News, Magazine, Social Events & 200 Club
LATEST NEWS AT BGC
Bedfordshire Golf Club Takes Over Management
of Pro-Shop & Driving Range - Sept 2019
Bedfordshire Golf Club is delighted to announce that management of our Golf Professional Services and Driving Range will be taken back within the Club from Wednesday 11th September 2019. We would like to thank Geraint Dixon for all his endeavours as our Head Golf Professional since 2007.
We are all looking forward to working closely with Richard Banks, Steve Connolly and Richard Kemp to continue their excellent delivery of service and enhance both the golf coaching and retail offers to both our members and visitors.
Golf Professional, Richard Banks commented: "The last 11 years at Bedfordshire Golf Club has been a great experience for me. I have seen the club go from strength to strength, with more visitors & members enjoying all the club has to offer. I hope my 20 years as a PGA Professional has given me the knowledge and skills needed, to continue to grow the business within the Pro Shop and the Coaching services we offer. I believe we are the envy of other golf clubs and l look forward to the future."
Golf Professional, Steve Connolly was equally positive, saying: "Due to the fantastic members, superb facilities and the ambition of club to always move forwards, my seven years here have been very happy. Working as part of a new integrated team at Bedfordshire Golf Club will help us in the Pro-Shop to achieve even more. Here’s to many more years serving the members, their guests and visitors."
Richard Kemp said: "Having been here for over three years now, I’ve had the great pleasure in meeting a lot of the members and hearing about what they have to say about their games. I look forward to using my 10 years of experience in golf retail to help both members and visitors with their all their golfing needs."
The Club is very excited about the commercial opportunity this change affords us and the management team will now spend time over the coming weeks to better understand these important new business operations before considering enhancements for future growth and development.
Members will be pleased to hear that all profits made in the Pro-Shop & Driving Range will be reinvested in the wider business......we hope you will all support our Pro-Shop with your custom.
2019/20 Membership Renewals - Aug 2019
BGC Annual Membership Renewals will, as usual, be due in September. This year, for the first time, we will be using our new office systems to send your correspondence out via email rather than leaving letters in reception for you to collect as in previous years. This will ensure that you receive your renewals details in a more timely fashion, direct to your inbox. It will also save the club money in stationery and staff time.
The Club is in a very sound financial position and I'm sure you'll be pleased to hear that Membership Fee increases are being kept to an absolute minimum, rising only by inflationary levels to off-set our costs.
Emails will be sent to you by the 30th August, so if you have not received yours by then, please check your email SPAM folders, in case yours has dropped into there.
Payment is due by September 30th with online transfer to the Club Account being the preferred method of payment.
Thank you in advance and we look forward to another successful year at Bedfordshire Golf Club
Tee Board Sponsorship Opportunities - Aug 2019
Would you like to market your organisation or business at Bedfordshire Golf Club? With nearly 700 members and literally thousands of visitors each year, it might be a great place to promote your brand.
We have several options available:
a select few Tee Board Sponsorship Opportunities
Par 3 Academy Course tee boards and signs
External Clubhouse signage.
Tee Board Sponsorship (see image below) is available from just £440 for one year, or £1,100 for three years.
If you would like to market your business or organisation, please call Lynne Hopkins on 01234 822555 ext 2
The latest edition of the BGC Recorder, our six monthly club magazine, has now been published. Our grateful thanks go to our editor David Allen. Please click here to download a copy in pdf format
England Golf PL Insurance - July 2019
England Golf announces Personal Liability Insurance for all affiliated golf club members - 'free'!
You will be pleased to know that England Golf is providing £10m PL cover as an additional benefit of your membership from July 2019.
To view details of your cover all you have to do is visit the England Golf site by clicking here
England Golf are working with specialist insurance brokers Bluefin Sport to provide this insurance, which is underwritten by Allianz.
We hope that none of you have to make use of this cover, but it's good to know it's there in the case of emergency or a claim against you!
SOCIAL EVENTS AT BGC
We have a busy social events diary coming up with first of a series of Rugby World Cup & Golf Specials, which start on Saturday 21st September and run through to the final on November 2nd - see poster below.
There are also still spaces for the Barn Dance & Hog Roast on Saturday 21st September (see poster below), which is part of our Stagsden Weekend.
Full details of our 2019/20 Entertainments Programme can be seen in the guide below.
To book for any event, just sign up on the Social Notice Board in the Clubhouse Foyer or call Lynne, Sue or Ruth in the office on 01234 822555 ext 2.
