When golfers bravedthe Blitz

2011-09-29 00:00

A GOLF notice from 1940 issued by Richmond Golf Club in south-west London is doing the rounds by e-mail.

Britain was at war with Germany at the time and it seems that golfers were still playing golf even with German aircraft flying over London and dropping bombs on the city.

The list was obviously written because of abnormal conditions on the course and was headed “Temporary Rules”. These days we know rules like these as “Local Rules”. They are written in a calm, matter-of-fact style in much the same way that rules are always written. One would never imagine that a war was in progress.

1. Players are asked to collect bomb and shrapnel splinters to prevent them causing damage to the mowing machines.

2. In competitions, during gunfire or while bombs are falling, players may take cover and cease play without penalty.

3. The positions of known delayed-action bombs are marked by red flags at a reasonably, but not guaranteed, safe distance therefrom.

4. Shrapnel and or bomb splinters on the fairways or in bunkers within a club length may be moved without penalty, and no penalty shall be incurred if a ball is thereby caused to be moved accidentally.

5. A ball moved by enemy action may be replaced, or if lost or destroyed another ball may be dropped without penalty.

6. A ball lying in a crater may be lifted and dropped not nearer the hole, preserving the line to the hole, without penalty.

7. A player whose stroke is affected by the simultaneous explosion of a bomb may play another ball from the same place. Penalty one stroke.

Golf as a sport is known to be addictive and many golfers become obsessed with the game and will play under virtually any conditions.

Dedicated golfers will play the game at any time, in any place and in any weather.

The above circumstances were obviously extreme and it just goes to show how determined and resolute golfers were even when German bombs were dropping around them.

Oh yes, rule 7 seems to be a bit unfair.

Last weekend’s results:

Victoria Country Club held a 4 ball Stableford alliance on Saturday afternoon. The winners on a count out were S. Hulbert, W. Hulbert, V. Frankish and D. Frankish with 88 points. In second place were S. Browning, R. Snowdon, J. Craig and S. Craig.

Maritzburg Golf Club held a 4 ball betterball Stableford fundraiser for the SPCA on Saturday.

There were 4 pairs on 46 points and a count out determined the winners. The winners were A. Gibhard and M. Sturgess in first place with D. Dayanand and P. Gounden placed second.

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