Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Minigolf and Crazy Golf courses in Pub Beer Gardens

Details of Pub Miniature Golf courses we've found on our travels

On our travels around the UK we've found Minigolf and Crazy Golf courses at a few Pubs along the way. Though not as many as we'd have liked!

Here are the links to the Pub Miniature Golf courses we've visited and played on our Crazy World of Minigolf Tour to date:


Pub Beer Garden Minigolf
One of the holes at The Horse & Harrow Pub Crazy Golf in 2006


Pub Beer Garden Crazy Golf
A view of the now long-gone Crazy Golf course at The Green Man Pub

#110 Tudor Rose Inn, Fordingbridge, Hampshire - Miniature Golf - Update: October 2012 - the beer garden has had a makeover and the course is no longer there.

Pub Beer Garden Miniature Golf
Playing a hole on the very good Miniature Golf course at The Tudor Rose Inn


Pub Beer Garden Crazy Golf
A double-humped hole at The Maldon Grey Pub in Sudbury


Pub Beer Garden Mini Golf
Playing on the course in the beer garden of The Sutton Staithe Hotel

- The Pitch & Putt Inn - North Shore Holiday Centre, Skegness, Lincolnshire - Pitch & Putt Course (did not play) and a Miniature Golf Course (#233)

- Not played (Pub under reconstruction) - Aber Falls Tavern, Abergwyngregyn, Wales - Crazy Golf

- Not played (too early, Pub not open) - The Woolpack Inn, Smeeth, Kent - Crazy Golf

- Not played (no course there any more) - The Bell Pub, Wendens Ambo, Saffron Walden, Essex - Mini Golf




Looking at the course lists on the excellent MiniatureGolfer.com website there are a few other Pub courses in England too.

Our friends at The Putting Penguin in the USA have also played some Mini-Golf courses in pubs and have set up courses at the Cambridge House Brew Pub in Connecticut!

Other Pub-related Blog Posts on The Ham & Egger Files:

Monday, January 30, 2012

2nd Annual Putter King Miniature Golf Scavenger Hunt Teaser Video Released!

2nd Annual Putter King Miniature Golf Scavenger Hunt Teaser Video Released!




Links:
- The Putter King
- Early Details of the 2nd Annual Putter King Miniature Golf Scavenger Hunt Released!
- Richard Gottfried runner-up in the 1st Annual Putter King Miniature Golf Scavenger Hunt
- Minigolf Trick Shot Video - Blindfolded Hole-in-One - Putter King Miniature Golf Scavenger Hunt  - filmed at Tea Green Golf Club
- Full Results of the 1st Annual Putter King Miniature Golf Scavenger Hunt 
- Putter King Results News Release
- Photo of Richard Gottfried with the Putter King Mascot
- My Entry for the Putter King Miniature Golf Scavenger Hunt 2011
- Ermington Putters Club - home of 1st Putter King Champion Allan Cox
- The Putting Penguin - home of 3rd placed Pat Sheridan

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Olympic Rings at St Pancras - 180 Days to Go to the start of London 2012!


Emily and I have managed to get tickets to watch some of the Handball at the 2012 Olympic Games!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Another new game played – Bar Billiards

At the recent Star City Open weekend in Birmingham my fellow Crazy Golfer and BMGA Tour minigolf rival Brad ‘The Fist’ Shepherd pointed me in the direction of the 1970’s Yorkshire TV show ‘Indoor League’. As a fellow fan of odd and obscure sports he knew I would appreciate the games on offer on the programme, he wasn’t wrong.

Bar Billiards sign at The Strathmore Arms Pub

Indoor League was a show that ran from 1972-1977 on Yorkshire Television/ITV and was presented by Cricket legend Fred Trueman. The games played on the show include Darts (using a Yorkshire board, which has no ‘trebles’!), Skittles, Shove Ha’penny, Table Football and a game that took my fancy – Bar Billiards.

In all my years frequenting pubs I had never played the game and have only ever seen a glimpse of a table before – at The White Horse Pub in Southsea. With Indoor League whetting my appetite for a play of the game I took to the web to search out information on the game and whether there were any tables near to us in Luton...?

First of all I found that there is an ‘All England Bar Billiards Association’ that governs the game and organises tournaments in 18 counties, which are mostly in southern England and Jersey.

A link on the All England Bar Billiards Association (AEBBA) website shows the location of Bar Billiard tables in the UK. Checking this out I saw that the closest ones to us were at The Strathmore Arms pub in St Paul’s Walden (near Hitchin, Herts), The Red Lion at Studham (near Dunstable, Beds), Bedford Arms in Hitchin and at The Bucks Head in Little Wymondley (near Hitchin, Herts). Also on the list and fairly nearby were The White Lion in Hemel Hempstead, The Goat Inn in St Albans, The Chequers Inn in Knebworth, Our Mutual Friend in Stevenage and The Unicorn in Cublington, Bucks. I have also found out via twitter that The Orange Tree in Baldock, Herts does have a table (and also sells Gluten Free food and Beer).

