Whispering Smith: Pitch and putt a ‘treasure’

NORFOLK Gardens pitch and putt course is one of the town’s little treasures.

I have been playing, mostly at weekends, on this par three course for around five years.

I play with three friends and we start out early on any weekend morning, just about the time the affable attendant is returning from putting out the flags and collecting the detritus from the course: mostly empty beer cans and crisp packets, left by revellers the evening before.

I play with three old friends and we have our golf balls labelled as Grumpy, Sneezy and Bashful.

My sobriquet is an obvious and true one, as is Sneezy’s who suffers from hay fever in the high summer, which gives Bashful – a complete misnomer – something of an advantage at that time of the year.

The course is rugged and unpredictable with a long grassed rough and lumpy greens infested with early morning worm casts.

Even though each of us has dropped a hole in one, each of us still has his own least favourite hole and mine is number one (68 yards).

Fail there I just want to pack it in and go home.

However, we do have a collective nemesis – hole four (77 yards).

This beast has a large clump of brambles and tall trees obscuring the flag and I, as have my companions, been in and out of those woods more times than a squirrel.

My favourite is six (114 yards), the longest hole and one I play using a forbidden wood needed to punch the ball up and over the lofty trees situated only yards in front of the tee.

The round takes about 45 minutes and is well worth the fee of five quid (concessions for the over 60s and under 16s).

Afterwards there is the adjacent Putting Green Café, Toast, or the nearby East Beach Café, all three of which serve a good cup of Joe.

Open all year round, it is well worth a visit and a credit to the folk who run it.

Well done Inspire Leisure!

CINEMA Paradiso, Giuseppe Tornatore’s re-released classic 1988 Italian movie about a young boy an old man and their love of the cinema in a small town recovering from the aftershock of World War II, would be a lovely film to show at our cinema if we ever get one.

The Windmill Cinema has been closed for 324 days.




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