News in 2011


Forthcoming Social Events

On Saturday 7th January there will be a "Bottle Bingo" at 7.30pm in the Clubhouse. Christine Rae will be the Caller. Elna Lawrie is collecting bottles as prizes. If anyone would like to make a contribution that would be great.

It is planned to hold a second event on Saturday 11th February -  a Valentines theme with 60's/70's music. Further details are still to be finalised.

The Club is going to be running a few social events in the Clubhouse, primarily to encourage members (and their friends) to meet socially and make more use of the facilities. The 'social' sub-committee would welcome suggestions/ideas from members for events to hold and by making use of the bar we hope that the Club will benefit from an improvement in funds. Good news for everyone!

Greenkeeper Wanted

Following George Rollo's retirement, the club is now advertising for a hardworking and conscientious Greenkeeper. Applicants must be able to work with the minimum of supervision, and must be competent in all greenkeeping tasks. We are looking for someone to commence employment as soon as possible in 2012. Terms of employment are negotiable, depending on experience.

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Winter Trial Membership

Once again this year the club is offering a Trial Membership over the winter months for anyone who might be interested in joining the club, taking up golf for the first time, or perhaps getting back to it after a few years away. Trial membership costs £50 and terminates on the 31st March 2012. If you don't have clubs then a free loan of clubs is available subject to a returnable deposit. 

This is a good value way to try out golf at Gairloch, and a number of our members have, in the past, used this route to full membership.

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Closing Match & Prizegiving (24th September 2011)

A Texas Scramble competition was played to bring our summer season to an end. Twenty three competitors took to the course in teams of 3 and 4 and managed to play 18 holes of very competitive golf whilst avoiding the worst of the forecast bad weather. The result was very close with one or two bad holes separating the winners from the also ran. Prizes were awarded to the first and second placed teams. Well done to everyone who took part.

A few drinks from the bar were followed by another of Anne and Jenny's excellent buffets, and then a few more drinks. Then Jo and Chris Powell presented the year's awards. Twenty nine different players received awards (some more than others) with the stand out Player of the Year being Brian Grant. Special note was made of Oscar Howard's successful year as a Junior. One to watch for the future.

Team Captain Player 2 Player 3 Player 4 Score
Ian Lewis Muir Russell Jo Powell Jenny MacDonald 50.4
Brian Grant Richard Spence John Lamont   51.67
Neil Macleod Shena Aanonsen Jocelyn Mitchell   52.5
Pete Meredith Peter Mitchell Hayley Lewis   52.8
Susan MacVicar Rob Heffer Cliff Callow Carol Turnbull 53.5
Margot Barr Mike Northeast Chris Powell   54.17
Ian Graham Julian Duggan Janet MacKenzie   56.83


Junior Masters (19th September 2011)

Thought you’d like to hear a bit of news about Oscar’s golf over the summer. He was selected to represent Gairloch Golf Club in the Junior Masters regional finals at Inverness in July and did well with a score of 36. We didn’t think at the time it was quite good enough for him to get through to the all Scotland juniors grand final. However, he was notified the other day that he has made it and so will be going down to Gleneagles for the Junior Masters Final on the 9th October. He is thrilled and we are pleased, whatever the outcome, for the great experience it will give him on a national stage while he is still only 14.

Thanks and great appreciation go to the invaluable work of John Beck and helpers for supporting the juniors throughout the year.

Regards Rob Howard

Player of the Year (17th September 2011)

The Player of the Year is determined by allocating points (10, 8, 6, 4, 2) to the top five placed players in each of the summer medals, medal winners medal, and three knockout competitions.

The results are all now in and the final placings are:

Brian Grant 64 pts
Angus Macleod 50 pts
Neil Macleod 46 pts

Congratulations to Brian Grant this year's Player of the Year!

Medal Winners Competition

The winners and second placed players in each of the Medals for the year qualify to play in the Medal Winners medal on Sat 17th September. For added spice this competition will almost certainly decide the Player of the Year competition.

