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Mail on Sunday National Classic - We are back!!

Mail on Sunday Round 1
Shifnal were drawn away against local rivals Lilleshall Hall (who also made it through to Round 5 last year) in the first round of the Mail on Sunday national competition. Lilleshall’s first challenge was to fix a date when, given the recent atrocious weather, their course would be open. Clearly both courses had suffered from the incessant rain but Shifnal became playable and open before they did and it was suggested, given the tight play by deadline, that the fixture be switched to ‘our place’. However, desperate not to give away home advantage, a date to play at Lilleshall was agreed with a contingency plan to hop across to Shifnal should Lilleshall be closed on the day. The day came and only the front 9 of Lilleshall was open for general play. Miraculously, and much to the chagrin of the Lilleshall membership, the back nine was opened specifically and purely for the purpose of our match. This raised more than a few eyebrows in the ‘Hall’ I can tell you…..
The pairings were drawn and it was clear that the Shifnal team were up against it from the start, with every player giving strokes to their opponent, ranging from 3 to 9 shots.
First out was our lowest handicap representative, Darren Lewis (2) who gave 6 shots. Darren was clearly used to the conditions, given that while we have all been off the course in the warm, he has been toiling away in the elements trying desperately to keep our course in prime condition. Winning the first hole set the tone and Darren was either 1 or 2 up all the way through to the 16th tee where, suddenly, he found himself back at all square. A combination of good club selection and local knowledge of the dangers relating to the new 17th tee position, ensured that Darren ran out a ‘comfortable’ 2 and 1 winner. One nil to Shifnal.
Next out was Bob Clarkson (6) who had to give 9 shots to their ‘captain’ but for the sake of this ‘tale’, I will report on this game last, as it was the last to finish….
Steve Hawke (6) was third out and had to give 8 shots. This looked like a stiff challenge with Steve being 1 down at the 7th, nevertheless a combination of solid par’s and his opponent occasionally finding the trees, witnessed a run of four winning holes for Steve to turn the game and be 3 up on the 12th tee. A hard man to best when he has his nose ahead and tail up, Steve closed out the game to win 3 and 2. Two nil to Shifnal.
Up next was Jon Jarvis (8) who had to give 5 shots and found his opponent both on form and using his strokes to full benefit. Two down at the turn quickly became 5 down after 13, following a run of three back to back ‘stroke’ holes, including the par 3 twelfth where his opposition made a ‘2’ nett 1. This game finished 5 and 4 to Lilleshall, with Jon only dropping 6 shots gross. (Match score now 2 . 1 to Shifnal).
Last out was Steve Wilson (4) giving 3 shots. The last pair have additional responsibility, because if the match is tied at 2 ½ each, they go back out to play a sudden death scenario, to decide who goes through to the next round. No halves or replays in this competition. Information regarding how this game played out was scant and hard to gain, apart from “I got thumped”…… A 5 and 3 win for Lilleshall meant that the match situation was all now square at 2 games all.
As previously stated, the second game out was Bob Clarkson giving 9 shots to the Lilleshall ‘Captain’ of the day and on his own course; there was only one person in the ‘box’ seat. Strong determination and a will to win, coupled with a deeply rooted passion for Shifnal golf club, is a mixture of emotions which can make funny things happen on the golf course. The game seesawed through 16 holes with each player taking no more than a 2 shot lead throughout. By the 17th tee, all shots had been given or taken and Bob was one down with 2 to play. Neither player was aware of the match situation at this stage. A poor chip by the Lilleshall man opened the door and Bob duly accepted by chipping his ball to 6 foot below the pin. A rock solid par brought the game (and the match) all square.  Two cracking drives off the 18th (better by Bob) meant that Lilleshall played in first. The Lilleshall ball hit the front third of the green, leaving a relatively straight forward, albeit 30 foot, uphill putt. Bob stepped up and played a great approach shot that unfortunately ‘caught the wind’, taking the ball left and ending up short of the green, plugged in the fringe. Despite the inclement weather, a small crowd had gathered at the back of the 18th and word had been given to both players regarding the state of the match. A comfortable two putts for par by Lilleshall would mean a play off at the least, possibly the win, if Bob didn’t get ‘up and down’ from his position, which was off the green and around 60 feet from the flag. Having to chip over the fringe, Bob played a low and bold shot which hurried towards the hole and was clearly going to be close or perhaps even ‘stiff’. Incredibly though, the ball did not stop short, nor did it roll past, instead it had the courtesy to gently touch the flagstick and nest itself plumb centre and securely in the bottom of the cup. A Birdie! What timing. You can imagine just how long that 30 foot Lilleshall putt became (albeit uphill…) to get a half and save the match.
Shifnal win 3 and 2, move into the next round (last - approximately - 1024 teams) and hope for a home draw…….

Shifnal Juniors Achieve Second Place in the National Junior Regionals

This week Shifnal's Junior Team played at Greenway Hall (Stoke) in the National Junior Team Championships Regional Match coming second against Style (Cheshire) and Davenport (Greater Manchester)

Style finished with 368, Shifnal 372 and Davenport 373 - Team of 6 One Gross and Four Net scores to count.

Team from left are Sam Rogers, Ross Booton, Lizzie Harvey, Callum Westward, Molly Barker and Aaron Stanton.

The sun shone throughout the day and the Team played exceptionally well on a difficult course that they had not experienced before.
There was a great Team spirit and we must be very proud of our youngsters for their dedication and effort.

Kind regards
Kathy James
Junior Organiser

Some Great News from The Junior Section

On Tuesday 1st September at Telford Golf Club, Shifnal Juniors won the Team Trophy against a total of 22 other Clubs from Shropshire and Herefordshire.
Our winning team comprised: Jamie Porter, Callum Westwood, Lizzie Harvey and Sam Rogers.
Callum Westwood came second in the Individual Competition out of 93 players.
As a result of this year's success, Shifnal have been invited to enter the prestigious Home Nations Championships with the first round at Greenway Hall Golf Club on Sunday 4th October 2015.
We have a team of six players entering.
Photographs on the club website soon.

Many Thanks

We are now coming towards the end of our project to refurbish all the chairs in the lounge and, on behalf of the Board of Directors, I would like to thank the following members for their kind donations towards the project:

John & Jill Adams Charlie Jones Mike Payne
Ian Amos Ann Lanyon Ann Peters 
Jim Andrews Bill & Lyn Lathe Nick Peters
Carol Aston Graham Lewis Dick Richardson
John Burton John Maiden  Tim Rissbrook
David Butler  Clive & Pam Mason Mike Roberts
Ann Butler Doug McQuarrie Paula Rushton
Bob Clarkson  David Milledge Jenny Sawbridge
John & Sheila Cockcroft Paul Miller David Shannon
Philip Cooper Kath Miller Alf Shepherd
Courtney Downing Bill Mooney  Jackie Taylor
Mike Edwards Ros & Geoff Moor Carol Thompson
Nick Evans Dave Morgan Doug Topple 
David Fenwick Lavinia Newell  Steve Vickers
Ian Fitzpatrick Terry Oliver Colin Wall
Frank Gardner Richard Osborne Tony Webb
Glen Hyson Jan Osborne  
Eirwyn Jones John & Lillian Palmer   

It is heart-warming that so many of our members are prepared to donate generously to special projects like this in order to maintain the high standards of our wonderful golf club. Again, many thanks.
Paul Miller
8th September 2015

Shifnal make it to Scratch League Final.

