Wigan golf course unveils water fountain in memory of club stalwart

The object has been installed on the course as a permanent tribute to a popular club member.

Thursday, 22nd April 2021, 3:32 pm
Members of the golf club's committee and Fred Burchall's family at the fountain

Dean Wood Golf Club, in Up Holland, has created the water fountain as a memorial to Fred Burchall, who died last year aged 83.

Mr Burchall joined the club in 1978 and played a huge role in its activities over the years, serving as Chairman of Golf for many years as well as taking on everything from encouraging younger people to play the sport to organising prize presentations to playing competitively in the Dean Wood teams and putting on competitions.

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The object was unveiled on the course last weekend with Mr Burchall’s family members Louise and Martin Burchall and their daughter Grace coming to view the fountain along with Dean Wood’s captains and president and vice-president.

Tributes have also been paid to Mr Burchall’s decades of enthusiastic work at the Lafford Lane venue.

Club president Fred Stuart said: “Fred was dedicated to the club; organising and controlling competitions and assisting in any way possible.

“He also took great delight in promoting the junior section by encouraging new members and was greatly respected by this young group of golfers.

“A staunch golf traditionalist, he was instrumental in arranging the numerous prize presentation ceremonies held throughout the golfing year.

“Fred was also a quiet family man but, quite evidently, extremely proud of introducing his family whenever they visited Dean Wood Golf Club. He especially enjoyed speaking about his children and grandchildren as well as his great-grandchild who live in the UK as well as overseas. There was a gentle side to Fred that he very rarely displayed.

“The fountain in his memory is a fitting tribute to a dedicated individual who will long be remembered.”

Vice-president Peter Carletti recalled the close friendship between his father Alfredo and Mr Burchall, who he warmly described as “Mr Dean Wood”.

He also recalled Mr Burchall’s role in setting up the 1922 Trophy, an annual contest between the Dean Wood and Barrow golf clubs.

He came up with the idea of bringing the two together as former players of Orrell and Furness rugby union clubs played each other home and away.

Called in to the Orrell team as a substitute one year, Mr Burchall noticed the two clubs shared the same formation year of 1922 and decided an annual fixture would be appropriate.

Director of greens Dave Atherton said: "Fred Burchall was a real character who devoted his life to Dean Wood Golf Club. He was always smart in appearance and wore a jacket and tie every day. He even played golf in a shirt and tie.

"He treated his role at the golf club as an actual job and worked most days from 8am until late, 10-to-12 hours, especially on competition days.

"He served on the club's council for years and was a font of knowledge on matters relating to golf and the rules that govern it. The club is just not the same without him.

"His family should stand proud knowing we now have a memorial as a fitting tribute to one of Dean Wood's finest serving members."

The memorial was entirely supplied and built by local businesses, with club grounds staff doing the excavation and groundwork.

The fund-raising campaign also brought in enough cash to refurbish two other water fountains on the course.

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