Those qualifying are:

October Julian Duggan, Peter Meredith
November Peter Mitchell, Ian Graham
December Cancelled
January Cancelled
February Peter Meredith, Brian Grant
March Peter Mitchell, John Beck
April Julian Duggan, Brian Grant
May Bruce Jeffrey, Ian Graham
June Neil Macleod, Ian Graham
July Brian Grant, Norman McDonald
August Neil Macleod, Brian Grant
September Brian Grant, Neil Macleod

So the full list is:
Julian Duggan
Peter Meredith
Peter Mitchell
Ian Graham
Brian Grant
John Beck
Bruce Jeffrey
Neil Macleod
Norman McDonald

MacIver Cup

The MacIver Cup is awarded to the player with the best 4 net scores from the 6 summer medals. The last medal was played today (4th September). At the beginning of the round there were 3 or 4 players in contention. Two players, Neil Macleod and Brian Grant raised their games to new heights, with Neil returning a net 61 and Brian an amazing net 58. He completed the first 9 holes in level par!

The final result is:
248 Brian Grant (65 61 64 58)
251 Neil Macleod (62 69 59 61)
267 Angus Macleod
267 Bruce Jeffrey
279 Julian Duggan
279 Peter Meredith
285 John D MacDonald

Congratulations to Brian Grant, this year's winner of the MacIver Cup.

Player of the Year

The Player of the Year is determined by allocating points (10, 8, 6, 4, 2) to the top five placed players in each of the summer medals, medal winners medal, and three knockout competitions.

With the finals of the Club championship, the Ian Campbell Trophy, and the HMS Hibernia to be decided, and Medal Winners medal yet to be played there are up to 14 points available to participants in this years Player of the Year competition. In the KO competitions I have allocated the minimum that each player will get regardless of the final outcomes.

The top five contenders at the moment are:
48 Angus Macleod
48 Brian Grant
42 Neil Macleod
22 Bruce Jeffrey
20 Pete Meredith

The winner will come from one of the top three.

Walk On Open (10th August)

This was held on the day the rains returned and for a few it was also a Walk-off-Open. Nevertheless, the survivors posted some excellent scores.

  Name H'cap Points
1st Peter Davidson - Spey Valley 24 39
2nd Peter Mitchell - Gairloch 15 38
3rd Darren Buchan - Gairloch 18 37
1st Jo Powell - Gairloch 28 24
2nd Jennifer Robertson - Gairloch 15 10
Nearest the pin: George Rollo - Gairloch  11'0"

The event was kindly sponsored by Lenny Crossley, Decorator, Dingwall.

Gents Open (30th July)

A fine old-fashioned summer’s day greeted a full entry for this event, kindly sponsored by The Sheiling Restaurant. The results were as follows:-

  Name H'cap Gross Net
Best Gross Steve McIntosh - Muir of Ord -1 66 67
Division 1      
1st Robbie Mackay - Fortrose 4 67 63
2nd Alasdair Mackenzie - Gourock 8 71 63
3rd Ian Graham - Gairloch 12 76 64
Division 2      
1st Richard Verrall - Southfields Oxford 13 75 62
2nd Calum Macaskill - Strathpeffer 18 81 63
3rd Kenny Ross - Strathpeffer 14 78 64
Division 3      
1st John Schiller - Fortrose 21 80 59
2nd Peter Davidson - Spey Valley 25 87 62
3rd Frank Mulgrew - Muir of Ord 25 89 64
Nearest the pin: Robbie Mackay - Fortrose 5'3"

The course was in immaculate condition in spite of the recent drought and it was gratifying that so many players came from far away to enjoy it.

Strathpeffer Match (23rd July)

Perfect weather at Strathpeffer for a very enjoyable day’s golf but the home side triumphed four and a half to one and a half. (Their hills are far, far higher than the gentle hills of home.) Undaunted, a bonding minibus journey ensured the team’s esprit-de-corps was undented.

Captain's Day (16th July)

This cheerful annual event was held in conditions variously described as stimulating, challenging, or why-are-we-here? The Ladies Captain’s team, supplemented by some “honorary” ladies led by the indomitable Jo Powell, triumphed over the Gents Captain’s side led by big hitting Richard Spence. There were some truly remarkable individual Stableford scores that were conveniently mislaid in the subsequent hubbub and grub. Thanks again to our Club Steward for a wonderful spread.

Gairloch Highland Gathering

The committee organised a chipping contest at Gairloch Highland Gathering on Saturday 2nd July. Thanks to the beautiful weather, dozens of visitors took part, leading to the sum of £201 being raised for the club. Pictured is one of the younger visitors taking part - a future Rory McIlroy perhaps?


