The Suffolk Ladies’ County Golf Association was formerly “The Suffolk Ladies County Golf Club” and was formed in 1926 by six Clubs, Aldeburgh, Bungay, Felixstowe, Ipswich, Royal Worlington and Woodbridge. In the first year there were ninety members paying a subscription of Seven Shillings and Sixpence (7/6d) each.
In 1965 the name was changed from “Club” to “Association”.
From 1993 all lady members of affiliated Suffolk clubs automatically became members – the affiliation fee coming directly from their clubs. In 2018 we had 1,903 members from 30 clubs.
Suffolk Ladies County Golf Association (SLCGA) is affiliated to England Golf (the EWGA and EGU merging in 2012).
We are proud to boast many illustrious members, past and present.
Penny Taylor of Royal Worlington was Chairman of the LGU in 1984/5.
Liz Boatman, also Royal Worlington, was Chairman of ELGA in 1989 and President of ELGA in 2000/1. She was the Captain of two victorious Curtis Cup teams.
Anne Smith, nee Willard, formerly of Gorleston, has held many prestigious administrative positions in Midlands golf. She was a Curtis Cup golfer and she won the British and English Girls Championships and the British Strokeplay, as well as the Suffolk Championships.
More recently, Julie Otto, nee Wade, and Joanne Woodward, nee Hockley, both of Felixstowe Ferry won many British, English and Suffolk titles. Julie also played in several Curtis Cup teams and won the 1992 Spanish Open.
Even more recently, Heidi Baek, who came through the Junior Ranks of both Suffolk and England, reached a handicap of +3. Among many successes, she was Suffolk Champion and represented England on numerous occasions, winning the U15 English Girls Championship en route. Her achievements were to break the Felixstowe Ferry course record, returning a 7-under par score, to reach the finals of the Daily Telegraph competition for the third year in a row. She was the top qualifier and, perhaps the crowning glory, was to reach the final qualifying session for the British Open in 2010. She finished off 2010 with an impressive win in the US Junior Masters Championship over the prestigious and difficult Sawgrass courses, taking the title in a sudden death playoff.
Over the years, Suffolk reached the sub-divisional finals of the English County Championship several times during the tenure of the Midlands Division and, in 1995, went through to the Championship Finals. Although they fought an unsuccessful battle at that time, returning to the fray was always high on the agenda thereafter. This ambition came to fruition in 2017, when they topped the East Division’s County Match Week league table to win a shot at the Championship Finals which was, coincidentally, to be played at Felixstowe Ferry Golf Club. The participating clubs in the East Division were Bedfordshire, Cambs & Hunts, Essex, Hertfordshire, Norfolk and Suffolk. Six counties from the other divisions around England, were involved in the Championship Finals: Gloucestershire and Yorkshire were quite evidently the strongest teams and they fought each other on the final day to get a result. Yorkshire won narrowly on the final green of the final match to carry off the trophy. Captained by Vanessa Bell, Suffolk were delighted to come third. In fact, it was a triumph to lead the way into that third slot against Nottinghamshire, Buckinghamshire and Hampshire.
We now look forward to further success and face the future with renewed vigour.
The Association shall be called The Suffolk Ladies’ County Golf Association (SLCGA) hereinafter referred to as “The Association”
The Association was affiliated formerly to the Ladies’ Golf Union (LGU) and is now to England Golf.
The Objects of the Association
- To promote the game of golf within the County for Ladies and Junior Girls
- To uphold the rules and etiquette of Golf and to advance and safeguard the interests of Ladies’ golf within the County.
The English County Championship Finals 2017
The English County Championship Finals 2017, held at Felixstowe Ferry Golf Club from Monday, 18th September to Friday, 22nd September were a high point in Suffolk Ladies’ golfing history…
A prestigious event, the Women’s County Championship Finals kicked off on the Monday. The Suffolk team were there, competing against Buckinghamshire, Gloucestershire, Hampshire, Nottinghamshire and Yorkshire for the sought-after title of England Women’s County Champions. Our team included Alice Barlow, Vanessa Bell (Captain), Fiona Edmond, Victoria Inglis, Lils James, Sharon Luckman, Amanda Norman, Abbie Symonds, Lottie Whyman, Joanne Woodward. The five-day, round-robin tournament is keenly contested and a showcase for fine golf. It was the first time in 22 years that Suffolk had won through to the Finals and was also the first time in 36 years that the National event had been hosted on Suffolk soil.
