Pendle and Craven Croquet Club Annual Dinner, Friday 23rd February 2007
Fifty-eight members, friends and vistors sat down to an excellent meal in Colne Golf Club to celebrate the past year and look forward to the next.
A few moments of silence preceded the meal in memory of John Beech, founder and chief administrator of the club until his death.
We were honoured by the presence of our President, Mr Ted Fort, of Fort Vale Engineering who regaled us with the history of Earby, and some of his own history as an apprentice at Rolls Royce, Barnoldwick in the 1950’s. David Openshaw, the President of the World Croquet Federation and Chairman of the Croquet Association, also spoke, exhorting the club to encourage more people, especially young people, to come and play the game. He offered the chance of Pendle & Craven applying for some prestigious international matches in 2009. This would set the club at the forefront of British Croquet. He also related some of his past history, being born locally and having history with QEGS school in Blackburn which had its own croquet lawns and produced some of the best English players.
Chairman, Geoff Whitaker, thanked all members and visitors for their attendance and continuing support for the club. The club won the beautiful Longman Cup in 2006 and this was presented by David Openshaw to team Captain Robin Delves, followed by The North West Federation Trophy to team Captain David Pollitt, and club trophies: Treasurer, Peter Dowdall won three of the club trophies and Abdul Ahmad, Secretary, won the New Year One Ball trophy. Maureen Whitaker, Catering Manager, won the Whitaker Cup for Golf Croquet. John Filsak, Tournament Secretary and Andrew Webb won the Association Doubles plates.
The Tombola finished, raffles were drawn. Mrs Beech, to loud applause, winning the necklace made and donated by Ann Dowdall. The evening was rounded off beautifully by Alice Fleck, accompanied by her husband Derek on guitar, who sang one of her own humourous poems, an encouragement to play more croquet.