* Location updates (4th &11th Feb and 24th March 2012)
- The Bucks Head in Little Wymondley no longer has a table
- The Red Lion in Studham no longer has a table
- The Bedford Arms in Hitchin has changed to a Pool table
- The Chequers Inn in Knebworth does still have a table - and the baize has been relaid
- The White Lion in Hemel Hempstead no longer has a table

So, on Friday 27th January 2012 we headed to the closest pub on the list – The Strathmore Arms pub in St Paul’s Walden.

The Strathmore Arms pub in St Paul's Walden, near Hitchin, Herts

Though close to Luton, a mere 8 miles, the B Road there is long, winding and quite pot holey – far removed from the hustle and bustle of Luton. It’s not often we venture out to the villages surrounding Luton. We have passed through some of them to reach the Offley Oriental Chinese Restaurant (which serves some great Gluten Free food). We also regularly go to Tea Green Golf Club at Wandon End, but this is very close to the Luton border.

When we arrived at The Strathmore Arms we ordered some drinks and then asked if they had a Bar Billiards table. The obliging barman said they did and pointed us around to a room attached to the main bar area where the table stood. And what a sight it was. The Barman told us it was a “pound a go” and left us to it.

The Bar Billiards table at The Strathmore Arms pub
Having only seen the game played on TV before, Emily and I had a quick glance at the rules on the plate affixed to the table itself, put a quid in the machine and started playing.

Emily plays a shot

After the first practice game we had a deeper read of the rules sheet that was beside the table and realised we had been playing our own version of the game! We then decided to play a best-of-3 games match to decide the Champion.

Emily has a read of the rules

In the first ‘proper’ game I managed to beat Emily with a final score of 400 to nil after Emily knocked the Black Peg down in the final ball shootout. Emily had reached a score of 940 before this was wiped out.





In the second game of the best-of-3 match I once again won to take the overall victory. This time I had a score of 1000, to Emily’s 90. This was a much cleaner match, with very little peg knocking down!

I line up a shot
In our fourth and final game Emily beat me 70-0. I had reached 180 but knocked the Black Peg down to wipe-out. Emily’s opening break was a score of 380 before she played a foul shot to wipe-out the break.



Once we’d finished our games we had a chat to the bar staff and some of the friendly locals. We got some further information about Bar Billiards and that it used to be a very popular game in Hertfordshire (and was one of the originating spots for the game), however there are not that many tables left to play.

As we were so interested in the game a few of the locals asked us if we were on a mission of some sort relating to Bar Billiards. We told them we weren’t (yet), but were on a Crazy World of Minigolf Tour! As I’m like a dog with a bone about new/old/interesting/fun/obscure/odd games and sports and challenges who knows, we may start-up a Crazy World of Bar Billiards Tour!

Another view of the table - plenty of balls still in play!

Emily was also interested in the Pudding Club that is run at The Strathmore Arms and there was a lively discussion going on amongst the staff and regulars over the latest offerings and the current rankings list!

A Dart Board was also set up next to the Bar Billiards table. I may take my ‘arrers next time we visit.

Looking at the Bar Billiards table I noticed that there was a badge affixed to the table we played that was from the “National Bar Billiards Association”. When I got home I had another look on The Online Guide to Traditional Games website and reread about the game and saw that National Bar Billiards Association was a pre-World War II organisation! The game started in the UK in the 1930’s, so the table at The Strathmore Arms could well be one of the first in the UK then!


Speaking with Brad ‘The Fist’ Shepherd and fellow sports and games enthusiast Marc ‘The Roller’ Bazeley I have found out they know of other tables in London, Gravesend and Northampton. ‘The Roller’ also tells me there is a thriving Wellingborough Bar Billiards League and when Emily and I head to Northants for a game then the Crown & Anchor Pub in Northampton is the place to go.

It seems a Bar Billiards ‘side-tournament’ or two is in order.

As Fred Trueman would say “Ahl si thee”

The Rules of Bar Billiards

Links:
- All England Bar Billiards Association
- The Strathmore Arms Pub
- Indoor League at Wikipedia
- Indoor League at UK Game Shows
- Bar Billiards at The Online Guide to Traditional Games
- Bar Billiards at Wikipedia
- Map of Bar Billiards Tables in the UK
- Crazy World of Minigolf Tour
- Minigolf Course Visit #210(a!?) - Vienna, Austria (Askoe Wien Wasserpark) - pit-pat "Hindernis Billards" (Obstacle Billiards)!

Friday, January 27, 2012

Receiving the OFBIMT Minigolf Trophy Orb...

...in the Car Park at Star City (the Las Vegas of the West Midlands).

