My association with sport and participation in it began when I was a small boy. My father ran two football teams, one junior and one senior. They all used our house as a base and trained from there. I remember my father on his bike following the runners.

As well as running football teams, he was an active player in both football and cricket. As I grew older and stronger, I progressed through school teams and even played for my uncle's cricket team.

This carried on through my late twenties and when I joined the prison service and represented the prison teams in both cricket and football

It wasn't until I moved to London that a transformation took place. Someone who was to become a great friend introduced me to this long metal stick with a rubber grip on one end and a strange wooden head on the other. My friend had been a golfer all his life. He took me to a local driving range and after realising that right handed was not for me, I switched to left handed clubs and went on from there.

It made good sense because I used a cricket bat left handed, so the golf swing felt more natural left handed. I bought some clubs second hand for £35, which I used for a while and as I improved, I bought a new set

I decided that I would benefit from some lessons, so went to the local P.G.A. professional. I would say to anyone taking up golf that the services of a P.G.A professional is paramount, not only to learn how to swing, but in the choice of equipment. My friend took me up to his golf club which I later joined.

I was posted to another London prison and took a break from golf. One day, a work colleague brought some clubs in and said, "My son can't use these." I took a look and said, "Is your son left handed?" to which he replied "no".

I ended up buying them and rekindled my love of golf. Eventually I bought another new set and started playing this great game

I was then posted to the South Coast where they had a golf society so I played with them. I eventually joined the club where I play today. There is something about golf that is addictive. There is something personally satisfying to see the golf ball flying down the fairway because you know that it is totally down to you and no one else.

Ready to Tee Off

Perhaps the ball doesn't go as far as it used to when I was younger, but self satisfaction is still there.During the course of a round you will hit a shot where everything comes together and that is the shot you remember and keeps you coming back for more

Golf also has more benefits, the physical exercise and the walk is beneficial in keeping active and assists in blood circulation. Mind you not all see it this way, Mark Twain said golf was a good walk ruined. Clearly, he had never played the game. Finally, my advice to anyone taking up this wonderful game, is to go to your local P.G.A. professional and get his advice on equipment and how to play this beautiful and addictive game.

Above all it is a game, enjoy it!

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