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July Golf Update
July was a busy month with 6 visitor groups enjoying “taster” sessions of croquet.
Our level play team drew with Bury Monarchs whilst the handicap team beat Fylde Falcons but lost to Llanfairfechan. Both teams are towards the top of the table as we enter the final few weeks of the season.
David Cornes won the National B level qualifier at Bury against very strong opposition but, due to holiday, he is unable to attend the final at Gulidford in September.
Dave Williamson Wins Fed Millenium AC Handicap
Congratulations to Dave Williamson on winning the Federation Millennium handicap AC tournament which was held over the weekend of the 13th/14th July hosted by Pendle & Craven Croquet Club. With 8 contestants from Bowdon, Bury, Crake Valley, Fylde, Pendle and Westmorland and with handicaps ranging from 3½ to 22 taking part, the event comprised 5 rounds of 18 point handicap AC played to a time limit of 2½ h per game. The lawns were in excellent condition, running both true and consistently, and the weather forecast was for good, dry days so all looked on course for an enjoyable weekend of croquet.
Initial pairings were based on matched handicaps as far as possible with subsequent rounds determined using the Swiss format. This brought some interesting encounters with the overall ranking changing with each iteration. As late as round 4 there were still three of the competitors in contention for the title but by the final round this had reduced to two with the final result hung on the last game to finish. At the end of the tournament three of the players were tied on 3 wins out of 5 and the end placings were determined by net hoops. However, the overall winner, being the only player with 4 wins out of 5, was Dave Williamson from Crake Valley (who earned a handicap reduction from 22 to 16). Second place went to Paul Dowdall of Pendle and third place to Tony Phillips of Bury.
Thanks to Pendle CC for hosting the event and for providing their customary excellent hospitality and to Robert Essler of Pendle who presented the trophies
Golf Croquet – June Update
June was a very busy and productive month. The action has seen Peter Uglow qualify for the National C level final and the North & Midlands Regional All England handicap qualifiers. Sandra Cornes has won through to the National Grass Roots final.
The level play team played exceptionally well to beat Pendle 12-6 and narrowly lose to the reigning Champions Chester Centurions 8-10.
The handicap team beat our closest rivals, Westmorland, 10-8.
At the NW Federation Festival both the handicap and the level play teams came 2nd in each strand. Picture shows David Lloyd scoring a hoop at the festival.
As a result of good play handicap reductions include David Cornes (3), Peter Uglow and Elaine Newman (6) and Sandra Cornes (9).
We’ve also had social groups from U3A and Grange Promenade Gardener and a practical coaching session on the key rule changes in 2019.
Progress with Club Development
Crake Valley Croquet Club has to date received money / pledges towards our planned “croquet for All” development plan from the Croquet Association, Walney Extension Community Fund, Sport England, Hadfield Trust, Frieda Scott Charitable Trust, Eric Wright Charitable Trust, ENMO Parish Council, ASDA and Aviva Community Funds.
A further 7 applications for funding have been submitted with decisions due over the next 3 months. If sufficient monies are raised the project will start with the demolition and replacement of the clubhouse from mid-September 2019.
Golf Croquet Update
The golf croquet season is well underway and during May we won both handicap games at home against Bowdon (13 games to 5) and away at Fylde (10 games to 8). 6 players represented the side over the 2 matches and all contributed to the end results. As a consequence there are handicap reductions for David Cornes (now at 4), Frank Sharps (6), Sandra Cornes (10) and Peter Uglow (11).
The month also saw 3 of our players travel to Watford and the Isle of Wight for national B&C level competitions.
On the social side we held a coaching session for 14 of the local primary school teachers. An enjoyable time was had by all with some huge improvements in a very short space of time from the teachers. At the end a fish and chips supper was enjoyed in the clubhouse.
National Croquet Day
National Croquet Day 2019 on Sunday 12th May was a great success for Crake Valley. Not only down to the excellent weather, but the teamwork of members in preparing for the day. From mowing and setting out the lawns to hand-baking some delicious treats for our guests, which included an enthusiastic group from Allithwaite Bowling Club, everyone played their part.
The day saw the first usage of the third lawn, currently under development, after falling into disrepair a few years ago. Guests were given a short lesson before teaming up with a club member to play a full game. After lunch guests played a game against each other with a club member on hand to advise of the alternative shots available to them.
All agreed it had been a great day and club Chairman, Jim Allcock, thanked everyone for attending and contributing to the success of the day.
There are two forms of croquet and taster days will take place in the future for both strands of this interesting game.