'Birthday Boy' Oliver Florence presents the mysterious Green Orb to me. Note the 'unique' handshake Florence has applied

A more traditional approach to the trophy presentation

Me and the Orb

The Orb was my reward for winning the Oliver Florence Birthday Invitational Minigolf Tournament in December 2011.

The late presentation of the trophy was due to previous Champion Guy Martin forgetting to bring it to New Malden, having left it somewhere ending in 'ham'.

Link:
- "Glory for Gottfried as Martin's mistake fails to cloud celebrations"

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Arcade Games at Star City – Air Hockey, Pool & Ping Pong

Following the first minigolf event of the BMGA Tour season at the Star City Open in Birmingham on Sunday 22nd January, a group of players headed to the amusement arcade attached to the Bowling Alley in the Star City Complex for an Air Hockey Tourney.

Among the competitors in action at the Las Vegas of the West Midlands were reigning Worlds Air Hockey Champion Peter ‘The Puckmaster’ Jones, James ‘Ruthers’ Rutherford, Seth ‘Wandsworth’ Thomas, 'Squire' Richard Gottfried & Oliver ‘The Machine’ Florence.

The first game to be played was on the closest table to the door and after a draw of sorts was organised by Emily ‘Lemony’ Gottfried play commenced with a match-up between perennial Air Hockey loser, ‘Squire’ Richard Gottfried, and the Welsh Worlds Air Hockey champ and side-tournament specialist Peter ‘The Dragon’ Jones.

Peter Jones (far side) faces-off against Richard Gottfried in the longest match ever!

Unbeknownst to the players the match would create something of a record result, as the machine was a bit broken! The final result saw 31 goals scored as the match seemed to be never ending. Normally the first player who scores 7 goals is the winner and the machine keeps the puck from being returned. However in the battle between Gottfried & Jones, Richard managed to get the upset win, with a slim victory of 16-15.

With the match going on for so long Richard retired from the rest of the contest due to exhaustion and went to have a nice sit down. This meant that Peter ‘The Crazy Aced Assassin’ Jones was back in the contest and would face Seth ‘Tooting’ Thomas in the ‘first’ round.

Before that contest could take place a new table needed to be found for the match between Ruthers and The Machine. Play then commenced after Ollie had put a deposit down for half an hour’s play on the Ping Pong table. In the Air Hockey match Ollie took control and defeated Ruthers 7-5 meaning The Machine would head to the final to face either Thomas or Jones. The defeated Ruthers consoled himself by heading to the Table Tennis table to take on and beat all-comers (except Seth, who was just too good). One notable result was the ‘Squire’ (ranked 50th alongside Brad ‘The Fist’ Shepherd in the 2010 World Series of Pong) coming out of retirement for one more match. He was swiftly beaten 11-6 by Ruthers.

Ping Ponger Ruthers awaiting new challengers

In the highly anticipated match-up between Worlds Champ Peter ‘Toy Truck’ Jones and the sporting polymath that is Seth ‘Clockwork Orange’ Thomas the result was an unexpected win to Thomas, who managed to take down the champ and win 7-3 to line up a contest against The Machine in the Grand Final.

The Machine warms-up for the Air Hockey final with a bit of Table Tennis

Having seen the photos of the Air Hockey matches online, and on being told he had wrongly assumed that Peter 'Indoor League' Jones had been dishing out lessons, Finnish player Pasi ‘Bruiser’ Aho commented “He's just giving you that false feeling of confidence and will strike back when it matters.”

With the first Air Hockey table used in the competition set to ‘Long Play’ the players couldn’t imagine that the event would befall some other controversy, but that is exactly what happened in the big final match-up. With Seth Thomas easing to a 6-2 lead against Oliver Florence what happened next could of been taken straight from a round of ‘What happened next?’ on TV game show A Question of Sport. As Ollie hit a goal to bring his score up to 3 goals, the puck got stuck in the goal mouth and couldn’t be retrieved, nor did it register on the scoreboard!

Seth Thomas and Oliver Florence face-off in the Air Hockey Final

Luckily Emily ‘I’ll get #TheMan’ Gottfried was on hand and went and got the man to come and have a look at the machine (the table, not Ollie). With much wrenching and fiddling the technician was unable to get the puck out, so instead turned off the table and gave the players their pound back.

Pucking Hell! The Air Hockey Puck gets stuck in the goal

This caused a dilemma as the result of the match was still undecided. To decide the ultimate winner of the Star City Air Hockey Contest, Seth and Ollie decided to play one game of Ping Pong as a decider!

The result of the Air Hockey Tournament is decided on a Ping Pong Table

In the end there seemed to be only one possible result as Seth took an early and commanding lead, as he had done on the Air Hockey, and finished the match by smashing in a result of 11-2 and leaving The Machine with the runner-up spot.

Following the final of the Air Pong competition Seth declared that “the fun isn’t over if I’ve still got money left” and proceeded to challenge players to games of Pool. First up was Richard who, apart from the break and potting one ball, spent the game speaking with Peter 'PJ#2' Jones on the sidelines.

