; Senior Organiser: Mrs Liz Robinson, Tel: 01284 752818. Scratch Score Assessor: Mrs Sue Cook Tel 01728 688406. All other personnel may be found on the County website at

The Nigel Birrell Trophy went, unsurprisingly, to Blaize Esmond, the retiring Junior County Captain. She enjoyed an absolutely sizzling 2011 and, when it mattered, was virtually unbeaten all season. She began by winning the Suffolk Ladies Matchplay Championship and topped off the long list of successes which followed with a win in the East Anglian Ladies Championship, the Haskell Trophy final (with Lotti Edmunds) and played a Outney Common, big part in the successful Bungay, Suffolk Founded 1889 • Course Designed by James Braid Weston Trophy campaign with NR35 1DS her Aldeburgh team-mates.

Bungay & Waveney Valley Golf Club

Suffolk has a wonderful group of cheery Junior golfers. They are making great strides but they are currently without an organiser. Any Association member who thinks they might enjoy helping out in this direction should please contact Judy Hamshere (see Officers) who will be delighted to hear from them. The meeting discussed the possible merits of swapping



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All extranjeros [foreigners] living in Spain must possess a Residency Card and carry it with them at all times. This must be produced when purchasing goods or paying for services by Credit or Debit Card. It is nothing more than an ID Card.

To acquire one in the first instance one goes through a lengthy process of form filling; date & place of birth, parents names, occupation etc. Photos and finger prints are taken as are many photocopies of passports and every other conceivable document; birth certificates, marriage certificates and the like.

my ¤10 and finally I was sitting in front of the nice man again. Hiding my deep frustrations we chatted as he processed the card. He complained about how busy he was dealing with all these extranjeros! "I have no time for a coffee" he said "too busy"! "No wonder " I replied "you are duplicating everything. You have to see everybody TWICE! Why send me away to get a photocopy of my passport when you have a photocopier on your desk? And why could you not accept my ?10 at the outset"? "No, no" he replied "we must do it this way"!

Every five years this must be renewed and one would have thought it would be easy enough to do - but, NO!

Eventually I left with my new card but it had taken a total of three hours to obtain it and already I am dreading going through the whole process again in five years time!

My first mistake was to go directly, in person, to El Registro Central de Extranjeros in Huelva where I was informed that I needed to make an appointment and that this could only be done "on-line" by internet! "Can't I do it right now"? I asked. "No, it is not possible" I was told.

It is tragic that Spain has 20% unemployment - but the photocopy shops are thriving and the banks are inundated with people needlessly standing in queues to pay their ¤ 1 0!!!

"OK, no problem, I can do that"! I thought to myself. WRONG! The site was totally unfriendly and inaccessible so, deeply frustrated, I asked my accountant to help, which he did - eventually. He told me he was equally frustrated having spent four hours in securing my appointment and, worse, the earliest date was to be in FOUR MONTHS time!!! Finally the day arrived and off I set, once more full of eager anticipation, to get this simple job done. I arrived in good time for my 10 o'clock meeting ... and after an hour I was sitting in front of this nice man. I had brought my passport, my current [now out of date] ID Card and another form that I had to collect previously from the mayor's office in Cartaya that confirmed I was a resident of El Rompido. "You must fill in this form" he said. Looking at it the form asked me all the questions I had been asked before; place and date of birth etc. etc. "But you have all this information" I said. "No, no, I need it again ... and I need a photocopy of your passport"! "But you have countless copies of this on file" I replied. "No, no, I need another so you must go now to a photocopy shop to acquire this and then go to a bank and pay ?10 with this document I now give to you. When you have done this you will return and I can renew your card"!!!! It took me another hour to find the photocopy shop and a bank that would stamp the form on receipt of

Oh, and by the way, I finally managed to change the registration of the car that was bought and owned by my limited company [that is now no longer; too many absurd taxes for a small company] into my own name. I took a photocopy of my passport [and my ID Card] and, would you believe, this was not acceptable. They wanted to see the real thing!!!! Another fruitless journey, another appointment to make and another queue to endure!! Ah well, it got done in the end ... and it only took eighteen months! Spain deserves the GOLD MEDAL for beurocracy gone mad! By the way it was good to see David and Carmen Sell, members of Barnham Broom, who called in to say hello recently. We enjoyed a long chat as they brought me up to date with Norfolk news. Finally my apologies for omitting to mention the Ladies of Aldeburgh Golf Club who did so well to reach the finals of the Mail on Sunday Challenge at El Rompido. Although losing in the semis I hope they enjoyed their visit. Enjoy!!

