Whittington Heath GC 18th October 2012

Whittington Heath... commenced with a shambles of a draw, mea culpa; but everyone made it round, eventually! The weather was kind, one short shower; although having been treated to rain at The Renaissance, rain and wind at Littlestone, plague in the form of flies was unexpected; fortunately once away from the opening holes they had dissipated.

The most creditable of winners was Derek Keatley (17?) Ingestre Park with a magnificent 42pts, off the far back white tees, a very impressive performance. Back in the real world, Jon Northover (12) Drayton Park shaded Brian Lever (10) Great Yarmouth & Caister on countback, both returning 37pts, to be our other two qualifiers.

There were three ‘new boys’ playing and now ready for further GCS adventures? Andrew Burrows, Erewash Valley , Richard Minton, Trentham together with, a contributor to The Golf Club Secretary, Keith Duff. Keith is an environmentalist, who, having spent 30 years working for English Nature, now advises all, from governing bodies to Clubs, on how to look after the game and its courses in a more sustainable fashion.

We were made very welcome by our hostess Jenny Burton and her team, all of whom were extremely helpful, despite numbers etc. going up and down a la the proverbial fiddler’s elbow! The pie and tart were much appreciated.

The support Team led by Richard Barker of TeeOffTimes, nearly out numbered the field, but it is was especially good to see Stefanie Mainstone of Jonas/Clubminder back in action. Bros in the form of the O’Hagans – Paul of Golf Monthly and Chris of Clubview (a very fine 35pts from him must surely get him a place in the Final someone, if only to give the poor chap a wearable tie?). Philip Vince of Majestic Crystal, was in his familiar and greatly appreciated role of chocolatier and photographer. Jezz Ellwood of Golf Monthly and of the driest of humours, joined in on his latest tour of England . Finally, and not forgetting, the doyen of the collateral world in the North of England – Eagle’s own Dean Poynter. (The word doyen is derived from the French term for dean, e.g. Dean (religion) and Dean (education). In the English language, its meaning has extended to refer to any senior member of a group, particularly one whose knowledge or abilities exceed that of other members).

As has been well publicized Whittington Heath may yet suffer due to the track of HS2 from London-Birmingham, despite the fact that there is a perfectly good bit of railway line less than a mile away… Jonathan Gaunt, renowned architect, was also present as he his looking closely at the options if the new track is to go straight down the 18th and 17th. It is to be hoped that his efforts won’t be needed.