Beaconsfield Golf Club
Seer Green, Beaconsfield
Bucks, HP9 2UR
Beaconsfield Golf Club
Seer Green, Beaconsfield
Bucks, HP9 2UR
We welcome the following new Members to Beaconsfield:
Harry & Jack Shawyer.
We hope that you have a long and happy membership.
50 years of membership
July 2019 marked the 50th anniversary of two momentous events. Neil Armstrong took man’s first tentative steps on the Moon and Beaconsfield Golf Club reluctantly admitted John Wynne Williams.
Armstrong’s achievements as an astronaut became marginally better known than John’s as an accountant, although serving as a BGC Board member and winning the Bloomfield Cups, the Sir John Aird Cup and The Presidents’ Cup make it a close-run thing.
Now retired, John augments his pension by capitalising on his commercial handicap of 17 and gambling on the fortunes of the Welsh rugby team with his Antipodean bookmaker. An enthusiastic patron of the practice ground, he is working towards playing “below his age” prior to his impending 90th birthday.
An enthusiastic Remainer and acknowledged left wing thought leader, John’s non-golfing interests include taking holidays and avoiding work in the garden.
Happy days, John!
From the Captain
As I pen, or more precisely, 2 finger type this contribution the temperature is threatening to reach 34 degrees Centigrade or in my language mid 90’s Fahrenheit. It is even hotter than 29th June for the Club Championship when the 36 holes became not just a test of golf but also of stamina and resolve. My warmest congratulations to James Casserly and Ellie Farwell. It was very much a day for the juniors.
It is traditional each July for the Captain and Vice Captain to be invited for a round of golf by their opposite numbers from the Artisans Club. We teed off at 6am (!!) and then after the most friendly of games, retired to the Artisans clubhouse for a wonderful full English breakfast and a pint or two of ale. Their hospitality was superb. They even went as far as both having the same Christian name so we didn’t have to test our failing memories too much. The relationship between the two clubs is something worth preserving.
The Longest Day Challenge was an extraordinarily successful event and a credit to all involved. Their final grand total amounted to an amazing £15,111.25 which was split evenly between their two charities, Stand Up To Cancer and Prostate Cancer UK. Thank you to all those members who contributed so generously. They are thinking of doing 5 rounds next time!
I have often used the Niblick to congratulate members on their achievements. This month John Williams became the latest to reach the astonishing milestone of 50 years membership. He joined in the same year as the first moon landing took place but more importantly, when the great Wolverhampton Wanderers won the First Division Championship. Also this month, Emily Gilmour won the stableford competition on Junior Captain’s Day with an incredible score - I’ll leave the Junior Organiser to say more in her column.
Gemma Dryburgh very kindly found time in her busy schedule to give a clinic at the club on July 20th. How she could talk, answer questions and hit quality golf shots all at the same time is beyond me. I think everyone that was there will have learnt something useful to use in their own game. The sound when she hits the ball is completely different from anything that I hear when out on the course for a friendly fourball. I’m sure we all wish her well for the rest of the season. Her performances in recent weeks must give her great confidence
After a few months without a rant, I feel the need to launch forth on a couple of subjects.
Safety on the golf course is paramount. In the last week, whilst course maintenance has been taking place, there have been incidents where our staff have been hit or nearly hit by golf balls. It is not acceptable. We are all capable of properly assessing when it is safe to play. Can we please have no more such instances.
I have enjoyed almost every aspect of being Captain this year. One of the very few disappointments has been those occasions when prize winners do not attend the prize giving. It is embarrassing for whoever is giving the prizes to announce a name and then for no one to come forward. It stifles the occasion. It was particularly the case on Captains Day but also on two or three other occasions. Is it too much to ask for an apology for absence or for someone to be nominated to pick up the prize on the winner’s behalf?
From the Ladies Captain
Our first Ladies Invitation Day of the year was a great occasion, with 96 ladies enjoying a fun day of golf and a chance to catch up with friends and family. We were blessed with lovely weather and our winning team was Maureen Smith, Sue Davies and their guests Julie Blake and Rowena Gibson.
The Club Championship at the end of June coincided with the hottest day of the year so far. The day was brilliantly organised and saw the whole club coming together to support those playing. It was lovely to see two young, talented golfers, Ellie Farwell and James Casserley, coming out on top.
Our Bucks Shield team managed to progress to the next round with a win over Buckingham.
Hazlemere are our next opponents with the home and away legs being held in August on 18th at home and 28th away.
Following the Bucks Shield match I went out to watch some lovely golf as the Girls County Championship came to Beaconsfield. A wide range of ages and abilities played in the competition, but it was clear that all were enjoying the game of golf.
