The Wilmslow Golf Club

PETER ‘Pep’ Smith has a long sporting affiliation in Wilmslow having been involved with Wilmslow Cricket Club for 46 years, Wilmslow Hockey Club for 41 years and Alderley Edge Cricket Club for 38 years.

He was a relative latecomer to golf only joining The Wilmslow Golf Club in 2005 and undoubtedly the highlight of his golfing life was to become Captain of the club – a huge honour for a local boy!

Pep, who plays off 17, said: "The Wilmslow Golf Club is a very friendly and traditional members club and we are lucky to have such a top quality staff.

 

Peter Pep Smith

 

"These include Ged Heaslip our very knowledgeable and affable general manager, Simon and Karen Ward winners of the National Golf Club Stewards of the year in 2013 and regional winners and finalists on numerous other occasions, Matt Gillingham winner of the Club Golf Professional of the Year in 2009 and Steve Oultram our course manager who has been with the club for 25 years and keeps our course in such tremendous condition.

"My favourite hole at Wilmslow is the 440-yard par four 16th as it is both tricky and picturesque - you need to hit and long and precise drive down the left side of the fairway leaving about 160 yards slightly downhill to a green with bunkers left and right and surrounded by mature trees. In summer the second shot to the green is one that all golfers would savour.

"Whilst I have played golf in the USA, Portugal and Spain for me there is really only one place to play and that is Scotland.

"My brothers (who gave me the nickname of Pep over 50 years ago) and I travel to Scotland in May every year to play golf and visit distilleries and my favourite three courses are Kingsbarns, the Kings Course at Gleneagles and Machrihanish who all have great and varied qualities to enjoy.

My hobbies, other than golf, are reading – I always have several books on the go at once – detective novels, horror novels, true life crime stories and true life unexplained mysteries, sports books (mainly cricket and golf) and I also have a keen interest in whisky and I look forward to the annual publication of The Whisky Bible by Jim Murray.

"I also follow cricket closely (having played each Saturday for over 30 years) and I like to watch live games whenever I can but this may be limited in 2017 due to the extra rounds I will be playing in my Captain’s role.

"I have fallen out love with football in the last few years but if pushed these days I loosely follow Manchester City – a Pep connection!

"My chosen charity is The Stroke Association and if I could choose three people to join me in a four-ball they would be Arthur Conan Doyle (creator of Sherlock Holmes, the world’s greatest detective), Stephen King (writer of the finest horror stories) and Jim Murray from the Whisky Bible."

 

WILMSLOW Golf Club’s new Lady Captain Elizabeth Black has been a member of her club for the past 15 years after beginning her golf at Alderley Edge GC where she was Lady Captain in 2001.

Elizabeth said: "I took up golf when my twin sons were due to go off to University and I was giving up teaching and joined Alderley Edge GC where my husband Ian was already a member.

"Not having done much sport since school days I was surprised how quickly my handicap started to drop and how much I enjoyed competitions, matches and mixed golf.

I played a full part in the ladies section, holding various jobs on the committee as well as serving as Lady Captain.

"When Ian retired he joined Wilmslow and I followed in 2002 and served for three years on the ladies’ committee and was thrilled to be asked to be Lady Captain this year.

Elizabeth Black

 

"Golf has become a major part of my life and I may play four times a week in the summer- a match, knock out round, a mixed event and ladies day – but in the winter perhaps once a week if the weather allows.

"My handicap has wavered around the low teens mark since I joined the club and now play off 13 which enables me to play in the Bell Cup and Cheshire A and B teams throughout the summer.

"I also enjoy playing in Mixed Opens with Ian and supporting Cheshire Ladies and Senior’s events which provide an excellent way to play other courses around the county.

The past year has been particularly busy doing ‘play-ins’ with new male members- it is often the first time they have ever played golf with a woman but they survive and admit to enjoying it after playing nine holes then having a drink and a chat.

"It is a pleasant introduction to the club and the bonus to me is that they have a wife who may be encouraged to join.

"Since I think that practice is so important for all levels of golf I have started I have started a ‘Practice and Play’ session each Thursday morning for any ladies who like to turn up for 45 minutes of practice then off on the course for a few holes before a sandwich and chat.

"The idea is to enable them to devise a simple practice routine before they go out to play and if the weather is poor we come inside to chip and putt, talk about rules, do some stretching exercises and finish with a cup of coffee – fun but functional!

"Many of the ladies who joined the club last year through our very successful Taster Package are coming along to enjoy the sessions.

"My chosen charities are The Christie, Macmillan Cancer Care and the East Cheshire Hospice and there will be plenty of events to raise funds during the year.

 

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