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Shrewsbury captains drive in

SHREWSBURY Golf Club’s new captain and lady captain drove into office earlier this month and nominated two charities that the club will support throughout the year.

The first is the Breast Cancer Unit at Royal Shrewsbury Hospital and the second is Hearing Dogs for the Deaf. New captain, Keith Smith, has been supporting the fight against breast cancer following the death of his first wife, Barbara, from the disease 10 years ago. Lady captain, Sheila Band, recognises the difference a hearing dog can make to deaf people, improving their quality of life significantly.

Keith has been a member of the Condover-based club since he began playing golf in 1966. He said: “Golf is a great game and when I began playing at the age of 17, my focus was on getting good at the game. Today, I enjoy the camaraderie. The friends you make in the club over the years are one of the best things about playing golf and being the member of a golf club.

“I’m looking forward to my year as captain and helping the club become prosperous with members old and new enjoying their golf throughout the year.”

He added: “Female breast cancer incident rates have increased in the UK since the late 1970s. It was rising steadily by 2% per annum until they introduced a national screening programme in the late 1980s. The unit at Shrewsbury Hospital provides excellent care and treatment for this disease that one in eight women are likely to get. However, if caught early this disease is treatable, so I’m keen to help hospitals detect breast cancer earlier and make breakthroughs in its treatment.”

Sheila has been playing golf for 30 years and joined Shrewsbury Golf Club in 2008. She has been county delegate for both Ludlow and Shrewsbury and has a keen interest in the rules of golf. She said: “Hearing dogs give deaf children and adults a new lease of life. Often when they lose their hearing they feel isolated and lose confidence. Hearing dogs do so much more than the practical tasks of alerting their owners to sounds like the door-bell or warnings such as smoke alarms. They bring confidence and independence back to their owners, so I am pleased our members will be raising valuable funds for them.”