IT IS a big year for Steve Lennon at Stamford Golf Club, both on the sporting and domestic front.
Not only is Steve captain of the Carrbrook club, the pinnacle of his 31 years as a member, but he and wife Pauline celebrate their ruby wedding anniversary in June.
Retired chartered surveyor Steve (62) took up golf as he wanted a new challenge after retiring from football.
He was a striker at non-league clubs Glossop, Hyde United and Curzon Ashton and, until recently, was Glossop’s all-time record goalscorer.
As a boy, he played for Cheshire and also had trials for England schoolboys such was his ability.
Steve’s three sons all played for Dukinfield Tigers and he also managed one of the junior teams for a time.
But since retiring from football, Steve has become immersed in golf lowering his handicap to 8.5 at one stage – it is now 11.
And he has achieved victories in majors, Captain’s Prize and the doubles foursomes knockout with club president Ian Grimsditch.
He has captained the ‘A’ and ‘B’ teams at Stamford as well as serving as chairman of the club’s greens committee.
Steve added that the club is vibrant, both on and off the course pointing to membership increasing in each of the last two years at a time when the sport is facing challenging times.
And last year Stamford reached the semi finals of the Dunham Forest Trophy, the North West’s top team knockout, when they lost to Bramhall Park. The team is made up almost entirely of the club’s promising young golfers as they are lucky to have a talented crop of low handicappers.
Steve added they are also lucky to have a top professional, Mark Smith who has developed an indoor swing room that attracts members from other clubs for expert tuition.
He added: “We are also refurbishing the lockers and changing facilities and generally improve facilities.
“Our head greenkeeper John Pierrepoint has the course in super condition while our stewardess and chef put on Sunday brunch each week.
“All these things are down to the hard work of the club’s Council and at the moment we are doing nicely and are receiving lots of compliments.”
LADY CAPTAIN Sandra Johnson is a late convert to golf.
“My husband Alan plays and, when I came up to retirement, I decided to play rather than be a golf widow,” explained the 65-year-old from Stalybridge who was a nurse, midwife and practice nurse in her working life.
That was seven years ago and mother-of-two Sandra has enjoyed her golf though, as a 36-handicapper, she concedes she plays more for fun than competitively.”
Sandra explained: “We don’t have many lady members, though there are one or two low handicappers.
“We have away days when we play other courses and also attend open days at places like Ashton and Dukinfield.”
Steve and Sandra are to have a joint charity raising funds this year for the Alzheimer’s Society and has an afternoon tea, fashion show and Christmas fair lined up.