OW Golf Society Report

John Butler (captain) presents to Robert Hollidge

The society’s season is approaching its conclusion and I have many meetings or matches on which to report.

Our first ‘open’ meeting of the season was John Butler’s Captain’s Day, and he took us back to Langley Park, where he used to play in his schooldays. John (OW 1962-68)  invited a guest fourball from the school to help him celebrate the occasion, and society members could only watch in awe as three out of the four occupied first, third and fourth in the placings, Max Brierley (Year 9) coming top of the pile with a wonderful 44 points. Robert Hollidge OW (1957-64) saved some of the society’s blushes by finishing second (41 points) and he was duly awarded the Captain’s Cup, as the leading member.

The second outing was to Wildernesse, near Sevenoaks, a fine course and a relatively new one on the society’s list. Jeremy Stanyard OW (1965-72) is a member there and kindly acted as our host. The turnout was a little disappointing, given that the society’s oldest trophy, the Hornsey Walker, was the prize on offer, but it is doubtful that many could have competed with John Butler’s 37 points on a day which became wet and windy in the closing stages. John was followed home by Tony Harris OW (1964-72) (33pts) and Don Anderson OW (1965-72) (also 33). John Gould OW (1960-68) (31) won the Veterans’ Trophy, for members over 65.

Fabulous weather arrived in time for the first President’s Meeting of Dudley Thompson OW (1953-59) on 4th August. We returned to Piltdown, a favourite in the past, and experienced a course where a substantial amount of work has been done both to the greens and in clearing much of the undergrowth which obscured the surrounding views. A very enjoyable day, well organized by John Gould, saw an increased handicap for the majority, in order to compensate for the use of the forward tees by others who foresaw problems from the back tees in carrying the inevitable, but very attractive, heather. Mike Berners Price OW (1962-70) had his first victory of the year, scoring 37 points, closely followed by Nigel Bradley OW (1964-71), returning to the society after many years’ absence, on 36, and Terry Newman OW (1953-59) on 35. The field of 32 included four guests, and also Dick Glynne Jones (Whitgift staff, 1955-95), making a welcome appearance at his home club.

Late June saw Whitgift participate as usual in the Cyril Gray, a scratch foursomes competition for over-50s played at Worplesdon in Surrey.  We won our first round match against Glenalmond 2-1, with victories for Tony Mason OW (1960-68) and Martin Hayes OW (1971-78) on the 19th, and Alan Scovell OW (1970-77) and Peter Blok OW (1956-63), 1 up. In the second round, we played Fettes and this time lost 2-1. Two pairs lost on the 19th, despite both having chances to win. There was a great victory for Martin Down OW (1960-64) and Don Anderson OW (1965-72), who was making his debut in this competition, by 5&4. Alas a sad exit!

Finally, we have played three matches against other OB societies and, unusually, met with success on each occasion. OMWs hosted us at Purley Downs and, with a 2-2 draw, we retained the Harrods Putter for another year; Alleynians were despatched 7-2 at Tandridge; and KCS 4-0 on their home patch at Royal Wimbledon, only our second victory in nine attempts there.

Our last open meeting of the season is to be played at Walton Heath on Weds 13th September. Anyone wishing to play and/or join the society should contact the secretary at peterbgale@sky.com.

Peter Gale OW (1963-69)
Honorary Secretary