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Article: Alan Towe - A Look Back In Time - 1st October 2001

Alan Towe - A Look Back In Time - 1st October 2001

Congratulations to Richie (The Don) Shenton on winning the Minworth Social Individual League championship. Richie finished his programme in style beating Brian Brooks 2-1 and Dave Downes in three straight legs hitting 4x140,134,135 and 100 in the process. Richie’s main rival for the title has been last season’s champion Dave Shorthouse, Shorthouse who had held pole position for a large part of the season and put up a spirited performance in his last two fixtures. Dave won both games 3-0, the first against Paul Burnham saw him hit a maximum and three tons. He then took on Tony Whitehouse and scored 140, 137 and seven tons, but unfortunately it was not enough. Dave finished in the runners up spot with 127 points six short of champion Shenton.

The two top players then met in the best of thirteen legs final of the league’s singles knockout. Shenton’s good form continued as he romped to a convincing 7-3 victory to record a fabulous double.

In the doubles Shorthouse teamed up with Steve Hawkes. The duo made their way to the semi finals where they met their match in the form of Mark Slater and none other than Richie Shenton, yes that man again. Shenton was now in line for a tremendous treble, however his opponents also had their eyes on the title. The opponents were Pat Koyce and Adrian Hammersley who, with a 5-3 result clinched the title and denied Shenton his third success.

Midland Red had quite a comfortable passage to confirm themselves as champions division one of the Harborne 401 Summer League. The Red’s were due to play a home tie against the Raven. However, the Raven failed to turn out and the match, plus the league title went to Midland Red.

Kings Highway won division two in style. They confirmed themselves as champions with a crushing 9-0 whitewash over Highlander Ladies.

The first of the semi finals in the league’s singles competition saw Midland Red’s T. McGlone lose 2-0 to D. Johnson from the George. S. Wenlock (Hobsons Choice) made his exit with a 2-0 reversal by J. Archer (Kings Highway). The final went the full three legs distance with Archer just getting the 2-1 edge over Johnson.

  1. Parsons (Raven) hit a maximum in the semi finals of the doubles knockout, but it was to no avail as he and his partner lost out 2-0 to V. Gould and B. Johnson from the George. The second semi was an all Midland Red affair in which T. McGlone and D. Bourne clinched their final placing with a clear 2-0 win over team mates P. Brotherton and G. Smith.

In the final McGlone and Bourne continued their straight wins sequence when they beat Gould and Johnson 2-0.

Tony Ryan is this years champion of the Selworthy Open. Tony moved into the final with a 2-1 success over reigning champion Paul Burnham and then secured the crown with a close 2-1 win over last seasons beaten finalist Alan Blythe in the final.

A big thank you goes to organisers Alan and Cath Blythe who rounded off the perfect day with a great bar ‘b’ cue and quiz night.

A very encouraging 35 pairs turned out for the South West Birmingham Clubs Summer League’s mixed doubles competition. Dingle Social provided the winning pair, Terry Cuff and Paula Draper who won the final against John Warman and Karen Newey 2-1.

The Emerald Club, Birmingham was the setting for a joint exhibition by the Ace of Clubs and the Gulp Charity team. Mick O’Sullivan organised the event which raised a fabulous amount of £216 which was donated to the St Marys Hospice, Small Heath.

Some eight years ago one of the country’s leading and biggest garden centre’s Hollybush agreed to sponsor me. I am extremely pleased to say that even after that length of time the partnership is still running very successfully.

The union was first formed quite by chance. At the time I was player manager of the hugely popular Mitchells and Butlers Tennents Pilsner exhibition team. Playing for the team at that time was Steve James, who knew that I was interested in setting up fish pond in my garden. One evening while playing in an exhibition Steve and I were chatting and he asked if I had ever visited Hollybush. I said I hadn’t and he then explained that it was only a couple of hundred yards off junction 11 of the M6 north alonh Warstones Lane.

The following weekend I decided to take a look and found the place to be very impressive. I got talking to the manager of the aquatics section who went on to introduce me to the centre’s Managing Director, Tim Porter. We talked of possible sponsorship, Tim was interested and invited me back for further talks. Our meeting went well and Tim decided to give the sponsorship a try. Since then we have not looked back, each year Tim has agreed to renew the sponsorship.

As part of the recent years deal Tim agreed to have my pond revamped. This was the pond that he originally had designed and paid for. He had the internal pump taken out of the pool and replaced with an external gravity pump to make it more accessible. The old filter system was scrapped and a more efficient system installed. In addition a bigger and better waterfall was built and an ultra violet system added to keep the water crystal clear so that the new fish supplied by Hollybush could be seen at their best. All in all, the pond was completely transformed and made to look absolutely fabulous.

Since our initial meeting only one thing has changed and that is Hollybush itself. The place is now even bigger than when I first went over and offers not only an amazing selection of anything or everything for the garden and gardener, but also many other items including some top class furniture for both the garden and inside the house.

The tremendous variety of items on offer, together with the miniature railway and restaurant with its fabulous food, make Hollybush an ideal place to spend a day to fulfil all your garden needs.

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