Congratulations to Norrie MacDonald for acheiving a hole-in-one at the 233 yarder, Blind Piper (the 4th) during a match versus Brian Grant last week. Following a superb drive, the players initially found it hard to locate Norrie's ball, as of course the green is not visible from the tee. But a final cursory glance in the hole, revealed what we all dare hope for, but rarely acheive. Well done Norrie!

Gairloch Member Reaches Scottish Amateur Final

Gairloch Golf Club member, Margot Barr, reached the final of the Handicap Section of the Scottish Amateur Senior Women's Championship. The final was played today (Friday 1st July) at Portpatrick in Dumfriess and Galloway. To reach the final, Margot (handicap 11) shot impressive scores of  81 and 86 in the strokeplay championship on the par 71 course, followed by quarter-final matchplay victories over Portpatrick local, Anne Wilson (4 and 3) and a convincing semi-final victory over Sandie Streets of Largs (5 and 4). Despite a very close game, Margot was unfortunately beaten by Caroline King from Clober. Congratulations are due to Margot for her impressive run in this national competition.

Midsummer Mixed

A highly successful Midsummer Mixed event was held on the 18th June. With a shotgun start, there were more teams than tees so one group started in a gazebo, a speak-easy thought up by the imaginative committee. This was also where each team stopped as it passed “go” twice. A Texas Scramble was the format with the usual amazing scores. The winning team, whom I do not wish to mention for fear of enlarging egos, had a net score in the fourties. How Niblick wishes he could pick the best of four tries at each shot! 

Afterward there was blether, magnificent refreshments and thanks to our club steward and the dedicated greenkeepers.

From now on the days shorten, shadows lengthen, years stretch, midges bite and handicaps haunt. How nice to have such a day as this to look back on.


Northern Counties Open

Gairloch hosted a Northern Counties Ladies Open on Sunday 22nd May. A total of 33 ladies played, unfortunately in wet and windy conditions and the winners were:

Scratch: Lynn Fraser - Fortrose & Rosemarkie - gross 77; Silver: Val Wright - Forres, nett 70; Bronze: Jo Powell, well-known lady captain and secretary of Gairloch.

The course and the hospitality received a lot of praise and sincere thanks were expressed by NCLGA and everyone who helped make the event a success. Northern Counties run three Opens, largely to raise funds and to support the County Juniors and County Team and the grand total of £370 was raised by the event at our club; an excellent result for the County.

Ladies Day

16 ladies competed in the 3 lady team event on Saturday 14th May.  Four teams of 3 played 18 holes, while a team of 4 played 9 holes.  The weather was kind to us and just caught the last group walking in from the 8th!  The winning team, headed by Jennifer with Jenny and Anne came round in an unbeatable score of 52! Great teamwork!!  Rhona's team with Sylvia and Shena were second with a very credible 60! A mention for Shena who excelled with two birdies and Jenny with with one birdie - well done!  The nearest the pin on the 9th was won by Jo and nearest the pin on the 18th was won by Shena.
After the match Anne provided us with an excellent buffet which was enjoyed by all.  The raffle was drawn and Elna managed to pick her own numbers twice for the prize which she had donated!  £57.00 was collected by the raffle for club funds.
An excellent day was had by all.  

Gairloch Ladies Success

Gairloch trio, Margot Barr, Irene Croal and Susan MacVicar were successful at the annual Muir-of-Ord 3 woman team event on Sunday 15th May. Scores at the top of the leaderboard were close with Elgin sharing the top score of nett 58, but Gairloch won on countback. First prize of a fourball at Castle Stuart is now being eagerly anticipated.

Highland Hospice Charity Event

The Highland Hospice Charity Day took place on Tuesday 17th May.  This was well supported by the senior gents and the Tuesday ladies, aswell as some visitors who entered the competition.  The competition was a straightforward stableford, with the ladies playing 9 holes and the gents 18 holes.
The results are listed below:
Best Gent's score on 38 points (decided on count back) - Angus MacLeod
Best Gent's first 9 holes on 20 points (decided on count back) - Mike Powley
Lowest Gent's score -  Ian Robin
Best Ladies score on 21 points - Jo Powell
Lowest Ladies score - Sheila Percy
The prizes are to be collected from the office.  A list of the prize winners is also up on the main notice board.
The amount raised on the day for the Highland Hospice was an amazing £210.  Thank you all for your generosity to this very worthwhile cause.  

