2023 Summer Award Presentation

On Sunday 5th November, the presentation of awards for the summer competitions were held at the club after rollup. Prizes and trophies were distributed by Mike Huxley. It was a dry autumn afternoon hosted by Wendy Lockwood and Hilary Bird, where attendees were treated to tea, coffee, and home made cakes. The roll of honour for summer 2023 is as follows:

  • AC Handicap Knockout: Ian F
  • Pat’s Plate: Bernie Phillips
  • Applewood Bowl: Hilary Bird
  • Charity One Ball: Hilary Bird
  • Golf Singles Knockout (EARS Trophy): John Bryson
  • Golf Doubles Knockout (JAWS Trophy): Peter Gill and Frankie Lea
  • Golf Handicap Summer League 7+: Roseann Sullivan
  • Golf Handicap Summer League 6-: Douglas Shand
  • Handicap Summer League (Amanda Bentley Trophy): Roseann Sullivan
  • Golf Summer Level Play League: Bernie Phillips

GC Team B’s final hurrah

Roseann, Ian Taylor, Hilary and Peter Adams, travelled South, in hope, to their final match of the season, versus Preston, near Brighton, on 23 September. (We were very pleased we had our own referee on board!)

Their 2 three quarter sized lawns were interesting/bumpy/challenging. Similarly, their handicaps offered a few surprises.

Despite Ian and Roseann doing their very best, we only managed to win three of the nine games. Nevertheless, we had some enjoyable croquet.

Sadly, having come joint top of the league in 2022, I fear we are joint bottom in 2023. Hey ho, as they say, you win some you lose some…..

However , we had some good croquet along the way, and plenty of fun. Well done team!

R League Match v Surbiton

It was a lovely sunny day and good company but the croquet was mixed!

The format involved a doubles match and two singles matches in round one followed by 4 singles matches in round two. Each match comprised the best of three games.

Julie and Andrea played in the doubles and started with an impressive win, 7-1. Then it all went wrong! The next two games were close with our opponents placing their balls with increasing accuracy and forcing long clearances and closely fought hoops. The two games were lost 6-7, 6-7.

The two singles were also closely fought Peter Adams won his singles but Hilary narrowly lost 6-7,6-7.

The Surbiton team provide us with a great lunch between rounds. A much appreciated sociable break.

Round two: Julie won her match, winning game 3 with an impressive 7-0! Andre’a match proved less of a struggle, winning 7-2, 7-1. But, unfortunately, after some long fought struggles, Peter and Hilary were beaten by their opponents.

So the end result was 4-3 to Surbiton. Well done and thank you to all the players.

GGCC v Rother Valley – SECF Handicap League Match

It is with a heavy heart that despite our best efforts I must report that we managed to place 2nd against Rother Valley, 4-5.

After a solid start in the doubles games, 3 of our singles games ended 6-7, giving RV a 4-2 lead going into the final stages.

As a reluctant skipper, I made the call to try to overhaul the deficit with some tactical handicap alignments. Andrew L and Andrew J (doubles) and John won their final games but I was unable to overhaul a -2-0 starting deficit sealing our fate for the final result.

Nevertheless, it was a lovely day in the sunshine and everyone participating enjoyed themselves (even the reluctant skipper!)

Bernie Phillips

Two friendly AC matches

On the 24th July we played Watford on their summer tour.  After the morning the match was finely balanced, with Andrew Fewster and Ian Fugeman recording wins by 10 and 9 hoops respectively, while John Gosden and Arthur Lindley narrowly lost the doubles and Peter Adams his singles game.  In the afternoon we swept to victory with John and Julie Tremble winning the doubles comfortably, despite a late fight back from their opponents.  Ian and Andrew won their games with Ian recording a whitewash and Peter lost by the smallest possible margin, 1 hoop on time. 

On 15th August we played Rother Valley seeking revenge for our narrow loss in the SECF U-league earlier in the year.  In the morning Ian Fugeman won his game in double quick time and once Stephen Stuart-Matthews finally got in, after his opponent Chris Stiff had used all of his bisques, he completed two 11 hoop breaks in successive turns and pegged out.  John Gosden and Arthur Lindley played steadily and won their doubles fairly comfortably on time.  In the afternoon Stephen and Ian were joined by new member Tim Dutton and Julie Tremble and all four won their games by convincing margins resulting in a 7-0 victory.  Well played all!

Victory over Reigate Priory

On the 17th July, we welcomed Reigate Priory to our lawns for an SECF GC Restricted League match. The prescribed format requires teams of four whose individual handicap is a minimum of 2 and aggregate team handicap a minimum of 16.

