Saturday, December 31, 2016

The last blog post of the year

What a year 2016 has been!

This year has seen some BIG milestones in the world of Mini Golf including the 90th anniversary of England's first Crazy Golf course opening in Skegness. There's still a course on the same spot today.

Crazy Golf in Skegness
A lovely bit of minigolf history

2016 saw the tenth birthday of our Ham and Egger Files blog, ten years of the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour and ten years since we played our tenth course. We've now visited 720 courses in total.

We had great fun playing the Southend Pier Crazy Golf course in the summer. The layout is 1.3 miles out to sea!
We had great fun playing the Southend Pier Crazy Golf course in the summer. The layout is 1.3 miles out to sea!

We also made a HUGE change in our lives, moving from Luton to live in Cheadle Hulme. We also found that we now live less than a mile away from a miniature golf Putting course, although it's one we're likely to never play.

There's a miniature golf course at the Park Square office complex in Cheadle Heath
There's a miniature golf course at the Park Square office complex in Cheadle Heath

On the very bright side moving north has opened up a large number of courses to visit (and old ones to revisit) on our tour. The latest course played in Greater Manchester was the wonderful Lost Valley Adventure Golf at Amazonia in Bolton.

The Lost Valley Adventure Golf course is well worth a play
The Lost Valley Adventure Golf course is well worth a play

The first course we played in 2016 was at Paradise Island Adventure Golf in Sheffield - that seems so long ago now!

Paradise Island Adventure Golf in Sheffield
We've played one of the two Adventure Golf courses in Sheffield

In 2016 we visited 47 courses, posted 204 blog posts (205 with this one - and 2394 in total since 2006) and went over the one million page views mark on the Ham & Egger Files.

2017 will see the 150th anniversary of the world's first Miniature Golf course. The Himalayas Putting Course at St Andrews in Scotland is still there today. We visited the Links Minigolf course in April 2012. It's a real pleasure to play.

Playing the world's first miniature golf course
The world's first miniature golf course

Thank you to everyone who has continued to support us. We look forward to sharing more minigolf fun in 2017.

Give the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour a Like on Facebook, watch our YouTube channel and follow us on Twitter @putting_gott and @Ems_Lems. Please do sign-up to receive our miniature golf newsletter too.

Friday, December 30, 2016

Treasure Island Adventure Golf in Southsea

A revisit to Treasure Island Adventure Golf in Southsea for the tenth anniversary of the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour.


On the 30th September 2016 we returned to Treasure Island Adventure Golf in Southsea to celebrate our BIG minigolf milestone of ten years of the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour.

Richard and Emily Gottfried at Treasure Island Adventure Golf in Southsea

Our friends John 'Big Al' Moore and Cat 'Helter Skelter' Patterson joined us to mark the occasion with a round on the Victory Trail and Warrior Trail pirate themed Adventure Golf courses.

A view of the Treasure Island Adventure Golf layout in Southsea
A view of the Treasure Island Adventure Golf layout in Southsea

Playing hole 1 of the Vuctory Trail

Treasure Island Adventure Golf in Southsea
Emily playing hole 1 of the Victory Trail

Our Crazy World of Minigolf Tour began back in 2006 while we were in Southsea visiting my brother Christopher. We decided to have a round on the Victory Trail Adventure Golf course and at the end of the 9-holes I managed to fire the cannon on the Lucky Last Hole to win a FREE GAME card. We returned to play the Warrior Trail the next day and our minigolfing adventures went on from there.

Treasure Island Adventure Golf in Southsea
One of the crocodiles (or alligators) lurking on the course

After our round on the Victory Trail we all stepped up to play the Lucky Last Hole and unbelievably I won another FREE GAME!

Treasure Island Adventure Golf in Southsea
Another FREE GAME CARD added to the collection

I also won a FREE GAME when we revisited the course on the fifth anniversary of our tour on the 30th September 2011, as well as on the 7th August 2015!

