Monthly Archives: April 2013

Greetham Valley’s teams in winning form

Greetham Valley’s Seniors are enjoying a fine run of form at the moment. After recently beating Rutland County at home by four and a half to three and a half, they travelled up the A1 to Stoke Rochford for what they know is always going to be a tough game. 

Stoke Rochford are trying out a new system this year of having breakfast before the match instead of dinner after it. After a good breakfast both teams took to the course. First blood went to Seniors’ Captain Rod Wells and playing partner Fred Aspin who won a very tough game with the last putt of the match to win one up. Dave Lucas and Martin Hope won one up and Gordon Wiles and Mel Clark also won by the same score line. David Aldred and John Clinton were next in with the first set back for the visitors, a four and three loss. Neil Bradbury and Ian Ryder came in next with the shock result of the day, winning eight and six.  

 The Greetham Valley team needed only a half to win the match – David Wallace and Barry Tillotson did that and more by winning their game four and three. Martin Boothman and Barry Shaw halved the penultimate game and to cap it all off, John Morfee and Bernard Bell won their game three and two. This meant that Greetham Valley had taken a very rare win at Stoke Rochford by six and a half to one and a half. 

Captain Rod was very pleased with his team and praised their tenacity saying that the three matches won on the final green could have gone either way. They look forward to their next game which is at home to Thorney Lakes on the ninth of May; this is the return leg, Greetham Valley won the first game away at Thorney Lakes a few weeks ago.

First Team Captain Neil Harris was in a slight panic during the week: with a number of key players missing due to other commitments, he didn’t have a full team to travel to Blankney for their match on Saturday. Neil managed to cobble together a team consisting of some regulars and some “volunteers” for the visit to fortress Blankney, so called because the home sides very rarely lose.

Debutants Dean Wilkinson and Chris Wheatland lost their game against a strong opening pair. Paul Clegg and another debutant Dean Greetham reversed that trend to win three and one. Neil Harris and Chris Steele lost their game putting the home team back in charge. George Grant and Fraser Denholm battled hard to halve their game after being behind in the early part of the game. Club Captain Trevor Smith and Andrew Frisby battled back to take the win on the final hole. This left the match finely balanced at two and a half games each, it all depended upon the last game out on the course. Ben Gasson and Ryan Tarrant secured the overall team win by winning three and two, this gave the Greetham Valley team an historic three and a half to two and a half win.

Neil said that everybody had really upped their game and he thanked them for their efforts, with particular  praise for the new players to the team who, win or lose, were there supporting their team members through to the final putt.

The Elsham Foursomes is a unique competition: each match has to go the full eighteen holes and it is the sum of the results of each match which determines the winning team. Greetham Valley played against Belton Woods in the first round. In the first game Jordan Burdall and Chris Steele halved their match. Next up were Neil Harris and Trevor Smith who won as did Adam Clegg and Andrew Frisby who holed the final putt on the last green to secure the overall victory for the Greetham Valley team.

Neil said that it was a hard fought encounter in a difficult format but each and every member of the team played their part to take Greetham Valley through to the next round.

Hit and giggle! Ladies’ beginners golf classes

New course starts Thursday 23rd May 7pm
Ladies, come along to Greetham Valley to enjoy a 6 week beginners course, learning to play the wonderful game of golf! Jim Hetherington’s Hit and Giggle course costs just £48 per person and includes:

  • range balls
  • equipment
  • coffee
  • FREE 3 month Academy course membership

The course is for 6 x 1 hour weekly lessons, every Thursday evening commencing 23rd May at 7pm. Learn to play golf in a fun, social and group-supported environment!

To book your place, phone Jim Hetherington on 07712 052763 or email Don’t delay – Jim’s first Hit and Giggle course was quickly fully booked!

Junior Golf lessons at Greetham Valley!

Be a part of Greetham Valley’s Junior Golf Academy – join Jim Hetherington’s Junior Golf Classes!

Due to popular demand, Jim is running a further 6 week course of Junior Golf tuition for just £48 for 6 x 1 hour lessons. This price includes:

  • range balls
  • equipment loan
  • FREE 3 month Academy course membership

Course begins: Saturday 25th May 1pm

Learn to play and develop golf skills in a safe, fun environment – with the emphasis on enjoyment!

