Busiest week of the 2017 season for West Wilts GC Seniors
Last week to test whether the readership is alive and kicking I referred to Stephen Adams as Vice Captain of The Seniors which, as we all know is erroneous, he is most definitely, Captain of The Seniors!
Stephen has now accepted my apology on the proviso that I try to do better in the future. Anyway, as the headline suggests, with 3 matches in a week The Seniors have not had a moment to spare. Pride of place must go to the semi-final of The Knighton Heath Trophy against Wareham played at home on Thursday 31st August. For those of us who can remember last Thursday, the weather was at its most benign with the course bathed in glorious sunshine. Tensions were running high in this late stage of the Competition with everything to play for as Captain of the day, Peter Walton, prepared his troops, namely, Mike Oram, Lester Trowbridge, Roger Lee, John Barnes, Dave Turner, Ian Bell, David Johnson, Jack Winter and Ray White for battle. Congratulations are due and chocolate frogs to all team members for achieving a magnificent 6 to 4 victory. The final will be played on Thursday 14th September at Knighton Heath, let's wish all players the very best of luck on the day.
Next on the fixture list was a match away against Wells GC on Tuesday 29th August. With the necessary visas for Somerset all sorted, our team were in high spirits as they left Warminster. Wells is significantly longer than West Wilts with over a thousand trees (not sure who counted them) and tight fairways. It is most definitely not a course for the faint hearted. Our winners were Dave Johnson/Roland Jones 3 & 2, Lester Trowbridge/Richard Triggol 2 & 1. Dave Turner/Ken Bailie fought all the way to scramble a half. Overall match result: Wells three and a half, West Wilts two and a half. Friday 1st September saw a local Derby with a home game against our old rivals, Salisbury & South Wilts. Winners were Jack Winter/Dave Thackaberry and Richard Triggol/John Tracey both storming home by 6 & 5. Ken Pearce/Dave Simpson won 4 & 2 and John Barnes/Captain Steve Adams won 2 & 1. The half came from Gordon walls/Bob Earnshaw. Overall match result: West Wilts four and a half, Salisbury & South Wilts one and a half. Just as an aside, the author was on the practice ground as the match was in progress and accidentally scooped up the ball of one of the visitors playing the 11th, what a faux pas but with no malice aforethought!
Let's finish off with some local history. At the first general meeting of the Club on 2nd February 1892 the Secretary reported that there were 50 playing members. It was decided that in the case of a ball going down the Chalk Pit another ball should be dropped at the point where the other ball was played, under penalty of two strokes. The Warminster Golf Club remained so named until at a special meeting on 14th January 1898 the name was changed to the West Wilts Golf Club. Indeed a number of members came by train to Warminster Station and then walked to the course, a tradition continued in part today by the eccentric member who pushes his bicycle up the hill and rides it down. The 34th President of the USA, Dwight Eisenhower, played off an 18 handicap. He had a putting green installed on the White House Lawn and made 29 trips to Augusta where he often played with Arnold Palmer. When Eisenhower was asked how his game had changed since leaving the White House, he replied, "A lot more people beat me now." When the libidinous JF Kennedy became President in November 1960, one of his staff said,"This administration is going to do for sex what the last one did for golf." That's all for now, writes author, Martin Hicks-Lobbecke.