200 CLUB DRAWS
Christmas 200 Club Winners
The three very lucky winners in the special Christmas 200 Club Draw are:
Wilf Mannion - £500
Keith Lewington - £250
Brian Allen - £250
Links to the 200 Club are below - if you're not already in it - why not sign up today and see what cash prizes you could win each month?
The lucky winners in the December 200 Club Draw are:
John Porter - £150
Trish Hind - £150
Links to the 200 Club are below - if you're not already in it - why not sign up today and see what cash prizes you could win each month?
Past President, John Farnworth Unveils Historic 'Mashie' Golf Club in Presentation to BGC-Feb 2019
As mentioned in last week's BGC News, an historic 'Mashie' golf club was unveiled on Saturday lunchtime in the Club Lounge as part of a presentation to BGC, by Past President, John Farnworth. The traditional 'Mashie' golf club (photo below with John Farnworth and Captain, Andy Brown) remembers the first two Bedfordshire Golf Club Professionals from over 100 years ago and both of their names are inscribed on it.
The 'Mashie' has been mounted as below and is now displayed in The Lounge by the Longhurst Bell.
Alongside it, a plaque remembers our first two Golf Professionals from over 100 years ago when the 'Mashie' was made. The full text can be seen below.
Our grateful thanks go to John Farnworth for donating this historic and valuable item to the club.
NB: The '2017' reference above is not a typo!
New BGC Presidential Nomination Announced
Message from The President
"As some of you will know, I will complete my four years as President at the end of this year and will be passing the chain of office to a new President at the AGM on the 20th January. The Presidents' & Captains' Committee met recently and have chosen to nominate Professor Joe Nellis as our next President.
Nominations for Club Officers & Board Members for 2019 will close on the 23rd December 2018."
The formal PCC nomination will be posted in due course, meanwhile Joe writes:
"Dear Members of Bedfordshire Golf Club, it is a great honour for me personally to be nominated as the next President of Bedfordshire Golf Club. I have been actively involved in all aspects of the Club since I joined in 2000.
Having served on the PLC Board, the Management Board and then as Club Captain in 2014, nomination as President is the greatest honour of all. I am looking forward to acting in the best interests of all Members to support the continued success and reputation of this great Club.
We are fortunate that so many people freely give so much of their time to help the Club in so many ways. We are indebted to them all - and especially to our 'retiring' President, Roger Willis. He will be a very hard act to follow but I shall look to him and many others for guidance and support!
As Captain, my golfing skills deteriorated rapidly under pressure - but as your President I intend to be much more relaxed about my playing ability (hopefully!)."
County Card 2018/19 Stickers Now Available
County Cards for 2018/19 are now available, and to activate yours, stickers can be collected to make them valid from April 2018.
Please liaise with Mags of Lynne to collect yours, or you can email or call and arrangements can be made for collection from Pro-Shop or bar.
For Members who have not previously used a County Card, these give you access to many to many other local courses at significantly discounted green fees.
Improved Hot Drinks Facilities in BGC Lounge Bar
Our new Lounge Bar based hot drinks machine is now operational and is already providing the Club and Members a number of benefits.
Our new Bravilor Esprecious Bean to Cup Coffee Machine
Providing a wide choice of hot drinks, including a full selection of quality Bean to Cup Coffee options, it also makes Hot Chocolate and provides Hot Water for making Tea. This will provide a significant improvement in speed of service at busy times as the bar staff will no longer need to go to the kitchen as often to make hot drinks, but can now do this more quickly and efficiently at the point of order.
The machine can also fill 2 cups at once and the coffee options will be served with a biscuit.
Easy Click On-Screen Drink Options
We hope you enjoy the hot drinks from our new machine and all benefit from the improved service levels and staff efficiency it provides us with.
BGC Facebook Site - Your Help Needed Please...
An ‘unofficial’ Bedfordshire Golf Club Facebook site was created some time ago, but unfortunately, it wasn’t created by current Club staff or representatives.
This has resulted in a site which has incorrect information in it, and even some details and images/comments which are related to The Bedford Golf Club rather than our own, see via the link: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Bedfordshire-Golf-Club/262072053903713
As you will realise, this is confusing, unrepresentative of Bedfordshire Golf Club and potentially damaging to our reputation. Online requests to Facebook have so far not resulted in any response, or indeed the required changes, so we would value your help.
