We can hardly wrap our heads around another year’s passing, yet here we are, at the doorstep of 2022. At the end of each year, we take a moment to reflect on the past 12 months. They were sometimes challenging – as we continued to navigate the ever-changing COVID environment – but we are proud to say that we have come through them with many happy memories and we are connected, sustainable, and enthusiastic about the future. A sincere thank you to our phenomenal staff, our Governing Body and Committee Members, as well as our members and guests. Your support and positivity felt, at times, like the pillars holding us up. We look forward to sharing with you in 2022, success, good health, joy, and connection…. with ample opportunity for golf!
Before we get into our newsletter, we would like to wish a warm welcome to our new members! We hope that you have settled into our Clovelly Family well. Our friendly staff are always available to help should you have any questions and our Governing Body would love to meet you over a game of golf. Enjoy every minute!
Before our restructuring process in response to COVID-19 in 2020, our income model relied heavily on premium visitor green fees, with close to 60% of those earnings generated between January to March. With a dramatic (+/- 40%) reduction in costs, we were able to create a more resilient model, shifting focus to one that is member and local visitor-based. This decision proved wise when January’s green fee income showed a drop of 58%, compared to the previous year.
Despite this, January was still a busy month, with over 5000 rounds played. Our team focused on course maintenance in order to limit the damage caused by high traffic, summer heat, and salt deposits from the South Easter. We also had a deep sanitization after both Hanko and Simone tested positive for COVID. These were the days when reports of COVID infections in the valley were rare!
Ian Solomon ended off the month on a high note, with a hole-in-one on Hole 8!
February brought welcome news from our President – alcohol and our beautiful beaches were no longer off-limits!
Sadly, we lost four of our longstanding senior members that month too. We continue to hold the family and friends of Donal Quill, George Scagell, Sharm Young and Derek Pereira in our thoughts. Almost a year has passed and yet it feels as if we last saw them just yesterday. Thank you for your friendship, gentlemen, and rest peacefully.
Achievements from February include Evan Marais and Ollie Malyon’s selection into the WP U13 team, June Harrison winning the Wendy Warrington Trophy and Vic Packwood making a hole-in-one on the 6th! Vic scored another hole-in-one, this time on Hole 16, in November. Talk about a good year for golf!
Other favourite highlights from the month include Brian Dlutu’s official promotion to Greenkeeper and Janeen Alford’s election as Ladies’ Captain after Jacky White hung up her boots after years of service. We were also able to start up our Friday night dinner and draw after regulations were eased to Level 1!
March announced Global Golf’s merger with The Pro Shop. Although this meant the discontinuation of the members’ 10% discount, Global has provided us with a great range of stock at affordable prices and they have honored their promise of crazy sales which far outweigh the discount! Let’s take a moment to acknowledge our helpful, enthusiastic Pro Shop team made up of Patricia, Primrose, Nicky, and Richard. They make the Pro Shop experience a joy!
March also brought with it another WP selection; this time it was Jonathan Barnard who was chosen to compete in the Seniors Interprovincial Tournament! Andre De Villiers achieved the only hole-in-one for the month, on Hole 16, and June Harrison claimed her second big win of the year, putting her name on the Freda Ackerman trophy.
Sadly, we lost another member of our Clovelly Family; Tyrone Thole. We were honored to host a beautiful celebration of his life, organized by his close friends.
April marked the start of winter and also a full-year operating under COVID. We chose to celebrate the occasion with a shortened Festival Weekend comprising of Clearwater Day and the Greenkeeper’s Revenge. Adding to the celebrations were Alan & Lynda Michell’s beautiful wedding and John Spyker’s 70th birthday. What a great start to the season!
Only getting better, we had a successful Hollow Tining, with Allan Johns, Gwyn Phillips, George Bowes, Adrian Batt, Dave Liebrecht, Mike Lee, Nick Girling, Theo Ferreira, Ian Jarvis, Rodney Yates, Christi Benson, and Bruce Condon volunteering their time, once again, to fill divots on the course. Brendan Jones ended the month on a high note, scoring a hole-in-one on the 16th and Amber & Ezra began their lives together as a married couple in what must have been one of the happiest weddings of the year.
