Conquering of the Boers

Her Majesty The Queen

                                                                                                        Buckingham Palace



                                                                                                        4th June 2018

Our dearest and beloved Queen,

After the marriage of Prince Harry to Ms Megan Markle, I wish to convey further good news to you, and to the rest of your Royal family.

As your military attaché in Africa, it gives me great pleasure to advise that the Boers have been conquered at the battle of Harrismith which took place on the 2nd & 3rd June 2018. The white flag of surrender was raised by General Hamman, at 13h00 on this historical day for your universal British Empire. 


During my lengthy military career I have never witnessed a display of such loyalty and courage, as shown by your troops in this bloody battle. Your forces received only a few minor scratches and bruises, while the Boer field hospital has called for additional nursing staff, surgeons and even psychiatrists to treat their mentally scarred soldiers. There were no fatalities.


Your Majesty will also be most pleased to hear that during the cease-fire period, as declared by Chief Justice Lord George Galloway, the British and Boer troops were treated to an elaborate Royal Banquet. At this very grand occasion, the soldiers from both sides mingled and socialized well. In some cases, too well! This developing inter-continental relationship seems to be getting stronger, despite the humiliating defeat dealt out to the Boers. 


On a personal note, please pass on my fondest greetings to my old friend Prince Phillip. I trust he is enjoying his retirement.

I await your instructions regarding any further military operations required .

Your loyal Military Attaché,

Field Marshall Mark Russell  VC

Bergview Wimpy Club Championship

To the North, South, East and West, there is no Wimpy with the reputation of the Bergview Wimpy franchise. The Manager, Ashton West, continues to maintain the extraordinary levels of service and hospitality for which this franchise is nationally famous. Other franchises in the “Sparkles Restaurants” chain clubbed in to make the event a sparkling success. The Mugg & Bean is temporarily closed for renovations, yet Lucia was on hand to treat the golfers with M&B delicacies. Debonairs also lent a large hand, so all in all, it was a Famous Brands Bergview Bonanza from Breakfast to Dinner.

The golf course is lush and playing to its maximum length, advantageous to the big hitters! One doesn’t find bigger hitters than the trio of Schalk Maree, Frits Valks and Pieter Cronje, and the results reflected this muscular match-up. After the first 18 holes, Pieter held a 3 shot advantage over Frits, after scoring a 74 gross. Pieter flexed his athletic frame in the afternoon to score a sensational 69 gross, to complete the 36 holes at one under par. Frits ended 10 shots behind to claim the runner-up spot. This was Pieter’s third Wimpy Club Championship title, and there will be more to come.

Divisional best net winners were as follows:   A Division - Pieter Cronje,  B Division - Jan de Jager, and C Division  - Frans Badenhorst.

The All day best nett winner was Tienie Els, while Frits Valks was the runner-up.

The Golf Club extends its sincere thanks and appreciation to Mark Pringle for the ongoing sponsorship of its most important closed tournament.




20 October - Fastway Betterball and Seniors event


The monthly Fastway Couriers better-ball medal has become a popular event among all the regular golfers. Similar to the Fastway prices, this competition is highly competitive, with all the teams trying their utmost to get their hands on the desirable crystal glassware prizes.

This month's edition produced unlikely winners. It is a mystery why Riaan Marais would select the Captain, John Venning, as his partner. It is even more mysterious how Venning could produce a performance good enough to support his more illustrious partner. Golf is a strange game, and never ceases to amaze. While this will go down as a career highlight for John, it is merely another notch in Riaan's star studded golfing career. Laurel & Hardy scored a 60 nett!

The Golf Club expresses it sincere thanks to the best "value for money" courier in Harrismith -  Fastway.


This historical Society displays all that is good about the game.

Every year, The Harrismith Golf Club is privileged to host this highly respected golfing Society. Our visitors are always an example of graciousness, gratefulness and politeness. While their Inter Provincial Triangular competition is hugely competitive, the level of sportsmanship and camaraderie between the teams is plain to see. They are a shining example to all golfers.

This Society loves coming to Harrismith, and they will always be most welcome!


