Golf-mad family finds get-togethers no handicap
THEY'RE so crazy about golf that other fans would have a 'fairway' to go to match their commitment.
Members of the Bevan family have been tee-ing off at Lilley Brook Golf Club in Cheltenham since 1952.
The late Jack Bevan was such an enthusiast he moved his family from Gloucester to the newly-built houses backing on to the course in 1966, and one of his sons, Colin, now lives one house down.
As the family grew and moved away, the one thing that tightly bound them was their annual golf day – played once a year for 19 years.
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Started in 1993, the informal golf round never fails to reunite the family, although this year, it was tinged with sadness as Jack passed away six months ago. His son Bob said: "From a little seed that Jack sowed, golf has been very much in the veins of the family.
"It's led to two of us playing for the county, one becoming a club captain and the other a professional. Our annual day really evolved from having a family get-together and it's been wonderfully supported.
"The fellows have always played and the non-players, ladies, children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren all come and we had 70 people at the evening meal."
Jack joined Lilley Brook in 1952 and served as a committee member, as captain in 1974, and was made a life member for services to the club.
As his children grew older he introduced them to the sport, and they passed it on to their off-spring.
"Because of the closeness of the family and because jobs and relocation have taken members to Cornwall and Manchester and a few places in between, we felt it would be rather nice to combine a day's golf with bringing all and sundry together," said Bob.
"We do play for trophies but that pales into insignificance with a family meet-up. The joy of golf to me is camaraderie – there's pleasure to be had on the golf course – it's the full package.
"It's a testing sport but it's a wonderful way to forget any problems you may have. You enjoy yourself for three to four hours, play well or badly or somewhere in between and then sit down with your colleagues.
"This time it was quite a difficult day for us so soon after dad had died.
"But he would have been glad we've continued and the overriding thing is respect for Jack – that's why everyone turns out."
The family day began with Jack, his brother and nephew Norman and Clive and Jack's sons Colin and Bob.
Jack's daughter Jane also married into a well-known Charlton Kings golfing family, the Brookes, who also play.
Now four generations turn out to enjoy the family golf day.