Richard Gottfried enjoys a nice sit down on his way to a Pool defeat at the hands of Seth Thomas

With the Hurricane Simulator ‘Out of Order’ a doubles Pool match was proposed, with the line-up of England (Ollie & Seth) to take on the ‘Wales’ team of Peter and Richard. England won.

And that wrapped up the fun and games at The Buttons of Star City. For a change no Laser Tag was played. The next big arcade event will no doubt be a £2 Tat Challenge at the amusement arcades of Worthing, West Sussex in April.

Links:
- 2011 Worlds Crazy Air Hockey Championships in Hastings
- Crazy Minigolfers Play Air Hockey Tournament in Hastings
- The Undisputed International Worlds Crazy Air Squash Championships

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Nominate Richard & Emily Gottfried for the Luton Sports Awards!

Nominate us for a Luton Sports Award!

Voting has opened for the annual Luton Sports Awards, organised by Luton Sports Network.

Emily and I would both appreciate your vote and nomination to help us be shortlisted (and hopefully win) a prestigious Luton Sports Award. Details on Criteria and How to Nominate is below.

Emily is entering the ‘Sports Woman of the Year’ category and I am entering the ‘Sports Man of the Year’ category. A summary of the highlights of our 2011 Minigolf Season can also be found below.

You can download entry forms from the link here

The deadline to nominate is Tuesday 21st February 2012.

Criteria:
Nominations will be accepted for sports people, teams or clubs who either have their home team/club venue or reside within the Borough and have:
• Achieved outstanding performances
• Shown outstanding ability
• Shown major improvement in their sport
• Promoted sport and influenced more members of the community to take part in sport

How to Nominate:
Complete the nomination form, which would typically include information on:
• For individuals: commitment and training, achievement, representation (e.g. school, club, county, international), contribution to sport etc. during 2011

Notes:
Please ensure that you provide full details and information about the nominee’s achievements during 2011 on this nomination form as the judges decisions will be based entirely upon this and no supplementary information will be considered.

The Luton Sports Awards are made by members of the public through a series of nominations per category. You can nominate anyone who meets the criteria on the nomination form. The awards are presented by the Luton Sports Network on behalf of Luton’s sporting community to recognise achievement in sport.

The nomination forms should be returned by Tuesday 21st February 2012 to Luton Sports Awards, c/o Active Luton, Wigmore Hall, Eaton Green Road, Luton LU2 9JB.


2011 Minigolf Season Highlights

Emily Gottfried

Emily is a British Minigolf Association (BMGA) Tour Pro and competed in ten full BMGA Tour competitions in the 2011 season.

Emily Gottfried - the 2011 WMF World Adventure Golf Masters Women's Champion

Emily represented Great Britain in two Minigolf tournaments in the UK and Sweden, winning the WMF World Adventure Golf Masters Women’s Championship in Hastings in May. While playing for Great Britain in Stockholm, Sweden in June she set a new British Women’s Record, and all-time personal best round, by scoring a 24(-12) on the Eternit type of Miniature Golf.

In September Emily was the runner-up in The Putt Park Annual Mini-Golf Tournament in Las Vegas, Nevada and on home soil she has continued to improve her play, recording four top ten finishes in her ten BMGA Tour appearances, along with a fifth place finish representing England, for the fourth time, in the Castle Golf Women’s World Crazy Golf Championships in October.

International Honours:
- Member of the Great Britain Minigolf Sport Team that competed in the WMF Nations Cup in Stockholm, Sweden
o The Great Britain 2 team finished the tournament in 10th place
o Set a new British Women’s Record, and an all-time personal best score, with a round of 24(-12) on the Eternit format of Miniature Golf. Her previous best was a 37(+1). Emily also set a new personal best of 36 on the Beton format of Minigolf, with a previous best of 40
o 10th in the WMF Nations Cup (Female Category)
o 45th in the WMF Nations Cup (Individual Category)
- Great Britain Player in the WMF World Adventure Golf Masters
o First-ever WMF World Adventure Golf Masters Women’s Champion
- In the WMF World Minigolf Rankings for Nations Great Britain has moved up one place to now be ranked 19th of 31 Countries

2011 Minigolf Season Highlights – Results:
- Winner of the WMF World Adventure Golf Masters Women's Championship in Hastings, East Sussex
- Runner-up in The Putt Park Annual Mini-Golf Tournament in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
- 4th in an April GMGC Club Tournament in Hither Green, London
- 5th in the Castle Golf Women’s World Crazy Golf Championships in Hastings, East Sussex
- 6th in the Planet Hastings Crazy Golf Club Open Tournament in Hastings, East Sussex
- 7th in the Midlands Open Tournament in Dorridge, Solihull
- 8th (tied) in the Weymouth Open in Dorset
- 10th (with Brad Shepherd) in the BMGA British Doubles Championships in Dorridge, Solihull

2011 Minigolf Season – Rankings:
- Ranked 24th of 138 players in the BMGA Season Rankings for 2011
- Ranked tied 35th of 116 players in the BMGA Order of Merit Rankings for 2010-2011

- Continued to promote Minigolf through online and offline media and social media channels

- During 2011 Emily played at 72 different Miniature Golf courses, taking the total played to date to 282, with 444 courses visited in total since 2006


Richard Gottfried

Richard is a British Minigolf Association (BMGA) Tour Pro and competed in 14 full BMGA Tour competitions in the 2011 season.

