On 26th May at Moor Park Golf Club in Rickmansworth, three Past Masters of the Company, Richard Brewster, John Waterlow and Tom Hempenstall, accompanied by Court Assistant Martin Woodhead,
took part in the annual TPOT golf competition. TPOT is an acronym for The Power of 10, the society of Past Masters of livery companies from Richard Brewster’s year as Master of the Stationers’ Company in 2010.
Captained by Richard Brewster, and fortified by excellent bacon rolls, our intrepid team was the last to tee off at 12.10pm on a truly splendid late spring morning. This might have reflected the high average handicap of our team but it soon became apparent that the team ahead of us were having just as many, if not more, wayward shots than ourselves. After a most enjoyable round on the magnificent course with wonderful views of the surrounding countryside, it was time for a late lunch at 5.30pm and to hear the results of our efforts. The good news was that Past Master John Waterlow won the Best High Handicap Prize with a splendid score of 33 Stableford points, which helped our team to achieve a mid-position in the overall rankings.
Altogether, an excellent day was had by all and it was good to make the acquaintance of liverymen and their guests from other companies.
After the proceedings finished, there was an opportunity to see some of the rooms in Moor Park Mansion, a Grade 1 listed Palladian house set in glorious parkland and brimming with magnificent paintings. During World War 2 the mansion was requisitioned by the Government, becoming the headquarters of the 1st Airborne Division who planned Operation Market Garden, the abortive mission to capture the bridges of the Lower Rhine at Arnhem and nearby towns. The Operation was planned in just two weeks by two generals in a first floor room, now named the Arnhem Room, which is full of memorabilia and paintings of gliders and parachutists. Sadly, of 8,969 members of the 1st Airborne Division, 1,174 were killed or died of wounds and 5,903 were captured or missing, which meant that the Division never saw combat again. Over half of the Glider Pilot Regiment of 1,262 members were also killed or died of wounds, or were captured or missing. A Polish Brigade also suffered heavy losses.
A somewhat unexpected and sad ending to an excellent day’s golf, remembering all those who lost their lives in the Battle of Arnhem.
Photo caption: Tom Hempenstall, left, John Waterlow, middle, and Richard Brewster, right, looking as resplendent as the rhododendrons behind them