On Saturday 20th July Gemma gave some of her time to present a wonderful clinic for us. Her clear explanation and demonstration of chipping, bunker play, putting and full shots gave us a lot to think about and aspire to. I am sure we all wish her the best of luck at Ashridge on 29th July as she tries to qualify for the Women’s British Open.
I thoroughly enjoyed my Away Day at West Herts. 32 ladies enjoyed a warm welcome, challenging golf and a lovely meal. Sue Puttergill, Sue Davies, Sue Schmidt and Joan Murphy came out on top with a very impressive 87 points.
Foxes Team Championship 2019 1st July
With 8 Clubs competing at Northwood, Beaconsfield managed to retain the trophy they won in 2018 when hosting the event.
Only one of the team had played at Northwood before so this turned out to be a superb effort. Icing on the cake was Steve Philpott’s performance to win the individual prize with 38 points (he was the only player of 40 to play better than handicap!), and Alan Ruxton getting an ace on the 192 yard par 3.
The format was Stableford with the best 3 scores of 5 counting. Beaconsfield amassed 103 points beating the second placed side by 6 points.
The hospitality offered by Northwood Golf club was excellent.
Please take extra care, particularly now the ground is firm, when playing approach shots to the 3rd green should there be golfers teeing off on the 4th tee.
Conversely if you are playing from the 4th tee keep a watchful eye out for stray approach shots to the 3rd green.
There have been some recent examples of mobile phones being used in the clubhouse and on the patio. Mobile phones should only be used in silent mode in those areas. If members or guests need to speak on their phone then they must go into the car park. The only exception to this rule is for an emergency.
In The Golf Bag.... Rules Of Golf
The eagle eyed amongst you may have noticed that the penalty area on the 15th hole has ‘grown’. When we were doing the rules talks at the beginning of this year, we were told that if you went into the penalty area and the pin was at the back of the green, it was then quite difficult to find a place to drop using the lateral relief option.
Just a reminder about a Red Penalty Area – there are four options:
1. Play the ball as it lies
2. Take stroke-and-distance relief, going back to where you last played
3. Take back-on-line relief keeping the point where the ball crossed the margin between you and the hole
4. Take lateral relief of 2 club lengths from the point where the ball last crossed the margin
Options 2,3 and 4 all cost a penalty of 1 stroke, and under options 3 & 4 the relief area CANNOT be in the penalty area.
Given the layout of the penalty area on the 15th, back-on-line relief is not an option, and if you are unable to take lateral relief outside the penalty area, then the options are very limited.
The margin of the penalty area has been redrawn to make it much easier to take lateral relief. If you are in the area which is now in the penalty area, but not in the pond, you have the option to play the ball as it lies, and under the new rules you are allowed to move loose impediments (twigs, leaves etc) and also ground your club.
I gave a rules quiz last month about the wrong person teeing off in a foursomes match. The answer is as follows:
The greens are recovering well after the recent renovations where they were scarified at a depth of -10mm in 2 separate directions to remove organic matter. The topdressing sand required to restore the putting surface takes its toll on the cutting units acting as a paste when mixed with the morning dew and therefore blunts the blades. Over the 7-10 days post renovations this will start to show in the quality of the cut but now that the majority of the sand has been worked into the surface we can replace the blunted dressing units with some new sharp ones which will hopefully start to show in the look of the putting surface in the coming days. The greens received 40 tonnes of sand followed by an application of fertiliser to speed up their recovery.
The Approaches were hollow cored successfully, removing a core 3-4 inches in depth and ½ inch in diameter. The holes were then filled with 60 tonnes of pure sand and fertilised to aid in their recovery. This process will help to firm up the approaches, enhance the infiltration of irrigation water and improve drainage.
The fairways were scarified to remove organic matter and lateral growth which improves the firmness of the playing surface and encourages new growth. The mat like ‘thatch’ is extremely good at holding onto water, stopping it from moving through the ground to the roots, so by constantly breaking this layer down it gives the grass plant a better chance of survival during extreme drought conditions.
The tees were spiked and received 40 tonnes of pure sand to improve surface levels, drainage and continue the breakdown of organic matter.
The whole team worked long hours getting up at 4am and not getting home till after 6pm to produce our most effective maintenance week to date and still managing to set up a very playable golf course by the end of the week. We constantly look to improve our maintenance programe, and our aim is to inlcude the hollow coring of the tees into this window next year. This will mean a full clean sweep of all of the playing surfaces.
Dates for your Diaries!!
News from the Juniors
What a month July has been, with the hottest days on record and our juniors flying high!!
Normally, I list all the competition winners to congratulate them, but there has been so many remarkable achievements, that I must mention them all individually.