Richard Gottfried at the 2011 WMF World Adventure Golf Masters tournament in Hastings

Richard represented Great Britain in two Minigolf tournaments in the UK and Sweden. In the WMF World Adventure Golf Masters in Hastings in May he qualified for a Major WMF Final for the first time and finished in 18th place overall. While playing for Great Britain in Stockholm, Sweden in June Richard was chosen to be Captain of the GB2 side that finished the tournament in 10th place overall.

In September Richard won The Putt Park Annual Mini-Golf Tournament in Las Vegas, Nevada to add to the Cystadleuaeth Minigolff Cymraeg (Welsh Minigolf Tournament) title he won in Newport in July. He also won in England with a victory in the Weymouth Open Team Tournament alongside Chris Harding.

On the BMGA Tour Richard recorded ten top ten finishes in his 14 tournament outings, including two runner-up spots. In October Richard represented England in the Castle Golf World Crazy Golf Championships, finishing in 25th place in his fifth appearance in the tournament.

International Honours:
- Member of the Great Britain Minigolf Sport Team that competed in the WMF Nations Cup in Stockholm, Sweden
o Captain of the ‘Great Britain 2’ team at the WMF Nations Cup
o 34th in the WMF Nations Cup (Male Category)
o 41st in the WMF Nations Cup (Individual Category)
o Recorded new personal best rounds on Eternit Miniature Golf with two rounds of 29(-7) and on Beton Minigolf with a round of 33(-3). His previous personal bests were 39 and 36 respectively
- Great Britain Player in the WMF World Adventure Golf Masters
o 11th in the WMF World Adventure Golf Masters (Male Category)
o 18th (finalist) in the WMF World Adventure Golf Masters (Individual Category)
- In the WMF World Minigolf Rankings for Nations Great Britain has moved up one place to now be ranked 19th of 31 Countries

2011 Minigolf Season Highlights – Results:
- Winner of The Putt Park Annual Mini-Golf Tournament in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
- Winner of the Cystadleuaeth Minigolff Cymraeg (Welsh Minigolf Tournament) in Newport, Wales
- Winner (with Chris Harding) of the Weymouth Open Team Tournament in Dorset
- Runner-up in the Weymouth Open Tournament in Dorset
- Runner-up in the London Invitational Tournament in East Finchley, London
- Runner-up in a January GMGC Club Tournament in Hither Green, London
- Runner-up (with Will Collins) in the Lost World Adventure Golf Pro-Am Classic in Hemsby, Norfolk
- Runner-up in the First Annual Putter King Miniature Golf Scavenger Hunt
- 3rd in a February GMGC Club Tournament in Hither Green, London
- 3rd (with the Midlands Minigolf Club) in the BMGA British Club Championships is Dorridge, Solihull
- 7th in the BMGA English Open at Wroxham Barns, Norfolk
- 7th (with Scott Lancley) in the BMGA British Doubles Championships in Dorridge, Solihull
- 7th (with Oliver Florence) in the GMGC Green Doubles Tournament in Hither Green, London
- 9th in the BMGA British Masters Tournament in Margate, Kent
- 25th in the Castle Golf World Crazy Golf Championships in Hastings, East Sussex

2011 Minigolf Season – Rankings:
- Ranked 10th of 138 players in the BMGA Season Rankings for 2011
- Ranked 16th of 116 players in the BMGA Order of Merit Rankings for 2010-2011

- Continued to promote Minigolf through online and offline media and social media channels

- During 2011 Richard played at 72 different Miniature Golf courses, taking the total played to date to 282, with 444 courses visited in total since 2006


Photo Links:

Emily Gottfried
Emily Gottfried at the WMF Nations Cup in Sweden

- Emily Gottfried - the WMF World Adventure Golf Masters Women's Champion
- Emily Gottfried playing hole 1 at the Castle Golf World Crazy Golf Championships
- Emily Gottfried playing hole 16 of the Crazy Golf course in Hastings during the Planet Hastings Crazy Golf Club Open
- Emily Gottfried playing the first hole at Strokes Adventure Golf in Margate at the BMGA British Masters
- Emily Gottfried playing hole 18 at Wroxham Barns during the BMGA English Open

