Norfolk Golf Award

David Hood

The first recipient of the award was David Hood who played County Golf for both Norfolk and Suffolk.

David was brought up in a sporting family. His elder brother played football for Suffolk, his younger sister played Hockey for Norfolk, and younger his younger brother canoed for Great Britain in the European Championships.

Working at Barclays Bank he moved many times around the Norfolk and Suffolk border. As a keen golfer he became a member of many clubs and served on several club committees. (Bungay, Gorleston, Lowestoft, Caister, Dereham, Royal Norwich (Twice), Thetford, Fakenham and Hunstanton).

In 1950 at the age of 18 whilst a member at Bungay & Waveney Golf Club he volunteered to check all the competition scores and publish the results on the notice board the day after the competition. Two years of National Service in the RAF followed.

In 1989 was allocated the job of Norfolk Development Officer and visited open fields, meadow and various types of unsuitable arable land to see if a Golf Course could be fashioned out of that area. Several came to fruition – Barnham Broom (was 9 holes), Bawburgh, Caldecott, Costessey Park, Dunston Hall, Eagles, Links Country Park, Mattishall, Middleton, Norfolk Golf & Country, Richmond Park, Searles Resort, Sprowson, Swaffham (Second 9), Wensum Valley, Heacham Manor and about 10 other which did not get developed. He continued to visit all of the courses giving advice where needed. Occasionally suggesting alternatives.

He reported to Norfolk County and English Golf Unions attending various seminars and lectures at the English Golf Union in Leicester before moving to Woodhall in Lincolnshire.

He was Treasurer at the Fakenham Gallow Sports Centre for 20 years attending 3 meetings a month. The Sports Centre caters for a variety of sports including Golf, Bowls, Squash, Tennis and Archery.

He served the Norfolk Golf County Golf Union as President in 1990 and as Captain for 4 years. He has been Match Secretary for many years, has been on various committees and prides himself in not missing a meeting. He also organised various competitions (County Matches, Clymer Bowl, 1st v 2nd team matches and the annual match against the County Ladies).

He played in various tournaments throughout the Country including Norfolk Seniors, South East, English and qualified several times for the British. He attended the Barclays Bank Summer Meeting for 64 consecutive years until 2016. 

He won the Amateur Championship at Great Yarmouth by 4 shots recording rounds of 71 and 75, he was second twice and third twice over the following four years. He won the County Foursomes 4 times.

He has had 5 holes in one all on different courses – Bungay, Gorleston, Royal Norwich, Dereham and Thetford.

He was a keen member of the Auditor for Norfolk Golfers Winter Alliance and was its auditor for 49 years before relinquishing the role in 2019.

Not content with all his golfing activities he decided to become a referee passing the Exam of Refereeing and the Rules of Golf at St Andrews. Allegedly, the first England Golf Union referee to do so. He was on the England Golf Union Panel from 1990 to 2004 attending, usually, 5 events a year all over the Country involving 4 or 5 days. His highlight coming when he was chosen as a referee at the 1992 British Amateur Championship at Carnoustie.

Since finishing the role at the English Golf Union, he became a regular referee at Norfolk events until 2020.

Now approaching his 89th birthday he recalls his best ever round which came at Gorleston Golf Club when in his late 50s. It was the morning round on Captain’s Day, playing off a handicap of 3 he went out in 29 shots returning in 34 amassing 47 stableford points smashing both the Professional Course record of 68 and the Amateur Course record of 69 in the process!

A worthy first winner of the award.