The highlight of the year so far has been the Club Championship Day! The weather was probably too hot to play golf, especially 36 holes, but 6 of our best juniors played in this special event, with all of them coming in the top 10. We have some great talent in the junior section. The ‘Stars’ of the day, were James Casserly who became our new Club Champion and Ellie Farwell who became the Ladies’ Champion. How thrilled and honoured they must be for winning these prestigious trophies. Many congratulations to them both!
I watched proudly as they came down the 18th and when James’s shot into the green ran through and down towards the bushes, my heart sank, but he calmly played a provisional ball. Luckily, he found his original ball and played a superb shot onto the green and managed a 5. James ended up just 2 shots clear of Mike Sanders and Ben Quick. Ellie on the other hand, had a 9-shot lead coming down the final hole, to claim her victory over her nearest rival Julie Cooper.
Matt Bowen has certainly enjoyed the last couple of weeks, winning the men’s midweek stableford on 3rd July with 43pts, reducing his handicap from 12 to 10. Then 3 days later he won the Sir John Aird Cup with a nett 68, which cut him again to 9. Well done Matt!
Our Junior Captain’s Day on Saturday 13th July was a great day! Ben Quick chose the format which was an individual qualifying stableford for those with an official handicap.
We had 4 of our younger juniors playing in their first competition that day, so they set off in their own 10-hole competition on the green course, which they really enjoyed.
The girls won the day, when Freya Conway came in with 47 pts which was a fantastic score, but then young Emily Gilmour who is only 12 finished with 59 pts! We believe this is might be a joint world record. Well done the girls!
For the Team Competition, we asked Ben to pick sets of 3 cards at random. Ben hoped that he would get Emily’s card in the draw and guess what? Yes, he picked Emily’s and Angus Creighton’s card (42 pts), so they won the Team Prize with 137pts! Everyone took part in the ‘Fun Challenges’ which had been set by Tom Evans and Rob Quick and at the end of the afternoon, they enjoyed sausages, chips and fabulous cakes made by Claire Quick and Elaine Conway. A very BIG “thank you” must go to the Mums and to Rob Quick who served donuts and squash at the half-way house.
Tom Bell became the BB&O Junior Champion on Monday 29th July at the Buckinghamshire.
Tom, George Johnson (Beaconsfield) & Ben Loveard (Woburn) - all finished in joint 1st position on gross 148, but in the ‘play-off’, Tom birdied the 1st hole to claim the title.
Tom is the first Beaconsfield Junior to win this title since 1993 when Luke Donald won with a gross score of 146. Huge congratulations to Tom and what a way to end the month!!
OPEN SWEEP STAKE
Last weekend we saw an exciting finish to the final major of the year - with the Irishman Shane Lowry coming out victorious, and with the Open Championship comes our annual Open sweep stake. The results are as follows:
1st Place - Richard Grocott Mason - £100
2nd Place - Bill O'Leary - £80
3rd Place - Mark Thomas - £60
Tied 4th Place - Ros Johnstone - £30
Tied 4th Place - Sue Schmidt - £30
Congratulations to Richard and Thank you to everyone who got involved!
NEW LADIES CLUBS
Ping have just launched their new range of ladies golf clubs PING G LE We are now stocking them and have a complete DEMO SET for you to to try.we are also going to be receiving the new range of ladies Kalea clubs shortly
OPEN TOUR BAG
Congratulations to Gill Thomas who won the draw for the limited edition Titleist tour bag.
Chris and the Pro Shop Team
The Summer Sizzler
The Summer Drizzler was played on Saturday 27th July and was a great success, even though it was played in damp conditions.
84 players took part and enjoyed lunch afterwards.
It was largely a drawn event and the consensus on the day was that it should continue as a drawn event in future.
The winning team was Graham Puttergill, Sue Puttergill, Peter Robinson and Catherine Robinson.
The raffle in aid of the captains' charities raised a net sum of £350.
Many thanks to all for their generosity.
I hope to see you in the clubhouse shortly.
President's Cup Update
Members will be aware that the Club is trialling a pre-qualification process for entry into this prestigious 36 hole event to be held on the 31st August.
The top 10 from the 2018 event have already been invited to play as have the top 20 from the medal held on the 14th July and those who have accepted are showing on the Club website.
The top 15 from the 7th August medal and top 20 from the 11th August medal will be similarly invited. Any places not taken up will be shared proportionately over the 3 qualifying events and offered as appropriately on the 12th August. Once places have been accepted the President's picks will be made. It is anticipated that the full field plus reserves will be established 2 weeks before the event and the draw made shortly thereafter.
As to the future there seems to be general support for some form of pre-qualification rather than a “race to the keyboard”. Assuming this to be the case it is planned that more notice will be given to the qualifying events and the dates of these will be better spread over the early part of the summer.
Trophy Roll Of Honour