The welcome break in the seemingly interminable cold and wet weather saw a large number of ladies participate in the PGA Tankard competition, generously sponsored by our club professional Will Carey.
Competing for the generous array of prizes, most golfers began their round in what has become their weekly attire: wet suits, woolly hats and as many layers as could be accommodated without rendering swinging a golf club impossible. After a few holes most ladies began the process of shedding layers as they basked in the welcome warmth of the sun.
Willes presence was marked not only by his generous prizes but many revised, or in some cases rebuilt swings were in evidence as players put the fruits of their winter lessons into play.
In her speech Elizabeth paid tribute to Will who has, in his first year, proved to be a huge asset to the club. The renovated shop and floral displays present a welcome to visitors and members alike and Elizabeth expressed the wish that Wills generous sponsorship and support pays dividends through increased trade.
Lady Captain Elizabeth Mawhinney expressed her delight at the large number of ladies who had participated in the competition and were in attendance for the prize giving on a beautiful warm sunny evening. The long awaited blue skies attracted, fifty ladies to play in the 18-hole competition with a further twenty-one competing in the nine-hole competition.
The overall winner on the day was Lily McMullan with 38 points . Emma Garrigan took second spot with 37 points just ahead of Alexandra Mawhinney who secured third place with 36 points.
Lady Captain Elizabeth with the prize winners of the PGA Tankard Stableford Competition.
A full list of additional prize-winners is set out below-
Peggy Nelson Qualifiers
Fifty-eight ladies took part in the 18 hole Peggy Nelson Stableford qualifying competition on April 12 in cold, but thankfully dry, conditions.
The Peggy Nelson Salver was first played for in 1957/58. It takes place annually in clubs across Northern Ireland with the winners in each club going forward to a final. The trophy commemorates the contribution made to Ladies Golf in the Northern Branch of the ILGU of its long serving secretary, Peggy Nelson, one of the 3 Gardiner sisters from Killymoon Golf Club whose golfing exploits were legendary.
Mary Black, Gillian Poole and Emma Garrigan won their respective categories and will represent the club in the finals of this year's competition, which will be held on July 15 in Dunmurray Golf Club.
The Lady Captain, Elizabeth warmly thanked Mr Philip Corrigan proprietor of Carey Glass International for his generous sponsorship and for choosing to support the Ladies branch.
Sponsor Philip Corrigan, Lady Captain Elizabeth Mawhinney and some of the prize winners of the Peggy Nelson Stableford Competition.
The results were as follows:-
Thursday 5 th April saw the first Medal competition of the year for the Ladies Branch which was very generously sponsored by The Dressing Room.
Lady Captain Elizabeth welcomed all the ladies along with the Vice Lady Captain Moya and Mrs Alison Wylie proprietor of The Dressing Room. The weather continued to prove challenging with strong biting winds which contrasted unfavourably with the beautiful conditions in Augusta for the opening day of the Masters. To add to the difficulties, the preferred lies which had been in play throughout the winter were abandoned as this was a qualifying competition. However, the winner of the April Medal, Alexandra Mawhinney did not let the adverse weather conditions stand in her way, returning an excellent score of nett 71.
A delighted and surprised Alexandra graciously accepted her first prize from Alison, thanking her for the generous sponsorship.
Alexandra Mawhinney 1st Prize Winner, Lady Captain Elizabeth Mawhinney, Mrs Alison Wylie proprietor The Dressing Room and successful competitors in the April Medal Competition.
April Medal -Competition Results: -
Thursday's Mary Peters Stableford competition was played in in challenging conditions with heavy rain and cold winds adding to the heavy conditions underfoot. However, Pauline Gingles returned an exceptional score of 39 points to secure first place. Anne Kinsella took second place with 35 points and in third place was Emma Garrigan with 33 points.
Lady Captain Elizabeth Mawhinney warmly welcomed Shirley and Manny Smyth proprietors of Professional Travel who were the sponsors on the night and thanked them most sincerely for their long and generous support of the Ladies' Branch.
In her acceptance speech Pauline thanked Shirley and Manny for their prizes and gave a special mention to her playing partner, Helen McLaughlin, who had kept her focused throughout the 18 holes.
Shirley Smyth- Professional Travel -sponsor, Lady Captain Elizabeth Mawhinney, Pauline Gingles 1st place winner along with prize winners from Mary Peters Qualifying Competition.
The remaining winners on the day were: -
The annual Eileen Steenson Memorial competition which was sponsored this year by the Craic'd Pot Coffee Shop took place on Thursday 22 nd March. The competition is played in memory of Eileen who was an excellent competitor and a great ambassador for Co Armagh Golf Club. Well known in golfing circles throughout Ireland Eileen served as Lady Captain in the club's centenary year 1993. In addition to her activities on the Lady's Committee Eileen devoted a great deal of her time and energies to the juvenile girls who flourished under her guidance.
Unfortunately, Scott King the proprietor of the Craic'd Pot Coffee Shop was unable to attend the prizegiving. The Lady Captain Elizabeth Mawhinney thanked Scott for his generous sponsorship of the competition and welcomed the ladies who had participated in event.
Ann Atwell was the overall winner with a score of 36 points.
On Thursday 8 th March the Ladies Branch held their first competition of the golfing season under dry sunny conditions in the am and hailstone showers in the afternoon. Despite the heavy snow falls of last week and the ceaseless rain fall in January and February, the hard work done by the grounds staff over the winter months was very evident.
Lady Captain Elizabeth Mawhinney was delighted to see such a big number of ladies in the clubhouse. She welcomed the sponsor for the event Ms Donna Kilpatrick who provided some beautiful gifts as prizes from her devinebydonna range.
