Latest News


September 12, 2020

Charles Webb won the 2020 Goldthorpe Salver, triumphing for the fifth time in atrocious conditions at a wind and rainswept Silloth-on-Solway GC, and thus ending the four year reign of former champion Judge Roger Thomas.

The appalling weather forced organisers into a controversial change of format, with the 36 hole competition being spread over two days to avoid the worst of the weather.

All competitors found the elements difficult, but in the absence of Andrew Sugden - another late withdrawal - it was Rupert Shires who finished bottom of the pile in both rounds to be crowned Goat.

Photographs are now posted on the website, and can be viewed  by clicking on this link.


August 27, 2020

Competitors in the Goldthorpe Salver will be able to travel to Silloth this September with a clear conscience, after the UK government lifted local Coronavirus lockdown restrictions in large swathes of Kirklees and Calderdale from Wednesday, September 2.

Although doubts had been raised that the majority would adhere to the restrictions, it would have been a source of severe embarrassment to several high profile members of the party - including an eminent judge,,a TV newsreader, a well-known industrialist, and two former senior partners of a top legal outfit, not to mention the current High Sheriff of West Yorkshire * - had it been discovered that they had flouted government directives.

*Full details have been redacted by the web curator to prevent identification, though everyone knows who they are.


August 28, 2020

Top judge Roger Thomas has hit back at claims by this website that he was shamed into getting his handicap reduced ahead of next month's Goldthorpe Salver.

The five-times Silloth champion had his handicap cut from 18 to 15 after handing in his card to the Woodsome Hall professional following a successful round on the New Course at St Andrews. It means that over the 36 holes of the Salver, he will now start six points worse off.

"Had his handicap been 15 for the last four years, he would still have won the Salver twice," said Webmeister John Shires. "But detailed research proves that he would not have won it in 2019 or 2016, when he was victorious by just a single point."

In his email to the website - published here in line with editorial guidelines - Thomas denies that Shires, who had berated him about his handicap during their recent clash at Whitby GC,  had any part to play in his decision to hand in his card from St Andrews. Interestingly though, while banging on about Shires'  own game, he offers no alternative explanation as to why he effectively dobbed himself in to the handicap authorities.

"What's more," added Shires, "he also attempts to muddy the waters with the specious argument that the original report could cause distress and hurt to less talented golfers in the field, who might somehow have had their hopes of success in this year's event unrealistically lifted."

"Such bluster may be commonplace in the courtroom, but it cannot trump the freedom of speech and the right of this august organ to voice its legitimate opinions," he concluded. is not a member of the Independent Press Standards Organisation (IPSO), but broadly subscribes to its Editors' Code of Practice. As such, it gives those who are aggrieved about editorial content a right of reply - even if it is total bollocks.

The email from His Honour Judge Thomas QC is reproduced here in full.

In the interests of fair and balanced reporting, a subject close to the professional & personal heart of the Salver’s self styled Web Meister, I should add something to his recent posting about my handicap. 


The essential facts he reports are true and accurate. Namely, that my handicap has been reduced to 15 as a result of a very good round on the New Course at St Andrews. 


However, the suggestion that he had some part to play in my handicap reduction is entirely misleading. That is not to say that he was not “royally put to the sword” when we played the other week at Whitby but the implied assertion that that was because of my over generous handicap is a wicked & terrible perversion of the truth.


The point being that I played quite modestly at Whitby (my card, which I did keep & put in at Woodsome, would not have reduced my 18 handicap) whilst he played (as he always does at Silloth) like a complete pillock. On the back 9 his ball was constantly disappearing many a country mile off course which his constant self berating and complaining couldn’t stop. 


He is right though when he says in his recent posting that he nevertheless complained long & hard to me about my handicap as though that, rather than his own ineptitude, was the cause of the dismal defeat/ capitulation that he suffered.


He may also care to reflect as well on the damage & hurt that can result from such misleading reporting.


