On Sunday the 18th October, 2020, a strong team of 12 Old Welleslians descended on Royal St George’s in Sandwich for their annual OW golf fixture.
Despite tightening Covid-19 restrictions, we were greeted warmly and enjoyed the usual first class hospitality for which the club is renowned. Seated in our foursomes for lunch in the dining hall, the players made the most of the sumptuous roast beef and some light refreshments, with any pre-match nerves being overcome by discussions of JET cup victories in 1992, hiding in the roof of the cricket pavilion instead of doing prep, school plays, form plays, the Wellesley challenge and other recollections of days gone by.
As the groups headed towards the first tee, The Headmaster gave a very brief introduction and laid out the competition rules (foursomes stableford off the weekday tees – Pinto tees to be used for those still at senior school) and confirmed the pairings. Each player was treated to a Royal St George’s pouch with tees, pitch mark repair and marker – all suitably RSG branded – and a strokesaver – thus giving all Old Welleslians no excuse of not knowing exact yardages. The gloriously benign weather and near immaculate playing surface gave the players even more reason not to be able to defend any sub-standard play – not that any was anticipated.
Amongst the competitors, we were delighted to welcome some recent leavers who are in their GCSE year at Tonbridge (grandsons of Bill and Tessa Sale), current sixth formers, some university undergraduates, a recently qualified Doctor and some (much) older OWs, as well as a special guest – the father of two OWs. The Headmaster was permitted to be an honorary OW for the afternoon, too. Rupert Harmsworth gave up his slot (very nobly) and opted to play with his brother instead (who was already out on the course) to enable us to have 3 groups of 4. Rupert’s absence from the competition, being a low single figure handicapper, at least provided the rest with some chance of silverware. The blend of ages and the ease in which all players mixed are just further evidence of the strength and quality of the Old Welleslian network and society.
There was some superb golf on display in the most serene, autumnal conditions. Following the 18 holes, in a Covid-safe socially distanced way, we were able to conduct a post-match presentation on the terrace with a plethora of Wellesley House and RSG goodies up for grabs as the prizes. Much fun was had by all and as the OWs disbursed, plans for an even bigger OW golf day 2021 were already being discussed. Thank you to all of the competitors and of course, to Royal St George’s for allowing us to play at their wonderful club. A great day out for all.
The results were as follows:
Hugo Loudon and Andrew Cox – 35 points and Champions
William Fenwick and Ed Roberts – 34 points
Rupert Plumptre and Freddie Evans – 34 points
William Evans and Kieran Wardman – 30 points
Archie Hammond and the Headmaster – 29 points
Digby Taylor-Young and Matthew Roberts – 27 points