Contact me, Peter Ballingall at: Apartado de Correos 101 21450 Cartaya (Huelva) ESPAÑA PHONE: (0034) 959 02 42 42 or E-mail: Website: 19

warm up properly, (b) I will only play shots that are within 80% of my capability, (c) I will only choose to play shots I am 80% confident of pulling off, (d) I will play to go past the pin at the earliest opportunity Doctor Golf is here to answer any minor or major These goals will be more useful as you as you are questions or queries, if you have something to ask, totally in control of how these goals are achieved. In (a) you can make a commitment to set the alarm 30 please send to minutes earlier or book your tee time 30 minutes or ring 01394 383480 later than usual to allow for sufficient practice/warm up time. In (b) you can take an extra club and make an easier swing, which may lead to a more balanced If you were dissatisfied with your golf or did not swing and better strike on the ball. In (c) you may make the improvement you were hoping for last choose to play a 5 iron short of the green into a wide year, it is now a great time to set some goals for part of the fairway rather than taking a 3 wood to the 2012. In an Olympic year when there will be many athletes green where the OOB comes very close to the right that have set their goals from four years ago to peak and the bunkers are tight on the left. In (d) during your next game work out how many times you play their performance for a particular week in the summer, there will be many articles and reports that short of the flag. On a single hole it could be that you were short of the green with an iron, followed by will highlight how they have set and worked on a pitch that was short and then followed by the first achieving their goals of winning a medal. putt being short. If we had played a different club Within a golfing context we should set ourselves into the green to begin with and got to the back of “process goals” first before we develop the green we may have saved 1 shot?! “outcome goals”. The Process goals are the ones that we can control, The Outcome goals are likely to be more like: (a) I will reduce my handicap by 6 shots, such as; (b) I will win a medal, (a) I will turn up 30 minutes before my game to (c) I will beat my regular playing partner, Although these are great goals, you are not in control of all the criteria. In (a) the CSS may change golf club due to other players’ performances. In (b) you may score 65 but others may score lower. In (c) you may Set in the heart of Constable Country play below your handicap only for them to play well where a warm welcome is always guaranteed below theirs. In each case although you have played well you may feel disappointed that you did not achieve the desired outcome.

Which goals will you set?

Brett Vale


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DISS SENIORS NEWS Congratulations to

Mike Breen on being the

Bandit of the year 2011

Full voting results:

Mike Breen Bob Allison Neil Stewart Chris Castle Maurice Costello Ron Ashdown Jim Bromley Dave Young

- 18 - 9 - 3 - 2 - 2 - 2 - 1 - 1

Congratulations to Mike Doig on winning

The Bill Batley Trophy 2011 Top Four Results:

1st Mike Doig 21 pts 2nd Harold Halil 19 (c/b) 3rd David Shimell 19 (c/b) 4th Peter Cottee 19 (c/b)




The Suffolk Winter Alliance reached the halfway stage of their season in mid December at Ufford Park. This year the organisation of Suffolk golfers has enjoyed a series of events in weather conditions at times far removed from the norm with only one meeting being lost at Newton Green due to fog. After two or three years in the recessionary doldrums numbers have steadily risen peeking at Hintlesham when 104 players supported the Pro. Am. Returning to Bury St. Edmunds after a break of several years the other Pro. Am also attracted 84 competitors partaking in a Shotgun start. In fact the abandoned Newton Green start sheet boasted a full field and the ever popular venue at Southwold was over-subscribed. The two players who got their heads in front in the Order of Merit leagues are Sam Ward, an Ufford Park member, and Professional Danny Barton, who is attached to Felixstowe Golf Centre, and has returned a number of impressive cards. More comprehensive results can be found on the Alliance website at along with further details of the movements activities. The second half of the Fixture List is due to kick off in mid January at Bungay culminating in a closing meeting at Haverhill in late March. The two Pro. Am competitions are to be held at Waldringfield and Felixstowe Ferry.

