SVGA - A History
On December 11th 2012, when this Document was prepared, The Sydney Veteran Golfers Association (SVGA) had a financial membership of 1054, with some 400 of these members having played in at least one event in this calendar year.
The Association is managed by a Committee of 14 with the following Structure. President
8 General Committee Members.
This Committee organises and runs around 44 events each year on some 40 courses in greater Sydney but including from time to time courses outside the Sydney area.
Most of these events will be individual Stableford Competitions in Grades/Divisions with an occasional Aggregate 2 Ball Score (regardless of Handicap) also serving as part of the prize Pool. However the SVGA do run an Aged Championship each year run over 36 Holes at two separate Courses. At the present this event serves as our Associations Championship.
Apart from the normal programme of competitions there are usually two other events of around 6 and 4 days respectively where a sub-committee arrange trips away to designated regions or Interstate and where some 60 to 80 players might attend.
The 4 day trip is open to Members and Partners and has been a quite popular event.
The Australian Veteran Golf movement had its foundations in Sydney when on July 7th 1965 four businessmen (and keen golfers) held a meeting and agreed to officially form a certified incorporated company known as the "Australian Veteran Golfers Association Limited?. (AVGA)
These gentlemen, namely A. Hall, W. Foulsham, J. Barkel & H. Hattersley had officially formed the Association with the intention of becoming affiliated with the World Senior Golf Federation and to further their aim of "The Promotion of Senior Golf and through it Goodwill between Nations".
Also it was to become affiliated with the various State Golfing Bodies/ Associations and the Australian Golf Union (now Golf Australia).
Following on from these meagre beginnings the development of Veterans Golf in Australia gathered pace and numbers grew rapidly. With members of the AVGA travelling to other States and into the Country to further the cause and to convince others to form their own Associations, the Veteran Golf movement was away and running.
It is understood that in the early 1970s (with quite significant member numbers existing) the Sydney Veteran Golfers Association (SVGA) was formed as an Associate body of the AVGA and from that point onwards the SVGA and the AVGA committees joined to form one management group.
The AVGA office bearers continued to concentrate mainly on the organization and conducting of overseas golfing trips/tournaments and local games for both male and female senior golfers. The other Committee members concentrated on the SVGA Membership and the running of a wide ranging programme of events across a great many courses in the Sydney area.
The ever increasing numbers of the SVGA brought about an increase in the number of Committee members required to run the programme of events and by 1977 there were almost 700 members attending events managed by an overall Committee of 22 .
Interestingly we then had a President; two Vice Presidents; a Secretary/Treasurer; a Captain; two Vice Captains; a Booking Officer and up to 14 general Committeemen.
NSW country Membership was around 2500 so the movement was beginning to prosper.
The SVGA continued to grow through the late 1900s and although through some difficult times, managed to provide a great programme of events for its members.
In 1995 there were a number of changes to the Committee and one of the Associations now Life Members moved on to the Committee.
That member, John Newberry later took on the role of Captain in 1997 and served as such until 2012. He along with Colin Prosper, & Neil Fryer (both Life Members) and Roger Houlahan (dec) along with a dedicated Committee drove through a tumultuous period where incorporation was sought and granted and the SVGA became an entity in its own right.
By the time we moved into the new Millennium the Association had started to see a decline in membership and at the 2000 AGM almost all of the Senior Committee members refused to stand for re-election creating a dilemma for the Association and for those who remained. A number of Committeemen and members from the floor stood up and agreed to fill the roles and after a Special General meeting in March of that year the size of the Committee was reduced to 12.
That Committee will be seen by many of our current membership as the drivers of what is today a great and well structured organisation dedicated to the enjoyment of Seniors golf.
For the record that Committee was. President: Keith Lewis, (dec) Vice President; Neville Hughes, Captain; John Newberry, Vice Captain; Rex Tate, Secretary; Neil Fryer, Treasurer; Roger Houlahan (dec) & General Committee Colin Prosper, Brian Geraghty, Ron Mallet, John Smith, Peter Theodore & Allen Zimmerer.
Since 2000 the SVGA has continued to grow and with the energy of many mentioned beforehand and people like Richard Doyle immediate past President we have achieved a strong position as a progressive organisation welcome at all Golf Clubs where we elect to play.
In this year we introduced our new electronic booking and event management software "OneGolf" where much of the onerous work once left with the Captain and a willing few has been, in the main, passed to technology. With an enthusiastic and ever increasing membership we are positioned to continue to provide enjoyable Golfing experiences for those in their Senior years.