The lawns have been shut since January 9th to preserve them from compaction damage due to footfall in the very soft conditions. There is a strong suspicion that some damage has occurred to court 2 during the autumn owing to the much wetter and softer than normal conditions. We are keen to reopen court 1 as soon as we can be confident we will not compact/damage the playing surface.
The assessment at the moment is that if drier conditions prevail over the next few days into early February. Then we should be able to resume play around February 6/7. I will let you know firmly one way or the other once we see the rainfall figures for the weekend (February 1/2) and I have inspected the lawns again around the 4/5th.
information, the rainfall figures show we have had a very wet autumn and have
had a wetter than normal January. They are:
For the autumn months (Oct-Dec) in the very wet conditions last year total rainfall was 260mm, compared to 160mm in 2017 and 175mm in 2018. So it was substantially higher and left the ground saturated and unable to absorb the rain that continued to fall on a regular basis.
The January rains we had were heavy at the beginning of the month with 22mm falling in week 2 when we shut the lawns and 28mm in week 3. We have had two drier weeks with 14mm falling. We have only had 5 rain free days since the closing the lawns, which has tended to keep things ‘topped up’. January rainfall this year was 69mm, three times that when compared to the 2019 figure of 23mm.
Hi. If you haven’t already reserved a ticket for our Winter Social, please contact me soon.
This is an excellent chance to meet up and socialise with other club members before the lawns reopen again. But, with posters up, tickets are now starting to be sold to the general public, so please don’t risk missing out by leaving it to the last minute.
Friday 7th February; East Hagbourne Village Hall. Doors open 6.30 (quiz starts 7.15 prompt). Aiming to finish around 10pm.
£10 per person, or £60 a table (max 7 people). Ploughman’s supper and soft drinks included. Wines available.
David Long. 07484 360169. email@example.com
Hold the date: Friday 7th February, starting from 7.15 (doors open 6.30pm).
BCC’s winter social will take place in East Hagbourne Village Hall, due to the refurbishment of Blewbury’s own hall. We’re arranging a fun quiz evening, that you’re very welcome to invite your friends and family to.
Tickets will be £10 per person in advance, or £12 on the door. Or you can book exclusive use of a table for your team, at a cost of £60 (up to 7 people). Prices include a ploughman’s supper, cake, and soft drinks; we’ll also have a bar selling wine by the glass or bottle.
Ticketing details will follow after Xmas (once we’ve printed them!), but please get in touch with me asap if you want to reserve a whole table.
Congratulations to the following, for the prizes they received yesterday – following our AGM – from our President (Coral Richards):
Joe King – The Founders Cup
Brian Jamieson – The Icknield Trophy
Paul Wolff – The Roger Cambray Shield
David Vincent – The GC B-Level Open (no trophy, no photo!)
Peter Allan – Player of the Year, for winning The Greek Open in Corfu, as well as our own Prebendal Trophy; for winning our local preliminary and almost reaching the national finals of the All-England AC Handicap; and for reducing his handicaps from 16-9 (AC) and 8-7 (GC)
David Seed – the CA Diploma for services to Croquet, recognising his long service in maintaining our lawns.
Bottles of wine were also presented to John Garnett, Roger Lowe and (in absentia) Mick Moore, for their huge contributions to maintaining the lawns this year. And a bouquet was presented to Deirdre Cochrane to recognise her previous long tenure as Chair and Secretary of the club.
Yesterday’s AGM saw a good turn-out, with 21 of our members in attendance.
With June Wolff retiring from the Committee, Steve Fisher was elected in her place. Up to two more members can be added to the Committee, if any step forward: we’d particularly welcome some female representation, given the roughly even gender balance of the club membership as a whole.
Membership rates for the 2020 season were agreed as follows: fees are due before the start of the season next April.
Individual Membership: £150 (up from £140 this season)
Junior Membership (under 25s): £35 (unchanged)
Family Membership (one address): £270 (was £250)
Distant Membership (over 35 miles): £80 (was £70)
50% discount for members joining after 1st August
Full details have been circulated to all members by e-mail. They may be seen here and a paper copy of the minutes will be filed in the Clubhouse.