Whilst April may claim to be the official start of winter, May was the month that arrived misty and moody! We were met with a Black South Easter and many mornings dawned like the setting of a mystical fairy tale.
Despite the grey weather, May was another great month for Clovelly! We were proud to be the first golf club in South Africa to offer our caddies full-time employment contracts, providing them with security and dignity. Marnie Wolmarans and Merle Christian won the GladMag Trophy, Stuart and Siobhan got married and we welcomed the most adorable new member to our Clovelly Family; Nekisha’s sweet son, Mateo Johnson. Below is a recent picture of Mateo, before heading out to church.
June proved that we were truly in the thick of the wet season. Strong gusts of wind blew in thunder clouds and four days of almost constant, thick rain. The course was transformed into a swamp, the Silvermine River was in full flow, gum trees keeled over and our bunker/16th tee projects were put on pause as we all huddled up inside to stay warm.
The month of June proved challenging, with President Ramaphosa putting us back on Alert Level 4 in response to the 3rd Wave, accompanied by the news that we lost two much-loved members; Dave Martin and Brent Kleve, to cancer and COVID respectively. At the same time, John Spyker and Geoff Taylor were in hospital battling against COVID. We are incredibly grateful that John and Geoff recovered and we wish we could have said the same for Dave and Brent. We miss them both.
Thankfully, in between it all, we also celebrated the most beautiful wedding of Steven Dunn and his lovely bride, Michaela. Warren Muir achieved a hole-in-one on the 16th. He must have started a trend as Mitchell Clark, Warren Pearce and Arthur Hanslo achieved hole-in-ones soon after, on the 16th, 16th and 11th. Dave Thompson and Matt Mills were selected to represent WP in a Mid-Am Invitational against Namibia (they won) and Brian Dlutu jetted off to Mpumalanga, accompanied by Paul Stoner, for the Talking Turf Conference.
In the heart of winter, July proved a quiet month with no events or golf days. Instead, our team had to figure out the logistics of operating in the midst of leave cycles and COVID isolations. A big thank you to our staff for their willingness to show flexibility, commitment, and an eagerness to serve. We really are blessed with the best!
In between days of life-sustaining rain, we had some gorgeous winter days too. Pictured below is one of our favorite pictures of the year, captured by Pat Quill in the golden hour.
Some member highlights from the month include Dawn’s return to golf after a year’s absence. At 95 years of age, Dawn English felt safe enough to return to Clovelly after receiving her vaccination in June. We are happy to report that she is once again playing two games of golf a week. James Wight ended the month with what must have been one of the best games of his life ; not only did he score 4 ‘2 Clubs”, birdieing every Par 3, he also managed to shoot his age with a gross score of 65!
August turned out to be a month of celebration and success!
Alan Michell defended his title of Western Cape Regional Champ and Gill Davies, Jacky White, Bev Roberts and Karine Polfliet won the WP Rutherford Trophy! Batho Theron achieved a hole-in-one of the 16th and Isabella van Rooyen and David Thompson were selected for the WP 2021 IPT Team. This news came just after Isabella won the Southern Cape Women’s Open!
As a result of her discipline and commitment to practice, Isabella had a phenomenal year. Isabella’s most notable victories include her win at the KZN Amateur Matchplay Tournament against the top amateur in the country, Caitlyn McNab, in March. In April, Isabella, who at this stage had been selected to represent WP in the 2021 WP Women’s Squad and Women’s 72 Hole Team Championship, won the biggest U19 Ladies Amateur event in South Africa – the Nomads SA Girl’s Rose Bowl Championship. In June, Isabella went on to win the Jakarta Governor Trophy and was awarded the GolfRSA / Women’s Golf SA Most Improved Open Amateur of the Year! It was not surprising then when Isabella was ranked first place in Women’s Golf SA after coming first in the Northern Cape Ladies Championship at Kimberley and second in the Ekurhuleni Open in September! Well done, Isabella! We are so proud of your deserving achievements.