If you know who created the site, or have any knowledge of how to change incorrect images and references/details on Facebook when you are not the ‘owner’ of the site, please let Lynne Hopkins in the Club Office know, either by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or calling her on 01234 822555 ext 2
Thank you in advance
NB: This is not the same Facebook site that is used by the Ladies section of Bedfordshire Golf Club. This is 'owned' and managed by ladies within our club and as such is factually correct and current.
New Club Ties Now Available
The new version of the Bedfordshire Golf Club Tie is now available - perfect for Club Functions and representative matches and events.
Gentlemen - if your club tie is looking tired, why not get a new one, to look even smarter at future events?
Ladies, an ideal present for your loved one - assuming of course, he's a member!
Ties available from the Club Office at just £15.
New Style & New Logo
Christmas Lunch Attended by Nearly 100 Guests
Nearly 100 guests attended a very successful and enjoyable Christmas Lunch on Sunday. The lunch was preceded by songs from the voices of 'Fusion' (see below), a young group of local singers, who performed very well, especially as their numbers were reduced by the colds and flu bug currently doing the rounds!
Always a very popular event, The Biddenham Suite was nearly at capacity for this traditional Pre-Christmas lunch at the club. Those attending were treated to one of Chef's excellent festive meals followed by Mince Pies and Coffee.
Our thanks go to the team who looked after everyone so well throughout a relaxed and enjoyable event.
Bedfordshire Golf Club updates club logo
In 2016 Bedfordshire Golf Club celebrated its 125th Anniversary, and in doing so created a special club logo to recognise the event, incorporating the original club crest and a new-style 125th Anniversary 'scroll' underneath.
This logo was very well received by members, with the majority purchasing at least one item of club clothing to celebrate this major event for the club. It was always intended that the club would revert to the original 'crest' when we moved into our 126th year, but having done so, many felt that the original crest was perhaps missing something and looked a little dated.
With this in mind, the management team has now produced an enhanced version of the original club crest with a new 'scroll' to create a new logo which includes 'Founded 1891'. This also has the benefit that it is no longer time-bound by any particular event or celebration and can be used by the club for many years to come. The new logo is shown below.
We hope you like the new version, as you will start to see it on branded items around the club in the weeks to come.
You will, we're sure, also be pleased to know that you will be able to sport this updated version of the Club logo when you're playing golf, as it will be featured on the Autumn stock from 1st October in the Professional Shop, both for member purchases and on staff uniforms. An offer will be sent to you shortly in your membership renewals pack, giving you the opportunity to receive an early order discount.
Clubhouse Refurbishment - Window replacements
Members will be pleased to know that as part of our ongoing clubhouse refurbishment and improvement programme, we are now replacing all the faulty window panels throughout the building. Some of the sealed units within these windows have failed resulting in a cloudy appearance. This work is being carried out by Bromham Windows, a local company which specialises in double-glazed windows.
Work is scheduled to be completed by the end of July. We apologise for any inconvenience caused whilst the work is going on.
New Entrance Walkway - Finally Completed
We are delighted to report that the new stone & rubber compound laid on the walkway to the front entrance of the Club House has finally been completed to our satisfaction.
After several failed attempts, the contractors have at last supplied and fitted a compound to meet our quality requirements. The surface provides a permeable layer for rain and excellent grip when walking down the slope, even during the winter period. In addition, it is much more aesthetically pleasing than the previous concrete 'stone' surface.
For all of you who have already seen it and walked on it, we are sure you will agree it is a major improvement to our club house entrance.
2017 Joint Captains' Drive-In -
2017 AGM and Captain's handover
The club AGM took place on Sunday 22nd January. Chairman, Steve Coppock and General Manager, Geraint Dixon reported that the club is in good health, with a record surplus in 2016 and a steady stream of new members joining from a variety of local clubs, who cite the excellent range of facilities on offer, great value for money and perhaps most of all - the warm welcome they receive in their first few weeks here!
2017 Captain, John Simpson takes the helm at AGM - see the full story on the Club Captain's Page
Former member Henry Longhurst inducted into World Golf's Hall of Fame
Members may be interested to know that one of the best known former members of Bedfordshire Golf Club has been inducted into World Golf’s Hall of Fame, as part of the Class of 2017, along with Ian Woosnam & Davis Love, see link:
Many of you might be unaware of Henry, understandably since he died in 1978, but he was quite a character during his life. Born in Bedford and part of the Longhurst family who established Longhurst & Skinner, he went to Bedford School, before studying at Clare College, Cambridge. He became interested in politics and was eventually elected as MP for Acton, see wikipedia:
A keen golfer throughout his life, he started writing for a monthly golf magazine, which eventually came to the attention of the Sunday Times, from which he became their golf correspondent. He subsequently became the BBC’s senior golf commentator, featuring on several US network broadcasts.
