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Latest Croquet News

Golf Croquet World Championship Websites

by Samir Patel [^]
3rd December (International)

Websites for the two World Championships to the held in England in 2019 have been launched:

Most Improved Player Awards 2018

by Sam Murray [^]
26th November (CA Official News)

The Croquet Association is pleased to announce the following awards for the most improved players of 2018.

The Apps Memorial Bowl for the most improved male AC player: Daniel Gott

The Spiers Trophy for the most improved GC player: Stuart M Smith

The Steel Memorial Bowl for the most improved female AC player has not been awarded.

The CA continues to encourage clubs and Federations to monitor improving players, and nominate them for these awards.


5th Edition of the Rules of Golf Croquet

by Stephen Mulliner [^]
22nd November (GC)

The 5th Edition of the Rules of Golf Croquet will become effective in England from 1 March 2019.

It should be emphasised that the 5th Edition is not intended to make any noticeable change to the way Golf Croquet is played. Its three purposes are:

(1) to make the Rules easier to use by improving the organisation and quality of the text;
(2) to provide direction in situations which previous editions did not address; and
(3) to remove some unnecessary inconveniences and complications in the Rules.

Links to the 5th Edition itself and explanatory documents are available in the GC Rules section of the CA website.

2019 CA Club Awards - Get your submissions in

by Roger Staples [^]
8th November (CA Official News)

The CA makes awards biennially in three categories to clubs that have made exceptional progress in providing a good playing environment over the previous two years:

The Townsend Award is given every two years to a club with one or two lawns that has, in the opinion of the Development Committee, made exceptional progress in providing a good playing environment over the previous two years.

The Apps Heley Award is given every two years to the club with three or four lawns that has made most progress at a national or local level in the last two years.

The Millennium Club Award is given every two years to the club with five or more courts that has made most progress at national or local level in any of two of the previous three years.

The Croquet Association Club Awards are made at the AGM in October and beside a certificate, a cheque for £250 is given to winning clubs.

To apply for any of these Awards, please firstly contact your Federation Development Officer and complete a submission form [https://www.croquet.org.uk/?d=330&pup=y] together with any supporting information. Ideally, clubs will be able to supply convincing photographs that demonstrate how their facilities have been improved, suitable for publication in the Gazette and online.

The closing date for the submissions is 1 January 2019 and the awards will be made at the AGM in 2019.

Roger Staples, Chairman of the Development Committee.

The 2019 Charity One-Ball

pictureThe 2018 winner, Margaret Murray from the Bath club, is congratulated by the runner-up, Tom Weston (Photo: Chris Roberts)

by Quiller Barrett [^]
6th November (CA Official News)

From the President

The 2019 Charity One-Ball

This handicap competition is being held next Spring and now is the time for CA clubs to consider taking part.

Kevin Carter has masterminded the event for 12 years and in 2018 more than £5,000 was raised for charity. I hope we can all contribute to donate even more in 2019 to show that members can have fun playing one-ball and at the same time support this year's charity, the Alzheimer's Society (www.alzheimers.org.uk). We all know somebody who has been afflicted by dementia and this wonderful charity provides information, advice, support and funds research.

Not only is the Charity One-Ball for a good cause, it is also a brilliant opportunity for clubs to start the new season with a competition which appeals to both AC and GC players - it bridges the gap between the two codes. Although One-Ball is based on AC rules, many GC players often get to the final and take home fine prizes.

Clubs can hold a heat whenever they want, up to a week before the 12th May final at Surbiton, and use whatever format they wish (advice being available if they need it). Raise just £50 and a club can send a qualifier for a free place in the final. Most clubs suggest a donation of at least £5 per head; others supplement it by raffles and other fund-raising.

If you are thinking of running a heat please let Kevin Carter know and if you want further information please contact him by e-mail kevin#profundus.com or on 01235-524712.

Quiller Barrett

For those unable to participate, contributions are most welcome:


Report of AGM and Council Meeting

by Dr Ian Vincent at Hurlingham [^]
22nd October (CA Official News)


A number of members wrote their names in the attendance book, but the terrace room at Hurlingham looked a lot fuller than that. Council's report was presented by its Chairman, Brian Shorney, who was coming to the end of his term of office. He noted that Council and its Officers had again been heavily occupied by the membership and governance changes, and on top of that there had been a complete turnover of staff in the office and shop at Cheltenham. He apologised to those members who had been adversely affected by this, but was confident that once the new staff had gained experience the normal high standards of service would be resumed.

He was pleased, and to some extent relieved, by the progress made with supporting Standard Membership, but somewhat disappointed by the lower than hoped-for take-up. The CA now has just short of 5,000 members, out of an estimated 7,500 club members.

Progress with changing governance had also been slower than he wanted, though some had been made and more was possible at the afternoon Council meeting. Although change was desirable, he was satisfied that the CA continued to be fundamentally well run.