The overall winner of the competition was Lily McMullan with an excellent score of 33 points. Jacqueline Kelly took second place beating Paula McCrory on a count back with 25 points. Helen Forster took fourth place with 25 points. The 9 hole competition was won by Toni McManus beating Gina Morris on a countback.
Lady Captain Mrs Elizabeth Mawhinney and sponsor Donna Kilpatrick with some of the prize winners.
The Ladies' Branch of Co Armagh Golf club held their annual Supper Evening on Thursday 25 th January.
The evening was hosted by the new Lady Captain for 2018, Mrs Elizabeth Mawhinney. Elizabeth warmly welcomed the Lady Vice Captain Mrs Moya Brady and the large number of ladies who had made the effort to attend despite the recent poor weather and the prevalence of winter colds and flu.
The evening began with a prosecco reception in the foyer followed by a beautiful buffet supper provided by the catering staff of Seven Hills restaurant. Entertainment on the night was a very enjoyable table quiz organised Elizabeth's daughters Alexandra and Sarah. The quiz along with the Ding Bat section proved an enjoyable challenge. The Vice Lady Captain Moya along with Gail Steed, Fionnaula Quinn, Paula McCrory and Lynne Brown emerged as the winners on the night.
Lady Captain Elizabeth and quizmaster Alexandra
Outgoing Lady Captain Mrs Gail Steed presented the Lady Captain for 2018 Mrs Elizabeth Mawhinney with her brooch of office at the Inauguration Ceremony on 1st January. Elizabeth was delighted to see the huge turnout of ladies for the traditional New Years Day breakfast and was particularly impressed by those ladies who had braved the elements to participate in the first nine-hole competition of the year. The winner of the competition on a count back was Sheila Stinson with 18 points just ahead of Siobhan Donnelly. Teresa McVeigh took third place with 17 points.
Paula McCrory explained that although the Spring League is scheduled to begin next Thursday 11 th January its unlikely to happen given the current condition of the course. Elizabeth asked everyone to note that the Ladies Supper is scheduled for Thursday 25 th January.
2018 marks the 125 th year from the establishment of the club in 1893. Elizabeth expressed her best wishes to the new Captain Mr Colm Shannon and President Mr Gerry McCreesh. To conclude proceedings Elizabeth presented the incoming Lady Vice-Captain Mrs Moya Brady with her brooch of office.
Alexandra Mawhinney, John Mawhinney, Lady Captain Elizabeth Mawhinney and Sarah Mawhinney.
On Friday 1 st December the Ladies Branch of Co Armagh Golf Club held their annual dinner in the clubhouse. Lady Captain Gail welcomed everyone to the meal and thanked the ladies choir who started the proceedings with some Christmas carols. A delicious meal was provided by the 7 Hills Restaurant staff. Further entertainment was provided by Sylvia Ashe who sang a customised version of the Boys from the Co Armagh. This was followed by a raffle of prizes provided by the Ladies Committee.
Then it was down to the main business of the evening when the final cups of the season and the Winter League competitions were presented. Ellen Brady was the overall winner of the Winter League with 98 points ahead of Mary Black and Ann Atwell who were joint second with 93 points. 4 th place went to Paula McCrory with 92 points whilst Lily McMullan and Geraldine Rafferty held joint 5 th place with 91 points.
The Silver medal was awarded to Colette McSorley and the Bronze medal to Lynne Brown. Colette also picked up the Silver spoon prize. Ellen Brady recorded the most birdies with an impressive total of 18 beating Helen Forster who had recorded 11 birdies. The biggest handicap reduction was recorded by Jackie Donnelly who went from 32 to 28 in her first season.
The Sinton Cup was won by Phil McKenna with Lily McMullan the runner up. Ellen Brady and Pauline Gingles were the beaten semi-finalists.
The Charlemont Salver was presented by Mrs Greta Forster to the winners Barbara Hamilton and Jacqueline Kelly who had defeated Donna Carolan and Corrina Oliver in a very close final match. Barbara thanked Greta for the beautiful prize and the continued sponsorship of the competition by the Forster family. The sponsored charity for 2017 was the very worthy Air Ambulance Northern Ireland.
A delighted Moya Brady was the winner of the Link Cup beating Theresa Corrigan in the final. Elizabeth Mawhinney and June Humphries were the beaten semi-finalists.
Valerie Gordan was the winner of the Hirsch Cup and Helen Forster the runner up. Valerie explained she was delighted to have won the cup, which is one of the oldest cups in the club, as she had been the runner up thirteen years ago.
Finally, Helen Forster emerged as the golfer of the year with a magnificent 130 points. Ellen Brady was the runner up with 90 points.
On Thursday 5 th October 62 ladies played the last weekly competition of 2017 in the form of a 14 and 9-hole stableford in which Lady Vice Captain Elizabeth Mawhinney emerged as the winner with a very impressive score of 34 points. Before presenting the prizes, Lady Vice Captain Elizabeth who was deputising for Lady Captain Gail wished everyone well in the winter league and reminded them of the AGM on Thursday 23 rd November.
She invited the lady members and their friends to a table quiz on Friday 13 th October which is a ladies branch fundraising event. Zumba classes resume on Thursday 12 th October for a 6-week programme running from 8.15 until 9.15pm. She also wished Ellen Brady and her team every success in the Winter Alliance inter club competition which begins on Monday 9 th October. Elizabeth has compiled a 2018 club calendar which will be available for purchase at a cost of £5 per copy from the office, bar and Ladies Committee.