As always, home advantage is significant in these competitions and Shifnal took full advantage of the home tie by running out comfortable winners 3 ½ to a ½ . Wins by Darren Lewis, Nick Stanton and Adam Brookes gave the team a comfortable cushion, but the half by Craig Simmons proved to be vital.
The return leg at Shrewsbury was hampered by not being able to tee off until half 5, which meant that light could be a factor, should matches go to the 18th; and so it turned out. The first three matches were lost by Darren Lewis, Craig Simmons and Chris Thompson, which left Shifnal’s hope in the hands of Adam Brookes. His match went to the 18th where Adam triumphed in near darkness, to make the match score 3 . 1 to Shrewsbury but overall victory to Shifnal by the score of 4 ½ to 3 ½ .
Shifnal now play Hawkstone Park in a 36 hole final, on Saturday 26th September at Burghill Valley. The squad for this fixture is: Craig Simmons, Darren Lewis, Adam Brookes, Chris Thompson, Nick Stanton and Steve Wilson (almost certainly the non-playing Captain once more….).
Please put a note in your diary as your support on that day would be most welcome.
Jon Jarvis (Match and Club Championship Organiser)

Captains Charity - Final Update

        The winning bids on the Captains Charity Auction items are as follows:
      • 1. De La Motte Photography - 1 Hour Sitting & Frame Offer (Value £180.00) - £85
        2. Severn Restaurant, Shifnal - Meal for 4 & Beverages - £80
        3. Ashley Gamble Hair Salon - Cut & Blow Dry & Various Beauty (Value £135.00) - £90
        4. Golf Breaks Voucher (Value £100.00) - £70
        5. Haughton Hall, Shifnal - Spa Day & Afternoon Tea for 2 - £75.50
        6. Lakeside Animal Park, Telford - Family of 4 Ticket (Value approx £100.00) - £40
        7. 2 x Tickets to Manchester Utd Home Match - Exact Match to be arranged - £132
        8. 1 x Trilby Tour Golf Bag - Lilac - £30
        9. 1 x Trilby Tour Golf Bag - Green - £35
        10. Fourball Voucher - Beau Desert Golf Club - £105
        11. Fourball Voucher - Enville Golf Club - £105.00
        12. Fourball Voucher - Hawkstone Park Golf Club - £81.09
        13. Fourball Voucher - Oswestry Golf Club - £81.09
        14. Fourball Voucher - Ingestre Park Golf Club - £101.09
        15. Fourball Voucher - Brocton Hall Golf Club - £80
        16. Fourball Voucher - Astbury Golf Club, Cheshire - £76.09
        17. Fourball Voucher - South Staffs Golf Club - £100
      • All proceeds from the auction will go to this years Captains Charity - Help for Heroes.
      • Thank you for all your generous bids


I would personally like to thank the following Club Members, who generously gave their time to help during this year's three day maintenance shutdown period:

        • Paul Robertshaw
          Brian Hinks
          Bob Pace
          Stuart Smith
          David Greenwood
          Mike, Pauline and Jenny Stuckey
          Derek Aulton
          Jim Andrews
          Kath Miller
          David and Ann Butler
          Nick and Ann Peters
          Pete Simmons
          Val Davies
          Ken Abbott
          Jan and Richard Osborne
          John Andrews
          David Milledge
A great deal of hard work was carried out, all of which was much appreciated.
Thank you.
Paul Miller

Club Championship Explained

Jon Jarvis (Match and Club Championship Organiser)
Has offered some answers to many asked questions regarding this years Club Championships. Bringing explanation and clarity to one of SGC’s biggest events of the year you can read his document here.


Alex Equals Course Record at Ladies European Masters

Alex Peters from England shot a course record equalling second round of nine under par 63 to lead the ISPS HANDA Ladies European Masters at Buckinghamshire Golf Club on Friday.
At 11-under-par, the 21-year-old Ladies European Tour rookie was two strokes clear of compatriot Charley Hull, with first round leader Sophie Giquel-Bettan of France a stroke further back on eight under.
Peters’ round of 63 matched the score previously recorded by Ashleigh Simon and Caroline Masson in the first round of the 2013 tournament. She birdied the second and third holes before posting seven birdies on the back nine to come home 29 strokes, equalling the all-time record on the Ladies European Tour.
“I just played absolutely amazing. I hit my irons so close and putted really well. I had a few other chances as well, but a 63, I’m really happy with the way I played today,” said Peters, who recently shot an 11-under-par 61 in a charity day at her home course, Shifnal Golf Club, in Shropshire.
“Seven birdies could have been eight. I left one right in the jaws on the 12th, the par 3, but I just putted really well, hit it close and gave myself chances.”
Since turning professional in October 2014, Peters has quickly settled in to life on tour. She has made the cut in all three events played so far and is ranked 86th on the current order of merit. This is her first time leading an LET event and she now sits two strokes clear of Charley Hull, who bogeyed her last hole, the par-four ninth, after driving into the trees.

A Word from The Captain So Far This Year


Well who would have believed that time can go so quickly?
Has it really been over three months since Junior Captain Jack, Lady Captain Paula and myself, all teed off for our drive in? Well yes it has and we all have so much to be thankful to the wonderful membership of Shifnal Golf Club for.
From the first day of competitive action between The Captain’s and The Presidents, the evening of The Hail and Farewell, right through to our recent Captain’s Days and more recently the very successful Senior Mixed Open.
I think we are all running out of superlatives when mentioning just how supportive the membership of Shifnal Golf Club is towards all of us. A very big thank-you to you all. Doesn’t sound much, but it is very heartfelt and a small start.
A great time was had by Junior Captain Jack, Senior Captain Dave Shannon, together with Jack’s Dad, Simon and I, when playing in the Cognac Trophy at Kington in June. We were able to find the only dry course in the country to play on, even if we didn’t bring any bottles home with us ;-)
Huge congratulations to The Juniors of Shifnal, who under the guidance of Kathy, Shirley, Oliver and a host of others, appear to keep going from strength to strength.
Juniors, Ladies, Gents and both Senior Ladies and Gents friendly matches continue to be exactly what they should be – friendly matches, will all members welcome to join in. Just please put your name down.
At a more competitive level, congratulations to all the players who represented us so valiantly in The Daily Mail National Club Competition– The final next year lads?
They say you can’t keep a good man, or lady for that matter down, so huge congratulations to recent Past Captains’ Angela Guy and Bob Pace on your recent hole in ones. Angela’s ace came on Lady Captains day, with Bob’s during the Vets Cup, when yours truly was marking his card.
I must be a lucky card marker as I also have the pleasure of playing with Sandra and marking the card of Judy Mills and Martyn Brown when they won the Grace Elizabeth cup with a stunning 64.
So many highlights of a fantastic three months, culminating in a brilliant Captain’s weekend. Starting with a rather damp, but very enjoyable shotgun with our Pro Neil on the Saturday morning, through to the most wonderful evening of food and entertainment – a massive thanks to Ann Peters for bringing it all together on the Saturday, finishing with a truly memorable day on Sunday.
Sincere apologies to all the people, places and events not mentioned, however with The Shropshire Star, The Senior County Dinner, The Senior Past Captain’s Match v Devon, Matlock Past Captains Match and so many more, I’m running out of space.
A personal thank you to all committee and Board members, Chairman Paul, Pro Shop, Catering and a first class Vice Captain in Frank, for making a very special year, very very special.

A Star In The Making Here at Shifnal!


Jack Edwards, Junior member, age just 11, a few weeks ago played at the The Vale on the Lakes course in the Wales U13 regional event. He scored 40 points to win the boys section which meant he won the boys event to qualify him in the Wales U13 national final in July at Celtic Manor on the twenty twenty course.
We asked him Mum for a few words on his background and experience to date:
"Jack was obsessed with balls, bats and I remember the first time he hit a golf ball about 4, it was straight. My husband thought it was normal. We took him to the David and Angela (Guy) sessions on Fridays when he was 5. His dad was helping out too. Then on the third session Chris praised two lads about 12yrs old but forgot to give his own son praise. Jack cried all the way home as he could hit it further than the boys and his daddy hadnt said well done. Jack refused to play golf again. He then got talent spotted for tennis and golf was left well alone. I saw an advert about the peewees from Mike Roberts so entered him. Jack was 7. We made him practise for a few days before. He came 3rd. So then his dad realised finally he had some natural talent. He now is playing off 15 with a target of 12 this year. So this year tennis is taking a back seat (number 1 in Staffs, so good place to stop) and Jack is now obsessed with golf. Last year he had a record nett score at manchester portal U18 open for Lee Westwood Golf School.
So to the Vale Lakes - Jack was really nervous. He knew he could do well as had played to 7 the day before on the practice round. It was off yellow tees and stableford. Jack was in a group with 2 welsh national players for U13. Then it was delayed by 2 hours due to fog. By that time the boys were over their nerves and were all getting on. Jack had an awesome 24 points and had lots of opportunities for birdie putts. Then he had a unlucky hole clipped a stone and the ball rolled back into the water. He then hit a poor tee shot and went in the water again. Nearly in tears you could see him trying to stay calm. He chipped the ball next to flag and you could see the relief. Then his battery on his trolley literally blew up. He had to push his trolley on the steepest part of the course. Counted his scores and realised he was still in it. We were really impressed with his attitude.16 points on back 9. So he is now in U13 final in July at Celtic Manor twenty twenty course and won a night for his parents in the 5 star hotel as well!!.
Good Luck Jack!!