This is not a reference to my own hurt feelings because I have learnt from long experience not to be troubled by the likes of Shires & Webb moaning about my handicap. But rather a reference to the likes of Andrew Sugden who take these false reports seriously, even to the extent that he now seemingly thinks that he will be taking the Salver back to Menorca this winter.


It is grossly unfair on such a hapless but well meaning golfer to be led to believe by such misreporting that he could somehow achieve the impossible.


It is to be hoped that the Press Complaints Council won’t latch onto this new website and we can continue to watch our Web Meister on the telly at tea time without those busy bodies removing his journalistic licence.


The Judge - putting on the 18th in 2019

August 27, 2020

The odds of perennial Goldthorpe Salver champion Roger Thomas winning a fifth successive title have lengthened dramatically following news that his handicap has been slashed by three shots from 18 to 15.

It follows a trip to Scotland, during which the five-time Silloth winner played several rounds on top championship courses, including three at the home of golf, St Andrews.

"I kept my cards and put them in at Woodsome," said the Judge. "Although most of them didn’t do much for my handicap, the very good round I had on the New Course has got me down to 15. Just in time for Silloth, despite my pathetic efforts so far this year with a Medal card in my hand. "

Your very own webmeister is happy to take some of the credit for the welcome news. "Only last week during a trip to Roger's holiday cottage in Sandsend, I was royally put to the sword at Whitby Golf Club, and while I was enduring my customary stuffing at his hands, I launched into my well-rehearsed, lengthy and vitriolic rant about his handicap," he said.

"It appears that at last it might have struck home, and I like to think that I might have played at least a small part in this happy development."


August 27, 2020

The BBC is to ban all mention of the prestigious Goldthorpe Salver from its airwaves, accusing organisers of racism and a lack of diversity.

Principal amongst its reasons is the name of the tournament itself. "It's been brought to our attention," said a Corporation spokesman, "that the word 'Salver' is an anagram of 'Slaver', and as such we can't countenance its use on our news bulletins.


"It would be easy for someone to make a typographical error which would result in a newsreader committing a hideous faux pas on air."

Other reasons cited by the BBC for the ban include:

Salver  2019 - no women or BAME competitors

  • The competitors are exclusively white, male and middle class.

  • One of them runs a blacking factory.

  • The organiser's nickname is Sambo.


August 17, 2020

The winner of the 2020 Goldthorpe Salver could be decided by a computer algorithm - if the competition is postponed because of the global Covid-19 pandemic.

The prestigious event in Cumbria is endangered by partial lockdown restrictions recenty imposed in Kirklees and Calderdale, home to the vast majority of competitors.

The algorithm will not only take into account a player's recent form, but also his historic record in the tournament, and - controversially - the opinions of fellow competitors.

This means that:

2020 winner?

  • It's impossible for reigning champion Roger Thomas to win for a fifth successive year, since everyone is convinced his handicap is entirely bogus.

  • Charles Webb can't lift the Salver either, because everyone is jealous of his ability.

  • Amongst other favourites, Mike Webb is ruled out because he's perceived to be arrogant, and John Shires is marked down heavily by his peers because he's a whingeing moaner. 

It's thought the algorithm could hand the title to former champion John Liddiment, on the basis that he's never made a loss on the book, everyone thinks he's a thoroughly decent chap, and no one has a bad word to say about him.


De Sambeau

August 12, 2020

The Goldthorpe Salver's Glorious Leader, Chris De Sambeau has added two stone in weight during lockdown in an attempt to increase his length off the tee.

"I've seen what my close relative Bryson has done over in the States, and I decided to follow his example," he said. "Bryson is now regularly braying it 390 yards on the US Tour, and I intend to do the same."

Other Salver competitors think they might have spotted a flaw in his thinking.


"Whereas De Chambeau put on 28 pounds of solid muscle through a tough regime of pumping iron, rigorous exercise and nutritional additives, De Sambeau's idea of dietary supplements is four pints of Ossett Gold and two bags of Jacob's Mini Cheddars," said fitness guru Mark Wilcox.

De Chambeau

And respected swing analyst John Liniment was quick to point out that length off the tee can sometimes be overrated.


