Views of the Vale



Views of The Vale         Monday 15th October 2018


Congratulations and thank you to our Ladies Section for a most successful Autumn Supper, held last Saturday evening. Apologies to members who didn’t tell their partner about the function, as they will be reading this and asking why they weren’t invited to attend! The hot dishes included lasagne, four different curries and a veggie bake followed by delicious desserts. Where else can you enjoy such a night for £8? It really was a mouth-watering evening to savour and those who were lucky enough to attend and support the night made it even more special. The ladies once again triumphed through hard work and teamwork.


On Sunday I was surprised to arrive on the first tee and found a two ball teeing off in a better ball competition. Not let down by one member but two. Then there was a three ball playing behind my group. It appears fair weather golfers look at the forecast and decide to drop out at the last minute. I didn’t relish the thought of playing in the rain that was forecast but it turned out to be a treat and the temperature rose throughout the afternoon. If you have entered a comp and have a genuine reason not to play (A forecast of rain doesn’t count) it is your responsibility to find a replacement or ask the pro shop to put out a message to the membership. I would suggest that a no show without good reason equals a ban from the next Turkey Trot.


After two days of heavy rain provided by storm Callum the course was playable as long as you hit your putts a bit harder. The River Dee was almost level with the River Hole fairway and warnings to stay out of the water for any reason were in place. They used to conduct baptisms in the waters just above the bridge between Trevor and Froncysllte but not on days like last Sunday, you would end up cleansed in Chester!


Thinking about NO SHOWS, a lot of work goes into Presentation Night so I hope this year’s trophy winners will be in the clubhouse on Saturday night to collect their prizes. Dress is smart casual and best smile for the camera.


Struggling to find news of Daily Mail Foursomes I contacted Daily Mail Sport and they informed me that Chris Platt and Kingsley Evans won their match in the quarter finals 1 Up over Hornsey and lost in the quarter finals to  Cosby, (Leicestershire) 6 and 5. The finals were played at ST. Pierre, Monmouthshire and I’m sure our team were well looked after and will have some good memories to cherish after eight qualifying rounds to reach the finals of the longest running national foursomes knockout competition. Congratulations on a great achievement to add to two excellent golfing CVs.


Ken Williams

Views of The Vale 29th August 2018

Congratulations to Chris Platt, Club Champion and Kingsley Evans who have reached the finals of The Daily Mail Foursomes. The first gents pair from Llangollen to achieve this result, only Eira Davies and Cora Ellis have played in the finals of this national competition.

Wishing Chris and Kingsley best of luck for the finals.


Views of The Vale August 2017

Once again I am delighted to hear the following news from Mr President.

President's Day For Ladies:

This was played on Saturday 7th July on a singles Stableford basis with 30 players competing. The scores on the day were excellent as the ladies took full advantage of the much improved greens and extra run on the ball due to the dry conditions. Setting an early pace was first out Edie Wilson with a fine score of 40 points only to be pipped later on by Gaynor Gee with 41  and the eventual winner Lizzie Hart with an astonishing score of 46 points. 
I notice that George Smith, clearly studying form, has already booked Lizzie for the County Mixed Foursomes at the Plassey on Sunday 8th September! Other prize winners were Hilary Wells with 38 points and Lyn Taylor winning on count back with 37 points, squeezing out Margaret Jeffries, Susan Davies and Linda Morris who also came in with 37 points.
Gwynfor and Angie provided a delicious afternoon tea for all the players, and it was good to see many of the Lady Members who are unable to play at present at the club, along with some of the non-playing past captains and former members. A thoroughly enjoyable day was had by all.
Special thanks to Andy James who kindly offered to 'man' the halfway house and provided refreshments and some entertainment for the ladies!
(And special thanks to Mr President for organising and sponsoring the day! KW)

Welsh Men's Scratch Team Championship:

Congratulations to the Vale of Llangollen team on qualifying for the National finals to be held at Neath Golf Club from 9th to 12th August. This represents a fine achievement for everybody involved in the qualifying stages and we wish them well in their first round match against Aberystwyth on Friday morning. The team for the finals and representing the club is Greg Purdie, Mark Jones, Tom Price, Dan Gibbon, Dyfed Rowlands and Lee Davies, with Bob Gibbon and Wyn Jones acting as caddies. This will give our lads the chance to play head to head match play against some of the best players in Wales, so good luck to you all. Many thanks to Andy Brown for providing most of the kits for the team both this year and last year. The teams progress can be seen on the Wales Golf Website (GUW) under live scoring.