FINANCIAL clouds on the horizon for the economy are turning out to have a silver lining for Newton Green Golf Club. In recent times the club has promoted a membership offer of 15 months for the price of 12 at the start of the year. This year, however, the promotion looks like having a record take-up. Paddy Lockwood, club chairman, said recent talk of a double dip recession had sent shivers through the spines of golf club treasurers, fearing a repeat of membership losses suffered three years ago from which a number of clubs were still reeling. Newton, however, had recently been able to demonstrate an extremely competitive pricing structure in relation to what it offered members. Golfers were looking to reduce their costs in regard to travelling and subscriptions, and were re-assessing Newton’s attractiveness. This included the condition of its course and general ethos of the club, the latter aspect having been singled out for praise by the sport’s county and regional leaders. In recent times the club had placed considerable emphasis on bringing more women and younger people into the sport. The junior section now had a record level of members, and the club’s intermediate membership category offering reduced subscriptions for 18 to 30-year-olds was about to be extended to those up the 35 years old.



Tony Garnett

Alastair Spink, director of golf at Fynn Valley and county development officer of the Suffolk Golf Partnership, has been made a Fellow of the PGA. The only others with this status in Suffolk are Aldeburgh's Keith Preston and Rob Joyce who has recently been appointed as head professional at

Alastair being congratulated by Suffolk PGA president Dell Bower, left

Felixstowe Ferry. Spink is one of 15 professionals in the country working towards a post graduate Diploma in Sports Coaching at Birmingham University. Once successful he will be eligible to apply to the PGA for the new Level 4 qualification and will then be able to continue at university to complete a Masters Degree.


There are some hardy souls in Suffolk, including these pictured on the course at Ipswich Golf Club (Purdis Heath). Ipswich member Barrie Henderson putts at the 4th, while fellow member Chris King looks on. Head greenkeeper Norman Fenwick had given the go ahead for play, on his daily frost-line, as he feels the course can withstand these rather Arctic early morning temperatures.


NORFOLK COUNTY GOLF UNION NCGU CONTACTS President Bill ( W.G. ) Neill of Swaffham Golf Club

Vice President Frank Myers of Thetford Golf Club

Imm. Past President Geoff Higgins of Kings Lynn Golf Club

Hon. County Secretary David Horsburgh 5 Bishops Croft, Barningham, Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk IP31 1BZ 01359 221281 Email:

Hon. County Treasurer Peter Clarke Email: County Captain Jon Baker-Odlin of Royal Norwich Golf Club Email: 2nd Team Captain Iain Yule of Kings Lynn Golf Club Email: Seniors Captain Tony Lount of Sheringham Golf Club Seniors Administrator Malcolm Carr of Sheringham Golf Club Email: Junior Secretary - Norman Blanch, 10, Hillside Crescent, Wicklewood, Norwich. NR18 9QD Tel; 01953 604394 Email: Junior Delegate - TBA Under 12 Manager - Mark Spooner c/o Bawburgh GC Under 14 Manager - Derek Sadler 01362 638588 Email: Under 16 Manager - Gary Davis 01603 610006 Email: Under 18 Manager - Mike Green 01362 860041 Email: PGA Secretary - John Paling ‘Squirrels Reach’, Folgate Lane, Old Costessey, Norwich NR8 5EF Tel: 01603 741301 Email: Norfolk Schools - Margo Horsburgh 5 Bishops Croft, Barningham, Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk IP31 1BZ 01359 221281 Email: Girls Organiser - Carol Delf (Acting)

NORFOLK SENIORS by Bernie Peet For the first time in their history, Norfolk Seniors will play in a league in 2012, the other counties involved will be Suffolk, Cambridgeshire and Northampton. There will be a twelve man team playing singles match play (scratch) using the Myhill style of scoring so each singles match will play all 18 holes ( a total of 216 holes altogether) with the County winning the most holes overall being the winner. Sponsorship has been obtained and a trophy has been donated by Jon Marks the Suffolk Captain. This will make the matches more competitive which can only be good for Norfolk Senior Golf. Two winter squad matches have been played to date, the first at Mundesley, on a very windy day, with individual stableford off handicap being the format. This resulted in a win for Bernie Peet (Royal Cromer) with 37 pts followed by Graham Turner (Mundesley) with 36 pts. The second match was at Royal Cromer on a lovely winters golf day, this time the format was a 3 man team with 2 scores to count on each hole, scratch stableford. The winning team with a very good score of 73 pts was Simon Fuller (Royal Cromer), Tony Lount (Sheringham) and Richard Blakey (Eaton). Hopefully there will be another squad day in March before the season starts in earnest in April.

