More than a few tears were shed when Nelson Golf Club veteran Tony Drake announced his retirement from his role as junior organiser after over 30 years.
There was an extra turn out at the club’s annual junior presentation night to see Tony give out awards to his juniors for the last time, including many of his old boys and girls, now senior members.
Mother of one of them, Kate Dennis, read out a tribute from her 36-year-old son John, now living in London and a member of Open venue Royal St George’s, in which he praised Tony, saying:”It was Tony above all who instilled in me respect and love of the game, through school, university and continues today.
“His contribution to junior golf in our area is immeasureable.”
Tony, 78, joined the club in 1969, becoming Captain in 1988 and President from 91 -92, and taking over the role as Junior Organiser in 1982, during which time he has seen his proteges take county, national and even international honours.
Tony said: ”The juniors of today are the champions of tomorrow. And it has been the best feeling in the world to see these youngsters grow into excellent golfers with a love of the game and itʼs etiquette.”
Now Tony has more free time, he intends indulging in his hobby of walking and visiting relatives in Australia.