55th ACI UK Sunshine Coach presented to Willow Dene School, Greenwich

On 3rd July 2017, ACI UK returned once again to the excellent Buckinghamshire Golf Club where 18 teams competed for first place in the annual ACI-UK Charity Golf Day.  Blessed (for the most part) with good weather, all teams were present and correct for the traditional shotgun start (following a handsome breakfast sponsored by IHS Markit) – and most were back at the 19th hole in time to see our 55th Variety Sunshine Coach presented to teachers and children from Willow Dene School.

As always, this event is made possible only by the generosity of our teams, supporters and sponsors. ACI UK and Variety are enormously grateful that, once again, you stepped up to ensure that we could present another Coach to a very deserving school.

In addition to the 18 teams that played in this year’s competition, this year’s sponsors were EC1 Partners (players’ buggies), Sucden Financial (refreshment buggies), IHS Markit (breakfast), ParFX (Straightest Drive and Nearest the Pin in 2) and Equinix (Longest Drive).   Additional sponsorship support came from Alex Weston Designs (event Programme), Liquidity Edge, Saxo Bank and Thomson Reuters (advertisers in Programme).

In addition, auction and raffle items were donated by organisations and individuals including:  360T, CME, C-View, Fielding & Nicholson, Integral, Nex Markets and Wheninrome Wine.

On behalf of ACI UK and Variety, thank you all very, very much for keeping this event in the ACI calendar and ensuring that a deserving school gets a new and much needed vehicle to support its special educational needs.

Players, supporters, ACI UK Committee Members and Variety ambassadors join the staff and children of Willow Dene School for the presentation of their new – and second! – Sunshine Coach.

“The new Sunshine Coach will be essential for providing a range of opportunities for our children to enrich their lives and enable them to build on their independence skills. The new coach will be used daily to take students to visit shops, libraries, museums, play spaces, swimming, cafes, theatres and much more. It will be also used to transport some children to medical appointments when their parents need support.”

Jude McPartlan, Deputy Head, Willow Dene School

The annual ACI UK Charity Golf Day is a flagship fixture in the ACI UK event calendar and the Buckinghamshire Golf Club course is acknowledged by all as a great course to play.  2017 presented some particular challenges, not least with the loss of Al Crane as the driving force (pun intended) of the ACI UK Golf Committee.  At one stage it was touch and go whether we would proceed at all without dedicated (volunteer) resources but the enthusiasm of many teams to take part meant that the event went ahead, in the end, coordinated and managed by two non-golfers on the ACI UK Committee – Tina Kane and Sue Attwood.

With very few ‘issues’ on the day itself, the enthusiasm of the teams and support of VPAR, Buckinghamshire staff and the broader ACI UK Committee, we had a very happy and successful day and our fund raising goal was – just – met.

It is not a trivial task to put on an event of this size and particularly with an underlying (and overriding) objective to raise sufficient funds (net of costs) to pay for the new Sunshine Coach and maintain our commitment to support Variety’s UK effort. We also recognise that it is increasingly difficult to gain internal support for these types of events; our biggest challenge, always, is finding sufficient numbers of teams and sponsors.

It is imperative that we have a strong Golf Committee to deliver the next event in 2018; if you are interested (and able) to play a direct part in delivering this fantastic event again in the future please contact events@aci-uk.com.


Link to more photos at Variety – the Children’s Charity

In 2017 our guest speaker and auctioneer was Adger Brown, an ACI UK Golf Day alumna known to many in the audience for his quirky (!) delivery and ‘audience participation’.  With some 30 years in show-business, Adger is an active member of The Variety Club Golfing Society, A Barker with The Variety Club of Great Britain and a proud member of the Grand Order of Water Rats.  After a highly entertaining intro, Adger made swift work of the auction, ‘encouraging’ the audience to bid for the plethora of donated items, that included a week’s stay in a fabulous Florida villa (courtesy of C-View), a bespoke suit (Fielding & Nicholson), various 4-balls at good courses (including the Buckinghamshire) and lunch at Hawsksmoor (thank you Integral).

Oliver Madden (ACI UK Committee member) made a personal donation of a fabulous (if rather large) framed montage of horse racing legends Frankie Dettori, A P McCoy and Kieron Fallon. (One family’s ‘loss’ is another’s gain, eh Oliver?).  Leon Brown, who worked in the Square Mile for many years, latterly at Societe Generale) donated a hand made shirt from his new business venture, Christian English.  Other generous auction and raffle items were donated by CME, Rob Malin (WineinaBox), Nex Markets and Variety UK.

In addition to the auction, players supported a raffle which, with the auction proceeds, made a considerable additional contribution to our fund-raising effort.  Our most sincere thanks to all who donated auction and raffle items, provided items for players’ goody bags or otherwise supported the event.

We are very aware that our sponsors, supporters and team captains have to work increasingly hard to persuade marketing departments to make room for this event in ever-tightening annual budgets and we are enormously grateful for their continuing commitment and support.

With sincerest thanks to all players, sponsors, prize donors and event supporters.

First Place – EC1 Partners

Jamie Cole, Ron Karpovich, Jack Stroud and Chris Meehan

Jamie Cole, Ron Karpovich, Jack Stroud and Chris Meehan

Second Place – LCH2

Jeremy Bell with Cameron Goh, David Fitzgerald and Philip Whitehurst

Jeremy Bell with Cameron Goh, David Fitzgerald and Philip Whitehurst

Third Place – Sucden Financial

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Wayne Rowarth with Jon Price, Colin Barrett and Peter Brooks