Norfolk Seniors are always on the lookout for new squad members so if you are over 55 and have a handicap of 7 or better please get in touch with Malcolm Carr on 01263 822623 or e mail

Winner of the SNIPE TROPHY at Ryston Park Golf Club, was Graham Childs of Hilgay, Norfolk, playing off 14 handicap with a net medal score of 66 which earned him a new handicap of 13. Second place was Cliff Norgate with 68. The only two competitors under par.

New Captains & Head Greenkeeper at Middleton Hall The recent Club AGM was attended by over 80 members to see the new Captains, John Burton (mens) Elaine Calvert (ladies) Alan De Witt (seniors) and Luke Stannard (juniors) take office. All of last year’s Captains and Committee members were thanked for their hard work in helping to make 2011 a great year for the club. Mike Johnson gave a slide show presentation to the members and thanked Douglas for staying on for a second year as Club President. Mike asked the members to sign an e-petition in support of a reduction in VAT to 5% for the watching and playing of sport. Any reduction would bring a financial benefit to the club which could be used to provide price stability of subs, enable further clubhouse and course upgrades and make the club, proprietary owned, more competitive with private members clubs. A link to the e- petition has been set up on the club website. Course improvements during the winter and spring will focus on areas to generate more light and a better flow of air around the greens and tees to aid drying out and promote more grass coverage. Attention this year will be to also improve the overall quality of the playing surfaces. Trevor Hammond has joined the team at Middleton Hall as Head Greenkeeper with responsibility for greens, surrounds, approaches and tees. With over 15 years in the industry Trevor brings his valuable experience to the course. He was made very welcome by the members at the AGM.

Four- Way Golf, the reciprocal golf arrangement of four Norfolk courses has a new partner Richmond Park has join Middleton Hall, Costessey Park and Caldecott Hall to provide members a free round of golf per month at each club. Members can save up to £720 in green fees each year by joining Four-way Golf for just £15. The clubs will hold mixed open competitions this year which will also benefit their members.


u n o r A Hackerd & About with

A Happy New Year

It is hard to believe that a full twelve months has gone by and yet another year begins, this time a leap year with an extra day to play golf. But what else will it bring? Well first of all it brings good wishes from me to all golfers for a happy and enjoyable new year playing golf. It’s no good my wishing every-one a successful season since we cannot all win but taking part in the life of your clubs and playing with friends is what the game is really all about. I trust that you will all have that opportunity again this year.

Unfortunate End to 2011 Looking at the county’s clubs the end of last year saw the closure of the Norfolk Golf & Country Club. At the time of writing it would seem that the land is returning to farming, with pigs roaming the fairways. Not a very happy end for all the members who were faced with this unhappy news only four weeks before the close down at Christmas. One must hope that many of them have found a new club for this New-Year. There are several clubs locally within a 30 minutes drive that need members and will welcome them. Perhaps some of them will write to us and tell us what they have done to continue in this great game. All around the county many clubs are still losing members, some only a few and some more than they can really afford but we must hope that times improve for all of us. County wide the overall loss of members from clubs in the twelve months period between August 2010 and August 2011 numbers well over 500. A substantial percentage decrease in numbers and a worrying situation for Club and County Committees and Treasurers.

Hopes for the Future The 1st of January 2012 saw the official merger of the men’s governing body, the English Golf Union, with the English Women’s Golf Association. The merged bodies will become one under the title of England Golf. The Ladies approved the merger by 100% whereas the Gentlemen only approved it by 86%. Some counties such as Cheshire, Lancashire and Dorset were not happy with the disproportionate share of involvement in the management of the new organisation given to the women which is on a 6 men to 4 ladies basis. In reality as far as

total figures are concerned the men outnumber the women by an almost 6 to 1 ratio. The first sole President of England Golf will be a woman although she will be supported by the immediate Past President and the President Elect, and of these three, one will always be a women. The decision to merge was immediately hailed by the organisations involved, as a triumph for golf and a step forward for the game. The new joint body should almost certainly encourage better financial support from the government’s point of view with England Golf speaking with one voice, sending out a powerful message that golf is a game for all, men and women, boys and girls, young and old. It was considered that the unified organisation promoting both the men’s and women’s game would be more attractive to new golfers, would help the game to grow, be more appealing to commercial partners and sponsors and would mean the organisation would be more cost effective. Key points of the merger are: • The Headquarters of England Golf will initially be at the National Golf Centre, Woodhall Spa. (Let’s hope that they are not going to charge us an extra £1 per year each year for 4 years to build another grandiose edifice costing £10 million to house the new body. Hacker. ) • The counties will continue to be the voting members. Counties will be encouraged to merge their Unions and Associations, but this will not be mandatory.


