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Gillian Kirkwood's Hot News Page



December 2006

bulletSunday 31st December 2006 :The end of 2006
2006 RLCGA Photographs
Dec 31st, 2006 - 23 Photos
After a fantastic 2006 season for the RLCGA County Team and many of its players.
We now go forward into a new year and hope to keep up the high standards on and off the golf course.
 To see some of the highlight review photos from 2006 click on the picture on the left hand side

bulletFriday 22nd December 2006: Your Christmas Card from your Webmaster

Your webmaster has eventually sent off all her Christmas cards. Here is my last one --- Click on her picture to reveal all

Allow it time to load (might only work if you are on broadband -- sorry) and make sure your sound is turned on.


bulletThursday 21st December2006 : Your Christmas card and message from your Captain
Beth and her committee wishes everyone a Merry Christmas and all good wishes for 2007


Click on the picture to see it. --- Give it time to load.

bulletTuesday 19th December 2006: Kathleen McNeil's Obituary is in the Glasgow Herald
In case you missed reading the Glasgow Herald , here is a link to Kathleen McNeil's Obituary that was posted in the Glasgow Herald -----  Kathleen's Tribute from the Glasgow Herald. It is similar to the tribute posted earlier on the web with some additional words from SLGA President Nancy Chisholm

bulletSunday 17th December 2006: Post your Golf Club News on this Website

I am having a trial run with a web page that I hope to incorporate into the website in 2007 that will allow your own golf club to send in their news.
eg Gladys Speedie and Carol Fell can be seen at the Douglas Park Christmas Lunch ---
Go to Golf Club News in the West of Scotland. to read all about it.

If you would like to have a go at becoming a "blogger" contact Carol
or alternatively why not  email me some news to Email Carol with some Golf Club News in the West of Scotland. Your news  will go on automatically but under my name. I can adjust it if needed.

bulletFriday 15th December 2006: Get some Christmas Cheer at Mearns Castle Golf Academy
Fed up with soggy shoes, windswept hair and inside-out upside-down umbrellas?

Why not stay warm this December and buy your Christmas presents over the phone?

To buy lessons for a loved one this Christmas, all it takes is one phone call to Mearns Castle Golf Academy on 0141 644 8200 and we'll do the rest!

And to make things ever better this festive season we have the following fantastic offers;

Buy 6x30 min or 3x 60 min lessons and receive £12.50 FREE on a Birdie Card

Buy 6x60 min lessons and receive £25.00 FREE on an Eagle Card

Receive a Junior Card with £10 FREE when you purchase any Junior Lessons

50% extra Credit FREE on all Range Discount Practice cards when purchased as Christmas presents (new cards only, not top-ups)

Receive an additional 3 months on all Season Tickets - when purchased in December, valid until end of March 2008

Beauty at the Castle - Buy a Facial and get a FREE eyebrow shape.

Call reception on 0141 644 8200 NOW and solve all your Christmas present worries!  


bulletThursday 14th December 2006: European Tour’s Dean Robertson inspires young golfers at Erskine Golf Club and an opportunity for Scots Girl to go to Texas College for Two Years

Dean Robertson, the reigning Scottish PGA champion and Italian Open winner in 1999, took time out of his schedule this weekend to encourage a new generation of local golfers.

On Saturday, the Paisley 36 year old gave a clinic to a group of children who are being coached by Erskine Golf Club volunteer coaches, through the national junior golf strategy, clubgolf.

Encouragement from the European Tour player comes at a perfect time for the youngsters. Whilst other golfers in Scotland have hung up their clubs for the winter, the children are mid-way through a coaching course organised by the Club.

“This group of children had an Easter starter session, then a summer school, and now we are giving them a six week winter slot,” said Erskine Golf Club’s Junior Development Co-ordinator, Janette McCartney.

“We wanted to keep their enthusiasm going so we are very grateful that Dean could spare time this weekend. The children loved the experience and we hope that the word will spread and we will attract more juniors next year.”

Erskine has always had a strong junior section and a welcoming approach to its young players. Janette, together with fellow club members, has made an extra commitment to encourage local children to take up the sport by becoming the only club in Renfrewshire to offer clubgolf coaching.

Launched by Colin Montgomerie and First Minister, Jack McConnell in 2003, clubgolf aims to create the opportunity for every nine year old in Scotland to experience the game from 2009. Six Erskine GC members have since become qualified to coach the programme’s Level 1 course. This winter a further three will become trained to join them as volunteer coaches.

“We did have a big junior section before but we realised that they weren’t going to be around for ever unless we did something about it,” admits Janette

“After six of us became qualified to coach last year, we advertised in local papers, spread the word amongst our members, I approached the Active Schools Co-ordinator and got permission to send flyers around local schools.

“We attracted over 50 children, most of whom hadn’t played golf before. One of my main reasons for doing clubgolf was we had no girl players but now we have five as a result of this programme.”

In addition to creating this Christmas treat for the current children on the programme, the Club hopes that Dean Robertson’s clinic this weekend will generate further interest from other local children.

"The children on our programme have varying levels of ability but they are all enjoying it and improving,” said Janette. “Some of them are only just learning to hold the club whilst others are already at the stage where they are ready to move on to being coached by our local Pro, Peter Thomson, who can take them to the next stage.

“We start the coaching again at Easter time and now that we have a larger group of coaches, I’m hoping we will get a similar number of children from the local community signing up for the course.”

Dean Robertson said, “Erskine Golf Club is helping the development of golf in Scotland by giving these local children the opportunity to play golf at an early age in a fun environment.

The volunteers are doing a fantastic job in teaching these children the fundamental skills. Golf programmes like this one will provide the required platform from which these kids can follow their dreams and aspire to one day play like their golfing heroes.”