Daily Mail Club Competition - THE LAST 120 - Round 5


At this stage in the competition, there were very few ‘local’ clubs for Shifnal to be drawn against. Those surviving being Hawkstone Park, Llanymynech and Swindon GC; we would then have to travel to, or receive clubs from further afield. The two former courses were well known to most of the squad but Swindon was something of a mystery. As fate would have it, we were drawn away (groan….) to Swindon. Having selected the team and given that Swindon GC was an unknown quantity, the players demonstrated their commitment to the cause by travelling over to Swindon and playing a practice round to gain some kind of familiarity (some of the team went back twice!!!).
For those who have not visited Swindon, I can highly recommend it as a strong test of golfing ability and a very picturesque course, which appears to be cut out of the natural (and abundant) woodland countryside. The greens are very similar to our own in cut, texture and pace; however overall, they are a slightly smaller target to aim for, with far greater undulations. Course Knowledge on this particular track is worth at least a couple of holes to the home side. Densely tree lined fairways with holes shaped so as to preclude the use of the driver (with any reasonable degree of safety or certainty) for all but two or three holes.
Some Shifnal ‘squad’ members, with very low handicaps, were unavailable for this match for various reasons, which in truth, helped with team selection. Had all players been available, the dilemma would have been ‘do we select a side with very low handicaps, which would probably mean giving shots to the opponents on their own course, or select slightly higher handicap players, to try to offset this possibility’. It’s not easy……
However the side chosen for this fixture was Tom Collins (4) Chris Thompson (4) Steve Wilson (5) Steve Hawke (6) and Jon Jarvis (8).
First up was Tom (available because league cricket is not played on Sunday’s….) who went about his business with a brand new set of clubs and a bag full of confidence from having performed well in his practice round. Tom was matched against a fellow, but younger 5 handicapper, soon began to assert his authority, turning into the back 9 ahead and closing out the game on the 15th to win 3 and 2. First blood to Shifnal. Next up was Steve Hawke, who so far had a 100% record from his first three matches – hopes were high.
The Swindon team contained two former ‘assistant’ professional golfers who have now taken up alternative employment. However both players were highly competent and now playing off a 3 handicap…..  Steve was drawn against one of these players and although receiving 3 strokes, found the challenge tough and eventually succumbed 2 and 1. A valiant effort.
Match score one all.
A first appearance in the competition was made by Chris Thompson. It may have been noticed by the membership (it has been by the handicap committee….) that Chris has been consistently returning great scores in our club events. This form was carried over to Swindon where he returned a 1 over par score in his practice round and, even though giving 5 shots to his 9 handicap Swindon opponent, ran out a highly impressive 4 and 3 winner. Thus edging Shifnal closer to the next round with the match score standing at 2:1 in our favour. Just a half from one of the last two games would force a play off.
Jon Jarvis faced up against the other ‘ex pro’ and while receiving 5 shots, found himself trying to hang on to his opponents shirt tails, to try to make use of his shots (3 of which came in the middle of the back 9). One down after seven holes became four down after 10 as the Swindon captain made 3 birdies in a row. Painful. Jon got it back to 2 down after 14 but could not sustain the fight back and went down 3 and 2; match all square at 2 all.
Last up was Steve Wilson who, having to give 1 shot to his opposition (which came on hole 12) was all square after 9 and looking good to get something out of the match. A run of three winning holes from the 12th put the Swindon player three up with four to play and Steve had to dig deep. He won the 15th and 16th to get back to one down but the Swindon tee shot found the safe side of the green on the tricky par three 17th, to secure a par and victory for the home side. Swindon winning by the match by a score of 3 : 2.
In summary, it was a great effort throughout the competition by the Shifnal representatives (of which there were 10 in all) to get into the 5th round. My thanks go to all the players and to the club membership at large who have supported us throughout this event. Next year perhaps?.......

A Senior Star Shows the Young Guns How Its Done!!


The Shifnal Golf Club Veterans Cup showed last week that you do not need to be in your 20's 30's or even 40's to be at the very top of your game. Just last week at Wentworth the infamous Miguel Jiminez, following his 10th European Ace in 25 years stated:-
“It’s very prolific this year, over the last few months,” said the Spaniard. “You get the right distance, the right club, hit a good shot and that’s the ingredients you need to make a hole in one!! And then there's Bob Pace of Shifnal, who achieved a hole in one just a week later on the 10th at "Shropshires Finest" his comments:-
"It was nice to go from 3 over par standing on the 10th tee to level when walking to the 11th. As it was the Vets Cup, I didn’t really pick up the flight of the ball because of failing eyesight, but fortunately the Captain was able to give me a running commentary on the ball’s journey to the hole. He was impressed by the shot, but that might have been the thought of the whisky he decided I was going to buy! I always thought that everyone would be very congratulatory about the hole in one, but lots of my “friends” have been taking the micky because I used a driver for the shot. But it did go in!"
. . . Indeed Bob, but have any of your "friends" got a very rare nice Boss Hole In One watch to show off next time they are down the club? I dont think so . . Well Done Bob!!

Renewable Energy and Barns Roof Project Now Complete


Following an investment of approximately £200,000, the installation of a biomass boiler, 80 solar panels and major refurbishment of the barn roofs has now been completed.
The commitment to renewable energy has already resulted in saving over 60 tonnes of CO2 emissions and the solar panels are estimated to produce 20% of our electricity requirements. As a result of Government subsidies for these schemes, savings generated by the renewable energy installations are on target to reach £23,000 per annum meaning that the pay-back period for these will be approximately 5 years.
The barn roof work was completed on time despite extra challenges being faced once the old tiles had been removed. This refurbishment can be seen as an important contribution to preserving the structure and fabric of our listed buildings.
A more detailed account of these projects can be found in the Members Area.