"I have watched De Chambeau's efforts on the US Tour since it recommenced after lockdown, and although he does indeed hit it a considerable distance, he has yet to locate a fairway - which of course is the pre-requisite of winning the longest drive competition on the 18th hole at Silloth," he said.


And Rupert "The Beast" Shires added: "Quite frankly, De Sambeau would do better to knob it 120 yards straight down the middle, like me."


August 12, 2020

Andrew Sugden is so desperate to avoid further ignominy in this year's Goldthorpe Salver that he's resorted to taking golf lessons.

Sources suggest that so far the reigning Goat has had two sessions with the professional at Huddersfield Golf Club.

And the verdict?


"There's room for improvement," said the pro - clearly a master of understatement.

"A work in progress"


August 11, 2020

The global Covid-19 pandemic has prompted Professor Charles Webb to embark on a new career.

With all sporting fixtures now being staged behind closed doors, the sports hospitality business, in which Little Charlsie made his fortune, has suffered a severe downturn. And rather than sit on his backside, the former President of Huddersfield Golf Club has decided to seek alternative employment..... as a Celebrant!

But while he can now theoretically be hired to conduct civil weddings and funerals, there is a catch. "At the moment I can only do funerals, as I'm not yet qualified to do weddings. To be frank, I haven't got all my wedding tackle sorted, if you see what I mean," said Dr Death.

"And despite what you read in the media, you might be surprised to hear that, at present, the funeral business isn't exactly healthy either," he added, gloomily. "As soon as I qualified, the death rate plunged. All the old buggers who'd normally shuffle off at this time of year had snuffed it earler in the pandemic."

The Prof's change of career has surprised fellow Salver competitors. "I can imagine that his outrageous sense of humour might be acceptable at a wedding," said his brother Michael, "but I'm not sure it would go down too well when families are saying farewell to their nearest and dearest."

Apparently, when asked by a Fixby member whether his new career entitled him to add letters after his name, Dr Death replied: "Yes! Charles Webb RIP."

That's his advertising slogan sorted, then.

The evil Dr Death

The Editor writes:

There might be those who think this item is a farrago of lies, whose only purpose is to poke fun at its subject.

However I wish to point out that, while being scarcely believable, this article - unlike much of the rest of the website - is 100 per cent dead accurate.


Sambo - firm favourite

July 31, 2020

The Goldthorpe's new Glorious Leader, Chris Samps-Un, is the ante-post favourite for the 2020 Goldthorpe Salver - because, as things stand, no other serious contender can play in the tournament.


While every other player entered into the 2020 event at Silloth is a resident of either Kirklees or Calderdale - and are consequently subject to the government's latest coronavirus restrictions, which at present may preclude their participation - Samps-Un (pictured) lives 300 yards the other side of the Kirklees boundary in Barnsley.

The only possible exceptions are Frank Whiteley, who lives in Scotland, and is therefore governed by Mrs Krankie's draconian rules, which mean he can't have anything to do with anyone from England, and Steve Sutcliffe, whose domiciliary arrangements are a mystery to everyone, including him.

What's more Frank hasn't swung a club in anger for over 20 years, and earlier this year Sutcliffe gave notice that if he came to Silloth this year, if would be purely in a non-playing capacity.

"But even if Frank and Sutty do play, I'll piss it," said Sambo. "If I can't beat those two, I'll eat my trousers."

However Sampson's presumption that the coveted Checked Jacket is already his may be premature, with other competitors signalling that they may still be able to participate. "While I am listed as a resident of Halifax," said multiple champion John Drake, "I think you'll find that's Halifax, Nova Scotia."

BREAKING NEWS - Charles Webb, who's missed the last two Salvers because of work commitments, is pulling out all the stops in a bid to land his 5th Goldthorpe title. The former President of Huddersfield Golf Club, whose handicap has recently been again reduced to 1, was recently seen having a lesson - not with the professional at Fixby, but with Woodsome Hall pro John Eyre.

