Stars chip in to raise cash for heart unit
Published at 09:04, Monday, 16 July 2012
A STAR-STUDDED cast of celebrities teed off at Close House to raise a staggering £100,000 for a charity close to owner Graham Wylie’s heart.
The household names of Ant and Dec, Alan Shearer, Bobby Davro and Lee Westwood, the attached tour professional at the golf resort, played in the Have a Heart celebrity golf day in aid of the recently saved Children’s Heart Unit Foundation (CHUF) at Newcastle’s Freemand Hospital.
The unit saved the life of Mr Wylie’s daughter Keira by carrying out three operations, and he wanted to celebrate the news it is staying open after two years of uncertainty.
It was a warm ‘homecoming’ for world number three golfer Westwood who, despite seeing his arrival by helicopter rained off, led the 33 teams on the day.
Included in the list of stars was Newcatle United manager Alan Pardew, top jockeys Ruby Walsh and Tony McCoy, football pundit Alan Hansen and Newcastle Falcon Ally Hogg.
There was also a top drawer prize raffle, followed by a meal and entertainment by comedian Davro.
The second Have a Heart event is part of Mr Wylie’s vision to transform Close House resort into a top destination to rival Gleneagles and Wentworth.
He has already made huge strides towards this, opening the championship Colt course, an elite golf academy and state-of-the-art glass clubhouse No 19 last May, not to mention the coup of attracting Westwood to represent the hotel.
Hexham held their club championships recently, which were split into four categories: Club (open to all), Alpha (handicap seven to 12), Intermediate (age 18+, handicap 13 to 18), and Rabbits (age 18+, handicap 19 to 28).
It was a good day for junior captain Jonny Richardson as he claimed the club championship trophy with victory in a tight affair with Hadrian League teammate Martin Coup.
The match was all square with three rounds remaining, but Coup conceded the hole to allow the youngster to clinch the win with a birdie putt.
The 18 hole Alpha Trophy belonged to Richard Dodd after a final showdown with David G. Watson.
Dodd led from the halfway mark, and wins in the 10th, 11th and 12th holes saw him with a five stroke advantage. The match ended on the 14th when Watson conceded the hole after failing to get onto the green from the greenside bunker.
The lead fluctuated between Intermediate finalists Davey Arthur and Tom Phillipson, before the latter claimed the silverware on the final hole.
It was Arthur who made the steadier start but both golfers battled well to keep in contention, with Phillipson showing more consistency with wins in three of the final four holes to take the title.
After a scrappy start to the Rabbits championship final, Huw Collins overcame the challenge of Paul Rock to pick up the success.
Collins was in control early on but was pegged back to two up after 12 holes. He struck back immediately, though, and the game ended on the 15th with Collins winning 5 & 3.
An event at Haltwhistle was organised to encourage golf stars of the future with local schoolchildren welcomed onto the fairway.
As part of the Haltwhistle Carnival, a special open day was held to give young people the opportunity to try out the sport for the first time.
As well as getting their first taste of swinging a club, the 20-strong group of youngsters aged between 10 and 15 also competed for prizes.
On the back of the success of the Carnival Golf Day event, the club now plans to launch a junior membership scheme and is currently looking for an enthusiastic golfer to voluntarily coach the youngsters on a weekly basis.
Club secretary Pat Peace said: “We had a fantastic turnout of children from schools in and around Haltwhistle and it was great to see so much enthusiasm for the sport among young people.
“Our aim was to welcome the next generation of golfers to the club and, with our new junior membership scheme, we now hope to coach them and develop their golfing talent.”
The Carnival Golf Day saw prizes awarded to Jasmin Edwards (best scoring girl), Darrell Thompson (best score for a middle school pupil) and Jack Barker (best score for a high school pupil).
Any golfing enthusiast wishing to become a volunteer youth coach at the golf club can contact should email Pat Peace on (01434) 294471 or email: Patrick.email@example.com.
At Stocksfield’s Steve Harrison’s professionals day, close to £1,000 was raised despite the weather.
Trevor Walker was the winner with 41 points, with Tom Kennedy (40) second and James Ridley (39) third.
Adam Thomson (34) was the best junior, Chris Scott was nearest the pin on the third hole, Steven Robson closest on 10th, Roger Jones on 14th and Tony Howden on 18th, while Colin Walker had the longest drive.
James Ridley (77-10-67) won the Fred Punshon competition ahead of Scott McDonald (77-8-69) and David Harvey (82-13-69).
With 39 points, home member D. Lee won the midweek open, with club mate A. Digirolamo (37) second and the Brampton pair of J. Boertien and K. Andrews (35) joint third.
Excitement is mounting for tomorrow’s junior open at Allendale, the first such event at the club and the opener for the new, county-wide March to Matfen competition.
Visiting juniors will find the yardage of the course within their compass, but its teasing challenges quite another matter.
Meanwhile, those challenges were well met by junior organiser Valeria Dunn, and husband Ian, who registered 94-28-66 to take third in the Brown Rosebowl foursomes.
They finished just shy of the winning duo of Jim Hall and Robin Makepeace (80-15.5-64.5) and John Coleman and Iain Thompson (86-21-65).
Published by http://www.hexhamcourant.co.uk
This week in... 1930Saturday, December 13, 1930...
HAVING raised over £1,000 through prize draws, dances, whist drives and donations, Bellingham was able to buy its town hall.
So successful was the fund-raising that when all the debts were cleared more than £100 was left in the fund.
The hall could now be used by the town for all manner of social and public functions.