He congratulated David Maugham on his astonishing feat of winning 9 out of the 11 domestic AC Championships and thanked all those who had supported him during his Chairmanship.

The issue of the level of the CA's reserves was again raised by Hugh Carlisle. Brian Shorney agreed that it was a matter of policy rather than book-keeping, but pointed out that Council had been spending some of the capital, on things like the National Development Officer and investing in IT, and asked the Treasurer, Peter Death, to give a detailed analysis. He noted that total reserves had fallen by £11K in 2017 and a further significant fall was expected this year.

George Noble and others raised the proposed change to abolish the concept of primary membership, to which his and a number of other clubs had raised objections. He was assured by the President that Council would take these into account.

There being no further questions, Brian was thanked to applause for his thoughtful leadership over the last two years.

Jonathan Isaacs, a Vice-President who had been chairing a working group on Governance, then outlined the proposals which were to be considered by Council that afternoon. The essence of them was to take a step-wise approach, starting by reducing the size of the Council from over 30 to 12 voting members, elected by CA members on a geographical constituency basis. The new Council would be tasked with deciding policy and scrutinising the effectiveness of an Executive Board in carrying it out. The working committees, which have generally been working well, would continue unchanged while that change was made. The meeting was assured that it would have the final say, either at an SGM in the spring or next years AGM, if Council approved them.

The remaining business moved more swiftly, starting with the Treasurer's report, much of which had already been given in reply to the question about reserves. The elections were uncontested, though there was a vacancy on Council arising from the later withdrawal of one of the candidates. Patricia Duke-Cox was elected a Vice-President nem. con.

The recipients of the most improved AC player awards, Chris Coull and Sarah Melvin, were at the the rival attraction of a development squad weekend at Ealing, where the trophies were presented, but Richard Bilton was available to receive the Spiers trophy for the most improved GC player in 2017. Roger Mills received the Coach of the Year award and Ian Plummer a lifetime one. Jeff Dawson and Michael Hague were presented with Council Medals. 18 members were awarded CA Diplomas.

At AOB, Roger Barnacle, speaking on behalf of Ian Harrison, asked for more flexibility to be given to experienced club handicappers and was assured that this would be considered by the Handicap Committee. Thomas Wills-Sandford, while noting that the Nottingham List was quite independent of the CA, asked contributors to be less aggressive to each other.

In closing the meeting, Quiller Barrett welcomed the increased number of women involved in administering the sport, suggested that clubs that were finding it difficult to get their members to volunteer might benefit from following good practice elsewhere, and praised Kevin Carter for organising the annual one-ball event, which had raised over £35,000 for various charities. Next year's cause would be Alzheimer's research.


Sam Murray, Chris Roberts and John Reddish were welcomed as new members of Council, and Patricia Duke-Cox as a returning friend.

John Bowcott was elected to take over from Brian Shorney as Chairman of Council, with John Dawson as Vice-Chairman and Chairman of the Management Committee. A number of committees have new chairmen: Frances Coleman (Handicap), Eugene Chang (Marketing), Brian Havill (Publishing), Lionel Tibble (GC Selection), Beatrice McGlen (AC Tournaments) and Jonathan Powe (GC Tournaments).

The main business, as foreshadowed at the AGM, was to consider the Governance proposals, which were again presented by Jonathan Isaacs. After a substantial discussion, in various valuable points of detail were raised, it was agreed by a majority that the Chairman of Council should be elected by the body itself, rather than the wider membership, after which the other proposals were agreed unanimously. Strat Liddiard, who had chaired the working party that researched and developed the original proposals, was thanked for having done the groundwork. The next steps are to draft the necessary changes to the Constitution and draw up a detailed plan for implementation, with the aim of implementing them next year.

Arising from the AGM, it was agreed to promote the One-Ball tournament through the fixtures book, waiving any levy that might otherwise accrue so that the charity would benefit to the maximum extent. The reserves would be considered, along with a risk assessment, at the January Meeting, and the concerns about Primary Membership were noted.

The AC International Performance Director's budget was agreed, after the Management Committee had enforced the policy that only coaches, rather than players, should receive expenses. It was agreed to buy six sets of Atkins Quadway hoops and refurbish the President's Cup ones. However, the proposed differential rates for lawn and ball hire charges, the top rate of which the Management Committee had restricted to larger events, were referred back for further consideration. The new, 5th Edition, of the GC Rules was adopted for use from 1st March next year.

Finally, the new Chairman exhorted his colleagues to work as a team to serve the enlarged membership, emphasising the need for leadership, good communication and mutual support.

Welcome New Members

by Alison Jones [^]
23rd February (CA Official News)

The Croquet Association extends a special welcome to our new Standard Members.

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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed on this news web page are those of the Editor and contributors. The Croquet Association is not responsible for statements other than those clearly identified as being made on its behalf. The full editorial policy is available online. The Web News Editor is Sam Murray.