Daily Mail Club Competition - ITS GETTING TOUGHER- Round 4


Wharton Park brought a team of varying handicaps to Shifnal for the fourth round of the Mail on Sunday competition; two players off 2, a 7, 9 and 14 handicapper completed their line-up. Shifnal were represented by Ed Peters (0), Neil Bird (3), Steve Wilson (4), Ben Gilg (5) and Steve Hawke (6).
Once again the Bird Man led the team out and unfortunately for him, was drawn against the 14 handicapper and so giving 11 shots; a tough task, even on your own track. The leading two-ball quickly closed in on the regular playing field of 4 balls and, while not being called through, began to feel the frustration of waiting to play shots. The mood of our lead man was not helped by the fact his opponent was matching him stroke for stroke and therefore, by virtue of the shot difference, was struggling to stay in contention. Unfortunately a course marshal had to be deployed to request an increase in the speed of play of a four ball, who had lost two holes on the general playing field. A different tale entirely as opposed to our last home match……. Speed of play did pick up, however after a gallant fight back the first game was eventually lost 2 down.
Next out was Steve Hawke, who is building a reputation as a gritty match player and the last thing his opponent would have wanted to do was to give an in form Steve, 4 shots on home soil. Steve, pictured LEFT - setting the ball on its way to the hole on the second – traded blows and turned into the back nine 1 up, before closing the match out on the 16th to win 3 and 2. The first points on the board for the home team and the match score level at 1 point each.
Steve Wilson had to give 5 shots and again he found this a big test, being down for most of the match. Indeed he had to chip in on the 16th to keep the match alive and went onto the 17th tee 2 down. A solid par for Steve won the hole and our opposition were beginning to find out what a hard finishing stretch our course offers. After crunching a drive down the middle, the Wharton player pulled his ball out of bounds and a bogey 5 was enough for Steve to half the game. Match score: 1 ½ each.
The normally reliable Ben Gilg came up against a quality player and although receiving 3 shots, found the oppositions captain too hot to handle and went down 3 and 2. This meant that Shifnal had to win the last pairing to level the scores at 2 ½ each and force a play-off. Ed Peters was our last man and, unusually, Ed was having trouble finding the fairways. His 7 handicap opponent was taking full advantage of this lapse and kept his nose in front for 16 holes. Finally, on the 17th Ed managed to level the game and the pair stood on the 18th tee all square. Two wayward tee shots further heightened the tension, with one being blocked out by the ‘7 stump’ tree on the right and the other hidden behind the left elbow. Both played down the right hand side and had to chip, from the rough, to the green. Ed made it to about 12 feet, while the other chap knocked it on to around 20 foot. Given the state of the match, we all knew Ed had to make his putt, assuming his opponent had two putts for a 5 and a probable half, therefore winning the match for his team. Gulp. The 20 foot putt was tentative and he left himself around 3 feet. Ed was bold and went for hole, sliding it by to about 4 feet past the cup. He made the return and the small crowd surrounding the 18th, held their collective breath, to watch the ‘final’ stroke. Nerves are a terrible thing…. Tension pulled the clubface and the putt was missed, ensuring the match was tied and required a sudden death play-off to separate the teams!
The small crowd became a little larger and we all marched off down the first (19th) to cheer on our respective champion. Sadly is seemed that the missed putt on 18, had sapped all confidence from the Wharton player and Ed, to the delight of the home team, won the first play-off hole. This sent Shifnal GC into the next round and become one of only 128 teams still left in the competition. We have been drawn away against Swindon GC in the next round on Sunday 31st May. Getting into the last 64 would be fantastic…….

Daily Mail Club Competition - Can they keep going? - Round 3


After two convincing wins, Shifnal GC moved into the 3rd round of this National and prestigious Team golf competition. Drawn away against local rivals Worfield was always going to be a tough task and the team selected to represent our club was: Ian Jenner (1), Steve Hawke (6), Tom Collins (5), Ben Gilg (5) and John Bennett (5).

Worfield were genial host and greeted the Shifnal team by providing bacon rolls on arrival and extending courtesy to utilise the practice facilities. Our team was led by Ben Gilg on this occasion and after the blind draw was made, it became apparent that to progress into the next round was going to take a lot of skill and determination. Steve Hawke was matched up against another 6 handicapper and he was the only Shifnal player not having to give shots to the opponents…..

Ian Jenner led the team out and was soon up against it. Having to give 6 shots became a challenge ‘early doors’ and playing on greens which were noticeably quicker and harder than our course, Ian turned the front 9 being four down. A valiant fight back ensued but it was not quite enough as Worfield took the match on the 18th to win 1 up. Second out was Steve Hawke and playing ‘off the stick’ ensured an even competition. Steve was down for most of the round and was finding it tough to get back onto level terms. However, back on level terms he was by the 17th and managed to win the 18th to place the first Shifnal point on the board. Our obligatory ‘leftie’ (every team should have one!!) Tom Collins was giving 7 shots to his opponent and while 1 down after 7, turned on the class to win 6 holes in a row running out a comfortable 5 and 4 winner. Next up was ‘The Gilg’ and Ben had to concede 5 shots. As in the preceding game, Shifnal found it almost impossible to take a lead and on reaching the 18th, Ben was one down and it seemed likely that Worfield would take the spoils to level the overall match score to 2 all. With true grit, Ben dug deep and managed to win the last and secure the half, which meant that the overall score was 2 ½ to 1 ½ and so Shifnal were guaranteed of at least a play off. Our last man out was John Bennett. An exceptionally experienced match player, whose golfing skills are only surpassed by his strong sense of humour…… We all had faith. Despite having to give away 6 shots, John dominated his opposition, closing out his match on the 13th to record a 5 and 4 winning margin to send Shifnal into round 4 with a 3 ½ to 1 ½ score line.

Shifnal have been drawn at home to play against Wharton Park Golf Club (from Worcester) on Sunday 10th May 2015. First tee 12:00 hrs. All support most welcome. For general information, the first ‘Mail on Sunday’ report stated that this competition was the largest club team competition in the world (authority: Nick Peters) and so to give a scale and measure of achievement so far, Round 1 had over 2050 teams registered. Round 2 became 1024 teams. Round 3 had 512 teams competing and Round 4 has 256 teams pitted against each other. Wouldn’t it be great for the club to get into the last 100……

Peter Leith Scores a 40!


There was lots of cheering and clapping at Shifnal Golf Club this week when a member of staff recorded a record score of 40!!!
Peter Leath, the Head Greenkeeper at Shifnal Golf Club, this week celebrated 40 years of Greenkeeping.
To celebrate the event, many of the Staff and Members gathered together for an informal presentation ceremony in the beautiful old listed building which is the Club's lounge and restaurant.
The Captain Colin Wall and Chairman of Greens Denzil Martin are seen presenting Peter with an engraved decanter and crystal glasses.
Peter recalls his start at the Club in 1975 - when The Bay City Rollers were top of the Hit Parade with Bye Bye Baby! He says, " I left school in the Easter of that year. I had no qualifications but I was a sort of Assistant Pro at Lilleshall Golf Club earning £7 per week whilst at school. I wanted to get on so I went over to Shifnal Golf Club and said that I wanted to learn to be a Greenkeeper". He goes on "I was interviewed by the Club Secretary, David Humphrey-Priestly-Martin and the then Head Greenkeeper, Billy Sprowell - affectionately known as Screw Neck!!"
"They offered me a job as a trainee starting on £16.50 per week and I thought I was rich" he adds.
The Captain, Colin Wall, added that "Peter is probably one of the longest serving and experienced Greenkeepers in the County and it is down to his skill, dedication and passion that the Golf Course is such a beautiful place to visit and play". Peter's final comment was " I don't think I can quite manage another 40 years!"

Juniors Day - A Great Success


Thanks go out to everyone involved in helping as well as taking part in the Juniors Day, it was a great success and enjoyed by so many.

A total of £1313.46 was raised for the Junior Section. The income was due as follows:
Entry Fees £408
Raffle £416.50
Refreshments £258.96
Driving the 10th Green £230

It was a day of great Teamwork. The Desk was managed by Roy Steventon in the morning and Jean Leith and Ann Holden in the afternoon Junior Captain Jack Tracey and his father Simon ran the competition on the10th Green

Kathy James ran the refreshments in the Milennium Hut and had lots of donations of cakes from Junior's parents and Ladies of the Golf Club.

The format was Texas Scramble with any combination of Teams ie Men, Ladies, Mixed, and Juniors with Nearest the Pin on the 7th and 13th and Longest Drive on the 15th.

The sun shone all day and thanks again to everyone both for the support of playing the competition, donations of Raffle prizes and food.

Kathy will now be able to order shirts and sweaters for our handicap team in time for the new season and buy some much needed equipment for our coaching sessions.

