On April 17th, 1961 representatives from Suffolk clubs met at Diocesan House, Ipswich to discuss the idea of forming a Suffolk Veteran Ladies Golf Association. The meeting was chaired by Lady Eddis and the principal speaker was Mrs Ursula Gaskell whose idea it was to form an Association.

The idea was received with great enthusiasm and, by the end of the meeting; the Association was born, some basic rules formatted and a committee elected. Initially the age of entry was set at 50 with no limit to the number of members, but, such was the popularity of the Association, it son became necessary to impose limits. In 1966 the number of members was limited to 120; this was raised to 130 in 1975 and then to its present limit of 180 in 1996. Also, in a relatively futile effort to control the membership, the age of entry was raised to 55 in 1971 and then to 60 in 1989. Throughout most of the Association’s existence, there has been a waiting list.

At the inaugural meeting, subscriptions were set at 5/- with a joining fee of 5/-. By 1967 this was increased to 10/- due to the green fee charges made by some clubs. Further increases to subs came in 1981, 1988, 1994 and 1997, when the current rate was introduced. Non-playing members were welcomed to the Association in 1997. Minutes of the Committee meetings show the members pre-occupation with funds (for membership, green fees, meetings, prizes etc), although the finances always appear to have been in a healthy state.

Fixtures and Meetings

During the first year, a Championship meeting was held at Royal Worlington, followed by a Captains v Secretarys match at Woodbridge. By 1962, the Autumn Foursomes Meeting was established as were matches against Norfolk Vets and Suffolk Ladies. The Fixture Book – known as the “Little Red Book”, was distributed to members that year and has continued ever since. Other matches were added to the programme over the years and the Captain v Presidents match became an established and much enjoyed event. The last meeting to be added to the Fixture list was the Mixed Open Meeting which has also become very popular.

Prizes for the early meetings were almost all donated by members and the host clubs, but this was gradually phased out as it was felt that meetings should be self-supporting. Apart from the Salver which was purchased for the first Championship meeting in 1961, all the other trophies have been donated; The Eddis Cup in 1966 for the best Bronze scratch score in the Championship meeting, The Nancy Causten cups in 1977 for the best aggregate score in the Autumn meeting, Ardeen Clowes Cup 1979 for the best handicap score at the Championship and lastly in 1987, the Sybil Voules cup for the best bronze handicap score.

The Association Flag was donated in 1981 but there is no record of when the cloth for the prize table was acquired.

It is a mark of the Associations popularity that, from the outset, all meetings have been enthusiastically supported, so much so, that it has been necessary to reduce the Championship to one round only and to playing in threes.