Treasure Island Adventure Golf in Southsea
A look inside the Lucky Last Hole

Following our game on the Warrior Trail we tried our luck for another FREE GAME and this time Emily played the shot correctly to win a pass!

Emily about to win

In the tenth anniversary competition on the Victory Trail I picked up the win with a round of 20. Emily was second on 23, with John Moore third on 25. Cat shot a 31.

Treasure Island Adventure Golf in Southsea
About to ace the eighth hole on the Victory Trail - Rusty Anchor

Treasure Island Adventure Golf in Southsea
Emily putting

Treasure Island Adventure Golf in Southsea
John Moore in action

In the round on the Warrior Trail John Moore took the win with a score of 23. Emily and I tied on 29, with Cat scoring a 37.

Treasure Island Adventure Golf in Southsea
John Moore was victorious to win a knitted clown trophy

In the overall rankings John won the title and 'trophy' with a combined score of 48. I was one shot back on 49, with Emily finishing third on a total of 53. Cat scored a total of 68 to pick up the wooden spoon.

Treasure Island Adventure Golf in Southsea
The minigolfers on the podium. In an incorrect order

The two 9-hole Adventure Golf courses at Treasure Island are well worth a visit and play. We know we'll be heading back for more games in the future.

Treasure Island Adventure Golf in Southsea
Another alligator (or crocodile)

Treasure Island Adventure Golf in Southsea
A view of the Treasure Island course

Treasure Island Adventure Golf in Southsea
Emily playing at Treasure Island

Treasure Island Adventure Golf in Southsea
Holing out

Check out the Treasure Island Adventure Golf website for opening times and prices.

Link:
- Treasure Island Adventure Golf

Related blog posts:
- From the Vault - Southsea Minigolf 2006
- Five years of the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour
- Nine years of the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour
- Crazy World of Minigolf Tour
- Southsea

Give the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour a Like on Facebook, watch our YouTube channel and follow us on Twitter @putting_gott and @Ems_Lems. Please do sign-up to receive our miniature golf newsletter too.

Santa's Stockport Grotto

Over the past month or so I've seen some pretty dreary Christmas trees, but while having a wander down Prince's Street in Stockport I spotted what must rank as the worst looking festive thing ever!

Grotty more like it!

Related blog posts:
- Christmas
- The worst Christmas trees of 2016

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Mini Golf and Crazy Golf on Southsea Common

Revisiting the Minigolf courses on Southsea Common.


While celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour in Southsea we swung by the Miniature Golf courses at Castle Golf on Southsea Common.

The GOLF hut and grass Minigolf course on Southsea Common
The GOLF hut and grass Minigolf course on Southsea Common

Unfortunately we didn't have time to play the Crazy Golf, Mini Golf Putting or Pitch & Putt layouts on this occasion. They are great fun though.

The Crazy Golf course on Southsea Common
The Crazy Golf course on Southsea Common

A view of one of the Crazy Golf holes on Southsea Common
A view of one of the Crazy Golf holes on Southsea Common

The Crazy Golf was the 61st played and the grass Putting course was the 62nd on the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour in 2008. We're yet to play the Pitch & Putt course there.

The Pitch & Putt course on Southsea Common
The Pitch & Putt course on Southsea Common

Related blog posts:
- Revisit to the Mini-Golf courses on Southsea Common
- Crazy World of Minigolf Tour

Give the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour a Like on Facebook, watch our YouTube channel and follow us on Twitter @putting_gott and @Ems_Lems. Please do sign-up to receive our miniature golf newsletter too.

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Canoe Lake Mini Golf course in Southsea

A return to the Canoe Lake Mini Golf course in Southsea.


On our trip to Southsea to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour we swung by the Canoe Lake Mini Golf course.

The Canoe Lake Mini Golf course in Southsea
The Canoe Lake Mini Golf course in Southsea

Unfortunately it was out of season so we couldn't get a game on the brilliant grass Putting course.

