Battle at golf club sees pro ousted

SUPPORTERS of Rushmere Golf Club professional Nick McNeil have lost their battle to keep him at the club.Mr McNeil, who has been the club professional for almost 25 years, will now have to relinquish his tenure at Rushmere on September 30.

SUPPORTERS of Rushmere Golf Club professional Nick McNeil have lost their battle to keep him at the club.

Mr McNeil, who has been the club professional for almost 25 years, will now have to relinquish his tenure at Rushmere on September 30.

Feelings among some members ran high at a special general meeting attended by 235 members held at Copleston High School last night.

It is believed the committee, along with a majority of members, want to bring in new blood in a bid to revitalise the club shop and services provided by the resident pro.


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Despite more than 80 members giving their backing to Mr McNeil they were outvoted by around two to one.

Two-hundred and thirty of those who attended were able to cast their vote.

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Eighty-three opposed the motion to remove Mr McNeil, while 146 sided with the committee. One vote was void.

Bob Tawell, secretary of Rushmere Golf Club and one of the six committee members who chaired the meeting today said: "It was a lively debate and people spoke for both parties.

"It's my job now to make sure the club unites. We have to make sure we get on with the business in hand and the club runs smoothly. There have been no grudges and there was no animosity."

However at least one angry dissenter is said to have threatened to resign from Rushmere and move to Fynn Valley Golf Club in protest at the decision.

Another supporter of Mr McNeil, Simon Strutt said today: "I just think it is a very sad day for Rushmere Golf Club and for Nick. It was quite a heavy defeat and we have just got to accept it.

"Personally I am very disappointed but that's democracy I'm afraid."

Another member said he felt some sympathy with Mr McNeil as over the past few years the club shop has suffered increased competition from the likes of Pin High at the corner of Bixley Road and Foxhall Road, along with Golf Galore in Martlesham.

Larger sports equipment shops have also been able to strike more favourable deals with golf club manufacturers enabling them to be more competitive on prices.

Mr McNeil was not available at the club for comment.

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