Phone Jim on 07712 052763 or email:

Improve your game in 6 weeks!

Next course begins Monday 27 May 6pm

Ladies and gentlemen of all ages are invited to join Jim Hetherington’s 6 week Improvers’ Course for just £48 per person – maximum 8 people.

This course of 6 x 1 hour lessons will cover your long game, pitching, chipping and sand play and provide you with the tools to help your concentration on the golf course.

To book your place contact Jim Hetherington on 07712 052763


April Medal, Rotary Golf Day & Midweek Stableford

The conditions just couldn’t have been any better than they were for the April Medal. Warm, sunny, very little breeze and very quick greens. Dave Copley took full advantage of the conditions to par the first hole, setting himself up for a good round, but just as you get comfortable the course jumps up and bites back. He double bogey’d the second hole after paying a visit to one of the green side bunkers. Eleven handicapper Dave then sorted out his concentration and went on a run dropping only three shots in the next fifteen holes.

He had been driving with great authority all day when inexplicably, he sliced his drive from the eighteenth tee almost putting it out of bounds. He might have been better off if he had, as his provisional ball was in a good position for three. Dave had to take a drop just to be able to chip over the corner bunker and ended up with a quadruple bogey to mar what should have been a fantastic round.

However, his score of 81-11-70 was just enough to take the win in division one and the overall medal win. He was very surprised as he really thought that he had blown it on the final hole. As a reward, he was cut to ten.  Paul Pritchett off twelve was second with a nett seventy two and fourteen handicapper Terry Romeo was third with a nett seventy three. Ryan Tarrant and Men’s Captain Trevor Smith shared the lowest gross after both shot a gross seventy nine.

Peter Zimmer Smith won division two, he also had a nett seventy but lost out on count back to Dave Copley for the overall medal win. Peter, playing off fifteen, dropped only seven shots in the first fifteen holes but three double bogeys in the last three holes really spoilt his chance for the medal win. Peter said that he was very happy with his game up until the sixteenth when it all went horribly wrong, however, he did have the consolation of taking the lowest gross and moving into division one for the next medal after being cut to fourteen. David Burton off twelve took second place on count back from fourteen handicapper Chris Brand, both came in with a nett seventy one.

Former Ladies and League Team Captain Gilly Grant, playing off ten, was the class of the field in the Ladies Medal. Gilly played to her handicap to win the Medal in the ladies competition by  two shots ahead of her nearest opponent, she shot a net seventy three. Current Ladies Captain Sheila Douty, playing off sixteen, took second with a nett seventy five and County player Sophie Beardsall playing off scratch was third with seventy six. Sophie also won the lowest gross.

A few days before the Medal, conditions were not quite so warm and the wind was howling for the eighth Rotary Club of Rutland annual golf day. Forty players in teams of four took part in the charity day which was organised by long standing loyal Greetham Valley member Bruce Strickland. Bruce said that he and his fellow Rotarians do several charity events throughout the year and usually raise between six and eight thousand pounds a year for charities. They also sponsor several young individuals such as a young writer, a young musician and a young cook as well as help with team building exercises. They also give money to the Mercy Ships charity.

The average score for the teams competing was around the ninety mark but the winners, using local knowledge, were a team from Greetham Valley, Graham Smith, Chris Wheatland, George Brand and Mick Peasgood. They came in with a staggering score of 117 to take the win. They were some twenty points better than Milestone Communications who were this year’s runners up. However, one of their players, Rob Smith, won both the Longest Drive and Nearest the Pin. The Ladies’ nearest the pin was won by Hazel Hinch.

Bruce said that in an age when people are finding it tough to make ends meet, he was overwhelmed at the generosity of the competitors, as £920 was raised for the charity pot.      

The Midweek Stableford was also played on the Lakes course in somewhat chilly conditions. Ralph Clark had a fantastic round to win with a score of forty points, he was cut to thirteen; James Kearney took second place with thirty five points. Andy Hardy took third place on count back from Neil Chatterton and Robert Gray after they all came in with thirty four points.