The team had been practicing, working hard and the players were ready for the competition against many of England’s top amateurs. First off Suffolk would meet reigning champions Gloucestershire and, as the host county, they were hoping for strong support. The team could be followed on Twitter @slcgagolf, or via the website for daily reports. IG Recruit (http://igrecruit.com/) kindly sponsored the team for County Finals week.
Order of play:
Monday, 18 September: Match 1 Nottinghamshire v Buckinghamshire; Match 2 Gloucestershire v Suffolk; Match 3 Hampshire v Yorkshire;
Tuesday, 19 September: Match 1 Gloucestershire v Hampshire; Match 2 Buckinghamshire v Suffolk; Match 3 Yorkshire v Nottinghamshire;
Wednesday 20 September: Match 1 Suffolk v Yorkshire; Match 2 Nottinghamshire v Hampshire; Match 3 Gloucestershire v Buckinghamshire;
Thursday 21 September: Match 1 Nottinghamshire v Gloucestershire; Match 2 Buckinghamshire v Yorkshire; Match 3 Hampshire v Suffolk;
Friday 22 September: Match 1 Hampshire v Buckinghamshire; Match 2 Yorkshire v Gloucestershire; Match 3 Suffolk v Nottinghamshire.
Day 1: A testing day for Suffolk as they lost to Gloucestershire, the defending County Champions…
Gloucestershire came out as though they meant to win and, indeed, on the day, they outclassed Suffolk in the short game and on the putting green. Alice Barlow, County Champion, put the only point on the board for Suffolk as the players tried valiantly to acclimatise themselves to the rarified atmosphere of the English County Championship Finals. It is certainly different from County Match Week where, in general terms, everyone knows each other and, though undoubtedly competitive, it is relatively cosy. Today the air was studious and quiet, probably because the participating counties are far flung.
Suffolk lost all three morning foursomes. Two matches went to seventeen but Sharon Luckman and Alice Barlow took a bit of a drubbing from Ebonie Lewis and Caley McGinty for whom below par score seemed to be the norm.
Out at the head of team in the singles, Lottie Whyman struck the ball well but the putter was still cold. She suffered a lip out at nine which didn’t help and was four down after ten. She then won eleven to get back to three. She struck a beautiful five iron to twelve but was still three down after fifteen. Digging in determinedly, she came to eighteen one down but lost it to a rather splendid birdie. Alex Giles hit two great shots to pin high and around six feet away, sinking the putt for a birdie and the match (2 up).
Amanda Norman couldn’t match Ebonie Lewis and lost early. Amanda’s sister Jo started off well and plugged away against Grace Connelly. She lost a few holes but returned to one down after eleven, hit an impressive six iron to twelve but finally had to give best to Grace Connelly on sixteen (4/2).
Vicki Inglis struggled to find her form. Despite a delicate approach shot to nine, the putt failed to drop and she went four down at that point. She did hole a good putt at the next but it was equalled by Gloucestershire’s Claudia Ovens so the optimism was short-lived and Vicki eventually lost out by 5/4.
Alice Barlow, now a scratch golfer, played a game of great determination. Two up after six she was pegged back to square at ten by Alison Kelly. Alice was one roll short of a birdie at eleven, then hit a great shot to twelve and reached thirteen one up. She moved to 2up at fifteen only to lose seventeen. At eighteen Alice was pin high for two while Alison was bunkered. Thankfully for Alice and Suffolk, the hole was eventually conceded and Alice finished at 2up. It was a thoroughly well-deserved win.
Captain Vanessa Bell, anchoring the team, played steadily all the way round. Square after twelve holes, she went one down to Caley McGinty at fifteen and finally lost eighteen for a two down finishing score.
Difficult to deny that it was a disappointing day for the team but there’s all to play for tomorrow when the nerves have settled. On the plus side, tomorrow’s opponents, Buckinghamshire lost out narrowly to Nottinghamshire by five matches to four. It’s still going to be tough but a touch of optimism never goes amiss and if the team plays as we know it can, there are plenty of possibilities.
Foursomes (Suffolk names first) Lottie Whyman & Fiona Edmond lost to Alex Giles & Claudia Ovens 3/1; Vanessa Bell & Vicki Inglis lost to Alex Saunders & Ffion Tynan 3/1; Sharon Luckman & Alice Barlow lost to Ebonie Lewis & Caley McGinty 7/5.