Daily Mail Foursomes:

Last Saturday morning Graham was at the club helping with starting for the Open Week-end. Coming off the 18th green at around 11am he spotted Kingsley Evans and Chris Platt shaking hands with 2 players that he did not recognise. 
“How they had got on?” he asked.
They had won on the last hole having been 5 down earlier in the match! Graham was a little puzzled but it transpired that they had just won their 6th round match in the Daily Mail Foursomes Competition against a pairing from Bridgenorth! This really is a magnificent performance from two of our established golfers both playing off 2 handicap. If they can win their next match they will be in the British Finals to be played at a Marriott Hotels venue in October. 

I don't believe any men's pairing from Llangollen has ever got to the 7th round stage, although I recall Eira Davies and Cora Ellis being in the Ladies Finals in the 1970's.
We all wish Kingsley and Chris all the very best in their 7th round match and when we know the date and venue it would be great if we could provide them with the support that they fully deserve. Anybody who has ever played Foursomes Match Play will realise what a difficult format it can be, but Kingsley and Chris are experienced and sporting competitors who on their day will be a tough pairing for anybody to beat! Good Luck both!

To end.
With a weather forecast for rain, I hear the greens have had some work done to them and there is a sand dressing to be washed in by much needed precipitation!

Seniors G.V. Roberts Cup Stableford
Neville Rawcliffe (631) won with 1 birdie and 3 pars 
Whilst I’ve been watching all the golf from Carnoustie the 2018 Open has been out shone by the above result that came through from Howdidido this week. I suspect the results computer doesn’t know that our Nev has celebrated his ninetieth birthday and whilst the stats for his round show that he didn’t score on the twelfth his gross score would have certainly beaten his age.
6 5 6 5 3 4 5 6 5      5 4 x 6 3 5 5 5 5
Playing off 23 handicap Nev took first prize to the delight of everyone and this has got to be a very special Senior Moment!
Congratulations from everyone at VLGC. 

Views of The Vale July 2018

Every Captain has his or her day and in recent weeks we have seen Captains’ Charity and Captain’s Day and I’m grateful to Captain Kevin for the following reports

The Charity Day 2nd June 2018 

Starting at 7.30 with a full field of 180 competitors, 
the weather was kind and refreshments at the half way house including the Wrexham Lager pit stop was much enjoyed. ( Certainly was! KW)
The overall winners came from the last group out which were Peter Wilkinson , Peta Lynn- Cheze , Sam Williams and Brian Griffiths.
Congratulations to them as they also qualify to play in the Prostate Cancer UK Regional event at Lymm on the 24th September hosted by Andrew Murray Golf.
Throughout the day donations were collected at the bar and half way house and after our comedian Bill Woolland who conducted the auction, Lady Captain and I are pleased to announce we raised over £8,800 for our two Charities Nightingale House Hospice and Prostate Cancer UK Ltd.
Many thanks to all the volunteers who manned the reception and raffle , the half way house and Lager stop.
To the sponsors and companies who donated prizes and auction items we would like to  say a huge thank you for making the day a massive success.

Thank you again. Mr Captain Kevin Walsh  Lady Captain Jane Thomas.

Captains Day 30th June 2018

Once again the sun shone and a full field played on the much improving greens.
Well someone liked them shooting a magnificent 43 points !!

Congratulations to overall winner Greg Purdie.

Once again many thanks to my volunteers who manned the Wrexham Lager Van and half way house. To my wife Sheila ,daughter Kerry for their help and my son Neal who played for the first time in 13 years well done.

I hope you enjoyed the refreshments and the day I certainly had a great day greeting many of you on the tee or at the halfway house.

Once again a raffle was run on the day along with a donations bucket and this raised a further £400 pounds for Captains Charities.

Thank you all once again for your support.       Kevin Walsh, Captain.

I know Lady Captain has already thanked everyone for her successful Lady Captain’s Day on the Ladies Facebook Page.

Both Captains certainly had ideal weather for their days and the scores were exceptional. Thanks to you both and the supporters who helped to make it all happen. A great deal of planning has made great contributions to your charities.

Sorry to report that my request for broken tee pegs to be collected and binned has fallen on deaf ears!

The run of good weather looks to be continuing through the month of July and this weekend’s scores certainly reflected what is possible on a fast running course. Owen Rutter won division 1 going out in 37 coming back in 36 with 4 birdies and 10 pars beating Gavin Pye (627) by 5 shots. Russ Bickley (1808) won division 2 going out in 46 coming back in 43 with 1 birdie and 4 pars beating Delwyn Jones (1631) by 2 shots. Mr President must have thought his prize for a course record was going to be claimed and Gavin Pye certainly thought he had The Newman Cup in the bag.  Congratulations Owen on a fine score.

I usually single out staff members who have been busy over recent months but everyone, from The Kitchen to The Office and The Pro Shop to the Greens has been flat out in the hot conditions. I’m sure members would join me in saying, “Many Thanks.” Not forgetting our cleaner who appears at some unearthly hour and keeps the club house shipshape!