Stephen’s practice pays off to win Anniversary Trophy

This year is the 21st anniversary of Greetham Valley which started life as a driving range with a nine hole par 3 course, quickly added to by two eighteen hole championship courses, the Lakes and the Valley. A  bowling club completes the sporting picture. The complex also boasts a thirty five bedroom hotel, a Gym and a two hundred seater function room, restaurants and Lounge Bar – Greetham Valley has taken big strides in a short space of time! For the members though, it is all about the golf. The first white tee competition of the year is the aptly named Anniversary Trophy, a stableford competition off full handicap, to celebrate Greetham Valley’s birthday . 

Played on the Lakes course on a warm sunny day with not a great deal of wind, no snow, rain, sleet or fog – almost a normal golf day after the bad winter which seems to have gone on forever. Thirteen handicapper Stephen Bennoson got off to a great start when he parred the first six holes and only dropped a shot at the par four seventh after arguing with the front bunker. Stephen got himself together and went on the par trail again making the next three. After a visit to the trees on the eleventh he dropped his second shot but bounced back with pars on the next two. He was to have another par and a birdie on the long par five sixteenth before two small errors resulted in bogies on the last two holes. However, after dropping only four shots in total he finished with a splendid forty five points, some four points better than second place.  

Stephen said that he started out in a great frame of mind, relaxed and positive that the practice that he had put in during the long winter would pay off. He was naturally very happy with the win but even happier to have got his golfing year off to such a great start, he was cut to eleven. Jamie Lowndes was second with a well crafted forty one points, he was cut to eighteen. Terry Dunlop took third place just one point behind and was cut to sixteen.   

In the Ladies Anniversary competition, Pat Jamieson took the win on count back from County player Emma Tipping, both Ladies played good steady golf to come in with thirty five points but Pat took the win and the trophy after coming in with a better score on the last three holes. Pat, who has practised very hard during the winter, said that she was happy with her round apart from a blob on the par five second. Mandie Cassie took third place with thirty four points.

Sue Wiles took the win and the lowest gross prize with a brilliant display in the Ladies Midweek Medal played on the Lakes course. Sue, playing off nineteen, shot a gross eighty eight, net sixty nine. Ladies Vice Captain Bev Dolman off twelve was second with a net seventy nine on count back from former Ladies Captain Jackie Friend.

The Seniors played their first qualifier of the year, the Seniors April Medal on the Lakes course off yellow tees. Nick Meyer off eighteen was in scintillating form in division one and took the win and the overall medal with some three shots to spare. Nick said that everything just seemed to work well, nothing out of the ordinary, just good solid golf shots, he was cut to seventeen. John Taylor off fifteen took second place with a net seventy two. Third and fourth were settled on count back after Robert Gray and 2012 Club Captain Jim Wheeler both came in with a net seventy three, Robert was placed third and Jim Fourth. Peter Giblett off ten had the lowest gross of eighty five.

Geoff Thomas won division two with a net seventy four. Mike Pare and Stuart Dodd were second and third on count back after both scoring a net seventy seven. Dave Lucas and John Morfee took fourth and fifth again on count back with a net seventy eight.

Ros Nicol won the Ladies nine hole stableford qualifier with a score of seventeen. Thirty six handicapper Mimi Harris had fifteen points for second and Pat Dawson off twenty nine was third with fourteen points.

Greetham Valley’s First Team lost their first game of the year against Tydd St. Giles at the weekend. Ryan Tarrant and Scotty Stevenson had to battle really hard to get a half to get the team on the board. Andy Frisby and Ben Gasson lost their game three and two after both players struggled with the putter. Neil Harris and Adam Clegg who recently returned from a six week lay off due to injury, took the win in the third game by five and four after Adam knocked in a string of birdies. Trevor Smith and Bob Green were up against it with former touring Pro Kevin Goude who demonstrated some huge hitting, they lost three and two. Ray Gladwinfield and Chris Steele managed to win their game one up on the last hole. It all now depended on the last game for the Greetham team, a draw to halve the match or a win to win overall. Unfortunately, it ended in a loss for the Greetham duo of Fraser Denholm and Simon Bateman, they lost two down. Team Captain Neil Harris said that they were disappointed to lose but look forward to their next game away to Blankney later in the month.