Daily Mail Club Competition - Keeps Getting Better


Shifnal were drawn at home for the second round of the competition against Brookfield GC from Nantwich, Cheshire. As all who play competitive golf will agree, a home draw is ordinarily a big advantage (perhaps more so for courses which have numerous ‘blind holes’).
The tricky factor of a home tie though - unless like our previous opposition, the Shropshire, you are lucky enough to have 27 holes at your disposal to juggle with - is to find a suitable tee time (or 5 tee times under this format) to try to minimise the impact to club members, of 5 singles matches playing between (or through) groups playing in four balls.
Consideration also has to be given to the distance the opposition has to travel and finally, given the time of year, recognising how short the evenings are in the winter months.
So an early start would be inconsiderate given Brookfield were coming from Cheshire, a late start (and bad weather) may preclude matches from finishing due to poor light and thus lose home advantage and a mid morning slot would cause disruption to most of the membership.
Who would organise competitive club matches? The longer evenings are not far away now….......
However, it is of great credit to the Shifnal membership, that all who came into close contact with the matches not only enthusiastically enquired as to the state of the games but also – to a man – stood aside and waived the matches through.
This is something the Brookfield team made a great play of back in the clubhouse, remarking on how generous and understanding the Shifnal membership is.
Take a bow gentlemen……. And many Thanks from the ‘Team’.
As in the first round, the two teams were evenly matched, with the Brookfield handicaps ranging from two (2) to six (6).
The Shifnal team was unchanged from their first round success: Neil Bird (3), Steve Wilson (4), Jon Jarvis (8), Ben Gilg (5) and Ian -‘the finisher’- Jenner (1).

Once again the Birdman led the team out and was giving one shot to his opponent. This was a tough encounter with both players taking a lead in the game but neither going more than one hole up. Finally it finished all square, which represented a fair result. Conversely, Steve Wilson faced a different challenge and was never up in his match. Giving 2 shots, Steve struggled to get a toe hold into the game but finally made it back to all square stood on the 18th tee. After playing four shots, Steve made a four foot put for bogey and Brookfield has a three footer to win the match. This he duly missed and Shifnal were let of the hook gaining another half. Jon Jarvis received 3 shots in his game and after being one down after five holes, utilised his shots and turned 2 up after nine, closing the game on the 15th to win 4 & 3. Following closely behind, Ben Gilg, receiving 2 shots, was enjoying similar success. His long driving and accurate short iron play, began to take its toll on his opponent and Ben too, finished his game on the 15th to win 4 & 3. This win took the Shifnal team total to 3 points, passing the 2 ½ point mark which would necessitate a play off. At the back of the field our ‘finisher’, Ian Jenner, was giving one shot to the Brookfield club Captain and Head green keeper. This was always going to be tight match but home advantage prevailed and Ian took the match on the last to realise a 4:1 victory to Shifnal.
There were over 1600 teams at the start, then 800 and now this result takes Shifnal into the last 400.
More to follow…….

Daily Mail Club Competition Update


We are reliably informed (by the Club Steward - Nick) that the Mail on Sunday Club Competition is the largest club competition in the world, with over 1600 clubs taking part across England.
There are two sections: Foursomes and a Team event.
Given the size of the competition, there are 9 rounds to get through to the final stages and the time lines for each round are exceptionally tight.

Shifnal representation in the foursomes was made by our current Willoughby Champions (Richard Bridgewood and Ian Fenn). Unfortunately our chaps were drawn away at Patshull and came up against a pair who made 4 birdies and an Eagle between them to win the match 2 & 1 in the first round.

The format for the Team Event is singles (full handicap difference) match play; the Team consists of 5 players.

In the first round Shifnal were drawn away against The Shropshire and the matching of the pairs was evenly placed (the match up’s are made under ‘blind draw’ conditions). Shifnal GC was represented by Neil Bird (3) Ben Gilg (5) Steve Wilson (4) Jon Jarvis (8) and Ian Jenner(1).

The conditions were reasonable given the time of year but the ground underfoot was testing. Indeed the match was nearly called off before it started because the starter would not let the matched go out, due to the fact that none of the Shifnal players had ‘hedgehog’ tyres on their trolley’s (note to all’ this is something that is required when playing the Shropshire in the winter!). Shifnal had not been informed of this requirement and so it was suggested that the Shropshire should lose home advantage and the match played at Shifnal. Amazingly, dispensation was then granted to use normal tyres and the balls were teed up!.....

First out and playing against a 5 handicapper (giving 2), the Birdman came firing out of the blocks and gave the team the encouraging start it needed by winning convincingly, to put the first point on the board. Getting 1 shot and having been 4 down at the turn, Ben Gilg fought hard to bring the match back to one by the 16th but unfortunately could not continue his push and lost on the 17th. Steve Wilson had to give 7 shots to his opponent and found it a challenge being behind for most of the round. Finally he drew level on the 17th and managed to gain a half. Jon Jarvis was matched against an 8 handicapper and spent most of his round being one or two down. This match again became all square on the 17th only to be lost (from a Shifnal perspective) on the 18th. With the match score standing at 2 and a ½ to 1 and a ½ in favour of the Shropshire, Ian Jenner needed to win his game to force a play off. Ian was giving 4 shots to his opponent who was the Shropshire club matchplay scratch champion last year and amazingly pulled of the required victory. A play off ensued.

It’s quite good fun being part of 20 or so spectators trudging down the first to cheer on your representative, particularly if you’ve just spent the best part of 4 hours in the cold, wind and rain……
I think it’s fair to say that all spectators wanted an early result! - Ian did not disappoint.
A ripping drive down the first left only 76 yards to the flag, to which Ian pitched his ball to approximately 6 foot. Having missed the green with his second shot, the Shropshire made a great ‘up and down’ to save par. Cool as a cucumber, Ian stroked the ball into the cup to make Birdie and send Shifnal into the second round. The Shropshire team became a little warmer after that…..

Second round match: Shifnal drawn at home to Brookfield GC from Chester; report to follow.

Proud Moment for Two Of Our Junior Girls


Last week at Worfield Golf Club saw a very pround moment for, not one, but two of our Junior girls.

Firstly Molly Barker received her Colours for the County Junior Team - Well Done Molly . .

. . and then Harriet Allsebrook (yes, Neil and Marias daughter) received her Full Colours for the County First Team - Well Done Harriet, remember she is just 16 yrs old. Indeed it was only last month she received her full school golf colours at Wellington College, Berkshire. Many of you may know that she is now in full recovery following her foot surgery last year and very much looking forward to a successful 2015. Indeed there is a rich vein of talent currently running through our Juniors at the moment. We should be proud.

Images show both girls receiveing their respective colours from the Lady President of Shropshire Golf Janet Sadler.

State Of The Art Greens Mower On Way To Shifnal


Thanks to approval by the board Shifnal Golf Club is about to become the proud owner of a Greenmaster 3150 Greens Mower meaning we will be better placed to increase cutting and rolling on the greens this year which will hopefully improve trueness and smoothness of surfaces. Whilst the pace of the greens is important to all of us in golf, a true, smooth and healthy sward is much more important.

This is also a sign of not only the greens being healthier but also our financial abiity in investing for the future of the course, the club and, its members.

Member Assistance Request For Golf Course

Some Members regularly do work which largely goes unnoticed throughout the year. For example, the Gardening Club work tirelessly and quietly to tidy, clear and plant all sorts around the Course. Graham Roberts, John Clayton and several others work quietly away throughout the year to help make the Course more pleasant and enjoyable for others. However, we could do with a small team or list of Members who might care to help us out around the Course - whether it be collecting dead branches, staking trees, tidying around bunkers and so on. If you feel you could spare a few hours once in a while or on a regular basis perhaps you would be kind enough to get in touch with me or Peter Leath - our Head Greenkeeper. You may want to organise a small team to work on a project such as pathways around the 7th, repairing or rebuilding the drainage on the 5th tee or looking at the replacement of the Ladies Tee on the 5th to a more lady friendly position! We are looking to build a new single toilet with washbasin to replace the portacabin loo on the 8th. The portaloo costs us approx £1800 per year. I would like to see a greater array of hydrangeas on the far side of the pool on the 6th - it would make a lovely backdrop. The area at the back of the 17th is pretty terrible. If we could get agreement from the owner for Members to clear all the debris from the area around the folly, it would make a great backdrop to the 17th. We'll be getting like Augusta!!! Any support we can get to improve our Course, whether it be moral, physical or even financial, would be gratefully accepted. Food for thought to be able to give a bit back.

Jean Leith and Ann Holden's 3,000 Mile Trip to Italy - in a Fiat 500

Jean Leith and Ann Holden have not long returned from the trip of a lifetime 3,300 miles in a Fiat 500 travelling down through Eastern France and then across Italy to Venice where Ann's son lives with his family.

