HON. SECRETARY’S REPORT
ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
WEDNESDAY 5TH OCTOBER 2016
It is unfortunate that this year has seen another disqualification in the Emerton-Court Trophy – Wrangaton being disqualified at the semi-final stage for fielding an ineligible player. That the rules were transgressed there is no doubt and, following receipt of the allegation, your Captain with the backing of the full committee took the only course open to them – disqualification. My own private thought on this, and in no way the committee’s view, is that it may have been more appropriate that the two captains of the clubs concerned should have discussed the matter and come to an agreement between themselves as to how the matter should be dealt with; once an issue such as this comes before the committee there can only be one outcome and this can lead to bitterness in some quarters. The matter is now closed and, I hope, not to be referred to again.
It is always sad and unfortunate when golf clubs come to a point where they can no longer continue. Sadly Willingcott Valley and, as I’m informed, Padbrook Park will close in March next year. We wish all the players at these two clubs the very best in establishing themselves in other clubs.
Otherwise I think it is true to say that we have had a very good year and, I like to think, a formative year in the DMVGA’s history. On the golfing front we have had an excellent year with, as you have already heard from our Captain, victories over the Devon Juniors and, by tying with Cornwall over the two matches, retaining the salver. In beating the Devon Juniors we recorded only our second win against them. Win or lose we always donate £200.00 to the Juniors to assist with their development – golf being the winner!
Despite being beaten, our trip to Kent was most enjoyable, the choice of new courses and accommodation were very well received – so much so that we have already agreed to return there in 2018. Our final match this year is against the Devon Lady Vets is on Monday coming – good luck Stuart!
From the President’s Salver at Tavistock at the start of the season right the way through to the Autumn Meeting at Honiton we have had marvellous support with full fields at all events; I try to accommodate as many players as possible by starting earlier and having a few later tee times as well and, with only one exception, have avoided ‘balloting out’. This is never an easy jobette and one I avoid if at all possible – however the one occasion I did have to do it I was brought to book, rightly probably, for an alleged unreasonable balloting method. This subject will be addressed later in the meeting.
As your Captain has already outlined The Emerton-Court final was held at Churston on Monday with Staddon Heights running out worthy winners over Libbaton; the match going down to the final putt, from the final pairing on the 18th and final green. The match was played in the very best traditions of golf in glorious autumn sunshine. What was also very encouraging and delight to see was the really quite large crowd of supporters – mainly from Libbaton – but which added much to the occasion. Well done both clubs!
Away from the fairways there has been substantial work carried out by a sub-committee as appointed by the Executive Committee; the first matter in the sub-committee’s remit was making the DMVGA a Qualifying Authority; that achieved we then had to implement the necessary administrative and technical backup to ensure that we met England Golf’s guidelines. This we did and the Spring, Summer and Autumn Meetings became Qualifiers. I have not received any negative feedback so I assume we can consider this a success. There is time later in this meeting to learn more about the sub-committee’s work; however, at this point, I would like to thank the members of that sub-committee for the time and effort they have all put in to carry out the work we identified as necessary to take the DMVGA forward – Peter Stuckey from Tiverton, Chris Henderson from Tavistock, Adrian Granville-Smith from Saunton and David Grieve from Tiverton – all have worked hard, but of those Adrian has in particular spent many hours on his computer burning the midnight oil on a couple of the projects. I think a round of applause for these chaps would not be out of order. We shall be hearing more from the sub-committee later in the meeting.
We shall be hearing the Hon. Treasurer’s report shortly and I think he will tell us that, financially, we have had a good year although of course there is a little bit to go yet. As some of you will know, David Bromage has been indisposed but, I’m very glad to report, is back with us again although with strict instructions to behave himself and to take things easy for a while; David, a very active man in mind and deed, may find that difficult! Welcome back David!
The role of the DMVGA club rep is perhaps the single most important role within the organisation. Without you all I would not be able to function and, simply, the Association would fall into disrepair. To each and every one of you my thanks. A couple of long standing reps are standing down now – Colin Walmsley from Holsworthy, John Essery from Downes Crediton and Graham Nye from Woodbury Park – to you all, many thanks for your sterling work and enjoy your ‘retirement’! I’m sorry if I’ve missed any other luminaries.
My thanks must go to the Executive Committee for their support; to David Bromage for keeping me on the straight and narrow financial highway; to Chris Henderson for all his assistance and never failing cheerfulness and finally to our outgoing Captain Sturt MacKerrell for his support and quiet well mannered ways – thank you Stuart.
I’m glad to report that the fixture list for next season is already completed and copies are available for you to take away.
Thank you Gentlemen and that is my report for this AGM.
Bob Small Hon. Secretary
Wednesday 5th October 2016