Non-golf celebrations included the wedding of Angela and Joseph, as well as the marriages of two of our own staff – Jessica Yiend and Austin Whittle.
Last, but not least of our mentions for August include our very successful Ladies Open Day on the Range, organized by Ladies’ Captain, Janeen, and her Committee. We also said goodbye to our Financial Manager, Amor, as she left for Erinvale Golf Club to be closer to her three delightful grandchildren. Although we all supported her move, we really miss her!
Unfortunately, we also lost Kashiv Adams to COVID in August. Rest in peace, Kashiv.
In comparison to its neighboring months, September seemed to promise a gentle easing into Spring. Hollow Tining early in the month meant that there were no golf days to prepare for. It also gave us an opportunity to take our team out for a team-building lunch at Seaforth Restaurant.
Unfortunately, our course staff could not join us, but to make up for it, they were treated to an excursion up Table Mountain in December, followed by lunch at the Waterfront!
Other exciting news in September was the appointment of our new Financial Manager, Gail Miller. Gail seems to have slotted into our team like a puzzle piece, keeping us in line with an exciting mixture of fear and friendship!
From a golf perspective, we were once again made proud by Jonathan Bernard on his selection to represent WP in the Seniors IPT Team and Jacky White managed to clinch the Greenwall Trophy! We also celebrated another two hole-in-ones; both achieved on hole 16 by Andre van Zyl and Nick Girling.
Beavin de Kock opened October with a bang, scoring a hole-in-on the 11th. Our juniors entered the month on a similar high! Not only did Evan Marais win the U13 A Division of the Clovelly Junior Championship but also, along with Olly Malyon, he represented WP in the Nomads SA U13 Championship!
Our junior golf section, under the guidance of MichellGolf, bloomed in 2021. Other young golfers who celebrated victories were Isabella Williams, Adam Richardson, Daniel Roos and Jan Stals van Rooyen. Whether these victories were new personal bests or placing in tournaments, we are so proud of you and can’t wait to see what you achieve in 2022!
October, with its seven golf days and multiple functions, set the tone for the rest of the year. Our timesheets were bustling and our team were working hard to look after our golfers and fertilize the course in between rounds.
We were celebrating the news of Isabella van Rooyen, Jane Hall and Jacky White’s achievements in the Ackerman Championships, as well as South Africa’s removal from the Red List, when we were rocked by the news of Ann Booth’s passing. Ann, throughout her long battle with cancer, was gracious and kind. It was a pleasure to know this lovely lady and we were honored to celebrate her life in an Irish-themed golf and pizza affair. We continue to think of her dear husband, Alan.
Errol Denman also passed away in October. His lovely daughter, Tarryn, recently welcomed a new baby to their family. We hope he brings their family much joy and we send them our love during this time.
Other than our Club Championships, by far the most exciting event in November was the opening of our new Clovelly Snack Bar! We opted for a bright, natural aesthetic and our menu was designed around the votes we received in our member’s survey. These were dominated by requests for sandwiches and filled rolls, followed by a cooked breakfast and wraps.
The first of four rounds of Club Champs dawned on a beautiful sunny day, however, our golfers were challenged by both rain and strong winds before the tournament’s end. Well done to Wendy Warrington and Matthew Cooper on securing the titles of Club Champions of 2021! Two positive changes to the Champs this year were that the mens’ and ladies’ events were combined, with a shared prizegiving, and we used a program called ScoreCapture, which allowed us to view live scoring online for the entire tournament.
A big thank you to Brian Dlutu and his team who not only ensured the course was in top condition for the Champs but also had the new 16th tee box open just in time for the tournament. Starting in May, this project saw our team merge the yellow and white tee boxes together, block-box three tee boxes, and remove three gum trees. We hope you have all enjoyed this new space!