Time to concentrate on Carnoustie,  Ken Williams.


Wed 4th April

Views of The Vale                      April 2018


Course Work


Weather permitting the Greens Staff will start the spring maintenance programme this weekend and will continue through next week.

This is essential work involving preparation for the summer golf season.

Finding a slot for this work, during this early part of the year, has been impossible so we will have to be patient and mindful of the staff who have priority at all times.


 Andrew and the team have battled with the water table and must be wondering  “What next?” I suspect it will be a battle against rapid growth and then a dry summer. There will usually be one person smiling in the clubhouse as he or she is top of the leader board. Could I ask the rest of the golfers to blame their slice, hook, clubs (not if Matt fitted them!), bad back, lack of practice, that putt that wouldn’t drop and all the other excuses but DON’T blame the staff for your golf. We are fortunate to have such a dedicated and hard working team.


The weather forecast is improving and April showers are better than the conditions that the first three months of 2018 have thrown at us. I was amazed to see the course open last Saturday and then I saw the excellent winning result!!! Can’t complain about bandits.


Dedication also applies to our Comps and Handicaps Committee who administer the men’s scores and results. I hope someone has stood up and agreed to take over from David Griffiths.


Time to enjoy The Masters.


Regards, Ken Williams.

Friday 21st July

My thanks go to the Greens Staff who followed up on a note I sent out about the number of divot marks around the hundred yard markers. They have clearly been busy filling them in.

The soil /seed divot dressing bags are there for collection by the first and tenth tees and once emptied can be left in the bin by the eighteenth. They are there for you to fill in your own divots and any others you see. There is nothing wrong with replacing your own divot if you haven’t got a soil bag!

The recent dry spell left divots drying out and then the heavy rain, washed the dressing away. 

I met two of the Greens Staff this morning as they were adding more sand to the bunkers. There have been members who have found bunker shots difficult of late. Either the sand is too wet, too deep, too shallow or too dry. We have improved the faces of eight bunkers where the balls were plugging in the faces and now you should find your ball in a fairer position but don’t expect to splash out like a tour pro every time you are bunkered! The easiest answer is hit the greens and keep out of them.

Driving off the men’s first tee:........

If you are a long hitter (Seniors can now proceed to next paragraph) then please consider that when the bell has been rung on the first hole, if you can reach the hundred yard marker then you must ensure it is safe to drive and shout fore. The hole was designed to keep golf balls out of Abercregan Garden (the house on the right) and an errant shot could result in further restrictions to protect our neighbour.

Gents and Ladies must also make use of the bell on the fifth hole to inform players on the tee that the fairway is clear.

I was delighted to see the fine weather, glorious course and most enjoyable meal and prize giving all went smoothly for Lady Captain, Steph.

Bob reliably informs me, that Sky TV would cost us £6,408 per annum. It is based on our rateable value and you can’t just go for the sports package, a club has to purchase a full package. That equates to about £12 on your subs if you wanted it installed but it’s not to everyone’s taste. Now you know why The Open Golf was not on in the clubhouse.

I’ve got Adam Scott in the sweepstake so its time I checked the scores.


Ken Williams










Views of The Vale : March 2017

Lots of news and information so please read right to the end! 


The Directors, staff and members of The Vale of Llangollen would like to extend a very warm welcome to the Club to all our new and returning members.  If there is anything you need to know about playing the course, getting a handicap, or entering a competition, the Pro Shop staff are there to help you and point you to appropriate committee members.  If you know anyone that is interested in becoming a member please ask him / her to contact the Office or the Pro Shop, and we can arrange for them to play the course with you. The increase in Junior membership numbers is greatly encouraging for the Club’s future.


Please ensure that you repair any pitch marks on the greens caused by your ball, or any other ball landing on the green.  This area has proved problematic over recent seasons and something all members need to pay special attention too.  This greatly helps the green staff improving the putting surface you play on. The greens staff and greens committee hope that all the hard work put in over the winter will provide members with a course in great condition for the coming season. Only time, new growth and continued treatment will see the end of the fuz infection on the greens but the weather is currently helping.

Roy Ankers informs me that there will be disruption to the water supply in the men’s locker room wash basins on Monday April 10th and Tuesday 11th whilst they carry out works on our Disabled toilet improvements.


Your ballot form should be in and the votes will be counted on Thursday morning followed by an email and notice to inform you of the name of the new director who will be in post from 1st April 2017 for three years

There is a television in the snooker room that is surplus to requirements, so House and Social & Directors have agreed that "any reasonable offer" made for it before next Thursday will be considered.