Saturday 28th October:          Mortimer Toyota better-ball stableford

Captain Venning has instructed the writer to encourage all golfers to support the Clubs newest monthly sponsor, Mortimer Toyota. Perhaps someone should suggest to the Captain that we should tee-off early, enabling us to witness the Sharks trouncing the Stormers?!

24 June - Animal Shelter day

The Harrismith Animal Shelter:   Applauded and Rewarded


After years of dedicated and compassionate service to the Harrismith community, the staff of this vitally important organization, have been rewarded. Their next door neighbors, the Harrismith Golf Club, arranged a benefit golf event. What a success it was!

When Golf Captain John Venning asked Mandy Pollock what their most desperate need was, she answered "a bakkie". She went onto explain, that the staff were using their personal vehicles to pick up abused, sick, injured and bleeding dogs and cats. Not an ideal situation. No challenge is too big for John Venning, who mobilized the golf committee, members, businesses and most of the Harrismith community. Requests for financial assistance were answered with enormous generosity. A suitable second hand bakkie (canopy included) was purchased from Mortimer Toyota by Mark Bebington, with the condition, "pay me back when you are able". He will not have to wait long. The R70000.00 price tag, has already been collected from Harrismith's incredible donors.

Emotions ran high when, at the prize giving, the branded bakkie was driven into the arena. And when John handed over the keys to Mandy, there were lumps in the throat, tears of joy, and goose bumps amongst the large crowd. All concerned with the support of this project can take a bow- what an amazing community we live in!

A special message from the Golf Captain, John Venning. "On behalf of the Club, I wish to express our sincere and heartfelt thanks, to all who were approached and contributed to this benefit event".

Thanks to you, John. Your commitment to this project was immense!

Members, Animal Shelter personnel and friends, celebrated this special event, long into the night.

Although the Harrismith Animal Shelter were the real winners, the four-ball alliance results were as follows.

1st (90 points)    :              Fritz Valks, Elzane Valks, Gerhard van Eeden, and Monty Galloway.

2nd (89 points)   :             Kobus Bester, Johan de Klerk, Tienie Els, and Dries Lategan.

3rd (88 points)    :            Ferdie Van Vuuren, Hernu Van Vuuren, Wally Botha, & Jan Harm Van der Merwe.

Important Dates:

Saturday 1st July:             Subway Shell Monthly Mug

Wednesday 5th July:      WAGS







The "Boer War"- 3-4 June 2017 - Letter to the Queen

      Her Majesty The Queen

                                                     Buckingham Palace



                                                     5th June, 2017


Our Dearest & Beloved Queen,

 It is with deep regret that I inform you that your courageous soldiers have been severely defeated, at the hands of the Boers, at the battle of Harrismith on 3rd & 4th June 2017.

Although there were no fatalities, the Boer Commando, led by General Wessel Hamman, showed immense bravery, superior marksmanship, and deft field skills, in the heat of battle. Your loyal soldiers raised the white flag of surrender, at 12 noon on this bloody Sunday.

The Royal Medical team of nurses, led by Sister Mandy Pollock on Spionkop, are still very busy treating your loyal and wounded troops. The most severe and common treatments, were for the after effects of the toxic Boer medicine "Mampoer". All your troops are showing signs of making a full recovery.

I would recommend that our soldiers be shipped back to London, and returned to Her Majesty's Military Academy, Sandhurst, for further instruction, in the skills of warfare.

Apart from this humiliating defeat, I have pleasure in advising Her Majesty, that your troops have been well treated by the Boer Commandos, and have enhanced the tattered relationship that existed between the Boer Republic and the British Empire. Our soldiers and their spouses were treated to a Royal Gala dinner, featuring a clash of British & Boer cuisine, expertly prepared by Afrikaner chefs, Anel Bekker & Lizet Du Plessis. Your troops were further entertained by guest speakers. Nick Leslie, spoke eloquently about previous battles, and the bravery of both the Boer and British forces. Dr Braam Joubert, from The Orange Free State, added a good deal of humour to this illustrious occasion. It was a grand banquet indeed!

There was a fly-past, performed by a Royal Airforce squadron of fighter aircraft, led by Flight Commander Sir Gareth Pollock (MBE). The Boers entertained our troops with "Boere Musiek" and “Volkspele” dancers and singers. Our own Captain Venning (OBE), joined in to demonstrate the British version of these Boer dance moves.

