Honouring golfer Marg: tournament tees of

October 29th, 2022Honouring golfer Marg: tournament tees of

THE most ambitious item on the modest bucket list of Clunes local Margaret Fox was to have one more hit of golf at her beloved local Clunes Golf Club.

THE most ambitious item on the modest bucket list of Clunes local Margaret Fox was to have one more hit of golf at her beloved local Clunes Golf Club.
Unfortunately the popular and respected member of the Clunes community never got to
fulfil that final wish.
The keen local golfer died in October 2020 after an 18-month battle with cancer leaving her partner Brendon Butler, friends and family all mourning her loss.
But determined to honour her memory – and her bucket list wish – those she left behind got together and inaugurated a special new tournament as a tribute to Margaret’s memory, and to help promote women’s
golf at Clunes.
“We have a very low membership of women in the club so we’re hoping to
encourage more women,” said club member Jo Love, who used to enjoy teeing off
alongside Margaret.

Margaret Fox. Image: Contributed.

And so it was that almost exactly two years to the day since Marg passed, that the
Margaret Fox Inaugural Memorial 4BBB (four ball best ball) event happened on the
scenic sand greens 18-hole course last Wednesday.
With entries open to golfers in mixed or ladies’ pairs, there was a strong turnout
of competition from near and far under a faultless blue sky.
Club president Ray Skinner said that while the club’s membership was a healthy
65 or so, there were only a very small number of active female players and the new
memorial event hoped to turn that around.
“We really would like to pick up some more women members,” said Ray who is a
qualified community golf instructor with Golf Australia and happy to teach anyone,
even raw beginners, the golfing basics at the clinics he runs.
Awarded to the female player with the best individual stableford score, the keenly
contested inaugural Margaret Fox perpetual trophy was ultimately clinched by
Clunes’ Chris O’Donnell with a score of 37, while runner-up went to Elaine Jones of
Queen’s Park Golf Club.
Having only taken up golf herself last year, after attending one of the Clunes
club’s clinics, Chris was a great example of exactly what the newly inaugurated event
is all about, encouraging more women to hit the greens.
Chris said she was delighted with her result on a day when “everything just went
“I never got to have a hit of golf with Marg but I knew her. She lived just around
the corner from me.”
Chris said she had decided to give golf a try after being a long-time tennis player.
“It’s a tricky little game. You’ve just got to persevere,” she said, clutching the
perpetual trophy. She also got to take home a smaller, unique trophy.
“Just stick with it. If you end up in the rough a few times, just keep going.”
Margaret Fox’s partner Brendon Butler said it was now expected that the new
event would take place annually – and he had no doubts that Marg would highly
“This is pretty special. Marg was very emotionally intelligent. She would have
absolutely loved it,” he said.
The day also featured sparkling bubbles on the eighth hole. The hole has a
bench with a plaque for Marg and the bubbles were sponsored by club member Phil
Johnston in her memory.
Proceeds raised on the day went to the Ballarat Hospice Care which provides
home-based palliative care and had attended Margaret daily in her final weeks.
Along with Chris’s win, the ladies pairs went to Judy Guest and Julie Hutchinson
from Midlands Golf Club with runners-up Elizabeth Fenton and Jody Frost from
Avoca Golf Club.
The mixed pairs winners were Chris O’Donnell and Rob Dean from Clunes Golf
Club with the runners-up Jo Love and Lawrie Lees, also from Clunes.

Words: Eve Lamb

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