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• The Board of Golf England will initially include 10 stakeholder non-executive directors six nominated by the EGU and 4 nominated by the EWGA. • Club golf will go on from day to day, exactly as it does now. • All the championships run by the EGU and EWGA will continue. • The regional and group structures of the two competitions will continue to run competitions. • The decision making role of the EWGA regional committees will end. • Affiliation fees for men and women will be harmonised and will be equal by 1st January 2014 although women will continue to pay an additional subscription to the Ladies Golf Union. ( Whether this means that the Men’s fees will go up, the Women’s come down or we all pay more is not indicated. Hacker ).

SO .... WHAT DOES 2012 BRING? Changes have been made to Decisions on the Rules of Golf, the Handicapping System, theoretically bringing a more consistent and fair approach to assist Handicap Committees in their deliberations on member’s handicaps and amendments made to the Definition of Amateur Status. An article in the next issue attempts to spell out some, if not all, of the changes to the latter two items and how they affect the average club golfer together with their implications for the future of the game.



County Union Matters Changes to County Officials 2012-3 County Vice President nomination Subject to approval by those Club representatives at the County Union Annual General Meeting in April, Mr. Alan Winstanley of Sheringham Golf Club has been nominated by the Council of the County Golf Union to be the next County Vice President and has accepted the nomination. Alan is currently President of Sheringham Golf Club and also of the Norfolk Golfers Alliance The Hon. County Secretary David Horsburgh of Thetford has announced he will be retiring at the County Union Annual General Meeting on 11th April, 2012 for personal reasons. He was appointed to the post in April 2008 after working for five years as Junior Secretary for the Junior Section of the County Union. The nominated replacement for election to the office of County Secretary at the Annual General Meeting will be Mike Devlin of Great Yarmouth & Caister. Mike is currently the County Junior Delegate and will relinquish that post upon election as Hon. Secretary. A replacement for him as County Junior Delegate is currently being sought. The County Captain Mr. Jon Baker-Odlin of Sprowston Manor Golf Club resigned from that position in December 2011 for personal reasons. A permanent replacement has not as yet been appointed but Iain Yule of Kings Lynn Golf Club, previously in charge of the 2nd Team Squad has been requested to perform those necessary duties until such time as a decision is taken and a formal announcement made.

Personalities Active Norfolk Sports Awards 2011. I hear that Carol Delf of Great Yarmouth & Caister Golf Club and the Norfolk Women’s Golf Association was short listed for the Keith Peel Services to Sport category of the Norfolk Sports Awards and Mark Spooner in the Coach of the Year category. Following the judging process, both finished as runners-up in their respective sections. When considering the number of personalities and sports nominated for each of these awards it is heartening and encouraging that golf received such high recognition and also that we have the quality of representatives worthy of such nominations. Indeed, in my belief, one only needs to look around to see that there are others who over many years, have helped and still help to run our game and who willingly and freely contribute their time and effort for the benefit of other people. Perhaps later this year when the Awards season comes around again, more of these people will be nominated and receive the recognition and honour that they truly deserve for their long years of service to this our game of golf.

Around the Clubs Bawburgh Golf Club held the “Grand Opening” of their new Family Golf Centre at Easton, with more than 300 guests including representatives of the designers, architects, builders and contractors as well officials of both men’s and ladies’ County Golf and club members attending. I was fortunate enough to be invited to this special evening and was most impressed with everything I saw. Included in the complex which covers some 3000 square feet are 2 wings, each of 12 bays, with power tees in each driving bay, some of which are heated. Three bays on each side are allocated to left handed golfers only. In the centre of the wings is a family zone with four bays and a heated seating area so that parents can watch in comfort, their children endeavouring to emulate the golf of Tiger Woods. The range is at least 300 yards long so it is long enough for most players and is floodlight at night.

On the left hand side of the entrance is a large open area with a cafeteria serving hot and cold food daily, a sports bar and a comfortable lounge area with one of the largest projector screens showing live sport that I have ever seen. In the early summer a short game area will be opening with facilities for practicing putting, chipping and bunker shots. It would seem that Norfolk golfers now have another of the most up to date centres available to improve their play in comfort and undercover with some of the best equipment and instructors available should they need it..

