Amazing charity effort from Sidmouth Golf Club
- Credit: Colin Macklin
All the way back in March 2019, Neil Holland, Captain of Sidmouth Golf Club, pledged £5,000 for Cancer Research with the help of the Ladies Captain Gill Paddon.
As Neil had guaranteed this figure, many were very inquisitive to see this fulfilled or how deep his pockets were.
The fundraising promised to be very different than previous efforts. Whilst he still the traditional auctions, raffles and dinners, nobody expected such diversity.
The year started with a gift of a 2002 VW Transporter – described very romantically as a beautiful VW Camper Van. What a start… but it was parked 50 miles south west of Alicante!
Flights, inflated tyres, a jump start, a new battery, 600 miles, a ferry, 48 hours and customs clearance and it was back in the UK.
Then, the trouble started with a failed MOT, rust galore and a market value less than the costs to fix was far from what was expected.
But a huge thanks to Otter Valley Motors for the hour of free labour that turned the project into a £18.55 surplus. And, of course, Jon Earnshaw for what was supposed to be a considerable gif.
The use of massive foam Dice on the golf course raised the emotions and experience for all at these events.
Live music during Captains Day, Drews’ meat, Dough Bros, Tolchards Vintage H-Van, Cabaret with Magic and the famous comedian Gethro didn’t disappoint.
Spice Girls Dance costumes were auctioned off, worn and won, there were three-piece suits as prizes. It is amazing what will actually fit into a spice girl outfit when you have a great charity to support.
Sidmouth town businesses were written to and support was provided by 22 local businesses – what a great community.
The Cricket Club even donated 10% of their own fundraising golf day to the charity.
With time running out, SGC entered the Victoria Cup Swimathon with the Rotary Club and, with Nigel Sharp’s impressive assistance, this boosted funds superbly and SGC even won the Swimming Challenge.
A wrestle with his own Director the following week also secured more than 2K from their joint company – QCR Recycling Equipment. Neil was now pretty desperate not to fall short of target.
More traditional golfing events from Nissan South West (Pic Nissan South West Exeter) also helped, along with many other club events with Dough Bros Pizzas returning on a regular basis, a President’s day and endless support from SGC members who had been enduring Neil’s passion to raise money for Cancer Research UK for over 6 months now.
An illusionist failed to hypnotise anyone in September but free Jala Flow Yoga for all members stretched most into awkward downward facing dogs during October.
Come Dine with Me was created in January at SGC. Mystery Chefs and celebrities provided all services for free with IG Winchester and sons attracting 20 diners. The Deer Park Head Chef Hadleigh Barrett giving a free masterclass for 40 with Trainee kitchen assistant john Jones and the French Chefs – Pierre Oland and Loitte Talabert five-course dinner masterpiece for 42 raised another big lump of money.
They even managed to get the local launderette to help with the dishes.
The annual dinner attracted ‘The Plank’ specialists, ‘Hanging Humans’ head and ‘40 Years a beard’ shaving (Paddy Tallon 40 years with a Beard – shaven by Jemma Gigg) and a rare chance to shave a red Squirrelks Head courtesy of David Bater.
That is just a snippet it of the fundraising activities and an incredible achievement from everyone involved, driven forward by the endless enthusiasm of Neil Holland.
The amazing grand total of £11,378.71 was raised for Cancer Research, and with the gift aid form also submitted– this figure will increase considerably.
The final cheque was even presented with all social distancing rules in places.
All pictures courtesy of International Sports reporter - Colin Macklin.com