Singles: Whyman lost to Alex Giles 2 dn; Norman lost to Lewis 7/6; Inglis lost to Ovens 5/4; Woodward lost to Grace Connelly 4/2; Barlow bt Alison Kelly 2 up; Bell lost to McGinty 2dn.
Final Result: Suffolk 1, Gloucestershire 8.
Day 2: A happy outcome for Suffolk who claimed a well-earned victory against Buckinghamshire…
Suffolk found their feet today, making the considerable jump from County Match Week to the English County Championship Finals. It is not an easy task and perhaps playing in one’s own back yard and wanting very much to do well adds pressure. They did do well.
The Foursomes went 2-1 in Buckinghamshire’s favour but the ‘1’ was an emphatic 4/3 victory by Abbie Symonds and Lils James over the third pair from Buckinghamshire, Goodacre & Gallagher.
Heartened by this success, the singles’ team went out in fine style. Lottie Whyman who, by her own high standards had not putted well during the foursomes, spent some time on the putting green after lunch and turned the putter into a help instead of a hindrance. Within her 6/4 victory she made four birdies on the trot.
Jo Woodward began comfortably, helped by a win at the first hole when her opponent put first her drive and then her provisional ball out of bounds. Jo went on to get the upper hand but was then brought back to square after nine, eventually losing 3/2 to Deeya Agaarwal.
Alice Barlow was inspired. Poor Victoria Bryan was overwhelmed as Alice charged ahead, birdying every par five on the first eleven holes. She finished there for a 9/7 scoreline and was three under par in the process.
Lils James also began on a charge, winning the first three holes. She had reached 5up when Georgina Bowers found an answer, working her way back to win a 2-hole victory on eighteen. Hard luck for Lils but, nevertheless, she had a good day. Abbie Symonds pulled out all the stops against Chloe Li. She hurried to five up on the thirteenth tee and hung on for the 5/4 win after fourteen.
Bringing up the rear and with the match result at stake, Amanda Norman probably found herself not playing as well as she might have hoped, but she summoned up the determination that has always stood her in good stead over many years playing County golf. She was one up after twelve and still at that point after fourteen. She added another hole to the tally clinching the win for the home team by 2/1.
Great stuff all round and well done team. Good luck would be needed against the might of Yorkshire on Day 3 and Suffolk will have to repeat their heroics of today to get a satisfactory result.
Results (Suffolk names first)
Foursomes: Alice Barlow & Lottie Whyman lost to A Kozlowski & T Kirby 3/2; Vanessa Bell & Vicki Inglis lost to V Bryan & T Kirby 7/5; Lils James & Abbie Symonds bt D Goodacre & J Gallagher 4/3.
Singles: Whyman bt Daisy Kennedy 6/4; Jo Woodward lost to Deeya Agaarwal 3/2; Alice Barlow bt Bryan 9/7; James lost to Georgina Bowers 2 dn; Symonds bt Chloe Li 5/4; Amanda Norman bt Susanne Mitterer 2/1.
Final result: Suffolk 5, Buckinghamshire 4.
Day 3: Hard graft against Yorkshire, one of the favourites for the Championship Title:
An impressive display from Yorkshire took the sting out of the Suffolk attack but failed to dent the team spirit. In fact, although they might have felt swept aside, our team took comfort in the fact that their result against the might of the North was better than either Nottinghamshire or Hampshire had managed in the two previous days. Until this morning, Yorkshire had lost only half a point from the eighteen on offer, so their loss of one-and-a-half points from the Suffolk match reflected the eagerness with which Suffolk met the challenge and the result maintained their third place in the overall standings. Their aim was to preserve that position to the end of proceedings on Friday, an ambition supported by Captain Vanessa Bell and Coach Kevin Lovelock.
Yorkshire, like Gloucestershire, excelled at the short game and they made Suffolk suffer in this department. The morning foursomes were a trial of character but here Alice Barlow and Vanessa Bell excelled. They began par, eagle, birdie birdie birdie and continued to play a blinder, complementing each other’s game ‘beautifully’, to quote President Hermione Scrope. The other two matches went to Yorkshire which left the singles team with all to play for.