Royal Norwich. Royal Norwich has opened a very attractive and modern sports bar with TV facilities for watching live sport. It has been well supported over the Christmas period and is favoured by the under 40’s as the place to meet and congregate before and after games. The showing of live golf and matches played by Norwich City and other Premier League teams has proved very popular. On the technical side there are two individual coaching /teaching suites with the very latest in training technology In the latest list of UK top golfing venues, the Royal Norwich course at Hellesdon appeared in the top 100 equipment staffed by the resident professionals Mark “Hidden Gems” category in December last year nominated Spooner ( runner up in the Active Norfolk Coach of the by both National Club Golfer and Golf Monthly Year Award ), Peter Bowers and the former well known Norfolk Golf & Country Club Professional Tony Varney. magazines. A well deserved listing if one listens to the number of Backing onto the right hand wing there is a very large, fully stocked Golf Shop with a private fitting bay and the visitors in recent weeks who have played the course and been extremely complimentary about its presentation, latest club fitting equipment run by Peter Field and his particularly the quality of the greens and fairways. staff.


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Celebratory Start for NLCGA Centenary Year The Norfolk Ladies’ County Golf Association has begun its centenary celebrations with recognition for those who have contributed to the organisation’s success. The association’s AGM was attended by a number of former county presidents, The former County Presidents, Captains, Secretaries and Treasurers who were presented captains, secretaries and with badges. Front Row (from left): Anne McHarg, Margaret Whybrow, Rosemary Beeson, treasurers who were each Val Munro, Jean Johnson, Jo Ashmore, Dawn Addison, Jill Brister, Nickie Clarke. presented with a badge to mark Back Row (from left): Karen Young, Tracey Williamson, Mary Davies, Nan Rains, Eileen their contribution to women’s Urquhart, Susan Horsfall, Margaret Fisher. golf in Norfolk. There was also great appreciation for the outgoing president, Anne McHarg, who was given a standing ovation as she completed her two years of office. On behalf of all county members, the new county president, Nickie Clarke, offered a “big vote of thanks” to Mrs McHarg, adding: “Anne has been a great ambassador for Norfolk ladies’ golf.” Mrs McHarg said it had been an absolute honour and privilege to be county president and she was grateful for all the support she had received. “I have really enjoyed it and I hope that Nickie enjoys her presidency as much as I have enjoyed mine. I would not have missed it for anything.” Anne McHarg (left) and her successor as Nickie Clarke, who has also served as County Captain County President, Nickie Clarke. from 1989 to 1991 and from 2009 to 2010, said her election as county president was a very proud moment At Ryston Park Golf Club , 11 teams of three (two for her, particularly as the NLCGA would be celebrating men and one lady per team) played eighteen holes its centenary in 2012. “I promise to represent and for the Christmas Special. support the county to the best of my ability”. A bright, crisp morning saw the players turn up with The activities planned for the centenary include an AM their Christmas Hats. Presentations were made in AM in April at Eaton, a club competition with the the clubhouse followed by a Roast Turkey Dinner. winning team qualifying for a centenary final at The winning team were: Paul Allen (Wisbech), Pam Thetford, and a celebration lunch. Entry to all individual Saxby (Downham Market) and John Emmerson (Downham Market). competitions will also be half price. 2nd place: John Rice, Dang Kittisak and Mike Brown, 3rd Presentations were made to retiring officials: Second place: Andrew Hodges, Val Mellish and Mike Coles. Team Captain - Sally Benton; EWGA Regional Nearest the Pin: Representative - Nicky Wylie; Chairman - Sheila Kingsley Mens Winner: and Competition Organisers - Liz Holmes and Joanne Richard Allen Cane. (Wisbech) and Officers elected were: County President – Nickie Clarke Ladies Winner: Janet Coles (Royal Norwich); County Vice-Captain – Sue Henderson (Downham (Dunston Hall); Second Team Captain – Sharon Black Market). (Dunston Hall); County Junior Organiser – Carol Delf Left to right: (Great Yarmouth & Caister), EWGA Regional Paul Allen, Representative – Marilyn Barter (King’s Lynn); Assistant Pam Saxby & Secretary – Margaret Watson (Swaffham); Executive John Committee Members – Irene Shell (Middleton Hall), Ann Emmerson Fletcher (Ryston Park) and Sam Martin (Royal Norwich).