"It just goes to show that the Professor is prepared to sacrifice everything - including his pride - to topple reigning champion Roger Thomas," said an inside source.

Kaye & Wilcox pull out of 2020 Salver

July 30, 2020

Charles Kaye and Mark Wilcox have withdrawn from the 2020 tournament because of injury and ongoing health concerns.

Kaye has a poorly knee which would apparently prevent him completing 18 holes, never mind 36, while Wilcox has decided to pull out because he suffers from a condition that affects his immune system, and his health might be severely compromised were he to catch Covid-19.

"Unlike some withdrawals in previous years, these are totally legitimate and understandable," said Glorious Leader Chris Samps-Un. "As far as Mark is concerned, it's better to be safe than sorry."

However it's understood that Wilcox WILL travel to Penrith for 18 holes on Wednesday, September 9, which will no doubt give him the opportunity to consume not one, but two giant meals in the bar.

Meanwhile the remaining 14 competitors are waiting to hear whether the new Coronavirus restrictions imposed on residents in Kirklees and Calderdale will affect the 2020 Salver.

Appetite unaffected


July 27, 2020

Less than a month after being forced by the closure of its original web company to re-locate to an alternative host, the all-new, revamped and re-designed Goldthorpe Salver website is fully up and running.

"This has been a mammoth job," said webmeister John Shires. "I have worked morning, noon and night to move hundreds of articles from the old site to the new, and as you can see from my photograph accompanying this article, I have aged considerably as a consequence. 

"Some people probably think there's nothing to it; just a bit of cutting and pasting from one to the other. But this is cutting edge technology we're dealing with, and only people as brainy as me would be able to contemplate such a task," he said.

"I'm sure discerning readers will welcome the new design, the easy-to-read typeface, and the enhanced photographs, not to mention the brilliant and incisive journalism," he added.

Some Salver competitors are sceptical. "It's about time he did some work," said blacking industry magnate Chris "Bradley Hardacre" Durrans. 

And former top lawyer Mike Webb questioned the entire enterprise. "What's the point?" he asked. "If all the articles were about me, it might be worthwhile. But they aren't, so it isn't."

A message from the Editor:  Notwithstanding the cutting edge technology, there are a couple of technical issues to which I would draw the reader's attention. Depending on the size of your PC, laptop or tablet screen, you may find that you are unable to scroll all the way down to the bottom of the drop-down menus for Reports and Photographs. The remedy is to scroll to the bottom of the website, where you can scroll up the menus instead! Easy! Similarly on some tablets you may find that not all the menu strip is visible. The remedy is the same.

Incidentally you can also visit the site on your smartphone, providing of course, that you have one. Finally, all previous articles can now be found in the News Archive section.

Goldthorpe Salver 2020 is on......for now!

Wednesday, July 16, 2020


Unlike the Open Championship, the 2020 Goldthorpe Salver has not fallen victim to the global Covid-19 pandemic.

Chris Samps-Un, the Salver's new Glorious Leader, has confirmed that Silloth-on-Solway Golf Club is open and ready to host the prestigious tournament, and - more importantly - the Golf Hotel is welcoming guests, and will honour previous bookings.

In a recently released statement Samps-Un said: "I have been speaking with Silloth GC and the Golf Hotel, and all is good to go for the Thursday 10th and Friday 11th September.

"Covid-19 regulations will not really affect the golf as we are not inclined to hug each other, though no touching will probably still be in place! The hotel advises that room sharing is allowed. The main difference will be in the bar and dining operation, and that will be what it will be come September."

The Golf Hotel - accepting bookings

Tee times at Silloth GC have been confirmed 


Thursday am 09:30 to 09:50 (12 players)

Thursday pm 14:30 to 15:00 (16 players)

Friday am 09:30 to 10:00 (16 players)

Friday pm 14:30 to 15:00 (16 players)

As things stand, dinner on Thursday night will be at the Golf Club, with the Presentation Dinner taking place in the Golf Hotel's Criffel Room on Friday.