Lon Morris College in Jacksonville, Texas is looking for a girl student/golfer from this side of the Atlantic for a two-year scholarship starting in the spring of next year.
There are already two girls from England on the junior college's golf roster, as well as three boys from England and two from Scotland.
The college website is:
More details available from Graham Gordon, sen, of SWM management at

You can also  email Colin Farquharson if you are interested


Wednesday 13th December2006: Funeral of Kathleen McNeil takes place today

Despite the appalling weather conditions approximately 200 people attended Kathleen McNeil's funeral  today at Greenock Crematorium. Kathleen had no close family and was 90 years of age, and yet this large congregation filled the Crematorium - a demonstration of the strong affection we had for a wonderful lady who led a very busy and active life in golf.
The Rev. Alan Ward from Ardgowan Parish Church conducted the service and paid the following tribute.


Tribute to Katherine Wilson McNeil, died December 8th 2006
(plus Some photographs)

– also known as Kathleen, Kate and Katie – was born in May 1916 and lived almost all of her life in Greenock. She was educated at Beltrees St Columba’s, St Leonard’s School in St Andrews, and graduated LLB from Edinburgh University in 1939.

For many years she practised law in her father’s firm of W W & J McClure in Greenock, but declined to become a partner because it might interfere with her many other interests, principal among which was, of course, golf. She was well regarded in the area for the quality and integrity of her legal work. She had another, lesser-known, string to her bow, as the proprietrix of McNeil’s ladies’ drapers’ shop in Grey place.

Her father, Charles McNeil, was Session Clerk of the former Trinity Church and Kathleen’s connection with that Church and its successors, St Andrew’s and Ardgowan, has therefore been lifelong. We think she was the oldest surviving Trinity member in Ardgowan. A regular attender, she was at worship on the Sunday immediately before the stroke which led to her death.

From the age of four she was involved in playing golf, and her love of the game grew and blossomed for the next 86 years. She became a girl member of Greenock Golf Club in 1927 and in 1986 became the first lady Honorary Member, in recognition of the enormous contribution to golf locally, nationally and internationally. As a player she was outstandingly good, being champion of Greenock seventeen times, and several times at Kilmacolm. She was a member also at Troon, Shiskine on Arran, and St Rule in St Andrew’s.

In golf administration she was twice Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Scottish Ladies Golfing Association. For many years she was an international selector. She was the non-playing captain of the Scottish Home International Team in 1969 (when the Scottish team won) and in 1974. In 1991 she became Honorary Vice President of the SLGA. She was also President of the Ladies' Golf Union 1987-1989; during her presidency she was in charge of the 1988 Curtis Cup in which the British and Irish Team beat the USA team. She has been an Honorary Vice-President of the LGU since 1991.

More locally, she was a non-playing captain of Renfrewshire Ladies County Golf Association 1957 – 1959, of the county finals winning team in 1959. She was an Honorary Life President of RLCGA, a position created for her several years ago.

Kathleen was awarded an MBE for services to ladies golf. She was a great supporter and encourager of all players, whether club, county, national or international, travelling all over the county and country. As recently as 1999 she went to Vancouver to support the British Team in the Commonwealth Tournament. She was also given an award from the Scottish Council “National Service to Sports” Awards.

There must be far more than this, and all you golfers present will cherish happy memories of her talent and skill at the gowff.

She was very fond of travel, and was blessed with good health which enabled her to indulge that hobby almost until the end of her life.

Although she was in some ways quite a private person, she was immensely popular with all golfers and made many friends of all ages not only in the golfing world but also in the non-golfing world. She was modest and kind, and the twinkle in her eyes we saw in the photograph on the website and in the Greenock Telegraph sums her up beautifully.

We shall miss her. We offer our sincere sympathy to her close friends, and to all who knew her and loved her.

Tribute in  the Greenock Telegraph ------ This was in yesterday's newspaper

To see some photographs of Kathleen in the last few years click here:
Kathleen McNeil Photographs


Saturday 9th December 2006: Renfrewshire's Honorary Life President Kathleen McNeil MBE has died

It is with great sadness that I have to inform all our members that our Hon. Life President Kathleen McNeil MBE (in her 91st year) died peacefully last night at 11:30pm.
Kathleen (pictured left --taken last month) was in great form at both the RLCGA  and the Greenock Golf Club AGM's at the beginning of November.  She then had a stroke on the 13th November and never recovered
A solicitor by profession, Kathleen was very involved with the administration of golf.
Kathleen was Captain of Renfrewshire County 1958/59 and President from 1980-85.
As well as being Honorary Life President of Renfrewshire, she was a past President (1987/88) and current Hon Vice-President (since 1991) of the LGU.
She had also been Chairman (1965/67), President (1982/85) and was a current Vice-President of the SLGA.

Everyone in Renfrewshire and Scotland are going to miss her. We always looked forward to meeting up with her as she took such a great interest in the golf and golfers, and was such a friendly lady who put everyone at their ease. Our sympathies go to all her many friends all over the world.

The funeral will take place at 12 noon on Wednesday 13th December 2006 at  Greenock Crematorium .

Visit the Guest Book for a new entry from Northern Counties about Kathleen ---- plus why not contribute a comment yourself


Friday 8th December 2006: Christmas Gifts from Mearns Castle Golf Academy

With Christmas less than three weeks away, it's time to get those presents sorted and under the tree.  Do you have a golfer in the family?  Then why not treat him, her or even them to some of our special offers this Christmas? Click here for more details -  Buy your presents from the comfort of your own home, contact reception on 0141 644 8200.

Looking to improve your golf then why not look here Have a few lessons

This page was last updated on Monday January 14, 2008 10:47