In order to commemorate this battle, and to remind future generations to further develop Anglo Boer relationships in Harrismith, Captain Venning (OBE) has donated a perfectly "in-scale" model of an ox-wagon. I wish to appeal to you to consider rewarding Capt. Venning, at Your Majesty's Birthday Honours ceremony.

Other candidates to receive your Majesty's recognition at this ceremony should include Major Gert van Tonder, who chose to enlist in Her Majesty Army, and then donated the battle dress to all the foot soldiers. There were others who have not only enlisted in your forces, but have made considerable contributions to this historical battle. These include Private George Galloway and the Scottish piper, Dr. Martin Reeve, who certainly stirred up the patriotic emotions of your troops. I respectfully recommend that the following be granted British citizenship with immediate effect, Dries Lategan, Steve Niewoudt, Justin van Tonder, and Quintin König. I was going to request that Kobus Bester should also be granted British citizenship, but on second thoughts, your Empire could do without this rascal.

Many of your troops travelled from the Last Outpost of your Empire (Natal), as well as from the Transvaal Goldfields, in order to fight this battle. They, too, should receive your recognition. These include Craig Surmon, Gary Bellars, Andrew Miller, Reggie Jelliman, Richard Butcher, Wayne Warburton, Gavin Scholefield and Chris Smith. I would sincerely appreciate your kind consideration of the above. Mark Bebington also answered your call to take up arms, and should be given Royal recognition.

I am under the impression that your troops are enjoying the warm sun in Africa, and may wish not to return to your United Kingdom. Perhaps Your Majesty could tempt them to return, with the lure of a "danger-pay" bonus, of a few Pounds Sterling.

I await your further instructions.

Your humble military servant,

Field Marshall Mark Russell (VC)


27 May FASTWAY COURIERS Better-ball Medal

The second of this monthly series of events was won on a far higher score than the first. Both Wim Pelser and Isak Pieters, as well as the combination of Kobus Bester and Dries Lategan finished on 64 nett. A count-out was necessary to split this tie. The Lategan / Bester combination were easy winners of the count-out, and were awarded the crystal glassware.

Thanks to Harrismith's and Qwa Qwa's most reliable and best "Value for Money" courier.

The Anglo Boer War

There is great expectation, excitement and banter amongst the members, who are looking forward to next week-ends Boer War. Field Marshall Mark Russell, will have his work cut out to lead his Platoon of 23 Souties, many of whom are from out of town, against the local Boers.

The programme for the weekend includes a Friday evening braai, where the Better-ball draw will be performed.  On Saturday18 holes of better-ball match play followed by a formal dinner in the evening, featuring a clash of Brit and Boer cuisine, two guest speakers, a Scottish piper and traditional Afrikaans music. On Sunday the two teams of 24 players, will be "man on man" in the singles match. The winning team will need 18 and a half points to lift the trophy.

God save the Queen!

27 April - Fastway Couriers series of events

This monthly series of "better-ball medal" events certainly got off to a fast start!

Fastway's reliable "next day service" to Johannesburg, Pretoria, the Durban CBD, Vereeniging, Witbank, Klerksdorp, and Rustenburg, is attracting many clients. Although saving money on their courier expenses is the chief attraction, clients receive personal and friendly service, from Fastway's professional team of franchisees.

This friendly Fastway hospitality was very evident on Thursday, when 35 players contested for the crystal glassware. There was no stopping the Badenhorsts. Frans and Linda cantered to an easy 7 shot victory, scoring a remarkable 56 nett.

The Fastway hospitality continued well into the night, when Mark Russell, John Venning, and Nicky van Tonder provided a delicious braai, for all the players and their wives.

The members will enjoy Fastway's hospitality each month, and the winners of each event will qualify to contest for the "Russell Claret Jug", at the end of the series.

Thanks to Fastway for this exciting new series. The Fastway franchisees look forward to assisting all new clients in solving their courier requirements.

8 April 2017 - Subway Shell Monthly Mug

It was a day of records!

