AFTER a two-week delay because of unseasonably wet weather, the 2024 season at Skipton Golf Club is now officially underway, with new Men’s and Women’s Captains, Andrew ‘Ollie’ Burton and Sarah Howes, swinging into action with the annual 'drive-in' to mark the traditional tee-off to the latest campaign.

Burton, from Gargrave, has been a Skipton member for six years. Also a former Rabbits Captain, he received his Captain’s jacket from newly elected president Steve Clayton, who in turn was presented with his own jacket by retiring President Bill Simpson.

Burton said the club remained in fine heart, both on and off the course. He commented: “We have a strong membership and a solid social side. I will be looking to build on the excellent work of my predecessors across all sections, notably among our younger players, who represent the future of this excellent club.

“Granted fairer weather and decent playing conditions throughout summer and winter in particular we can only go from strength to strength.”

Howes, from Grassington, joined the club in 2018. She commented: “I must thank our outgoing Captain, Lorraine Raeburn, for her dedication and organisation. My focus for the year ahead is maintaining a positive female role in golf and encouraging new members this year to join our small team and to support our current members in their golf journey.”

Both Captains have chosen Motor Neurone Disease as their joint charity for the year and will be organising a series of fund-raising events. Their efforts received an immediate boost when a total of 128 members participated in the Captains Drive-In competition, a team event with a shotgun start.

Members were asked to pay for and place flags on the 13th fairway predicting the distance of the new Captains’ drives. The initiative netted £400. Winners were Ben Ross and Susan Bunney.

Competition results were: 1 W Sands, A Conroy, J Barwick 101pts, 2 S King, T Lister, Mark Shelley, Mathhew Shelley 98 pts, 3 D Ives, D Daggett, E Cooper, S Potter 96 pts (on countback). There were 11 2s in total for S King (twice) C Payne (twice), S Lemon, I Sewell, R Watson, D Burn, D Cooper, R Windle and D Jackson.

Other appointments for the new season include: Men’s Vice-Captain – Jonathan Smith, Scratch Team Captain - Sean Lemon, Rabbits Captain – Stewart Stead, Juniors Captain – Alex Topper; 8-15 Team Captains – manager Gordon Whincup, Captain Jonathan Smith, Joint Senior Captains – Richard Spencer and Roger Moore, also Club Chairman.

Full details of all on and off-course event and activities, including membership opportunities, are at