North Berwick/Stoke Poges
Charles John Hutchison was a native of North Berwick, born there in March 1890. Although carrying a famous clubmaking surname in the town, Charlie does not appear to be directly related with his father being a house painter with a photography business. Nevertheless he trained as a clubmaker in North Berwick before moving to become assistant and principal clubmaker to James Sherlock at Stoke Poges in 1911.
On the 1911 census he is listed as a golf club maker visiting the Cox family in Woking. The following year he married the daughter of that house, Beatrice A Cox.
He attested under the Derby scheme in late 1915 which meant he could continue with his civilian occupation until he enlisted or was called up. He wanted to be a rigger in the Royal Flying Corps but although holding the rank Air Mechanic 2nd Class he was instead assigned to be a batman.
He drowned as a result of an accident on 17 June 1917 leaving Beatrice and two small children. Charlie is buried in Lapugnoy Military Cemetery, Calais and is commemorated on the North Berwick War Memorial.
On his death, one of the Stoke Poges members wrote to Golfing magazine,
‘Without exaggeration it may be said there never was a better clubmaker. Although not much of a player, he had that extraordinary instinct which can at once tell a perfect club from a merely good one and he never allowed a club to leave his hands until he was satisfied it had reached his standard. As he played but seldom he was always to be found in the shop read to criticise any club and his cheery presence will be terribly missed by many who had come to rely upon him whether it was a question of a new club or of tinkering with an old one.’
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