Beat the pro to mark birthday

Andrew Richardson - when he joined Blackpool North Shore Golf Club in 2007 - welcomed by captain David Brennand.

Andrew Richardson - when he joined Blackpool North Shore Golf Club in 2007 - welcomed by captain David Brennand.

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BLACKPOOL North Shore has been busier than normal this week – as professional Andrew Richardson and his staff mark the fifth anniversary of his appointment to the Devonshire Road club.

It is an appropriate way to celebrate the landmark, but Richardson says that most important of all it is to get members out on the course to savour the joys of playing golf.

The week kicked off with a tournament open to all members – men, ladies and juniors – and was followed by free video lessons in the golf studio academy to see where members were going right – or wrong – with their swings.

There were also short game clinics.

And Friday, Richardson will be a man under pressure! Members will be out on course trying to better his score over 18 holes.

Those who do win a prize – and even those who fail to match it – qualify for a free lesson.

Saturday sees a sales promotion in the North Shore pro’s shop, where Richardson will be assisted by Steve McLaughlin, formerly head pro at Fleetwood, and new boy Tom Lord.

Richardson beat off strong opposition to take up the post at North Shore, after previously working at St Annes Old Links, and before that at Fleetwood.

He said of his five years so far at North Shore: “It has been a fantastic time, and it seems to have flown by, so much so that I still talk about myself as the new professional!

“By the far the best thing about the club is that the members make it. The social side here is massive, and by far the best of any of the clubs I have worked at.”

He added: “The course is in really good condition, and we have one of the best greenkeepers around in Ian Gunn.”

The highlight of the summer at North Shore is the staging of the James Brearley Lancashire Open, which returns to the course this year, having become a fixture at the venue.

Richardson said: “All the players here in August for the Lancashire Open comment on how good a condition the course is in, and that is some accolade from such experienced professionals, who play all over the North West.

“That is credit to the hard work done by Ian and his team.”