Richard Gottfried 
Richard Gottfried at the WMF Nations Cup in Sweden

- Richard Gottfried playing hole 5 of the Crazy Golf course in Hastings at the Castle Golf World Crazy Golf Championships
- Richard Gottfried playing on the new Pirate Adventure Golf course at the WMF World Adventure Golf Masters in Hastings
- Richard Gottfried at the Weymouth Open
- Richard Gottfried playing hole 18 of the Wroxham Barns Minigolf course during the BMGA English Open
- Richard Gottfried playing at The Green Indoor Mini Golf course
- Richard Gottfried at Strokes Adventure Golf in Margate at the BMGA British Masters
- Richard Gottfried playing the Minigolf course in East Finchley at the London Invitational Tournament


Links:
- Ham & Egger Files Year in Review
- Richard Gottfried Player Profile
- Emily Gottfried Player Profile
- Luton Sports Network homepage
- Luton Sports Awards
- Luton Sports Awards Nomination Form
- British Minigolf Association
- Crazy World of Minigolf Tour

Monday, January 23, 2012

Minigolf Report – Gottfried’s Tee-Off new Minigolf Season at the BMGA Star City Open in Birmingham

Luton Minigolfers Richard and Emily Gottfried were back in Minigolf action as they teed-off in the first event of the 2012 British Minigolf Association (BMGA) Tour season on Sunday 22nd January at the BMGA Star City Open at Adventure Island Mini Golf, Star City, Birmingham.

Both players finished four places higher than in last year’s event, with Richard 13th and Emily 24th in the 31 player field.

Richard scored a three-round total of 104(-4), having scored 37, 33 and 34. Richard still jointly holds the official BMGA course record of 28(-8) on the Lost Hut Trail which he set in 2010 at the BMGA National Open.

Richard Gottfried plays the 13th hole on the Lost Hut Trail course

Emily scored a total 111(+3) after rounds of 41, 37 and 33.

Emily Gottfried plays hole 2 on the Lost Hut Trail course

The tournament was played over three 18-hole rounds on the Lost Hut Trail course at the Star City venue, and was won by Birmingham’s Chris Harding following a sudden-death play-off with Oxford’s Michael Smith. Cambridgeshire’s Adam Kelly was third, defeating Cambridge's James Rutherford in a sudden-death play-off.

Richard said “My scoring was good and I only dropped six shots over the three rounds and 13th place was not too bad. My round of 37 was a little disappointing though as I know I can shoot much better scores on the course. I’m now looking ahead to the trip to Worthing and the BMGA British Masters in April”

Richard and Emily are now in their sixth year as BMGA Tour players. Last season Richard was ranked 10th of 138 players in the BMGA Season Rankings and 16th of 116 players in the BMGA Order of Merit Rankings for 2010-2011. Emily was ranked 24th in the Season Only Rankings and tied 35th places in the Order of Merit.

Ends

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Revisit & Replay of Smugglers Cove Adventure Golf in South Shields

On Sunday 8th of January 2012 Emily made a revisit to the Miniature Golf course that was the 100th played on our Crazy World of Minigolf Tour back in June 2009 - the 12-hole Smugglers Cove Adventure Golf course in South Shields, Tyneside.

Photos from January 2012:
The Smugglers Cove Adventure Golf course in South Shields

One of the holes on the course

Another view of the course

A barrel of Putters

A skellington

The 12th and final hole!

On her round on the course Emily shot a 29(+5).

Links:
- Gottfried's Crazy World of Minigolf Tour - Minigolf Course Played No. 100!!!
- Video introducing my 100th Minigolf Course Visit on the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour

The 100th course location visited overall was the 9-hole Arnold Palmer course at Pops Meadow Putting Green in Gorleston-on-Sea, Norfolk on the 10th of May 2009.

Crazy World of Minigolf Tour

Monday, January 16, 2012

Another Blogging Minigolf Team - Richard Gottfried & Seth Thomas Team Up

Following the pairing of myself and fellow minigolf blogger Oliver 'The Machine' Florence in the 2011 Green Doubles minigolf tournament in Hither Green, me and NKOTBB* Seth 'Clockwork Orange' Thomas teamed up for a challenge match at Dorridge against the duo of The Smiths.

Seth (l) and me in our 'internet' t-shirts earlier in the BMGA Minigolf Season at Dorridge. Fellow blogger and a former doubles partner of mine, Oliver 'The Machine' Florence is also pictured lurking in the background

Our team - named Looting** - defeated the team of Chris 'WMD' Smith & Michael 'Hole In One Kenobi' Smith 4&2 in the 12-hole Matchplay Match at the Four Ashes Golf Centre in Dorridge. In doing so Seth became my 18th Minigolf Doubles Team Mate since the 17th of May 2008 when Emily and I teamed up in a losing effort against Sean Homer & Marion Homer (aka Casual Force) in our debut at the BMGA British Doubles Championships in Warwick.