Canoe Lake Mini Golf course in Southsea
The Canoe Lake Mini Golf course is well worth a play

The Canoe Lake Mini Golf course was the 387th course played and 669th visited overall on the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour in 2015.

Related blog posts:
- Canoe Lake Mini Golf in Southsea
- Crazy World of Minigolf Tour

Give the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour a Like on Facebook, watch our YouTube channel and follow us on Twitter @putting_gott and @Ems_Lems. Please do sign-up to receive our miniature golf newsletter too.

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Season's Greetings

We wish you all the compliments of the season.

Christmas Miniature Golf on the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour
A Christmas Crazy Golf course from our travels

All the very best for the festive break and good luck throughout the year ahead.

Friday, December 23, 2016

Ten years ago today

A look back at the 10th course played on the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour.


Ten years ago today we visited the 10th course on our Crazy World of Minigolf Tour. On a bitterly cold 23rd December 2006 Emily, Christopher and I headed along to the Horse and Harrow Pub in West Hagbourne, Oxfordshire to have a game on their beer garden Crazy Golf course.

Crazy Golf course at the Horse and Harrow pub in West Hagbourne, Oxfordshire
Emily putting away as Christopher thinks 'What on Earth are we doing?'

What a course it was - we'd not seen anything like it before. And we haven't seen anything quite like it since!

Crazy Golf course at the Horse and Harrow pub in West Hagbourne, Oxfordshire
One of the Crazy Golf holes in the Horse and Harrow pub beer garden on the 23rd December 2006

We revisited the course in April 2011.

Crazy Golf course at the Horse and Harrow pub in West Hagbourne, Oxfordshire
The course in April 2011

Crazy Golf course at the Horse and Harrow pub in West Hagbourne, Oxfordshire
A long minigolf hole

Crazy Golf course at the Horse and Harrow pub in West Hagbourne, Oxfordshire
The green that Emily was putting on in the photo above

Back in 2006 we never realised quite how BIG the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour would become. To date we've visited 720 courses!

Crazy Golf course at the Horse and Harrow pub in West Hagbourne, Oxfordshire
Y indeed!

I'm not sure if the Crazy Golf course is still at the pub. There's no mention of it on the pub's website and the last Google Street View image of the location is from April 2011 too. We'll have to swing by next time we're in the Abingdon / Didcot area...

Related blog posts:
- Crazy Golf at the Horse & Harrow Pub in West Hagbourne
- Crazy Golf at the Horse & Harrow Pub in West Hagbourne revisit
- Crazy World of Minigolf Tour

Give the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour a Like on Facebook, watch our YouTube channel and follow us on Twitter @putting_gott and @Ems_Lems. Please do sign-up to receive our miniature golf newsletter too.

Adventure Golf at Oasis Fun in Bournemouth

A look at the Oasis Fun indoor Adventure Golf course in Bournemouth.


My mate Mick 'The Man' Gisbourne let me know there is a new indoor Adventure Golf course at the Oasis Fun centre in Bournemouth and sent along some snaps of the jungle-themed minigolf course.

Indoor Adventure Golf course at Oasis Fun in Bournemouth. Photo by Mick Gisbourne December 2016
A view of the indoor Adventure Golf course at Oasis Fun in Bournemouth

Indoor Adventure Golf course at Oasis Fun in Bournemouth. Photo by Mick Gisbourne December 2016

It's another course to add to our 'to play' list on the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour. Perhaps we'll get along for a round in 2017...

Indoor Adventure Golf course at Oasis Fun in Bournemouth. Photo by Mick Gisbourne December 2016

As well as Adventure Golf, the Oasis Fun centre also offers tenpin bowling, a softplay area, diner & bar, pool and arcade games. Check out the Oasis Fun website for more information.

Indoor Adventure Golf course at Oasis Fun in Bournemouth. Photo by Mick Gisbourne December 2016

Link:
- Oasis Fun

Related blog posts:
- Bournemouth
- Indoor Adventure Golf
- Mick Gisbourne

Give the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour a Like on Facebook, watch our YouTube channel and follow us on Twitter @putting_gott and @Ems_Lems. Please do sign-up to receive our miniature golf newsletter too.

