General Information If You’re Interested in Joining Us
Whilst originally based in Napton, the centre of the Society is now the neighbouring village of Long Itchington.
Having said that, we have members from all over Warwickshire who regularly turn out.
NGS is based in the Green Man Pub in Long Itchington. All the courses we play at are within an hour’s travelling distance from there.
We normally play on a Tuesday once a month, with an optional post-game “analysis” down the Green Man afterwards.
The cost for the outings varies, but it is never more than £40. The format is Coffee & Bacon Roll on arrival, 18 holes of golf, hot meal and awards ceremony.
Visitors are always welcome. Please get in contact using the links on the top of the home page.
Whilst the Golf Society is here for ermm…Golf(!)….it has also raised over £45,000 for good causes over the years:
||Total to Date
||Warwick Hospital Renal Unit
||Adam Crinage Foundation
||Myasthenia Gravis Assoviation
||Multiple Sclerosis Society
||Cornelia de Lange Foundation
||Bell House Trust
||Parkinsons Disease Society
||BHF Cardiac Rehab at Warwick Hospital
||The Afghanistan Trust
||The Kathryn House Hospice
||Blind Veterans UK (St Dunstans)
||The Children’s Air Ambulance
||Macmillan Cancer Suopport
||Warks and Northants Air Ambulance
||Parkinson’s UK, Leamington & District Branch
Napton Golf Society was formed in March 1994 at the King’s Head pub in Napton where Barry Mackaness was mine host and founder member of the Society. The first outing was to Daventry G. C. on 27th April where nine inaugural members paid £9 each to go twice round the 9-hole course – plus £5 for food. Following this outing initial handicaps were confirmed with one member (John Lillie) playing off 9 and the other 15 varying between 20 and 28, the maximum allowed for men.
The first officers were Captain John Lillie, vice-Captain J. Hartley, Chairman W. Spotten, Hon. Secretary Gary North, Assistant Secretary R. Powell, Handicap Secretary Rod Gillard (who rapidly became known as “Chopper”) and Hon. Treasurer Dave Harmon. Barry and Roger Prickett completed the first committee and one of its first decisions at the meeting of 30th March was to reduce the proposed annual subscription from £25 to £15.
The first AGM held at the King’s Head on November 29th was poorly attended and all officers were re-elected unopposed – no change there – including the Captain. The Treasurer reported a membership of 21 (four of whom lived in Napton), no change in the annual subscription, and a “not too healthy” balance at the Midland Bank of £42.60.
From April to September in that first year five outings were successfully arranged to Daventry, Cherwell Edge, Ullesthorpe, Stratford Oaks and, finally, the first Captain’s Day on September 16th at Hellidon Lakes.
At the committee meeting of 7th March 1995 Barry Mackaness was elected Social Secretary “to assist the Secretary and organise functions e.g. Christmas Party” the first of which was at the Tarsus restaurant, Southam on December 12th. Meanwhile the Treasurer complained that so far only 8 members had paid their annual subs – again no change!
At the next meeting on 28th March it was decided to try and ensure that at least one experienced golfer would be included in each group, and John Lillie agreed to draw up a list of the most common rules of golf and etiquette in order to “help clarify some rules” and to “speed up play”.
In 1995 nine outings were arranged, March to October and by the 2nd AGM at the King’s Head on 7th November membership had increased to 30, a very creditable 16 of whom attended, and the Treasurer was able to report a much healthier bank balance of £512.57. Barry Mackaness became Chairman, Chris McNally was the next Captain, and other positions remained unchanged.
The 1996 AGM attended by 11 members saw major changes to the committee. Gary North was elected Chairman, Secretary was Neil Elkerton (Captain in 2001) assisted by Phil Croft who subsequently became Competitions Secretary. Chris McNally took on the task of Handicap secretary alongside the 3rd Captain A.J. Collins whose vice-Captain was Rod Gillard. Dave Harmon announced funds of £974.75 and agreed to continue as Treasurer. Although the Society now boasted 31 members it was suggested that posters be put up to advertise for new blood. The records do not reveal whether this idea was acted on.
The first Presentation Evening was held on 8th November 1996 at the Green Man, Long Itchington where an early member, Barry Cramp (ably supported by wife Sue), was mine host. Although eight people cancelled at a late stage the Green Man was very understanding and 23 members and partners dined well for £15 each (no drinks included!) with digestion aided by live music. This event has been well attended at the Green Man every year since.
