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Mountain Ash win Welsh Junior Golf Club of the Year

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March 26, 2018.

Mountain Ash has been named as the Welsh Junior Golf Club of the Year at the Wales Golf Awards ceremony held in the 2010 Clubhouse in Celtic Manor.

While Whitchurch member Nigel Edwards received a special achievement award for his contribution to Welsh golf as a player and administrator in the ceremony held in the Samuel Ryder Suite and sponsored by One Golf Network, a marketing and distribution network for golf clubs.

Junior membership at Mountain Ash has gone from 1-60 in 18 months, with more than 100 juniors taking part in their schemes.

Mountain Ash junior organiser Stuart Whippey said, “It is absolutely fantastic, we are humbled as a club.

“I think it is due recognition for the way the club developed junior golf over the last couple of years, coming from just one member to having more than 100 going through the books in the last two years.

“It is outstanding and allows us now to move onto the next stage of our development.

“I think Bryn Meadows (Welsh Golf Club of the Year) have got to be our role model for the future nad we need to develop a community club with families and continue to develop our junior side. We will get there.

“European Tour player Stuart Manley came through our club. We do not have a professional and he has come to coach and help out at the club when he is available, which we are glad is not too often.

“We have got some players now on the books with Glamorgan, but it will take some years to get a conveyor belt of players through because the majority are under nine, but we will get there with the unwavering support of our club members.”

Former Walker Cup player and captain Nigel Edwards, who represented Wales 15 times in the Home Internationals, was presented with a Special Achievement Award.

Edwards was delighted to receive recognition for this contribution to Welsh golf. “I have never had an award before, I was a little surprised to get this,” he admitted.

“Golf is a passion of mine. I am fortunate my passion has turned into my job, so it is nice to have the achievements recognised especially as through my career the majority of other people were full-time golfers whereas I was working as well.

“So many people gave me the opportunity, starting in Bryn Meadows in a great junior section there, through to Whitchurch where they welcomed me with open arms, moving on to work with the Welsh Golfing Union, as it was then.

“I wasn’t afraid to work hard, managed my time well, and feel very lucky to have the opportunities I have – meeting three US Presidents, playing with Rory McIlroy, Dustin Johnson, Danny Willett, Justin Rose, Sergio Garcia, it goes on and on.

“Being part of teams which have won as well, we won the Men’s Home Internationals in 2002 which was the first time Wales had ever won which was a big deal. We had been close in previous years, so to get over the line was great.

“Being part of Walker Cup teams, winning Walker Cups, then being captain as well, coming from the South Wales valleys where golf was not high on the agenda, it has been an interesting journey.”

Wales Golf chief executive Richard Dixon said, “It is always great to recognise some of the golfing work which goes on around Wales and the successes that brings at all levels.

“Mountain Ash have done a great job for junior golf and their award, along with Bryn Meadows, made it a great double for golf in the valleys of South Wales.”

Picture captions: 346 is Golf Development Wales PGA Pro of the Year Robin Hughes from the North Wales club.

352 is Volunteer of the Year Shawna Lyons, from the North Wales club.

370 Amateur Golfer of the Year Jack Davidson.

377 and 381 Junior Club of the Year Mountain Ash.

399 Welsh tour Professional of the Year Oliver Farr.

406, Bryn Meadows owner Gary Mayo, Wales Golf Club of the Year.

412 Special Achievement Award Nigel Edwards.