Reigate’s team consisted of players with handicaps of 2, 2, 7 and 14. Our team was Peter Adams, Andrew Lockwood, Jan Honeysett and Vernon Salt with handicaps on the day of 4, 4, 5 and 6.

In the morning, the two lowest handicap players from each team play doubles against each other. The higher handicap players play singles. All matches are best of three 13 point games. At lunchtime, GGCC were ahead 2-1 thanks to winning the doubles and one of the singles.

With all still to play for, the afternoon session of four singles matches yielded three more victories for GGCC giving a final result of 5-2 in our favour. Well done team!


Our third match was against Sussex County Croquet Club (aka Southwick). We fielded a team of handicaps 3, 6, 7 and 8 – Ian Taylor, Graham Lamacraft, Hilary Bird and Roseann Sullivan. They were represented by three 4s, a 6 and a dog (huge English Pointer, owned by a Russian!).

It was an unusual and dramatic afternoon from the off. I was distracted by someone having reversed into my parked car just as the opposition arrived (please note this is the second time this has happened. Word of advice to other members, don’t park under the trees.)

During the first game the dog provided further distraction by howling, until removed to its owner’s car. Our poor, parched lawns prevented most shots from going where one wanted, however at the end of the doubles round it was one all.

In the singles we managed to win three games, putting us 4-2 up as we approached round three. All to play for – we only needed one win to secure the match. Sadly this was not to be.

Having lost two games everything hinged on the third. Meanwhile the insurance company phoned me, and then my phone died. Roseann kindly lent me her phone, and I was in the middle of re-answering all the questions (because it’s a new phone call 🙄) when the Sussex captain approached me in a state of nervous excitement. I had to abandon the call.

It transpired that the 2 remaining players had failed to time their match, but had clearly gone way over time. One needed to finish to go on holiday, and the other was holding up the team escape back to Sussex. The score was 5 all.

After a team conflab it was agreed that the first to win the next hoop, hoop 13, would win. (I should point out at this stage that neither player was aware of the critical nature of the result!). With all the other team members watching this nail biter, 3 of the first shots to hoop 13 finished short. The tension was palpable.

Several minutes later the matter was resolved, with Sussex squeaking a win, meaning they had won the match 5-4.

It was certainly a close run thing and was, I think, enjoyed by all. Congratulations Sussex, and well played GGCC.

SECF Ladies Day 7/7

Janet Curtecka, Lynn Edge, Roseann Sullivan and Hilary Bird sallied forth to Southwick, for a long, hot, tiring day of croquet, against 6 other randomly drawn SECF clubs.

We had moments of success, including beating Chichester and Fishbourne, and drawing with Bromley. Despite many closely fought matches, unfortunately our efforts went unrewarded – the rewards coming from having had an enjoyable day playing and socialising with both old and new friends.

Well played, Ladies.

GC Handicap Team B

We played our second match on 27/6 (apologies for the delay in reporting the result).

The team comprised Jan and Graham Lamacraft, Charles Martin and Jan Honeysett. Our opposition, Chichester and Fishbourne, arrived bright and early (the kettle hadn’t even boiled!) for what promised to be a well matched morning.

After the doubles round we were 2-0 down, so went into the singles round somewhat nervously. Happily, we won three of the four games, meaning we had equalised . Sadly, in the third round we were unable to maintain the momentum and so Chichester and Fishbourne won 6-3.

As ever, the scores did not entirely reflect the closeness of many of the games. Well done team – good effort.

Longman Cup 2nd round match for our AC team

After a 7:45am start for their journey, our opponents in the second round of the Longman Cup, Kington Langley arrived in good time for the 10am start on Friday 30th June.  Our doubles pairing of John G and Julie T were in good form and won convincingly in a little over two hours; just before the drizzle started!  Michael C started slowly but picked up to record a close win by +5.  Andy S had a good battle with his opponent and only lost by 3.   2-1 to G&G at lunch.

In the afternoon all of the games went to time.  John was the first to finish and after a slow start pulled far enough ahead to result in a fairly comfortable win.  Andy fought hard again but the result was a narrow defeat.  Michael was leading convincingly 16-7 after the first two hours but his opponent fought back strongly to record a 21-17 win.  Julie had been behind for much of her game but as time was called had battled well to move ahead by 2.  In his last turn her adversary made a miraculous take-off from the west boundary to land 2 inches in front, and bang in the middle, of hoop 5.  He then made the 3 hoops he needed to win.  A very unlucky defeat and an overall loss for G&G by 3 games to 4 in the narrowest possible margin.