In early October 2011 I also teamed with Michael 'HIOK' Smith as the Oxfordshire Mini Golf Club in a victory over James 'The Rocket' Rutherford & Emily 'Lemony' Gottfried from the Cambridgeshire Mini Golf Club in a grudge match between the two counties. I am yet to team with Chris 'WMD' Smith. Although he has teamed with Emily, when they were runners-up in the Weymouth Open Team Tournament in October 2011 (which me and fellow Midlands Minigolf Club team mate Chris 'Who' Harding won)!

My 19th team mate in Miniature Golf doubles competition was the Scottish International and renowned apathetic Crazy Golfer Guy Martin, when we teamed up in the 'Pro-Am' event at the Oliver Florence Birthday Invitational Tournament at New Malden in December 2011.

The BIG minigolf question now is - Who will be my next, and landmark 20th, Minigolf Doubles Team Mate?

My Many Many Many Minigolf Doubles Partners (2008-2011):
1 Emily Gottfried
2 Matt Smith
3 Andy Gonsalves
4 Owen Johnson
5 Paul Johnson
6 Kevin Moseley
7 Chris Harding
8 Simon Hall
9 Leo Kukielka
10 Christopher Gottfried
11 Alan Norman
12 Oliver Florence
13 Julio Kent
14 Richard Skeggs
15 William Collins
16 Scott Lancley
17 Michael Smith
18 Seth Thomas
19 Guy Martin

My Minigolf Doubles Record:

Click to enlarge image

*New Kid On The Blogging Block
** aka The Bloggards, aka Quantity and Quality, aka Insquired, aka Clock of the Walk, aka Sqock Won, aka Bloggy Brilliant, aka Why have I spent 8 ruddy minutes thinking up team names!?

Sunday, January 15, 2012

strange games: Strange Games News: British Mini Golf Tour

strange games: Strange Games News: British Mini Golf Tour: More than just an excuse to post a video of cool American mini golfers...The British Mini Golf Association have just published this yea...

Friday, January 13, 2012

Join the BMGA for 2012 Minigolf Season

Join the British Minigolf Association ahead of the 2012 Minigolf Season

The British Minigolf Association (BMGA), the Governing Body for Minigolf, Crazy Golf and Adventure Golf Sport in the UK, offers two membership levels - 'Free' & 'BMGA Tour Pro'.

- 'Free Membership' via the BMGA website ensures members receive regular newsletters on forthcoming events and results from the BMGA tour.

- 'Tour Card Membership' costs £20 for the season and entitles players to discounted pre-event practice rates at tournament venues on the calendar (some venues will offer these rates all season).

Full details of what is available to members under the two tiers of membership can be found at the BMGA Membership Page. To register for Free BMGA Membership please visit the BMGA Website Registration Page.

The BMGA organises and promotes around 20 Miniature Golf and Crazy Golf competitions each year.

If you have any questions about BMGA Tour membership please contact the BMGA via its website.

Yours in sport,

'Squire' Richard Gottfried

BMGA Tour Pro
Great Britain International
Member of the BMGA since January 2007

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Gottfrieds in the World Minigolf Sport Federation Rankings – Nov 11 Update

The World Minigolf Sport Federation (WMF) has released the latest World Minigolf Ranking Lists (dated November 2011).

In the Women’s Rankings Emily is ranked at number 132 of 137 places (150 players).

Great Britain International Emily Gottfried

In the Men’s Rankings List I am ranked at number 406 of 411 places (427 players).

Great Britain International Richard Gottfried

In the Country Rankings Great Britain has moved up one place to now be ranked at 19th of 31 Nations.

The Great Britain Minigolf Sport Team at the 2011 WMF Nations Cup in Sweden (from l-r Eirik Seljelid (Coach), Scott Lancley, Bj√∂rn Dinau (Coach), Michael Smith, Tony Kelly, Emily Gottfried, Marc Chapman, Marion Homer, Sean Homer, Richard Gottfried)

The latest WMF statistics show that there are 16,037 competition players registered with their national associations and the WMF. Germany is the largest Minigolfing nation, with 5,060 registered competition players. Great Britain has 198 registered players and is the 12th largest Minigolfing nation according to WMF figures.


2010-11 British Minigolf Association (BMGA) National Rankings

In the 2010-11 BMGA Order of Merit Rankings I finished the BMGA Tour season as the British number 16, Emily was tied for 35th place. In the 2011 BMGA Season-Only Rankings I was ranked 10th, with Emily 24th.


Links:
- World Minigolf Sport Federation (WMF)
- British Minigolf Association (BMGA)
- Report from the WMF Nations Cup minigolf tournament in Stockholm, Sweden
- Blog Post – Minigolf Diary: 5 Days on International Minigolf Duty
- UrbanCrazy - Great Britain Team Sponsor

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Business Tenants in London Ready to Get Putting on New Office Minigolf Course

Reading the CITY A.M. newspaper on the 10th January 2012 Emily spotted a story on The Capitalist page about a new City office space that is offering tenants a mini-golf course as part of the package!

