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Major RJM Warren-Dawlish M.C. has been Secretary of Royal St Luke’s Golf Club in Suffolk since 1985. A leading authority on the Rules of Golf, guerrilla tactics and continental drift, he has graciously agreed to publish items of his correspondence is these columns. The opinions, prejudices and obsessions expressed are his alone and do not (necessarily) reflect those of Golf International or Golf Today.

Royal St. Luke’s Golf Club (Est. 1603)
pulsa inveni repulsa

From: The Secretary

Subject: Spring Report

Due to the unseasonably short winter and unreasonably early spring, the Club’s Opening Weekend for the golf season has been brought forward to the 23-25 March. The guest speaker at the Dinner (black tie) will be the Rt. Hon. Marcus Enwright QC MEP, who will speak on the integration of EU fisheries policy. Our resident professional, Ted Malagrowther, will give a demonstration of shanking and how to combat it, while there will be a clinic by our touring pro Monty Morrison, fresh from his near-triumph in Tajikistan. As in previous years, Mr Henry Fordyce CA will be in attendance to advise members on off-shore capital asset swaps, sub-prime investments and general techniques of tax evasion, prior to the end of the financial year on 4th April.

I have received a blizzard of complaints regarding the flooding of both courses over the winter. This was due to the descent of gigantic volumes of water from rainclouds within a series of deep depressions. These in turn are caused by the deviant Jetstream over which, as I said repeatedly at the EGM, I have absolutely no control. Would Members please refrain from criticising the Jetstream and indeed the weather in general, unless they are prepared to actually do something about it.

Mention of the recent EGM on subscription increases, leads me yet again to the disagreeable subject of the disturbances at the meeting. As you will have seen, these have been the subject of much unwelcome and inaccurate comment in the gutter press. As the Captain has said in his encyclical to you all, in no way could the fracas in the Clubhouse be described as a riot and there was no need whatsoever for the police to be called. The 999 call has been traced to a cellphone belonging to a Member who will appear before the Disciplinary Committee next month, charged with improper device use and bringing the Club into disrepute – and indeed into the press.

The Club has received the Annual pre-season Reports from Heads of Department.


Both courses are in reasonable shape after the remarkably short, but extremely wet winter. Almost all bunkers have been pumped out, but the great ‘Cardinal’ at the 12th remains full and is to be reclassified as a water hazard and stocked with trout. Fishing licenses are available from the Secretary’s Office.

The new diesel-powered hollow-tining machine has been returned to the manufacturers. The fault appears to have been a failure of its internal governor which caused it to run riot when switched on and set to maximum tine-depth. I wish to express unreserved apologies to Messrs. Holtby and Carmichael-Fenwick who were run over by the machine on the 6th green during Saturday’s Medal. The Club will not contest the action for damages brought by Williams, Mr Holtby’s caddy, who was pursued across the 7th fairway but then fell, resulting in the machine overtaking him and severely tining his backside.

The extension to the 17th tee will be completed by early May. This will extend the hole to 855 yards from the Championship tee, making it the longest in the country and a true par-five for the professionals at the Open Final Qualifying in June. The plea by the Seniors Section to have the hole re-designated as a Par-7 has been referred to the R&As Geriatric Committee whose decision is expected early in 2016.


The damage to the Founder’s Lounge caused at the EGM has been repaired and the carpet replaced. The upstairs bedrooms have been fitted with CCTV following the discovery of a female person hiding in a closet of a room occupied by a Member unrelated to her. Invited by the Secretary to explain himself, the Member stated that she was to be his ‘mixed-foursomes partner’ and offered to pay the requisite £50 green fee. This was reduced to £25 when she was identified by Sgt. Maj. Watkins as actually being the wife of a Member. The reception held to mark Mr Arthur Fitzgerald’s 101st birthday was attended by 90 Members and produced a memorable exchange in a Question & Answer session with the Captain. Asked what he would have done differently, had he known of hislongevity, Arthur said:

“Had I known that I’d live to be 101 – I’d have taken a bloody sight better care of myself!”


The shop awaits members keen to avail themselves of the latest in equipment from a range of top manufacturers. The DL (Distance-Limited) ball is now mandatory for medal play and retails at £18.99 for a sleeve of three. The new Firebrand Drivers are in stock at only £699.99; this may seem expensive but is actually good value given their gigantic sweet-spot which actually extends up the shaft. This means that when using this driver it is physically impossible to produce a slice, cut, hook or airshot.

The recent ruling that the H.E. (Hyper- Extensible) putter is legal is a great relief, as we have a large stock. For those of you unfamiliar with the concept, this putter extends up to the face and features an upper end in the form of a gumshield. It is thus held actually in the mouth instead of being jammed uncomfortably in the midriff. The mouth insertion guarantees that your head will remain steady through the putting stroke thus improving your averages. It is recommended that false teeth be removed before putter insertion and handed to your caddy for cleaning (this can be done in the ballwasher on the next tee). The caddies have been instructed that their own dentures must be placed in the golf bag and not in a pocket, or the ball-washer, to avoid confusion. It is bad enough to be handed the wrong club – to be handed the wrong teeth can be acutely embarrassing, as Percy Theakston found out last week when he eventually got home and smiled at his wife…

Reproduced with kind permission of Golf International Magazine


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