The worst Christmas trees of 2016

A fine selection of the bad and ugly Christmas trees spotted this festive season.


During the festive season I've been engaged in discussion and competition with Marc Bazeley and Dan Paynton as to who has seen the worst Christmas Tree on their travels.

Christmas tree in Stockport
The Christmas tree that started the spotting - on a back street in Stockport. On the 9th of November

Among the dregs and dross of what passes for seasonal decorations we've noticed some common themes, most notably the erection of metal railings imprisoning the tree. Some of these barricades have also carried signs bearing that most traditional of greetings 'WARNING DANGER OF DEATH'. And while we may scoff at that message, at least the trees seen with that sign have at least had lights put on them!

So, after not much consideration our top three worst Christmas Trees of 2016 are as follows

In Chorley Marc found this delight.

Christmas tree in Chorley by Marc Bazeley
The tree of Christmas past by the look of it

In Chale, near Ventnor on the Isle of Wight Dan snapped this beauty.

Christmas tree in Chale near Ventnor on the Isle of Wight by Dan Paynton
I think you'll agree this sums up Christmas perfectly

Dan quite liked the look of this sorry affair I spotted in Cheadle Hulme's Oak Meadow.

Christmas tree in Cheadle Hulme
Lots of barriers

The best of the rest...

Not a bad tree per se, but while in Bolton I had to frame the photo like this to make it as ludicrous as possible.

Christmas tree in Bolton
Nothing says Christmas like some portaloos

And speaking of ludicrous I have no idea what was going on with this 'tree' in Stockport!

Christmas tree in Stockport
Interesting use of some street furniture

A selection of the others spotted by members of the newly formed Awful Tree Spotters (ATS) club.

Christmas tree in Adswood
Another railing, sorry Christmas tree, in the Metropolitan Borough of Stockport. This one is in Adswood Local Centre

Christmas tree in Askam by Marc Bazeley
Marc's local Christmas tree in Askam. Glitzy

Christmas tree in Barrow in Furness by Marc Bazeley
A Christmas tree in Barrow in Furnow. It doesn't look real

Christmas tree in Barrow in Furness by Marc Bazeley
Neither does this one

Christmas tree in Bamhall
This Christmas tree on a roundabout in Bramhall in the Metropolitan Borough of Stockport looks like it's had a bit too much of the Christmas spirit

Christmas tree in Cheadle Hulme
One of the first we spotted pop up in an odd location. Plugged into the street light too
  
Christmas tree in Cheadle Hulme
One of the DANGEROUS Christmas trees in Cheadle Hulme

Christmas tree in Cheadle Hulme
The little brother of the electrical Christmas tree above

Christmas tree in Handforth
The dark tree of Handforth

Christmas tree in Ipswich
Ipswich Market's Christmas tree is bright. But it's also almost mostly hoarding

Christmas tree in Wellingborough by Marc Bazeley
Wellingborough's effort is a bit of a spit and sawdust affair

Christmas tree in Newport on the Isle of Wight by Dan Paynton
The Christmas tree in Newport on the Isle of Wight looks a little bit lost

Christmas tree in Northampton by Marc Bazeley
Northampton's Christmas tree is a big 'un. No decorations though

Christmas tree in Stockport
I spotted Stockport's Christmas tree just before it was lit

Emily spotted a couple of Christmas trees while in Vienna, Austria. However they don't count as they're actually nice.

Christmas tree in Vienna, Austria by Emily Gottfried
Elegance and class

Christmas tree in Vienna, Austria by Emily Gottfried
A little over the top on the decorations. But better than nothing

And while it's not a Christmas tree I'd like to finish this post with this lonesome decoration on the seafront in Felixstowe.

Christmas decoration on the seafront in Felixstowe


Related blog posts:
- Christmas Trees