The offices are run by the serviced office company Co-Work and their City location in London is home to a three-hole Miniature Golf Putting course.

You can see the course layout in the first photo on the Co-Work ‘City’ location website.

Links:
- “GOLF RETURNS TO THE BOARDROOM AS CITY FIRM TEES UP TENANTS” Story on City AM website
- Co-Work
- Co-Work City Location

Related Blog Posts:
- Minigolf in London
- Crazy World of Minigolf Tour
- 85 Years Too Late to Play a Rooftop Putting Green in London

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Regular Show & Miniature Golf

Just before Christmas one of my nephews told me to check out a cartoon on the Cartoon Network called ‘Regular Show’, so I did.

It’s brilliant.

The show followers two 23-year-old Park Groundskeepers, Mordecai and Rigby, and the many shenanigans they get up to as they try to avoid work and their angry boss, Benson. The pair enjoy slacking off, playing video games (on what looks like a Sega Master System 1), Zombies and Rock Paper Scissors, amongst other things!

The rest of the cast of characters on the show are a weird bunch too.

One of the episodes ‘Do Me A Solid’ features Minigolf (in an ironic sense).

I urge you to check out Regular Show, it’s anything but!

Links:
- Regular Show on Cartoon Network UK
- Regular Show on Cartoon Network USA
- Regular Show page on Wikipedia

Sunday, January 08, 2012

Putter Fingers’ ‘Spot The Ball’ Minigolf Competition

The team at Crazy Golf business Putter Fingers have launched their second online competition and this one is a minigolf ‘Spot The Ball’ contest!

To enter the online competition you’ll need to visit the Putter Fingers facebook page to check out the photo and choose the grid square you think the ball is in.

The photo was taken at the 2008 BMGA British Open held at Strokes Adventure Golf course in Margate, Kent (which will once again host the tournament in September this year).

The contest closes at 12pm on Wednesday 18th January 2012.

Links:
- Putter Fingers
- Putter Fingers ‘Spot The Ball’ contest page
- Spot the Ball – Crazy Golf Style! January Mini Golf Competition
- British Minigolf Association (BMGA)
- Strokes Adventure Golf
- Winners of the Putterfingers Micro Putt Minigolf Competition Announced

Saturday, January 07, 2012

100,000+ hits - Thank you for reading!

Towards the end of December 2011 The Ham & Egger Files had its 100,000th 'hit'!

I’d like to start the New Year by thanking everyone for visiting and reading the blog over the years.

Looking at the web stats, The Ham & Egger Files has been visited by people from 32 countries outside of the UK, including Australia, Austria, Brazil, Canada, Costa Rica, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Egypt, France, Finland, Germany, Guatemala, Hong Kong, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Jersey, Moldova, Morocco, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Pakistan, Poland, Russia, Singapore, South Korea, Sweden, Turkey, the USA and Venezuela.

So, wherever you are from and whatever your interests are, be it Miniature Golf (Air Hockey, Amusement Arcades, Arm Champs II Arcade Games Arm Wrestling, Brussels Sprout Competitive Eating, Bun Throwing, Conga Dancing, Crazy Air Squash, Crazy Golf, Crystal Maze Games, Darts, Dodgeball, Fake Alligators/Crocodiles, Gluten Free, Guinness World Records, Lazer Tag, Picnicking, Piers, (Ping) Pong, Pirate Flyer Laser Monorails, Rock Paper Scissors, Shooting Shacks, 'Tat' Challenges, Tea Rooms, Thumb Wrestling or Wacky Waving Inflatable Arm-Flailing Tube Men) do keep checking back for more...as I'll be continuing to write about our travels on the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour (and other sports and games).

If you have any suggestions or comments to make please do let me know, it’s always good to hear feedback from visitors from around the world.

All the best for 2012.

Richard

Friday, January 06, 2012

Putter King Miniature Golf Hole Design Contest - Vote for the Best of the Top 3

The Putter King Miniature Golf Hole Design Contest deadline has passed and the three winners have been declared.

The three Hole Designs will be added as a free update to the Putter King Adventure Golf app for iOS and Android.

The top three Minigolf Hole Designs have now been put through to a final stage of voting to decide which will win the cash prize.

The winning designs were:
- Island Moai Statues
- PK's Crown
- Putter King Car Course

You can vote at the Putter King contest page on facebook. Voting ends on Sunday 15th of January 2012.

My Miniature Golf Hole Design for the competition - The Jewel in the Crown - was voted as the sixth best of 30 design submissions.

Links:
- The Putter King website
- Putter King App Hole Design Vote on facebook
- My hole design (sadly not a winner) – The Jewel in the Crown
- Early Details of the 2nd Annual Putter King Miniature Golf Scavenger Hunt Released