This year’s AGM will be held on Tuesday 15th October, 2019; at 3pm in the Melland Room, Blewbury Clubhouse, Boham’s Road, Blewbury.
The meeting will: * receive last year’s accounts and this season’s club report * agree subscription rates and discounts for the 2020 season * elect new committee member(s), and * seek to form a working group to organise a winter social.
If you haven’t done so already, please let the Secretary know your intention to come, not least to ensure adequate supplies of tea and cake!
Blewbury finished this year’s competition with one win,
one draw and one loss.
1-1 draw away to High Wycombe – Robin Brown (-1.5) beat Duncan Reeve (-2) +17TP. Nick Butler (-1) lost to Raouf Allim (-0.5) -2. Robin had a comfortable win but a missed peg out by Nick while well ahead proved very costly as Raouf came back to snatch victory.
0-2 loss away to Aldermaston – Robin Brown (-2) lost to Andy Myers (-1.5) -9TP. Nick Butler (-1) lost to Steve Woolnough (1.5) -20. In very challenging conditions, a bumpy lawn and firm hoops, Robin had a chance to win but failed a triple peel attempt; Nick however really struggled blobbing a number of hoops and was soundly beaten.
2-0 win home to Basingstoke – Nick Butler (-1) beat Roger Barnacle (2.5) +11. Joe King (-0.5) beat Ian Harrison (4) +18. Joe got into trouble after 1 peel of a triple attempt but it wasn’t punished so he won comfortably, Nick started strongly whizzing round to 4-back on turn 5 and then kept Roger at arm’s length with both games pegging out just 2 seconds apart.
This left us 3rd in the table with 3 points, close behind winners High Wycombe who finished on 5 points and runners up Aldermaston on 4.
Wednesday 24th July, sunny and warm, and we entertained the Watford tourists at Blewbury for the eighth consecutive year, playing association croquet, mostly level advanced.
The morning’s games saw Joe King(-½) and Steve Fisher(11) lose -1 on time to Geoff Johnson (2½) and John Bee (8) at doubles, Nick Butler (-1) beat Simon Hathrell (-1) +11 after a flying start of hard, accurate shooting and a fourth-turn break, Avril Rangoni-Machiavelli (3) lose to Mark Homan (6) -10 (handicap), and Deirdre Cochrane (4) beat Andre Machell (6) +3 on time, for a match score of 2-2 at the half-way point.
Back on court after we’d all lunched together at the Blueberry, Joe and Avril lost -26 to Simon and Andre in the afternoon doubles (handicap advanced), Paul Wolff (4) lost -19 to Geoff (who had claimed at the start it was his turn to win in the long-standing series between these two), Deirdre lost -1 to Mark, but though Steve beat John +9 it wasn’t enough, and Watford ran out overall winners by 5 to 3 for a flying start to their summer tour.
Watford’s verdict: “We really do enjoy our visit to Blewbury and this year was every bit as good as ever (and the courts better than ever).” Blewbury’s response: Thank you for coming, and we hope to see you again next year.
Keith Pound (High Wycombe) won the annual Midweek Handicap (AC) tournament hosted jointly by the two clubs on 26/27 June, and retained the trophy he won last year.
The ‘home’ contestants, Andy Robertson and Steve Fisher (Blewbury) and Frances Colman, Raghu Iyer, and Richard Peperell (Phyllis Court), were also joined by Colin Britt (from Camerton & Peasedown in Somerset) and Liz Taylor-Webb (all the way from Bowdon in Cheshire) for the event, blessed once again by sunny midsummer weather. Blewbury’s home catering for lunch was praised (thank you, June!), the lawns were newly mown (thank you, Mick!) and white-lined and in excellent condition (thank you, everyone else who had a hand in it!), and all we lacked seemed to be the shade of a pop-up gazebo on the day.