Bradley Hall’s Stuart Naylor has described his 60-year golfing career as “a fairy-tale journey.”
It started when he swung a club at the age of around 10 with his father Arthur at Ogden and will peak in 2016 when he becomes president of the Halifax, Huddersfield and District Union.
Naylor’s appointment, in succession to Fixby’s Bryan Webb, was announced this week.
“It was a surprise - I don’t know how these things are decided,” said Naylor, who will be 72 in March.
“It is very nice to be asked and to know that people think you can do a job for them.”
Naylor will become the second Bradley Hall member to be president of the Union, which was set up in 1947, following Brian Taylor in 1998.
After his early introduction to golf, Naylor became a caddie at Halifax Golf Club.
When he embarked on what turned out to be a long career in the police force at 17 he signed up to a block membership at Bradley Hall.
He also joined at Queensbury but when he went to work in Wakefield in the late 1970s he became a full member at Bradley Hall.
He was captain in 1992 and president in 2004 and 2005 and he described Bradley Hall as a warm, sociable and forward-thinking club.
He is secretary of the Halifax Past Captains’ Association but hands over soon to David Downsborough (Ogden).
Naylor has always managed to keep out of the Rabbit category, for players with a handicap of 16 or more. He is hanging on at 15 at the moment, having played off nine in his prime.
He has had his share of success and once partnered clubmate Roy Lofts to a very low winning total in an Alliance at Bradley Hall. However, success in Hall’s prestigious Mexborough Cup has so far eluded him with second place his best result.
Naylor, who lives with wife Phyl at Rothwell Drive, Savile Park, has been an accomplished sportsman in his time, also successful at football, rugby union and crown green bowls.
He rose to inspector’s rank in the police and worked at Halifax, Todmorden and Wakefield, where he became the instructors’ instructor at the police driving centre.
Bizarrely, he once even rode a speedway bike at the Shay between a Halifax Dukes match and the reserve races. He did four laps but failed to impress a family member who remarked: “You didn’t go as fast as Kenny Carter!”
The Naylors enjoy their holidays abroad but will need to cut back for what promises to be a busy 2016, when Halifax-Huddersfield will host the late-season Yorkshire Inter-Union Six-Man Team Championship at Bradley Hall.
One aspect of the president’s job which will not faze Stuart is the speaking - he is a regular raconteur at dinners.
Halifax-born Nick Marsh was only able to stage a partial recovery after a poor first round in the Lake Macquarie Amateur Open at Belmont GC in Australia.
The 20-year-old former Lightcliffe and Elland member finished tied 40th out of 81 after shooting 75,73,72 and 72.
Marsh, one of three players representing England Golf in top Australian amateur events during January, moves on to this week’s Australian Men’s Amateur Championships at Lakes GC/Australian GC in New South Wales.