‘Squirrels Reach’, Folgate Lane, Old Costessey, Norwich NR8 5EF

PGA website:

Tel: 01603 741301 Email: COMMITTEE MEMBERS Chairman: Mike Jubb Norfolk PGA Representative: Michael Few Captain: Ryan Pudney Vice Captain: Neil Lythgoe Committee: Alan Hemsley, Lee Patterson

Kings Lynn N.P.G.A. Pro Am Twelve months ago this event was cancelled because of snow on the course, so what a pleasure to have 10 C and a very sunny day on a course that was looking in good condition. A number of 74’s were setting the early pace, but all were overtaken by the eventual winner, Ian Ellis (Costessey Park), who shot 69 and with this win Ian confirmed himself as this year’s Dingles Toyota O.O.M. winner. Three players shared second place:- Craig Graver (Marriott Sprowston), Laurence Dodd from Bury Driving Range playing in his first NPGA Pro Am, and finally Tony Varney representing The Norfolk for the last time and it was fitting that he had his regular team with him, including dad Les. The team competition was won by host pro Mike Timson and at the prize presentation the club captain, Tim Arthur, said that the whole team were indebted to 17 handicapper Derek Stringer who single putted the first five greens and contributed on 12 of the holes. Nearest the pin was Lewis Bates and longest drive Lawrence Osborne. Team. 1st 129 Mike Timson with Tim Arthur, Paul Godfrey & Derek Stringer. 131 Laurence Dodd with Mark Rea, Ralph Evans & Ben Luke. 131 Tony Varney with Neil Newton, Jeff Smith & Les Varney. Professionals. 1st 69 Ian Ellis. 73 Laurence Dodd, Tony Varney & Craig Graver. Ian Ellis whilst making his speech said that he and all his fellow professionals wish Tony Varney well in his future.

Thetford N.P.G.A. Pro Am Once again, last year the event was snowed off, so what a difference a year makes, because today’s weather was excellent although a stiff wind made scoring difficult. For the last event of the year it was probably appropriate that two of the county’s top professionals could not be separated at the head of the leader board. Both Ian Ellis (Costessey Park) and Neil Lythgoe (Royal Norwich) settled for a share of first place with level par 72’s and it was enough to win by one shot from Neil Mitchell (Bury Driving Range). Ian’s points gave him a 26 points advantage over Neil in the Dingles Toyota Order of Merit competition and last year’s winner Neil made the presentation to Ian and also the Norfolk Professional Golfers Association would like to say a “big thank you” to Dingles Toyota for supporting us in what has been their last year of sponsorship. The association’s secretary, John Paling, invites any future sponsors of this prestigious event to contact him for more details and John’s mobile is 07778577596 and NPGA website Ian also led in the

winning team on 9 under par supported by his amateurs: Bernie Vaughn, Colin Norris and former footballer Dean Ashton. The day was completed by all the members participating the AGM and next year’s fixtures were circulated. Nearest the pin was Mark Taylor and longest drive was Laurence Osborne. Team 1st 135 Ian Ellis with Bernie Vaughn, Colin Norris and Dean Ashton. 137 Tom Robinson (Middlesex PGA) with Gary Robinson, Colin Yates & David Newstead. 139 Neil Mitchell with Stan Lee, Neville Howes & Les Collins.

Captain Neil Lythgoe presenting the O.O.M. cup to the winner for 2011, Ian Ellis.

N.P.G.A. 2011 DINGLES TOYOTA ORDER of MERIT Final Positions (16 Events) Ian Ellis Neil Lythgoe Lee Patterson Ryan Pudney Jason Groat Gary Potter Mike Jubb Oliver Barnes Tony Varney Sam Cubitt Mark Allen Michael Few Gary Kitley Matthew Gardner Steven Chick Alan Hemsley Craig Graver David Woolley Tim Lon-Caulke

Costessey Park Royal Norwich Royal Cromer Mundesley Denver Golf Centre Great Yarmouth & Caister Sheringham Devere Dunston Hall The Norfolk Lowestoft Driv’ Range Eaton Weston Park Thetford Barnham Broom Dunston Hall Barnham Broom Marriott Sprowston Middleton Hall Diss Golf Centre

86 60 511/2 50 33 29 241/2 24 201/2 19 16 13 12 8 8 8 7 6 1/2

Suffolk & Norfolk Golfer Jan/Feb 2012  

The online edition of the Suffolk and Norfolk Golfer Magazine.

Suffolk & Norfolk Golfer Jan/Feb 2012  

The online edition of the Suffolk and Norfolk Golfer Magazine.