As she has done before, Lottie Whyman set out to make the most of her game. Her caddie (Father!) kept score and said she was three under par after sixteen holes. Even Lottie herself confessed to playing the short ninth and long tenth ‘beautifully’. That was after she had eagled eight to get back to all square though it was an onlooker who mentioned that little nugget. The birdies at nine and ten took her to 2up but eventually, the score having oscillated between one and two up for some time, she came to eighteen all square and a half in regulation four gave her and Olivia Winning half a match point each.
None of the matches were runaways for the Yorkshire team. Amanda Norman went to seventeen with the very young Mia Coles-Smith and was irritated with herself for letting a hole or two slip mid-round. Likewise Abbie Symonds who hit the ball well and has made a resolution to banish the odd hiccup which scuppered her plans. Her highlight was a birdie win at the long second.
Fiona Edmond commented on the consistently great putting from the opposition. On the day she saw only one miss from ten feet or less. That is some record!
Tomorrow Suffolk will take on Hampshire. Lots of Suffolk support would be greatly appreciated. Here, Felixstowe Ferry Golf Club deserves a special mention. The event has been beautifully arranged and no stone has been left unturned to make everything comfortable and easy for players and spectators alike.
Results (Suffolk names first)
Foursomes: Fiona Edmond & Lottie Whyman lost to H Holden & C Heath 4/3; Alice Barlow & Vanessa Bell bt Rochelle Morris & Melissa Wood 4/2; Vicki Inglis & Sharon Luckman lost to Olivia Winning & M Lockett 6/5.
Singles: Barlow lost to Lockett 3/2; Whyman halved with Winning; Bell lost to Heath 3/2; Symonds lost to Slater 5/4; Norman lost to Coles-Smith 2/1; Inglis lost to Holden 4/2
Final Result: Suffolk 1.5, Yorkshire 7.5.
Day 4 Suffolk maintained third position with a win against Hampshire…
A terrific day’s golf left Suffolk two points ahead of Hampshire and still in third place in the league table that will decide the winners of the English County Golf Championship. The well-motivated team made a clean sweep in the three foursomes matches, winning all the points. Vanessa Bell and Alice Barlow were 2up after fifteen holes and 1up after seventeen. Needing just a half up eighteen, Alice hit a mammoth drive and Vanessa hit the green, leaving Alice a simpler putt than the Hampshire curly cross-green requirement, the result of a super second and nearer the hole than Suffolk. Hampshire passed the hole and Alice cosied her ball to the hole’s edge. Hampshire conceded the putt. Suffolk 2up.
Although all the games were close and hard fought, the result put Suffolk in the strongest possible position moving into the six afternoon singles. The outstanding match of the day came from Alice Barlow, pitted against the experienced and skilful Kerry Smith, England international and Curtis Cup golfer. Alice is the epitome of a steady golfer and is, as her record shows, becoming hard to handle. Her 3/2 victory put the first Suffolk point on the board, making a tally of four. Just one to go for the match. As Suffolk were up in five of the six at one point, hopes were high. Hampshire, however, were not phazed.
Out first, Lottie Whyman played well and again found herself going up eighteen all square against Georgie Mundy. Both players were on the green in two but Lottie had a difficult downhill putt across the considerable slope. Almost inevitably, the ball slid past the hole to a fair distance and, unfortunately, she missed the one coming back. Mundy holed out for a four and took the point by the one hole margin.
Amanda Norman’s match swung back and forth, up and down, but she finally lost by 2/1 to Raffi Dyer. Vicki Inglis and Sammi Keen fought it out to the eighteenth where Vicki left herself with an uphill putt, looking much easier than her opponent’s small greenside, downhill putt/chip. Sammi played it beautifully, hitting the pin and pulling up about three feet below the hole. Vicki made a good putt, past the hole and sank the return for a four. Sammi made her four, too, and a halved match seemed fair. Vanessa Bell, anchoring the team, went two down after three holes, but plugged away in her usual graceful fashion, to beat Kelly Travers 2/1. As a consolation point for Hampshire, Aimee Paterson beat Abbie Symonds 4/3. It was an exciting display of golf by all concerned, the outcome in doubt for most of the afternoon.