We also celebrated our Ladies Copper League’s win, coming out four points ahead of their opponents, after a long year of tough matches and travel. Well done to our League players; both men and ladies. It takes admirable commitment and passion for your club to take part in the league season. We are a very proud club and give special thanks to our league organizers and those that stood in when called upon. You guys rock!
A quick mention of Johan Praets and Adrian Touhy, who also achieved hole-in-ones in November! We mentioned Vic Packwood’s earlier. Once again, these came in three.
We must also include Gerhard Hach’s exploration of one of our ponds, after accidentally falling into it from his electric golf bike! His good friend, Rolf Hediger, was so kind to send us the photo!
Sadly, we also learned of the passing of Dave Ramsey (pictured below handing out Liverpool items to our Liverpool-supporting staff) and Tony Webb. It is hard to imagine a Clovelly without Tony Webb and when his wife, Lorraine, offered to continue Fine & Country’s sponsorship of our seniors’ competitions on his behalf, it was a bittersweet moment! Tony was so passionate about this club and a close friend to our seniors’ community. We send both families peace and strength..
When December started, we were still reeling from the recent announcement that South Africa had been put back on the Red List. We were also hearing of multiple members and guests testing positive for COVID. Thankfully, the Omicron variant has been much kinder to us, and not only were we removed from the Red List a few days later, but everyone made quick recoveries.
Despite COVID, our Team was in the Christmas Spirit and joyously celebrated our GM, Paul Stoner’s, selection to serve on the Executive Committee of the Club Management Association of Southern Africa! What a proud moment for us!
Another proud moment for us was the 2021 RAGA Awards Evening. The students were recognized for their achievements throughout the year and some of the alumni put on a charming skit, which ended in a surprise “Happy Birthday” wish for our Chairman, Jonathan Ackerman.
Well done to the following students:
Recognition of courage and determination when facing academic challenges: Zheograthia Sauls; Gabeebah Solomon; Naeelah Slarmie
– Academic of the Year: Avuyile Sihihi
– Academic Awards for diligence and consistent effort::Sibusisiwe Bingwa and Andonele Ndlovu
– Life Skills Award: Wiedaah Southgate
– RAGA AWARDS Programme Bronze: Shagin Cotton; Nabeelah Daniels; Wiedaah Southgate & Zheograthia Sauls
– Golf Award: Sibusisiwe Bingwa & Jordan Fisher
– Most enthusiastic student: Akhanani Gceya
– Spirited co-operation and teamwork: Moses Maremudze
– Always willing to assist: Sinazo Solani
– Fellow Student of the Year: Wiedaah Southgate
-Student of the Year: Zheograthia Sauls
The rest of December shot past in blur of end-of-year lunches, golf groups and beautiful weddings. Our team pulled together to make the events a success and we were reminded how blessed we are to have colleagues and members that support and uplift each other.
Clovelly is made up of people from a variety of backgrounds and it is through individual contributions from staff, members, guests and the community that the shape of a family takes form. So thank you, Lynette Meyer, for being prepared to lug tables around and work late to make sure our brides have memories to cherish. Thank you, Nicky Asia, for welcoming our Swallows by name, despite not having seen them for almost two years! Thank you to Penelope Price for your hard work preserving our little ecosystem and sharing little facts about the flora and fauna around us. Thank you, Pascal Machekwa, for maintaining the course with a smile. Thank you to the following people and companies who partnered with us throughout the year; KWV, Under Armour, Douglas Transport, Lyall Morgan & Associates, Seeff, Peresoft, RE/MAX Elite, Pick n Pay, Chalford Wealth Great White Surf & Sport, Fine & Country, Groote Post Vineyards and Heineken. Everywhere we look, we are met with kindness, joy, and commitment. Thank you to you all! We can’t wait to do 2022 with you!