Most members are probably unaware that the bell in Bedfordshire Golf Club's lounge, which is rung by The Captain to announce results of competitions, is in honour of Henry Longhurst himself!
Who could fail but to enjoy a flutter on the horse? The “punters” enjoyed a feast of close exciting races from the perfect viewing point on every course.
Much fun and mirth was had by all but none more so than Simon Cavill who came in with at least 3 winners!
Winners of the 8 races on the night were:
1. Blue Monarch owned by Peter Gill
2. Aurelia Star owned by Simon Cavill
3. Glennange owned by Glenn O’Brien
4. Harry’s Game owned by Simon Cavill
5. Master Plan owned by Terry Donnelly
6. Dougie Jones owned by Julian Boyle
7. Ocster owned by Simon Cavill
8. Poppy owned by Tim Bailey and his table
Some of the winners are pictured below:
A huge thank you to the staff, especially Santino who ran the Tote. Captain, Jim & Ladies Captain, Judi would also like to thank the generous sponsors and horse buyers who helped make the evening such a success.
A sum in the region of £600 was raised to be shared between their respective charities, The Alzheimer’s association and the Nursery School, Agbeve, Ghana.
The Deacon Dinner & Cup
The Deacon Dinner took place on Saturday 27th May in The Biddenham Suite. One of the Club's most prestigious Men's events, which has taken place almost every year since the 1920's, it was a very enjoyable if somewhat alcoholically fuelled evening. Following an excellent meal, and Captain John's own amusing golfing 'tales', he introduced this year's guest speaker who was none other than BGC member Nick Willis. Nick, in his own inimitable style, provided a very entertaining speech for the 60+ guests, with some hilarious anecdotes and golfing tales. He received warm and well deserved applause.
Sunday morning arrived and many of those on the putting green members were complaining of sore heads! Perhaps this explained some of the scores, as very, very few managed to play to their handicap. A small number did though, and things were so tight at the top after 18 holes that a play-off was called for between new member Rob Donnelly and Chris Johnson who were tied on Net 69.
The ultimate victor after 21 holes and Deacon Cup Winner for 2017 was Rob Donnelly - yet another Major's Board with the family name on it! Well done to Rob and of course, Chris for his excellent and sporting performance.
Below: Rob Donnelly with Captain John
Also played for in this competition is of course, The Judges Cup for the lowest gross score over 18 holes. This year, the trophy was deservedly won by Colin Beard with a 75.
Below: Colin receiving his trophy from Captain, John
Celtic Night - Saturday 4th March
The Biddenham Suite was packed with over 100 members and guests for a hugely successful Celtic Night. A welcome from a Scottish Piper got everyone in the mood and he then accompanied Norman McQueen in 'Toasting the Haggis'. Following an excellent meal with English, Irish, Scottish and Welsh themes, Local Irish band, Life of Riley got everyone up and dancing. Following his Drive-In lunch, this was Captain John Simpson's first social event in the role, and he manfully overcame a sore throat as MC. The photo above shows Geraint and his mates belting out some Welsh 'classics' - if you can call them that!
The Quiz Night on Friday 31st March, proved a very enjoyable evening and a very close contest. Those attending enjoyed a supper of Lasagne accompanied by mixed salad, and by the sound of some of the answers - quite a bit of alcoholic refreshment too!
After much too-ing and fro-ing between the best performing teams, the winners were the table comprising David & Helen Owen, new members Graham & Rose Gill, Helen & Steve Gilder and Anne & Nick Willis who will of course organise the next event in the autumn.
Thanks go to Board Chairman Steve Coppock and team who organised the quiz this time.
Captain's Drive-In Lunch - Sunday 29th January
The Captain's Drive-In Lunch took place in a packed Biddenham Suite on Sunday 29th January. Members, families and friends enjoyed a lovely meal and a speech from New Club Captain John Simpson in which he outlined his plans for the year ahead. He thanked all those who have supported him to this point and of course, those who will be providing an endless supply of it during the year ahead - especially Ladies Captain Anne and of course his lovely wife Sue!
Above (top) - Captain John, family and friends - and (below) Ladies Captain Anne, family and friends.
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