Joan Haigh – Ladies Captain, 1979 and 1991

This is a transcription of a conversation Joan had with Graham Lawrence on 7 November 2007.

Allan, my husband, started to play golf around 1969ish. He worked with members of Corhampton and they used to play on the way home from work. My hobby was horse riding at that time and I used to go riding early on a Sunday morning and then drive up to meet Allan at Corhampton. They all seemed so full of their golf that I thought I would like to try it. Allan wasn’t very encouraging so I took evening classes at Highbury College and eventually joined Hayling Island where I had some very good friends and took lessons with Frank Kilbride. I must have joined Corhampton about 1972. When I gained my 36 handicap we played together a lot and had some lovely days out at various open meetings. We had some very happy times when the course was just nine holes and we only had a little wooden club house. Everybody knew everybody else at that time. We used to have an honesty box outside on the wall for visitors green fees. On Sundays we would play in our competitions, come in for tea, and a whole crowd of us would go out again for a few more holes. It wasn’t long before I found myself on the ladies committee.

Allan was Captain in 1973 and helped in taking the club forward into 18 holes and the designing of the new club house. Many members were against this of course and wanted to keep our little friendly club as it was. Allan also researched and helped to design the club coat of arms.

The men always had their AGM in April but decided to change to November the same as the ladies giving the incoming Captain time to get used to his new office before the start of the busy time of his year. John Wright was captain from April 1978 to the November and Allan became Captain for the second time in the November and we drove in together. Allan was quite ill at the time but managed to get his handicap down to 9 before he stopped playing. We thoroughly enjoyed our year together and he died in 1981.

In 1991 I had the honour of being ladies captain for the second time for our centenary year. We had a wonderful year. I was introduced to Greta Blythe by Bob Harvey. She had been a Lady Captain at the club before the Second World War. I invited her to our past captains’ lunch and presented her with a bouquet. She had us all enthralled with her stories of golf before the war. She lived in Bishops Waltham and used to ride to the club on her horse where she tethered it while she played her golf. She was very spritely when she came to lunch.

Greta Blythe

Lady Captain sometime before the Second World War

Tim Woods was a keen photographer and took the set of photos below of the past ladies captains who attended that lunch.

We used to have Scottish country dancing every Tuesday evening. It was Betty Johnson’s idea. She started it in her year and we all enjoyed it so much I kept it going. Mike Freeman was our teacher. His wife, Margaret, sometimes came to help. He had quite a job on his hands but it was such good fun.

That year I presented the Lady Captain’s Bowl to be played for on lady captains day. We also started the Haigh Masters to be played for by winners throughout the year and the Centenary Shield, an eclectic competition for other ladies clubs.

Joan Haigh’s Trophy

This is the trophy I put up for Lady Captain’s day which is still played for

Ladies Committee – Centenary Year – 1992

Front Row: Vera Leggett (Vice Captain), Joan Haigh(Captain), Margo McKinlay(Hon. Secretary).Back Row: Margaret McDonald, Freda Wilson, Connie Taylor(Secretary), Wendy Palmer, Linda Fletcher(Treasurer)

Allan and Joan Haigh – Driving In – 1979

Bob Harvey and Joan Haigh at a Medieval Party

Photographed in the Clubhouse during the centenary year.

Connie Taylor and Mollie Henning and Joan and Anne Corden on the first fairway

Darling Buds of May – 1 – 1991

Photographed in the clubhouse – Back: Helen Keefe, Vera Leggett, Jo Jo Buchannan, Maureen Martin, Sue Flesher, Julia Sparshatt, Joan Haigh, Pat Yates,
Front: Chris Waterman, Margaret McDonald, Lisa Flesher, Connie Taylor,
Betty Johnson, BettyVerrico

Darling Buds of May – 2- 1991

Photographed in front of the May Tree – Back: Sue Flesher, Florence Johnson, Maureen Martin, Julia Sparshatt, Lisa Flesher, Pat Yates, Nora Butt, Jo Jo Buchannan, Margaret McDonald
Front: Joan Haigh, Betty Verrico, Helen Keefe, Connie Taylor,  Lyn Dominy,
Betty Johnson

Denise Starkey and Freda Wilson and Joan and Liz Borrow – 1991

Mavis Cutler, Stella Wright, Joan and Masie Meadus – 1991

Iris Heathcote setting up the buffet for a Christmas party in the old clubhouse.
The ladies always used to provide all the catering for social functions in the old clubhouse

Mrs Hartwell, Joan and John Stirling who we invited to a Ladies Dinner at the Clubhouse in 1991

Joan Haigh – Centenary Lady Captain’s Day – 1991

Joan Haigh on her captain’s day (with club) – 1991

The wonderful cake that Di Gibson made for me on my Captain’s day.
My daughter, Susan, is on my right, standing next to her daughter Joanne and on my left is my other grand-daughter Julia

John and Iris Heathcote helping out in the old club house in 1972.
They were a lovely couple. John worked for Gordon Johnson.
He had an awful accident on the Isle of Wight and never recovered from it