Winter Order of Merit & Ladies’ Mail on Sunday

After almost six months of play, competitors in the Winter Order of Merit played their final round of the series and for a change it was played in warm sunshine, a distinct change from only two weeks ago when it had to be called off because of thick snow covering the course.

Adrian Cunningham saved his best game until the last round; as he hadn’t suffered a cut to his handicap, he played off his original handicap of twenty eight. Adrian came in with a massive score of forty six points, twenty one on the front including a four pointer on the first and twenty five on the back nine which included a further three four point holes.  Adrian said that after a great start everything just seemed to work well for him. Club Secretary Dennis Millington was second with thirty eight points and Steve Anderson playing off five was third with thirty seven points just edging out second team Captain Alan Bennett on count back. 

The three top placed players played together in the last group: Trevor Smith, playing off plus three, faced the almost impossible task of finding three birdies and parring everything else just to get thirty six points, he came in with a score of thirty two. The usually steady and dependable Paul Jenkinson who had been sitting in second place had one of his rare off days and could only score twenty nine points. Trevor was placed second and Paul third but the winner of the 2012/13 Order of Merit was Steve Anderson. Steve had started the day in third place some fifteen points behind the leader but thanks to a sterling effort, he came in with thirty seven points, and being awarded thirty points in the league table for third place, this was enough to take the title in this long and hard fought competition. 

Carl Causbrook headed a tightly packed group in fourth with David Copley, Alan Bennett, Tony Mould and Ian Copley taking fifth to eighth places respectively. Greetham President Martin Boughton, who had won the first competition in 2010/11, finished ninth and organiser Neil Harris crept into tenth. Adam Clegg returned from injury to take the prize for the best Saturday score outside the top twelve and Dennis Millington secured the best Sunday score with another dogged performance in the final event. 

Order of Merit winner Steve Anderson said that before the start of the final round it felt like a very tough ask but he stuck to his task getting off to a good start by parring the first, he dropped only four shots in his round. He went on to say that the recent change in the flag colours helped enormously as on some holes it is difficult to see the bottom half of the flag stick. Course Manager Adi Porter said that they had set the flags out as per the tee markings, red at the front for Ladies, yellow for Men and white at the back for the competition tees; there have been very positive comments received from members supporting the change.

No one player has been able to win more than once during this season’s competition, although some have come close to it. Neil Harristhanked all of the fifty three members who played in it and for supporting the competition.  He went on to say that £1253 had been shared out in varying amounts in prizes throughout the competition including £495 for the final. The WOOM will be starting all over again, this time as a club competition, on the twenty sixth of October.

In the photo, second in from the left is Greetham Valley President Martin Boughton, to his left holding the trophy is the overall winner for 2012/2013, Steve Anderson. Next to Steve is organiser Neil Harris and to Neil’s left is the final weeks winner, Adrian Cunningham. 

As previously reported, Greetham Valley will be the venue for the England Boy’s Championships qualifier next year. To celebrate this, Greetham Valley Pro Jim Hetherington will be starting his Junior Academy on Saturday 13th April. This will be for six one hour lessons with equipment loan, balls and free membership to the Academy course for three months. All this will be only £48, less than Jim charges for a full one hour lesson. 

Greetham Valley are keen to promote Junior Golf and to increase Junior participation at the club. Jim and the management are encouraging children to take part to give them a sense of being part of something where they will get guidance, support and encouragement should they wish to continue their golf development after the initial introduction to the game. The push to bring more Juniors into golf will continue throughout the season with a variety of free taster sessions which start in May and structured Junior courses. Jim can be contacted at Greetham Valley or on 07712 052763.

Greetham Valley Managing Director Robert Hinch said that they fully support Jim’s efforts to provide a solid base from which youngsters can start golf. He went on to say that it is very important for parents to know that their children are learning to play the game in a safe and controlled environment.

After beating local rivals Burghley Park in the last round of the Mail on Sunday team knockout competition, Greetham Valley’s Ladies faced Oundle at home in the next round on Sunday. The previous round was played in a mix of snow, rain and high winds; this one was very different, a slight breeze, quite warm and the ground firm enough for the ball to run.

