A E Gregory
Albert Edward Gregory was born on 30 August 1902 but, for now, I do not know where or to whom.
He began his golfing career as an assistant at the Molesley club in Birmingham and qualified for the match-play finals of the PGA Assistants’ Tournament at Watford in 1923. The advertisement shown with this entry suggests he also spent time at “Frilford Head”, meaning Frilford Heath, before leaving for Germany in 1925, presumably as an assistant to J H Turner. I have no evidence of this nor reason to doubt it.
Gregory supervised the construction of the Wyk course on the North Sea island of Föhr (then called the Südstrand GC) designed by Bernard von Limburger but Price became professional when it opened in 1927 and Gregory moved to Bad Salzbrunn (now Szczawno-Zdrój in Poland) and Gregory played in the German Open without a club affiliation beside his name. Perhaps this was because Salzbrunn was originally a course without a club frequented mainly by spa guests. The club itself opened in 1929 but the course had been publicised with exhibition games such as Gregory playing Percy Alliss in July 1928 and the availability of the golf course, ‘under the leadership of Coach Gregory’, had been announced in the Deutsche Allgemeine Zeitung in April of that year. He played in the 1929 German Open with Salzbrunn against his name. In that same year he had also been in charge of another new von Limburger course, the nine holes at Breslau (now Wroclaw).
In 1930 Gregory moved to the Berliner Golf Club. There were a few of these but I am pretty certain it was the Nedlitz course in Potsdam because of a report from there in October of that year in the Deutsche Allgemeine Zeitung that he had been working on the starter motor of his car when the car ran into the canal with Mrs Gregory inside. She was rescued by the crew of a nearby dredger and the car later pulled out by the Fire Brigade.
He returned to England in 1933 whether through choice or necessity is not clear. (J W Buckland spoke about the policy of replacing foreign professionals with German natives and Breslau, even though by then having a German professional, was closed by the authorities).
The Huyton and Prescot club in Liverpool appointed him as its professional in February 1933. He played in the Dunlop-Southport qualifier in 1934 and in the Northern Professional Championship the same year. In 1936 he qualified for the Open Championship at Hoylake but missed the cut after the second round. After the Open he moved to Bramall Park GC, Manchester in October as professional. He was there up until the start of WWII, playing in the £1000 Moor Park competition in April 1939 and the £1000 News Chronicle tournament at East Brighton in August.
After the war he worked as a representative for a golf ball company and was reinstated as an amateur. He continued to play in tournaments with particular success in foursomes, often the “am” in pro-am contests, and represented the Manchester Alliance. He made a final contribution to professional golf by getting a Lancashire Professional Championship off the ground, after many years of trying to find a sponsor, with a tournament played at Hazel Grove in 1958.
It seems the couple retired to Penrith. Gertrud died in 1986 and Albert on 9 January 1990.
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