Quiz & Curry Night

Ten teams of four competed for the honour of the win, at this our first Quiz Night in some time. Everybody agreed that the evening was a great success, aided considerably by an excellent array of curries and spicy sundries. Quizmaster for the evening was Martin Rowe who had put together a series of challenging questions, incorporating music, golf, culture, general and popular knowledge. The top and bottom teams were not so far apart, and the winning team (the youngest swingers in town), ably captained by Rob Threadgould,  just took victory by 1 point in the end. As well as prizes for the first and second teams, there was a prize for the most originally named team. Unfortunately, it would not be prudent to repeat it here - but you know who you are! Taking into account ticket sales, raffle money and the bar takings, the club benefited to the tune of £446.80. Thank you to everybody involved.

Saturday Brunch

Thanks are due to Richard and Yvonne Spence for running a very successful Saturday morning Brunch on the 5th March. Nearly 50 customers enjoyed a beautifully cooked breakfast and many are already asking about when the next one will be. At the same time as the brunch, good weather allowed Angus MacLeod to organise a chipping contest by the 9th green and this was so popular that he raised an additional £50! Thanks also to the kitchen helpers in the form of new club president, Chris Powell and our secretary, Jo.

John Beck's Retiral as President

To mark John's retiral as President from the Golf Club Committee, he was presented with a limited edition print of a new painting by Rob Howard from the SolaJohn Beck receiving presentation from Catain, Richard Spences Gallery. The selected view is similar to that from his home in Gairloch. John has served on the Golf Club Committee for  almost ten years, including two as President. Throughout that time, he has shown unyielding commitment and outstanding organisational skills and he will be sorely missed by this year's committee. However, we know that John will continue to remain actively involved with the club and we wish him every pleasure and success as he is able to devote more time on the fairways. 

Photography Competition

Gairloch Golf Club are holding a photography competition throughout 2011. We would like to increase the number of quality images we hold, so that we can utilise them for future publicity such as inclusion in national golf magazines. The images may also be used for a golf club calendar and any other purpose as required by Gairloch Golf Club. However, all images will be acknowledged by the name of the photographer.

Format - Digital - in colour or black and white

Content - we are looking for images which show the beauty of the course and its environs throughout the season.

Entries - to  Closing date is 31st December 2011 and entries can be sent throughout the year by e-mail. Naturally, Judges decision to be final. All prizewinners will be notified by e-mail and also by publicity in the Gairloch & District Times in January 2012.

Prizes - vouchers (to be used in the clubhouse) to the value of £50 for 1st and £25 for 2nd, with a £25 voucher for best photograph submitted by U-18.

Safety - please take care whilst taking photographs when the golf course is being used.

Torridon Cup

Torridon Cup players On Monday 31st January, eight golfers from the villages of Diabaig, Alligin and Wester Alligin competed for the Torridon Cup. The venue was Gairloch Golf Club and despite a decidedly unpromising weather forecast, battle commenced at 11am after a hot drink in the clubhouse. Four teams of two were selected in a pseudo-random fashion and the rules for a Greensomes tournament were explained. Of the eight players half had official CONGU handicaps – the other four had to be allocated handicaps in a “diplomatic” fashion. After nine holes we retired to the clubhouse for refreshments – a mountain of sandwiches, Torridon smoked mackerel, a choice of cake, and an extremely potent hot whisky punch.

On the basis of first half performance a couple of adjustments were made to handicaps and the second nine started with only 5 shots separating the whole field. The weather held off wonderfully and spirits were high. The competition remained nip and tuck to the final hole – a testament to the Greensomes format which worked extremely well for a field containing handicaps from 13 to 36.

After the swapping of golfers' tales, and the tallying of scores the trophy was presented – to the wrong team! Eventually, after much recalculation and deciding a tie on the back-9 score, the Cup was awarded to Donald MacGregor (Alligin) and Avril Turner (Alligin) – well done!

Everyone deemed the day a great success and we are all looking forward to competing again in 2012. Our grateful thanks go to Glyn and Morag for providing such bracing refreshments, and to Gairloch Golf Club for hosting the event.