Samps-Un also confirmed that the pre-Silloth Tour will go ahead too. Four Salver competitors - Haigh, Drake Shires J and Sambo himself - will warm up again at Slaley Hall in Northumberland on the Monday and Tuesday, and they will be joined by three more at Penrith on Wednesday, September 9.

So far the majority of competitors have signalled their intention to participate in the 2020 Salver. "We Yorkshiremen are made of stern stuff," said Samps-Un. "We are not prepared to kow-tow to this Chinese virus."

He also exhorted those taking part to get out on the practice grounds and hone their preparations in readiness to end the Judge's four year reign as champion. "I hope you are looking forward to the excitement of who can come out of the pack and get within 10 points of the Judge. We all must try harder," he said.


"Of course, the fun and good company is just as important, and we must also give our late Supremo Mark Nicholson a belated and  fitting send-off," he added. 

The Supremo - a fitting farewell

Thursday June 25, 2020


Friends and members of Woodsome Hall GC turned out in force to bid Mark Nicholson farewell. More than 50 lined the driveway in front of the first tee, and applauded as the hearse bearing his coffin passed on its way to a Service of Thanksgiving at Grenoside Crematorium in North Sheffield.

With large gatherings still forbidden as a result of the Covid-19 restrictions, it was the only way those who'd known and loved Mark were able to pay their respects; a fitting tribute to a man in whose life golf and Woodsome had played a major part.

His other passions - Huddersfield Town, music, pubs, curry, and his stepdaughters ("my girls" as he called them) - were reflected in the tribute paid to him at the service by lifelong friend Iain Stevenson. Our own tribute can now be found in the Valete section of the website.

Mark Nicholson

It's with great sadness that we have to report the death of Mark - or the Supremo, as we've come to know him.

For more years than we care to remember, Mark had organised the Goldthorpe Salver trip to Silloth-on-Solway, cajoling members, conducting draws, buying prizes, and generally making sure that - against often formidable odds - everything ran smoothly.

In recent years the Salver had become an important focus of his life, though sadly nothing could arrest his gradual and apparently inevitable decline.

Legal eagles in unseemly photo row
June 22, 2020

Two of Yorkshire's top legal brains have become embroiled in an ugly spat over the revamped Goldthorpe Salver Website.

After Webmeister John Shires revealed that it would take considerable time and not a little patience to upload the huge quantity of archive photographs from the old site to the new, Mike Webb - the erstwhile Senior Partner at Huddersfield's alleged premier firm of solicitors, Eaton Smith - suggested that to save time it would be "a good plan to excise several photos of our late Supremo awarding the checked jacket to Roger Thomas."

His Honour Judge Thomas QC has responded with an acerbic - if slightly melodramatic - riposte: "As recent events have so well shown, you can’t rewrite established history by dumping proof of past events into the likes of Bristol dock," he wrote.

"It is essential that the visible records of what has happened are kept in perpetuity for future generations. Where will all this end if the likes of Mike Webb are permitted to expunge such vital historical records? Jack Nicklaus’s statue to be submerged in the Swilcan Burn presumably? "

Happily, though entirely unintentionally, website editor Shires has arrived at a compromise. "The new web-building software automatically offers a mobile version of the site, and if members care to log in on their mobile phones , they will notice that, as a result of some technical glitch, for which I currently don't appear to have a remedy, Roger's head is missing from the photograph at the top of the articles on the report pages," he said.

"I was about to contact the technical gurus to ask for their advice as to how to correct the anomaly, but on reflection, to satisfy both parties, perhaps it's better to leave things as they are."

 Mobile site screenshot                        

The Goldthorpe Salver website

Eagle-eyed visitors to the website might just have noticed that things have changed! This is not because the old layout was particularly outdated - though indeed it was - or because of popular demand, or even because your webmeister fancied spending the next three weeks or so learning new skills to rebuild the site.


It was actually forced upon him by the announcement of the imminent closure of the website building company, Mr Site, at the end of June 2020.

Hopefully it will not take too long for content to be transferred to the new layout - though I wouldn't bet on it.

Goldthorpe Salver

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