It is with very great sadness we report that Christine Irwin, the Federation Coaching Officer, has passed away suddenly after a brain haemorrhage whilst in the US and where a cremation is planned to take place. Chris died on 14th March in the critical care neurology unit at UF Shands Hospital in Jacksonville. Christine, a brilliant Coaching Officer, was developing new initiatives to take our Federation coaching to new levels. Christine was a highly regarded member of the Bowdon Club where she will be greatly missed. Our thoughts and prayers are with Colin at this very sad and difficult time and we send our condolences on behalf of everyone in the Federation.
Executive Summary – Federation Spring Meeting – Sat 7 March 2015 at Culcheth.
About 35 people attended the annual spring meeting of the NWFCC. New chairman Gary Wilson (Pendle) welcomed everyone to this, his first meeting as Chair. Treasurer Bob Connop presented a positive report regarding Federation finances which are in a stable and healthy position. CA Representative Peter Wilson described the major issues facing the game are the proposed constitutional changes which are to be voted on at the CA Council meeting on 28 March 2015.
League Manager Tony Thomas thanked clubs for their input into the 2015 League fixture schedule, which had been published on time. The Croquet league season will be commencing on 5th April and finish at the end of September. Overall, the league remains healthy and has again expanded slightly. The Level Play Golf Croquet league continues to develop and has increased by two clubs (Bowdon Bandits and Bowdon Sinners) this year.
Coaching Officer Christine Irwin sent in a report describing how the Flying Circus coaching group are available to deliver any coaching course, free of charge at any club, for groups of 8 to 16 players of similar ability. So far, there will be a one day course at Bowdon on 10 April for high bisquers (16-20) and a Beginners Golf course to be arranged at Fylde. Last year we introduced pods – monthly 2hr coaching sessions for advanced players which were very successful. These will be repeated this year and we also hope to introduce a similar programme for higher handicap groups.
The CA is publishing a new Golf Croquet Coaching Manual which should be available in a few weeks. A two day course for club coaches is being organised following the successful venture last year. If anyone wishes to embark on a Referees course or wishes to take the referees exam, please contact Christine.
Development Officer Ron Welch has resigned from this post and we are now searching for another member to take on this important role. Paul Rigge is also searching for volunteers for the annual Pennine Cup match against the north east Federations.
The major Agenda item concerned the Constitutional changes being promoted by the Croquet Association which need to be voted on by individual CA members and clubs by 18th March. The CA website has details on how to vote. There was a wide ranging discussion on this complex topic with a variety of views expressed. It was felt the information being disseminated was confusing and seemed to be changing over time.
One consequence of the proposed changes is the invitation by the CA to Federations inviting them to become full CA voting members. After discussion, it was decided a motion could be proposed at this meeting and there was a large majority in favour of the Federation accepting the CA invitation.
There were various club announcements – Bowdon have developed an extra lawn; Bury are developing one of their new venues at Whitehead Park which will eventually become their main centre of operations; Pendle still have vacancies for their Easter tournament and they have changed the names of their Level Play Golf teams from A and B to Pendle Forest and Pendle Tykes; Southport have renovated their entrance path to eliminate previous flooding problems; Liverpool are positive about a new recruitment programme; Culcheth are still playing on their indoor surface on a weekly basis and everyone is very welcome to attend; Tattenhall now have two lawns available.
Don Williamson (Southport) is a member of the CA Handicap committee and reported the CA would like club handicappers to become more active in their role and Federations should also have a Handicapping Officer. It was subsequently agreed that Don Williamson would take on this role. All clubs should have received a poster describing how Handicap Cards should be completed. The north west website also lists details of club handicappers.
The meeting closed at 11.30 am – a record early closing time. The next club meeting will be the AGM, to be held at Culcheth on 21 November 2015.
Tony Thomas (Personal View)
8 March 2015
You can obtain the unratified Minutes of the 2015 Spring Meeting by clicking here
LIZ AND PETER VISIT SOMERSET WEST IN SOUTH AFRICA
Photo by Howard Bowron.
Liz and Peter entered the Somerset West Week. Situated in the suburbs of Cape Town the club has four lawns and very good weather all year around. A party of fourteen players and partners took over a small hotel nearby. The ‘apres Croquet’ was formidable with locals arranging events and food.
In the Vets block of Handicap play Liz was unbeaten until the final where Richard Hoskyns took first place. In the B class open Liz was again undefeated in the block but this time won the final game against local player, Chris Wakeman.
Liz is presented with the salver by David Openshaw, Lancashire’s Captain and winner of the open.
In the doubles Peter partnered Richard Hoskyns and Liz partnered David Munday both winning about half their block games. In the open singles Peter came up against a string of minus players but netted 6 index points from a couple of wins.
The plaque presented to the club from Fylde (see 2009 news archive) by Philip and Catherine in 2009 is still on display.
With acknowledgement to post on 22nd February 2015 on Fylde Croquet Club website.