They spent some time with them and then came back along the south of France, up to Lady Vice Captain - Paula Rushton's place outside Toulouse; they spent a few days with her and then made their way gradually up to Jeans cousin in Normandy for a few days. The final leg back along to the Channel Tunnel and home.

Whilst staying in Venice, they went to Rome for 3 days, had a tour of the Vatican and did some sightseeing around Rome. They had some interesting experiences and met some interesting people along the way. Some had very little or no English at all but communication wasn't too difficult.

"A lot of people along the way seemed to find it amazing that we did this trip at all. I think it's because of our age - 2 old birds can do THAT. Nobody actually said that but ......" Said Jean

The sample photographs include a break-stop in Grenoble

The Impressive town walls of Sirmione (Lake Garda)

The final one outside a delightful bar in Nice

"Bravo" and "Complimenti" Girls !! Thats a bit of French and Italian.


Shifnal Chronicle Cup Team Win at Wrekin!

Our Chronicle Cup Team (Winners of the SGC Chronicle Cup earlier in the year -handicap 10-28) competed at Wrekin Golf Club against 23 other local teams.

The team comprising of David Pittaway, Mike Neylan, Ben Maguire and Wally Gregory won the event with a stableford score of 103 points (3 from 4 scores counted) and Dave Pittaway was the individual winner with a score of 39 points.

Well Done Lads!! Pictured with Shifnal's Mike Roberts, County President.

Captains Charity Raises Over £10,500!!!

At our Captains Drive In way back at the end of March we announced that our chosen charity was the Severn Hospice based in Telford. That same day, following the announcement of our choice we were presented with a cheque from a member for £200 “to start your charity fundraising”, and that kind gesture set the tone for members generosity over the next few months.
We have held charity coffee mornings, raffles, Captain & Professional challenges and, thanks to support from John Richards a golf event with many former Wolves players who played in the 1974 League Cup final, this event alone raised almost £1,900.
Members have provided many prizes for raffles throughout the year and some excellent items for an online auction that we ran for the first time, this exceeded our expectation with many members participating in a healthy bidding competition that raised almost £1,400.
Our charity golf day on Sunday 24 August was very well supported with over 200 players, members and visitors, generously buying raffle and tombola tickets and entering in a competition on the 10th tee for the use of a Honda car for a weekend supplied by J.T.Hughes, thanks to Neil Allsebrook for spending the whole day there selling tickets and providing refreshments. Prizes were supplied by many local golf clubs, Nick & Ann Peters and members donations.
The traders in Shifnal and surrounding areas have also been very supportive with donations and excellent raffle and auction prizes as have our suppliers. Marstons our beer suppliers asked about support to the Hospice for any equipment that is needed and they have given £1,700 towards electric rise and recline chairs, our thanks to Rod Grainger for his initiative in this matter.
We presented an intrim cheque of £8,000 to John Fairclough, Vice Chairman of the Trustees of the Severn Hospice on Sunday evening.  We can now however confirm that the final amount we are able to donate to the hospice is £10,500, this does not include the kind donation from Marstons.
None of this fundraising would have happened without the support of you, our members and on behalf of the Hospice, Judy Mills, Lady Captain, Aaron Stanton Junior Captain and myself David Butler many, many thanks.

PGA Golf Bonanza at Shifnal - 23rd September 2014

On Monday 22nd September it was the Midlands PGA Pro-Am and on Tuesday 23rd September Shifnal are the proud hosts to The PGA Midland Professionals Championships, the last event of the PGA Order of Merit, the winner of which will next year be taking part in the BMW Open at Wentworth. Some big names are on display (including our own Oliver Clews #comeonollie) and if Monday is anything to go by (Andrew Cheese of Sutton Golf Club) was 9 under par - then we have a great day ahead. For live scores of the day go here and please tune into our twitter (opposite) for news as it happens. Why not take the opportunity now and follow our twitter to get live news from Shifnal Golf Club- its real easy!

The Captains Charity- THE Auction of The Year!!

This year the Captains' of Shifnal (Dave Butler, Judy Mills and Aaraon Stanton) have chosen the Severn Hospice as their charity. The Hospice relies entirely on charitable donations and provides care and support for local people, and their families, living with incurable illnesses at a most difficult time. This coming Charity Weekend of 23/24 August is the culmination of the Captain's efforts to raise money for this worthy cause and we hope members will support one final push to provide as much financial support to the Hospice as possible.


Manchester United VIP tickets - £250
Wallaby Experience at Lakeside Plant & Garden Centre - £100
Derek Dougan Framed Authenitcated and Signed Photographs -£60
Race Night at Monmore Green, for up to 10 people - £250
4 Course Meal for 4 people cooked in your own home by Mark Strong of Severn Restaurant – £86
Hair makeover including cut, colour and blow dry, donated by Ashley Gamble of Shifnal – £105
One hour photo session framed picture of your choice by De La Motte Photography – £65
Bloxwich GC Fourball - £60
Ingestre Park GC Fourball - £80
Halesowen GC Fourball – £52
Shrewsbury GC Fourball – £60
South Staffs GC Fourball - £75
Trentham Park GC Fourball - £75
The Shropshire GC Fourball – £40

TOTAL BIDS £1363.00 On behalf of the Captains (David, Judy and Aaron) A big thank-you to everyone who took part in such a valuable, fun and worthwhile project.

Golf Monthly Review 12th August 2014 - How Did We Do?

Last week we had a visit from the UK's leading Golf Magazine - Golf Monthly.

Sub Editor Jez Ellwood (a 5 handicapper of course) was given the enviable task of checking out some leading courses in Shropshire and in the space of just 48 hours visited and played Hawkestone Park, Shrewsbury GC and ourselves at Shifnal (Shropshires Finest!)
The hounours were shared over 18 holes between Jez partnering our Captain Dave Butler against Chairman Paul Miller and Nick Evans and from comments made during the round it sounds like he loved the course

Afterwards Anne laid on a superb meal during which he, surprisingly, commented on how unusual it was to receive such hospitality - indeed he rarely enjoys a meal afterwards and often plays the courses alone.

All in all a first class and professional job in entertaining the UK's leading golf media with good food, fine wine and excellent golf!! Now keep your eye out for that review sometime in November - we will keep you posted.

Lady Captain's Update 9th August 2014 - Judy Mills

I cannot believe how quickly my year is going – nearly six months have gone by and such a lot has gone on.
It began with the Drive In – a fantastic day for Captain, David Butler, myself and Junior Captain, Aaron Stanton.  It was great to see so many people there including my two grandchildren who I didn’t know were coming.   The Drive In was followed by the Hail and Farewell Dinner attended by 90 people which was very enjoyable.  David and I had arranged a surprise guest speaker, Dougie Parker, who had us all in fits of laughter.
The first event of my year was the Charity Coffee Morning – this included various stalls and a hair demonstration by Ashley Gamble of Shifnal.  We had a draw for a make over and this was won by Val Davies.  Val was such a great sport – in front of a room full of ladies she had her hair cut and styled by Ashley – and she loved the transformation.  Ashley also cut and styled some of our other ladies hair.  I would like to thank everyone who donated goods for the stalls and helped and to those who attended.  We raised £1,200 for the joint Captains’ Charity – Severn Hospice.
Lady Captain’s Day in June will be unforgettable.  I was greeted at the bottom of the drive by Lady Vice Paula, blindfolded and taken in a buggy over the course.  Blind fold removed and I was on the 13th tee where I was met by the Ladies Committee with champagne, salmon and caviar bellinis.  There also on the pool was my gift from the Ladies Committee – the duck house!  The ladies told me that in typical ladies’ style once Peter Leith had installed the duck house the night before – he had to go back on the water and move it as it “wasn’t quite in the right position”.   The day that followed for me was fantastic – 80 ladies played in the morning, followed by lunch with the ladies and twelve Past Lady Captains.  We then had a mixed competition in the afternoon followed by a meal and prize presentation – a truly wonderful day.
We have had two Ladies Opens which have been very successful and we are looking forward to our Ladies Invitation in September.
 A few weeks ago 44 ladies went to Mottram Hall for our Away Break – the weather was great as was the golf.
We are now looking forward to the Mixed Texas Scramble during the Festival of Golf Week and also to the Captains’ Charity Weekend which both David, Aaron and myself hope that everyone will support.
I would like to thank everyone who has supported me in the last six months of my captaincy and I am looking forward very much to the next six months. New Picis for Ladies Section Here

Greens Update 12th July 2014 - Denzil Martin

Well,what a turnaround In the weather. 3 Weeks ago it was all about rain and flooding, now it's about sunshine and scorching! Anyway, here is a bit of an update on the Course.

