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Chris Boughton’s golf column: Clubs can celebrate memorable 2016

NEW LEADERSHIP: Thetford Golf Club president Anne McHarg with new club captains Trevor Wignall, Gill Welham and Gary Goodchild at the New Year's Day Drive-in. Picture: Malcolm Grubb
NEW LEADERSHIP: Thetford Golf Club president Anne McHarg with new club captains Trevor Wignall, Gill Welham and Gary Goodchild at the New Year's Day Drive-in. Picture: Malcolm Grubb

My selected highlights from the Golf Round-ups during 2016. In alphabetical order:

Bury St Edmunds Golf Club: In June Steve Finch and Joan Garrett hosted their captains’ weekend with over 100 club members taking part on both days.

In July, seventeen-year-old Michael Gee was crowned club champion (gross and nett). Also on a warm, breezy July day, the appropriately named ‘Eco Cooling’ won the Captain’s Charity Day team competition. In late July, John Cauldwell hosted his President’s Day with Mathew Fordham taking the President’s Putter competition and Kate Booty the President’s Mashie.

The highlight of August was the Hambro team’s superb performance in winning the Cup for the first time in 20 years.

In September 17-year-old, 5-handicapper Ben Aves won the Lake Cup, beating the far more experienced Paul Glasswell. In October Ben partnered his father, Chris, to win the Spring Goblets.

In November, the captains (Joan and Steve) presented £4,750 each to their chosen charities (St Nicholas Hospice and East Anglian Air Ambulance).

The new Captains’ Drive-In in December was accompanied by fireworks, music and two great tee shots from Nick Bonney and Joan Warnett.

Flempton Golf Club: Club member Mark Rae had a great golfing summer starting with third place in the Suffolk Amateur Championships at Aldeburgh, followed by winning the Club Championship (The Biggs Cup) with a two-round gross score of 148. In July Rae scored 40 points to also win the club’s Challenge Cup.

Richard Mason and Chris Fry won Andrew Long’s Captain’s Charity Day (East Anglian Air Ambulance) on a glorious summer’s day.

The formation of the new Inter County Intermediate Scratch League was announced: Flempton will compete against Gog Magog, John O’Gaunt and Milton starting in April.

Stowmarket Golf Club: In July, Lily Kent was crowned Ladies’ Club Champion (gross) and vice-captain Clare Rich won the nett prize. Also in July, Ian Harvey’s Captain’s Charity (CRY) Day saw Gregory’s Gofers win the team event (Tony Palmer, Jacqui Gregory, Lee Gregory, Chris Lee).

It was a very hot and sunny summer’s weekend for the Club Championships with Trevor Galton getting a hat-trick of wins (gross, nett and Seniors nett). Galton struck gold again in the autumn, winning the Suffolk County Seniors’ Championship.

In September, the Seniors won the Beaumont Trophy, beating Cretingham. Bill Darling hosted his President’s Day with Paul Swallow and Kim Davies the individual winners.

The Suffolk Golf Club: In the spring, Joan Keil won the Suffolk County Division 4 Olive Caruthers Cup at Southwold.

In June, Paul Delaney won the President’s Cup on countback from Colin Debenham. Ivan Snelling, Chris Tate, Rob Shaw and Alf Jackson won the Captain’s Charity Day.

In August, club President, octogenarian Peter Plumb, won the Memorial Trophy, achieving the holy grail of golf by scoring lower than his age, in a medal competition.

In September, the Club Championship was won by Chris Tate, with Simon Ferrari nett winner and Charley Garrod best of the ladies. Captains Angie Lewis and Paul Dufosee presented cheques for £2,100 each to their chosen charities (Willow and Headway).

In October, fireworks and stunning fancy dress attire greeted the new captains (Angie Lewis and Alf Jackson) at their drive-in.

The new greenkeeper’s building was completed and occupied the week before Christmas and ground work carried out for the new clubhouse.

Thetford Golf Club: Lightning prematurely ended the Ladies’ Captain’s Day at the end of June, but 15-year-old Abigail O’Riordan was declared the winner over the 10 holes that all players had completed. John Barton was victorious in the Seniors’ annual championships.

Alan Brown’s Captain’s Charity Day was held in early July. Abigail O’Riordan was on the winner’s podium again with team mates Amy Beard, Glen Beardsell and Phillip Shenton. Anne McHarg hosted her President’s Day where Terry Stephenson won the individual competition with 46 points.

In September, Ross Sanford won the Club Championship with two rounds of 76. Dave Bennett won the handicap prize.

In the Autumn, Thetford became the Norfolk Scratch Champions, beating the mighty Royal Norwich in the Weston Trophy.

In late November, club Captain Alan Brown presented The East Anglian Children’s Hospice with a cheque for £11,100.

The club’s 2017 captains (Trevor Wignall, Gill Welham and Gary Goodchild) drove into office on a cold, wet but well supported New Year’s Day. This year’s charities are The Stroke Association and Alzheimer’s Research.

Other highlights: In the summer, Culford School’s Academy young golfers scooped first and second places in the West Suffolk Schools Championships. Local golf professionals Adam Trett and Simon Byford launched PGAlife365 on YouTube.


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