In 1998 Barry Cramp took over as Chairman and the first Captain’s Charity Day was held at The Windmill, Coventry, on 30th June with £365.75 being raised for the Schwachman Syndrome Foundation by the then Captain, Gary North. The major trophy for this event, the Charity Shield, contested by 22 pairs, was sponsored by Bryan Roberts then mine host at the Crown Inn, Stockton where food and many a pint were enjoyed after outings. Since this modest beginning similar events have been held every year at various venues until 2001, then at Stoneleigh Deer Park from 2002 to date (2018), raising a total of nearly £47K for 20 different charities.
Apart from Captain and vice-Captain the officers from 1998 to early 2003 were almost unchanged. Phil Quinn took over from Chris McNally as Handicap Secretary in 2002, but in July 2003 Barry Cramp and Neil Elkerton decided to resign their after twelve years of valiant service between them. The Secretary’s responsibilities were temporarily assumed by the then Captain, Geoff Colquitt, ably assisted by Colin East. David Cobley, Treasurer since July 2002 when Dave Harmon decided to call it a day after steering the Society finances through its first nine years, chaired meetings.
At the December 2003 AGM the office of Chairman was discontinued except as a means of controlling meetings when any committee member could take charge. Colin East was elected Secretary, Graham King (2002 Captain) Competitions Secretary, and Phil Quinn Handicap Secretary. Brendan McKenna became Captain with Phil Croft as his vice, and David Cobley continued as Treasurer.
Since 1997 although a few were convened at the Jolly Abbot pub in Rugby where Graham King was mine host, almost all meetings have been held at the Green Man, the declared HQ of the Napton Golf Society. Perhaps the presence of several Long Itchington residents on successive committees may have something to do with it!
To celebrate the first ten years of the N.G.S. a weekend outing was arranged in early June 2004 to the de Vere Belton Woods Hotel and G. C. in Lincolnshire, where a new prize, the 10-Year Trophy, was played for by 34 members. Brian Handley was the first winner and this weekend outing has since become a very popular annual event. 2004 was also notable for a peak in membership at 58, but many members attended outings infrequently if at all.
Twenty members attended the 2004 AGM at the Green Man on 7th December where once again the officers were returned unopposed. It was agreed that the annual subscription be raised from £15 to £20, and that a retiring Captain could be if he so wished an ex-officio member of the committee. It was suggested by Pete Cornish whose firm Glass D Sign provides all the NGS prizes that the “longest drive” prize be dropped on outings because he, Pete, kept winning it! The committee agreed and substituted a “nearest the pin in 2” prize, also at Pete’s suggestion.
When Phil Quinn left the Society in 2007 Lee Pollard took over as Competitions Secretary and Graham King moved to Handicap Secretary. Graham Balls, Captain in 2006, and Martin Terry, 2009 Captain, have been active committee members since 2005 and 2008 respectively. After Graham King resigned his office in 2011 Lee Pollard took responsibility for both handicapping and competitions. Colin East resigned in 2014 after a 10-year tenure as Secretary handing over the reins to David Board our Webmaster and 2015 Captain.
Recent years to date (Dec’2018) have been particularly successful for the Napton Golf Society. Active membership has grown, the program of events has expanded, outing attendance has increased as have charity donations. The stable core committee of Graham Balls, David Board, David Cobley, Lee Pollard and Martin Terry has been ably assisted by Rob Wigley (Captain 2011), Andy Beck (2014), Roly Oliver (2016), Roger Walker (2017), Daniel Gleeson (2018) and now Simon Cobley.
2018 has been a particularly noteworthy year with achievements such as:-
- Membership has recovered to 45 from a low of 35 in 2015
- Average attendance at monthly outings was a record 29 members (64%) with a best of 36 for the Mike Reynolds Pairs in November
- Lee Pollard introduced the latest CONGU system and NGS handicaps now range from 6 to 34 (max 54!). Members at first sceptical are now getting used to the changes.
- The updated R & A rules have been simplified to encourage faster play.
- Captain Dan Gleeson’s charity, the Marie Curie Nurses benefitted by a record £7,100, a magnificent effort by all concerned – Dan in particular
- At the November AGM annual subs were raised to £25 (joining fee £10, Juniors unchanged at £10) the first increase since 2004.
In 2019 the Napton Golf Society celebrates its 25th year with Simon Cobley as its Captain and Tony Inskip as vice-Captain. Planning is well advanced so keep up with the news by visiting this website.
New members including ladies, juniors and beginners are always welcome. Indeed many members past and present learnt to play golf with the N.G.S. The enthusiastic and hard-working committee organises outings every month except December usually on a Tuesday, and the bank balance is healthy. Long may it last!
Footnote: This website was suggested and sponsored by Rob Wigley, and is his legacy to the Napton Golf Society following a successful year as 2011 Captain when a record £4,000 was raised for the Afghanistan Trust. David Board took over as Website Manager in 2012.