Weeds on the Fairways
You will have seen an excess of weeds in general and Clover in particular on the Fairways during the past month. They are to be treated shortly but at a cost of over £800!

Tree Down!
You will have noticed one of the oak trees at the corner of the 12th has come down. I hear our Captain is well pleased as it gave him some grief when he was playing his Captain/Pro Match against myself and Dave Morgan!
Peter Leith, our Head Greenkeeper had brought it to the attention of the tree surgeon but the Surgeon felt it was ok. You can never be too careful can you? At least nobody was hurt.

Speed on the Driveway
Courtesy and Care - need one say anymore! Please, let's all look to our speed when we go up and down the driveway.

Course Bunkers and Sand
Many bunkers have been refilled with sand. You may feel some of the bunkers are over sanded - it will settle down - a few showers and lots of raking and we'll soon be saying there's not enough sand. PS one delivery of sand costs us £1000!

With all the recent heavy traffic and numbers of visitors, divots are once again an issue. PLEASE, don't give up on the great work many members are currently doing to keep them looking good.

Out of Bounds Markers
OOB markers are to be made more prominent to the left of the 14th Fairway and at the back of the 17th Green.
A white line is to be painted at the back of the 18th ( along the road) to delineate OOB.
Please note that the pathway to the First Tee is now out of bounds when you are playing the 2nd ( or 4th!!! ). New white lines are to be laid down as indicators.

Disease Treatment on the Greens for Anthracnose
The Greens are being treated for anthracnose nose ( Colletotrichum Cereale for the Latin scholars out there! ).
Anthracnose, a disease which can destroy the turf, occurs in dry warm conditions where there is, amongst other things, a lack of good irrigation and heavy traffic. The disease is stress induced ( which is why I think I have a touch of it!!! ). Prevention can be achieved by introducing good agronomic practices as we do here at Shifnal. We maintain satisfactory aeration processes, top dress regularly and we water by hand during the day when conditions demand it. We also water the Greens every night for 2 minutes at 8pm, midnight and 4am.
Nevertheless, the disease can still catch us out so, to be absolutely certain, we also chemically treat the Greens. Unfortunately, it costs us 800 pounds!

Greens Speeds
Well, whilst we have raised the cut a few weeks ago from 3.5 mm to 4 mm, we have also commenced Cut and Roll on the same day. It's a bit more time consuming and can be detrimental in hot dry weather so we shall keep a close eye on the turf!
Greens Speeds as of yesterday, Friday 11th July at 12 noon were as follows :

2nd Green 9' 7 1/2" - 4th Green 11' 6" - 9th Green 11' 10" - 18th Green 10' 00" - Average Greens Speeds 10' 9"

4 readings ( 12 ball rolls ) are taken from each Green. Bear in mind that we roll the balls in one direction and then reverse it and it is not always possible to find a truly flat area on every Green. Therefore, for example, when testing the 4th on the upper layer, the measurement across the Green in the direction of the First Tee is only 6' 10" whereas the measurement in the direction of the 5th Tee is 18' 00" !!! This gives an average on the top half of 12' 5"!! On the lower level of the Green near the entrance to it the respective speeds are 8' 8" and
12' 6" giving an average of 10' 7". Put the 2 together ( 12' 5" and 10' 7" ) and the overall average for the Green is 11' 6". Just bear it in mind when you are looking at your direction of putt!
Fairly obvious info I know, but for those of us still learning the game.........

Enjoy your golf

Biomass Boiler Update - Mike Stuckey and Ken White 17th June 2014

You may remember that prior to the AGM we informed you of our investigations into Biomass Boilers.  We also gave a brief overview during the AGM and have subsequently made a couple of presentations to a sample of the Membership to explain the details of this significant project.  Below is a further update of the project and the current status:
Biomass boilers burn wood pellets  and are largely Carbon neutral and because of this the Government is offering significant long term incentives for businesses to replace Carbon polluting heating systems such as our current Fuel Oil heating system which is housed in the cellars of the House.  We calculate that the new boiler will save over 1100 tonnes of CO2 pollution over the next 20 years. 
Although the cost of fuel to generate a kilowatt of heat – wood pellets versus Fuel oil are broadly similar the Government will pay us over 8p per kilowatt used to heat the House and provide hot water and we estimate that over the next 20 years this will save us over £400,000 and after we have paid for the boiler we should see a net profit of over £300,000 even if we ignore the index linking of the subsidy which should make the numbers even more attractive. 
We are not alone in this move to Biomass many other Golf clubs are also moving over to this system of heating because of the Government guaranteed subsidy which will last for the next 20 years and will also increase in line with RPI. Beau Desert and Drayton Park and others close to installing are Royal Saint Davids, Aberdovey and Morfa Neffin.
We have chosen a Company called Eco Link to supply and install the boiler because of their knowledge, their experience and their proven track record – they already supply Sainsburys, the National Trust and many other installations including some Golf Clubs.
You will have noticed the activity at the back of the house in the last week as we have cleared some shrubbery and laid down a concrete slab on which will be placed a 40 foot shipping container in which the boiler, a store of hot water and a hopper with over 10 tonnes of wood pellets will be located.  
The Government has announced a reduction in the subsidy for new installations after the first of July so we are pushing hard for the installation to be completed by the end of this month to maximise the return to the Golf Club.  This is a tight schedule for the Contractors but at this point in time we are on target, however, even if we fail to make this deadline then the savings projection is still in line with the forecasts made when the Board of Directors first approved the project and the numbers will still be as outlined above.  Once the container is in place it will be clad in wood on both the front and the side nearest the Golf Course and we are then required by Planning Regulations to screen the container with Trees and shrubs. This has been included in the overall project budget.
Work is also proceeding in the house as we improve the hot water system by replacing the current 500 litre hot water tank with 4 * 250 litre tanks which will be better insulated and recharge much quicker than the current system.  In addition we are also taking the opportunity to convert the heating in the House Managers Flat away from Propane which should save an additional £1500 a year.
We will not be removing either the Propane boiler in the Flat or the Gas oil boilers in the cellar for at least two years so we have a back up in place in case of any teething problems.  We have also set up a 5 year maintenance deal with Eco link to cover annual servicing of the boiler system

For further information please contact our in-house eco-experts and organisers Mike Stuckey and Ken White

Harriet Leads The Way at Shropshire County Ladies Championship - 4th June 2014

Last week Harriet played in the Shropshire County Ladies Championship, the event started on Thursday with 2 stroke play rounds of 18 holes – morning & afternoon. The combined score from the 2 rounds puts together the leaderboard. Harriet shot 75 & 76 which placed her in number 1 position for the following two days of match play.
Vicky Bradbeer from Oswestry G C was in 2nd position and the
existing champion Katrina Gillum from Lilleshall G C was in 3rd place.

First round of Match Play Friday morning Harriet won 5 & 4
Quarter Finals Friday afternoon Harriet won 6 & 4
Semi Finals Saturday morning Harriet won 5 & 4
Final on Saturday afternoon Harriet lost 3 & 1 to Vicky Bradbeer from Oswestry Golf Club
Harriet (with her schools permission) is now looking forward to representing Shropshire in “County Week” which is being held this year at The Leicestershire Golf Club in Leicester. This event starts on Monday 9th June – Friday 13th June.
Anyone wishing to support the County Team is most welcome to go along and watch. The format is usually pairs in the morning and Individual matches in the afternoon. WELL DONE AGAIN HARRIET!