St. David’s Day Celebration Dinner is our one black tie event of the year and it falls upon the President to organize the meal and entertainment. Last year I organized for a magician to entertain us with a tenuous link to Wales being a magical country. This year I was pleased to consult with Dennis Jones for his recommendations on a welsh choir and he certainly provided the answer. We were joined by Parti Y Siswrn from Mold who were on top form. I didn’t expect them to be accompanied by a harpist, keyboard and flute. Their program of music was excellent and amongst over fifty diners we were joined by a leading voice from the Froncysllte Male Voice Choir and the President of Rhos Male Voice and I’m sure they will be reporting back to their respective choirs on the harmonies we enjoyed. In addition, Gwynfor and Angie had compiled a traditional welsh menu that was thoroughly enjoyed by one and all. I certainly enjoyed presenting “the leek” to be consumed and washed down by a new face to the function. DIOLCH YN FAWR IAWN.


In past years I have followed the pattern of a President’s Day for Gents and one for Ladies. This year I have changed to one day for all Club members with an early start and late finish on 17th of June when the light allows for more tee times. There will still be gents and ladies prizes and you will be invited to complete the day with a Presidents Buffet Evening. Tickets will be on sale in advance and the disco is booked!

I am pleased to inform members that Phil and Gaynor Gee have been recognized by the Directors for the way in which they raised the bar and turned an ailing business into a success. In addition to the small collection made in the pro shop last December we have added complimentary membership for one year to their farewell gift to show our appreciation. 

Over the next month we can expect to see two drones visiting us! Not the bee variety but one belongs to Joe Pye who is a member. Joe, a freelance filmmaker, has kindly offered to make a hole by hole fly over of the course with commentary by Matt, our professional. This will be submitted as part of Joe’s course work to Manchester University. I was greatly impressed by Joe’s 'you-tube' film taken from above Dinas Bran

Llangollen Town Council has also contacted us as they are having a film linked to a project by the Welsh Assembly, The Year of Legends. They would like a general aerial view of the course and what a stunning Area of Outstanding Beauty they have at their disposal.

Hopefully the drones won’t be involved in aerial combat; my money is on Joe to win!

Finally, the H & S Committee have various events in the pipeline that will soon be advertised.

This is a bit like the painting the Forth Road Bridge as it is time to compile the next edition and I will soon be releasing the first excerpt of a 'Rule Book' for members.


Ken Williams



February 2017


The Club frontage is looking good and improvements to road down to Greens Shed progressing well. Once again I must thank Roy Ankers and Mike Davies for their vision and hard work on this project.

 Sometime ago I invited sections to contribute to Views of The Vale and I’m grateful to Andy James of The Seniors Section for the following supplement.

 Our first inter club Seniors Match is away to Rhuddlan on Tuesday 20th February. A friendly club with a great carvery, only the weather could be a problem!

 Now the transfer deadline is over, Andy James is pleased to present our new signings. From Carden Park; George and Mildred (aka Russ) in addition there is our very own Karl The Diver Livingstone and our Banker, Bill Dudgeon. Good to see these new additions adding a touch of glamour to our Senior Section!

 Andy provides a scoop item by revealing that during the Captain’s Drive in, whilst the crowd were enjoying the aroma from the kitchen, a cry of, “Beef” was heard as three great drives were launched down the fifth fairway. It can now be revealed, yes you read it here first, Captain Dave is now attempting to lose two stones in a sponsored weight loss act for his charity. Bravo and good luck to Mr Captain and we hope his weight watching is as good as his driving. Whoever cried, “Beef” will be served up with potatoes and two veg if he is identified.

Thanks Andy.



House and Social

Thanks to Sheila Walsh for organising the successful Candlelit Dinner

 St. David’s Day Dinner

Diolch to everyone who has booked their attendance for the evening. The menu looks tasty and the choir is booked. This is the one event that the President organises for the House and Social Committee so your support will be greatly appreciated.

 Wednesday 15th March sees the last of our Winter Quiz Nights so sign up your team on the sheet in the foyer. Six teams so far.

 Election for one director.

 The postal vote is organised and it is sometime since we had to hold an election, the last time being when Clwyd Roberts and myself were elected. We are a progressive group of directors and we aim to continue developing the course and clubhouse facilities for members. Please make your vote count.


I have just joined a cast of thousands on the Greens Committee and it is good to see the interest of members in the course developments. I can assure you that the committee is now full and making excellent progress, being in year two of the plan for three years.

It was clear that the committee have noticed an increase in divots not replaced and unrepaired pitch marks in abundance. One green had in the region of twenty-five pitch marks unattended last weekend. No comment.

 For all you lovers of conifers ( that mainly belong in Kronospan not in The Dee Vale) please be patient as the trees that have been felled will be replaced by new features.

 Looks like a weekend for wearing thermals is ahead.

 Swing well.

 Ken Williams