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Captain’s Log: Terry Griffin, Cotswold Hills Golf Club

All Areas > Sport > Golf

Author: Roger Jackson, Posted: Thursday, 20th December 2018, 09:00

Terry Griffin Terry Griffin

Cotswold Hills Golf Club captain Terry Griffin has dug deep, quite literally, for the club many times.

You see Griffin, now 74, is a builder by trade and he has been involved in a good number of the improvements that have taken place at the Ullenwood club over the years.

“I was asked to build the clubhouse by Morris Little, who designed the course,” he said. “I’d worked with him previously but I was building 76 houses down in Nailsea at the time. Five years later when I’d finished down there we’d built 250 to 300 homes.”

That was in the early to mid-70s – Cotswold Hills’ current home on the southern edge of Cheltenham was opened in 1976 – but it wasn’t long before Griffin would become a familiar face at the club that was first established on Cleeve Hill well over 100 years ago.

“I used to play football for Shurdington Rovers and cricket for Slad Exiles and Cheltenham Nomads,” he explained. “I needed to do something after I’d stopped playing football and cricket and my wife said, ‘Why don’t you try golf?’

“That’s how it all started 40 years ago. When I went up there I saw Morris Little and he said this was the clubhouse he wanted me to build!”

And of course Griffin, with his skills, was a bit more than just a player at the club.

“I was soon digging out a couple of holes so that we could plant a few trees,” he laughed. “We were planting 10 a day. Then I took my digger up there and was doing 50 to 60 trees a day. There are 3,000 to 4,000 trees round the course now.”

And that wasn’t all he did.

“I put up all the new huts, I built the greenkeeper sheds, I built the car park and put in the new sewerage system,” he continued.

Not surprisingly, Griffin, a dad of two grown up children, is an honorary member of the club these days as well as being captain.

He’s a decent golfer too because at his peak he played off eight. He currently plays off 16 – “I’m still battling with it,” he chuckled – and has won a number of competitions over the years.

“There are a few cups with my name on it,” he added. “My best round ever was when I shot a gross 69. Net was 71 and I had a handicap of 11.

“Needless to say I won the competition – I can’t remember the name – but it was a big cup and I was chuffed to bits with that, I’d beaten the course!”

And he’s a big fan of the course at Cotswold Hills.

“It’s lovely,” he said. “There are nice surroundings and the holes are really tough.

“Greg Norman played the course once in the early 1980s – his manager lived in Cheltenham – and he said the course was really tough. He asked if there were many single handicappers at the club – he said he didn’t imagine there’d be too many!”

It’s clear that the club mean a lot to Griffin, who was born in Prestbury and now lives in Shurdington. He first served on the committee some 32 years ago and was the men’s B team captain before taking on his current role.

“They’re a great club,” he said. “I know everybody and everyone is really friendly.

“We’ve just spent £500,000 on new changing rooms, they are lush, really beautiful. We’re a very strong club.”

And all the stronger for having people like Terry Griffin around of course.

Other Images

Cotswold Hills Golf Club in Ullenwood

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