The 100 Club ... and the winner for May is ... - 2nd June 2014

The winner of the 100 Club draw on Wednesday 28th May was Terry Oliver. Congratulations to Terry who wins £100.
As he was not at the Club on Wednesday, the bonus £50 rolls over to next month, meaning that June's winner may potentially receive £200 if they are in the clubhouse when the draw is made.
If you are not in the 100 Club and would like to take part, please contact a member of the bar staff who will be able to sell you a ticket priced at £60 per year.


Get Shifnal Golf Club News INSTANTLY - 25th May 2014

Fancy getting the very latest news from your golf club INSTANTLY? On your mobile phone, your Ipad and your PC you can get news of course conditions (if closed, open, temporary greens etc.) major competiton results, special forthcoming golf events, social events, the latest news about everything the club has to offer.

There are no fancy images and the news is just a few short sentences.

If you want the latest and as soon as it happens then sign up for twitter and follow @sgc_members, whatsmore you can tell your phone/ipad to give you alerts from this source - then the news message will come up immediately as it is posted.

You can even join in with discussions amongst other members if you so wish, however, any disapproving comments will not be tolerated. Fortunately, this is not something we expect from fellow Shifnal Golf Club members.

Our Juniors Would Love Your Help - 15th May 2014

You may well have seen our younger players out on the course at recent Junior sessions. We have juniors who are keen to gain their first handicaps, playing 9-holes on a Saturday afternoon, but we are short of adults to help.
Could you, on a fairly regular 2 weekly basis, through the season, walk round with 2 or 3 juniors? You would help them to learn the rules of play and course etiquette, and check their score cards.
If you can give 2 to 3 hours, twice a month, to help the present Junior Organiser and Junior Girls' Organiser, please get in touch. The Juniors would love to see you!

Many thanks to all of you who have contributed vouchers. The total is now 5,000 which is a fantastic result! Last day for collection of vouchers is Tuesday May 20th then we can exchange the vouchers for items to help the juniors learn and play golf.

Message From The House - 11th May 2014

I have been back in charge of house for only the last 6 weeks and we have as a committee overseen the change of our beer supplier to Marstons which seems to of gone down quite favourably with most members. Our first social function St George's night celebration was well supported and everybody agreed our caterers Anne Peters selection of English puddings was exceptional. Thanks to Bob (fingers ) Froggot for playing the piano and picking our songs; we all had a great sing-along led by Ian Tranter.

The Hundred Club draw was made and won by the Men’s Vice Captain Colin Wall . There are still tickets available if you would like to join ask Nick Peters at the Bar.The next draw takes place after the Wednesday bash on the last Wednesday in May.

On a more serious note it has been brought to my attention as the warmer weather is arriving members are not wearing acceptable clothing and footwear in and around the clubhouse that is expected at Shifnal Golf Club eg. Beach wear and flip flops not allowed, Shirts should be tucked into trousers or shorts . Please keep to our dress code and help to keep our Club at the high standards that we all expect , Thanking you all for your co-operation. Stan Ashford

Shifnal Members Invited to "Come Dine With Me"- 9th May 2014

The Channel 4 hit show Come Dine With Me is back for a new daytime series, and as you probably know over five days, four strangers, from all walks of life, take turns to host the perfect dinner party for each other. At the end of the week the best host wins a £1,000 cash prize!

Whatsmore members from Shifnal Golf Club have been invited from within the Shrewsbury, Telford & Wolverhampton areas as possible candidates. If you, or any friends of yours, are interested then please email or call 0871 244 4142 leaving your name, address, age and contact details. Shoot dates are: 16th June – 20th June 2014

Shifnals Very Own Driving Range - 7th May 2014 - UPDATE

As part of the improvements to the Golf Club's Facilities, Neil Allsebrook, our Club Professional, has invested his own money to improve our practice facility between the 16th and 18th holes. This will now become an Official Managed Driving Range. Balls will be supplied, collected and cleared by The Professional.

Should you wish to continue to practice with your own golf balls, you must use the facility adjacent to the 1st fairway.

UPDATE Members can pay £2.50 for 30 balls (Green Fee Visitors £3) as and when they wish or pay an Annual Fee of £60 for unlimited balls, which runs from 1st June 2014 to 31st May 2015 and get May 2014 free this year.
It is Neil's intention to fund a ball dispensing machine at some future point.
Baskets of balls are obtained from the Pro Shop

May Members Night - 5th May 2014

WEDNESDAY MAY 28th After 4.30pm

Play in the Wednesday Bash sign-up at the Bar - £2.00 entry fee

Special Evening Bar Menu available after play

The 100 club draw for May

First Impressions - 4th May 2014

By now most of you will have noticed yet another improvement to Shifnal Golf Club and thats the walkway to the first tee.

With such a beautiful clubhouse the driveway up to the first tee was not exactly in keeping with the surrounding area and, indeed, some of the very few negative comments we get from visitors highlighted such but we members over the years have probably taken the walkway for granted.

Improvement and upkeep of our wonderful course and clubhouse is not cheap and as we all know money, unfortunately, does not grow on trees and to this end we rely primarily on donations, money raising events and special project funding for such. The driveway was partially funded by the '100 CLUB' which is a funding scheme for SPECIAL PROJECTS and as such it is so important that it is given your support - Remember the 100 CLUB not only raises much needed cash but it also gives you the chance to actually WIN money. So if you haven't joined already please do so now - there are only a few places left.

Captains Drive In then Hail and Farewell - 31st March 2014

The day of the Drive in dawned dry and sunny.  We, Captain David Butler, Lady Captain Judy Mills and Junior Captain Aaron Stanton were overwhelmed by the support we had from the members.  Junior Captain Aaron was the first to drive off followed by Lady Captain Judy and then Captain David Butler.  A lot of banter took place both before and after the event with David being tricked with an ”exploding” golf ball.  The Captains then invited the members to a light lunch with drinks.

  The Captains joint charity for this year is The Severn Hospice and the Director of Appeals, Norma Ross came to talk about the work that the Hospice does and its reliance on charitable donations.  After this there were two matches between the Captains and Presidents both for men and ladies.  The ladies teed off first and on reaching the Millennium hut waited to greet the men with drinks – again a lot of banter especially when Mr. Captain nearly chipped in on the 9th!  It was great to be able to sit outside with the sun shining, hopefully a sign of good weather for the year.

There followed in the evening the Hail and Farewell dinner for 90 members with great food provided by Ann & Nick. Outgoing President Barry Smith presented outgoing Captain Bob Pace with a Past Captains tie following which there was great hilarity with speeches from Bob and David.

Bob presented David with two paintings of the course and clubhouse by one of our members Steve Clayton.  He also presented David with a caricature picture of himself and his man “Butler!”

 David and Judy had then arranged surprise entertainment for the guests – Dougie Parker, a well known and favourite comedian, who kept everyone in fits of laughter for an hour.  It was a fantastic day which the three Captains will never forget and thanks go to everyone for their support.

New Officer - Lady President - Kath Miller - 28th March 2014

.Joined Shifnal Golf Club in 1989 when Dorothy Smith was Lady Captain
. Joined Ladies Committee in 1996 as Ladies Secretary
. Became Ladies Captain in 2000 (Millennium Lady Captain with Richard Osborne as Captain - a very busy year!)
. County Delegate for three years thereafter
. Have represented the club in League, Mail on Sunday, Daily Mail Foursomes and Friendly matches.
. Have been delighted to get my name on a few of the Honours Boards -that was my ambition when I joined the club!

My father, Bill Cook, was a member of SGC at the old course at the old Brimstree course (we called it Lodge Hill then) and then at Decker Hill. I caddied for him on both courses as a schoolgirl!

Husband, Paul, has been a member since 1977 and is now Chairman of the Board of SGC.

Both sons, Andy & Steve, have been Junior Captains of the club and played for the County. Two grandsons now learning to play!

I would like to add that I am extremely honoured and privileged to have been invited to become Lady President and I am looking forward to a fun year with our new Lady Captain and Lady Vice Captain, who are both long-standing