HOYLAKE, ENGLAND | First a story.
Pat Ward-Thomas was perhaps the most elegant of the British golf writers who generated quite a following in the second half of the last century. This was the post-Bernard Darwin era, the time in the 1960s and ’70s when Ward-Thomas, writing in The Guardian newspaper, Leonard Crawley in The Daily Telegraph and Henry Longhurst in The Sunday Times (and commentating on television) were nicknamed the “Crazy Gang” and roamed the world transmitting their golf writings back to Britain.
On his many visits to Europe, Bing Crosby got to know Ward-Thomas and, as so many did, became a fan of his writing. Crosby wrote the foreword to one of Ward-Thomas’s anthologies. As their friendship grew Crosby was persuaded to travel up by train from London to visit Ward-Thomas at his home in Norfolk and play a game at Royal West Norfolk, otherwise known as Brancaster, where years later Ward-Thomas would become captain.
“Just one thing Bing,” Ward-Thomas said to Crosby. “I’ll pick you up at King’s Lynn Railway Station ...
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