Update on funding
The club continues to receive information / decisions regarding potential funding for our project to replace the clubhouse and introduce a “Croquet for All” development programme from 2020. The club are working with funders and expect to be able to convey exciting news in the form of a press release in the next few weeks.
Crake Valley Golf League Team Win Their First Level-Play Match
David Cornes, David Lloyd and Elaine Newman represented Crake Valley in our first ever Level-Play Golf League Match on Friday 26th April. All 3 players played well. Visitors Southport and Crake both deserve great credit for playing out the games in extremely difficult weather conditions. Crake won the match 13-5.
Crake Valley Compete in NW Federation (Millenium) GC Event
David Cornes, David Lloyd and Frank Sharps represented Crake Valley in the NW Fed Level Play competition held at Bury on 17th April.
Against a very strong field all our players showed their skills with good play but just failed to qualify for the finals.
Our highest placed player was David Cornes who finished with 4 wins out of 6. His 2 losses went all the way to the 13th and final hoop against Libby Dixon (Pendle Handicap 3) and the eventual winner David Walters (Bowdon -3).
The photo shows some of the competitors. Our thanks to Jean Hargreaves and her colleagues at Bury for a great day.
Winning Start to the Season
The 2019 Golf Croquet league started with a visit to Chester on Sunday 14th April. On a blustery and cold day some close games were played in a good sporting manner. There was never more than 1 game difference between the teams before a very strong finish ensured Crake Valley came away with a 10.5 to 7.5 scoreline. Player of the Match was Peter Uglow with 3 wins and a draw in his singles along with a doubles win at the outset.
The picture shows from left to right – The 4 Chester players then Crake Valley’s Peter Uglow / Frank Sharps / Sandra Cornes and David Cornes
Alternate Stroke Doubles Tournament
On a beautiful, warm and sunny day the competitive season started with sixteen enthusiastic players from across the NW Federation gathered at Crake Valley Croquet Club for the annual Alternate Stroke Doubles Tournament. The players were from Bury, Pendle, Keswick and Penrith as well as Crake, and the tournament lived up to the expectation of high-low partnerships allowing practice for the pairings in a friendly but competitive environment. The ninety minute/14 point games were generally decided by a couple of hoops and everyone got plenty of lawn time allowing for both break-building skills and winter rust to show.
Play was organised into two seeded blocks of 4 pairs on an all play all basis. The block winners went through to the final with an additional game to decide 3rd and 4th places.
The strong partnership of Barbara Young and Margaret Eccles from Bury decisively won Block 2, but the news of the day was from Block 1 where Simon Robins paired with David Cornes (in his first attempt at AC) representing Crake. The results were impressive with 3 wins out of 3, setting up a highly competitive final.
From the off the game swung first one way then the other with the lead changing hands several times, as time went Robins and Cornes were leading by 2 hoops, but the result was still in the balance during the final turn for Eccles and Young, with one misplaced rush that could have proved decisive and set up a 3 ball break for the final hoops, just nine inches out – the margin between first and second.
The third and fourth place play-off was between the top seeds, Gary Wilson (Pendle) paired with Steve Skelton (Keswick) against John Henderson and Robin Swindells, both of Penrith, this match also exceded expectations and produced a Golden Hoop finish with Wilson and Skelton emerging victorious.
Many thanks must go to all the visitors who made the event so enjoyable and to Crake members whose efforts made it possible.
Further funding Success
Crake Valley Croquet Club has been awarded 2 further local community grants towards our lawn and clubhouse development plan.
The Eric Wright Trust has approved £500 and ASDA Barrow in Furness £1,010.
The Croquet Association has also approved 50% towards some major parts of the renovation including the provision of electricity to the site, demolition of existing building, concrete base and a metal storage shed.
There are still significant funds to raise but we hope the project can be financed and completed during 2019.
The picture shows Committee Member David Cornes receiving a cheque from ASDA’s Gill Gerish.
The next internal fundraiser is our Spring Lunch to be held at Holker Hall on 20th March.
Aviva Winners & Parish Council Donation
Crake Valley have been notified that we have been awarded £1,000 by the Aviva Community Fund. We are grateful to all who supported for us in this public vote. The money will be used specifically to help us renovate land to almost double our available playable lawn space.
We have also had notification from our local Parish Council that they fully support our “Croquet for All” development plan and they have committed to giving a £500 contribution towards the costs.
Internally the club has continued fundraising by hosting a New Year Raffle and we are planning further functions during 2019.