Gilly Grant leading from the front beat Liz Swan seven and five, Annie McCulloch who had stepped in at the last moment as Sue Brand was ill, followed this up with a three and two win over Ros Riley.

Pat Jamieson, who has been in excellent form recently, lost her game against Karen Joyce four and two. Ladies Captain Sheila Douty playing in her first Mail on Sunday game also lost her game against an in form Gerry Robinson four and three. Scratch player Sophie Beardsall had to give Pat Silburn ten shots but she still managed to halve her game scoring a remarkable two under par, this left the overall match tied. 

Despite Sophie’s heroics she then had to face Pat in a sudden death play off. On the first hole Sophie was on the green in two, six foot from the hole only to see Pat put her third shot some two foot from the hole with a shot in hand. Sophie, under extreme pressure, lipped out and Pat sunk her two footer for a par to knock Greetham Valley out and take Oundle into the next round. Gilly Grant thanked her team for playing their hearts out with special thanks to Sophie for giving them a chance with the extra play off hole.

First Spring report from the greens

Despite the short Easter week and the continued bad weather,the green keeping team managed to get quite a lot of work done out on the courses. All fairways have been fertilised, although this is a month later than last year. Greens are still showing no signs of growth yet so to increase the speed for this weekend’s golf, we ironed them and also put another light topdressing of sand on.

We have been busy clearing up the wood from the left of the 17th Valley. The removal of these trees has been necessary as some are diseased (not ash dieback ), and some have started to rot from the centre of the trunk.  The positive outcome of this will be that the logs will provide some of the heating in the Lounge bar next winter!

Hopefully next week we will see a change in the weather to a milder, possibly wetter, pattern and this will promote grass growth and allow us to get the courses into their peak condition.

I know you will have noticed the coloured flag positioning by now and it is hoped that many of you have seen an improvement to your game! Do let us know your thoughts.

Enjoy your golf

Adi Porter, Course Manager

Greetham Valley’s 21st Birthday Party!

Saturday 20th April
Join Greetham Valley as we celebrate our 21st Birthday with a fabulous party night of fun, fine food and fantastic entertainment – live music, disco and casino!

Enjoy a delicious two course dinner, then dance ’til midnight to live swing music from the fabulous Clem Johnson and the sound of the Partybeat Disco. When not dancing, why not try your luck at Roulette and Blackjack?

When reserving tickets, please select preferred dining location, subject to availability:

  • Rutland Suite – live music and disco – lively and noisy!
  • Lakeview Suite – casino – a touch quieter and a bit easier to talk

Book early to reserve your preferred table location – first come, first served!

7.30pm to midnight    Tickets £21pp  

Please click here for 21st Birthday Party menu 

Everyone welcome to come and celebrate 21 fantastic years with Greetham Valley!

Ticket reservations: Greetham Valley Hotel Reception, tel: (01780) 460444

Hole in one on first day of flag positioning trial!

A hole in one on the first day of Greetham Valley’s flag positioning trial!

Now this has made the trial more interesting  – on his eighth visit to Greetham Valley with a group of friends on a golf break, Steve Osborne aced the 6th on the Lakes course, his first ever hole in one!

The yellow flag was placed in the middle third of the green to the right and Steve’s 9 iron shot cleared the pond, bounced once and went in the hole. He would like to say it was a deliberately calculated fine shot but was honest and said ‘Sheer luck!’  By coincidence, the greenkeepers were just a few minutes away from moving the hole to another position on the green – that would probably have saved Steve the cost of the whisky bottle he put on the bar for the benefit of those in the Clubhouse!

We do very much want feedback from players during the coloured flag positioning trial – remember, red flag in the front third, yellow in the middle and white in the back third. Does this coloured visual aid improve your approach shot? Does it help in club selection? Are you seeing a decrease in your shots per round? Do you have any other opinions (polite and constructive please!) regarding the trial?

Please speak to Captains Trevor or Sheila, to Dee or Robert Hinch or email or via Twitter @GreethamValley – we look forward to receiving your feedback.