Despite falling membership the society managed to stage three one day meetings plus the Captain’s Outing,  the remaining fixture had to be cancelled due to lack support in October but in any case could not be played  as the course succumbed to heavy rain – a foretaste of what became the wettest winter on record.

The Spring Meeting at Abridge enjoyed dry weather with sunny periods and had a decent turn-out. Brian Woolford took the Jack Ryman Cup with 36 points.

Our first visit to Temple Golf Club in so called ‘glorious June’ was memorable and extremely wet!  The weather forecast was forbidding and several long distance members abandoned their travel attempt early on. It rained, and rained - yet 15 hardy members completed a beautiful course, some with distinction. We were treated royally by the host club who provided extra towels and coffee and biscuits in the changing room! The John Bond Cup was won by Chris Phillips with a creditable 33 points. Several members expressed an interest in returning at another date to enjoy, in the dry, a lovely course.

In July the President’s Trophy meeting was held at the Leatherhead Golf Club and, this time, sunny and warm weather was enjoyed. Nigel de Koning on his return after a lengthy lay-off took the trophy with 33 points.

Our captain, Judith Smith, took us to Poldark country and the Carlyon Bay Hotel. A very comfortable base with unsurpassed views over St. Austell Bay. The first day was windy but with sunny periods and we enjoyed our first round on the hotel’s own cliff-top course (one of it’s noticeable features was a separate Pro Shop for ladies) In a ‘mystery pairs’ event the winners were David Littlechild and Peter Jones. For the Captain’s Salver we decamped to Lanhydrock, and in conditions reminiscent of our visit to Temple in June, the heavens opened and the whole round was played under leaden skies. The course is a good one and withstood the continual downpour rather well. As expected from a player of his class, Chris Phillips took the salver with a remarkable 34 points. Back to the hotel course for the final competition on the third day and a Florida Scramble was won by (appropriately) Judith Smith, Chris Phillips, David Littlechild and Hugh Sear played in breezy but mainly dry conditions.  It was another enjoyable outing and particular mention must go to the hotel’s cuisine. The breakfast kippers were particularly enjoyed!

Thus our 85th year was happily completed and sustained by what I shall call our ’hard core’ of faithful members. Thanks are due in no small measure to Judith Smith for her dedication and leadership in her second tenure as Captain. One of her achievements was finding  a vice-captain (no mean success in these difficult times!)  And so we welcome Chris Lee another member who has previously served in this position. For 2020 he has selected some excellent courses in Kent, Surrey & Berkshire and  West Sussex is the base for his Captain’s Tour featuring three of the region’s best courses. We wish him well and trust members will give him their full support.

A sign of the times is the difficulty in recruiting officers to clubs and societies. As an example, my home club is operating in 2020 without a lady captain or vice-captain and the seniors have no vice captain or secretary. Difficult times indeed. So far we have no vice-captain to serve in 2021 and a serious discussion will be required at the Annual General Meeting in May to light the way forward. A captain, although highly desirable, is not essential but thought must be given as to the format of the London Stationers in 2021. We have survived so far by the acquiescence of previous captains to ‘recycle themselves’ (!) for a second term

Time to congratulate the winners of the 2019 annual trophies, as follows: Chris Phillips (Liberty, Guildford and Tolley), Eric Smith (Watkins), Peter Jones (Conlon) and Brian Woolford (Spicer).

As usual my special thanks to David Stride for his stolid work as Treasurer and to Geoff Fowler who quickly and accurately updates our website, which incidentally I believe to be one of the best of its type around. Also I thank Warren Evans for his continued sponsorship of our meetings and also to those who chipped in for the Captain’s Outing.

So we look forward to the new season with the hope that the ‘Gods of Climate Change’ will bestow on us some warm and sunny weather in 2020. They need only visit our website to pinpoint the important days  …

Richard Johns

10th March 2020





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Secretary's Report 2019