Results (Suffolk names first)
Foursomes: Suffolk won all three matches
Singles: Lottie Whyman lost to Georgie Munday 1 dn; Alice Barlow bt Kerry Smith 3/2; Amanda Norman lost to Raffi Dyer 2/1; Vicki Inglis halved with Sammi Keen; Abbie Symonds lost to Aimee Paterson 4/3; Vanessa Bell bt Kelly Travers 2/1.
Final Result: Suffolk 5.5, Hampshire 3.5
Day 5 The Suffolk team finish the final day with a flourish. Suffolk 6, Nottinghamshire 3…
The last of five days of intense competition found Yorkshire at the top of the league, claiming the Championship Title with the last putt on the final green of their match against Gloucestershire, the defending champions. It was a beautiful day at Felixstowe, bright and brisk with wall to wall sunshine and a cleansing breeze. Suffolk were playing Nottinghamshire and were desperate to win again and claim the third spot that they had set their hearts upon.
Everything went according to plan in the foursomes. The third match out featured Captain Vanessa Bell playing with Suffolk Champion Alice Barlow. How well they complemented each other. Emma Anderson and Emma Howie had no chance as the home duo cruised to a 4/2 victory.
The other two pairs had to work hard for their results. Vicki Inglis and Lottie Whyman came back from four down against Caron Harrison and Carol Wild to win by one hole. Along the way, Lottie sank a bunker shot at eight. Likewise Sharon Luckman and Fiona Edmond enjoyed a tight match against Kristina Lazarevich and Libby Kilbride, finishing 1up and making it a full house of three points from three for Suffolk.
The singles, with only two needed though no one was allowed to voice that thought, proved to be a matter of feast or famine! Vanessa Bell, Abbie Symonds and Amanda Norman all bowed out early, leaving Alice Barlow, Lottie Whyman and Lils James to garner the plaudits.
Alice went 1up after two. On nine, she missed a birdie putt by a whisker. She remained steady at 2up on 10, made a par 4 at eleven for 3up and went to 4up at twelve. She then lost a hole and when Emily Cheshire made birdie 2 at the long par three sixteenth, Alice was dormie 2up. A half was all she needed at seventeen for a 2/1 victory.
Behind her, Lottie Whyman was 2 down after three and there was not much movement in the score. However, she was just 2up at eleven and through to fifteen. 184 yards separates the tee from the green at sixteen. Lottie put her tee shot near enough the hole to engender hope. Lauren Spray, a fine and confident player, was putting first from a little further off. She missed the hole while Lottie took careful aim and rolled her ball safely into it to win by 3/2. This point at 3/2 took the team into the match winner’s enclosure.
However, Lils James hadn’t finished yet. Her caddie for the day was Jo Woodward, former British stroke play winner and a member of Felixstowe Ferry who had returned to the fray for the Finals. Lils, having posted a 5/4 win on the board against Emma Anderson said ‘I couldn’t have done it without Jo’. But she had obviously enjoyed the experience, being 3up after six holes, working her way steadily round the course before being the recipient of a lucky bounce at fourteen and sinking the ensuing putt for the win. Her point put the icing on the cake for Suffolk.
Captain Vanessa Bell said she was absolutely thrilled with the team’s performance. ‘I never thought we could get to the Finals and, having got here, never thought we’d come third even though I dreamed we might. Then, after Tuesday’s win against Buckinghamshire, I decided we could make third place. And we have!’ President, Hermione Scrope said she was also ‘absolutely thrilled. It was a real team effort with everyone contributing. An excellent week!’
Results (Suffolk names first):
Foursomes: Vicki Inglis & Lottie Whyman bt Caron Harrison & Carol Wild 1up; Sharon Luckman & Fiona Edmond bt Kristina Lazarevich & Libby Kilbride 1up; Vanessa Bell & Alice Barlow bt Emma Anderson & Emma Howie 4/2.
Singles: Barlow bt Emily Cheshire 2/1; Whyman bt Spray 3/2; Abbie Symonds lost to Rachel Houlton 6/4; Amanda Norman lost to Kristin Lazarevich 8/7; Lils James bt Anderson 5/4; Bell lost to Kilbride 6/5.
Final Result: Suffolk 6, Nottinghamshire 3.
Reflections from Julie Latimer-Jones
Footnote: The week was so well organised by Felixstowe Ferry Golf Club that England Golf awarded the Club the Venue of the Year Award in recognition of their work. Jo Woodward chaired the organising committee. Suffolk was absolutely delighted for them all and very grateful for their dedicated effort.