 For the first time in this reporters Harrismith golf career, three players scored 66 nett in a "Mug" competition. Included in this trio was Pieter Cronje, who equalled the course record of 65 gross! This was achieved without dropping a single shot to par, while recording seven birdies. An absolutely remarkable round of golf! It will be a round that Pieter will remember for the rest of his life.

Quinton Konig, also played the best round of his golf career to score a 77 gross. His 66 was easily good enough to win the B Division. Perhaps this will prove to be the last competition that Quinton will be contesting in this Division. He is comfortably good enough to be playing in the A Division.

Ebbie van Rooyen called a penalty on himself, for not replacing the ball after it had accidentally moved. The game generally repays its players for acts of sportsmanship and honesty. This was certainly the case on Saturday, when Ebbie won the count-out to win this unbelievable edition of the Monthly Mug. Well done Ebbie ….. Justice!

Dries Lategan recently visited a coaching professional, in order to rectify some bad habits that had crept into his game. This coaching session has immediately made a huge difference to Dries’ ball striking. Dries scored a 67 nett to triumph in the C Division.

The owner of Subway Service Station, Emile de Beer is again thanked for this legendary sponsorship.

For those on the roads over Easter… travel safe, enjoy this special time and get back home in one piece to join us for more golf!


The prizes of award winning wines, were appreciated and valued, together with the delicious steak braai. This was all part of Dries Lategan's wonderful, spur of the moment, golf sponsorship last Saturday.

With so many regular golfers away, there was only a small but grateful field of 15 players, who were spoilt by Dries’ hospitality and generosity. The quality of the wine was matched by the standard of the golf. John Naude and Lebo Zietsman were rewarded for their 46 "better-ball" points, with two "magnum" bottles of Cannonkop. These were not opened and, no doubt, will be put away to celebrate a special occasion. As per any good red wine, Mark Russell and Peter Pollock showed the importance of maturity, by scoring 44 points to scoop a few bottles of the divine "Die Plek Cinsault".

A lovely evening, together with wives, was enjoyed on the deck in perfect weather with Captain - John Venning's - choice of 70's rock and roll music in the background, and the crackling sounds of the braai fire enhancing the atmosphere. The Harrismith Country Club was certainly "die plek" to be.

That was a great day, thanks Dries!

Golf Report - The Platberg Classic - 10 to 12 March 2017

Golf Report - The Platberg Classic

 And what a Classic it was!  Over the 3 days, a total of 348 rounds of golf were played!

Highway Junction, Hardware Mecca, The Bergview Complex, Mountain View Inn, Ocean Basket, as well the team of young and committed members (Monty Galloway, Helgaard Beukes, Lebo Zietsman and David Pretorius) have given the Club a massive financial boost by providing the members and numerous visitors, with an unforgettable tournament.

One cannot omit to mention that there was the long list of "on course tee" sponsors that also made a substantial contribution to the Club coffers, and to the enjoyment of the competition as a whole. All in all, a wonderful effort by so many companies, and individuals.

Apart from some scintillating performances on the course, there was much to enjoy for all the participants. Festivities included, fantastic catering, live music, raffles, bowls on the putting green, and the very pleasant social atmosphere in the clubhouse.


As usual the Deysel family, and the staff of this iconic Harrismith business provided an outstanding "kick-start" to the tournament. Having recently completed the renovations to the kiosk at the 7th & 13th holes, it was very fitting that Kobus and staff members used this facility to provide HJ hospitality of excellence. Each time a golfer passed this kiosk, a new variety of refreshment had just come off the braai. Thanks for the kiosk upgrade, the delicious treats, and for the wonderful HJ hospitality!

The HJ sponsorship included a vast array of generous prizes, and a delectable dinner. The Club wishes to thank Ben and Amanda, as well as all the HJ staff for a "classic" start to the tournament.

Results - 1st: Antoine & Christiaan Lombard 47 points. 2nd: Fritz Valks & Jan de Jager 47 points.


The three Valks brothers, Anton, Duarte & Fritz, as well as Fritz's wife Elzane, are well known for their commitment to the Club. This special family business has come to the aid of the Country Club on so many occasions, and their sponsorship and involvement in the "Classic" is just another example of this generosity. This day, too, involved the staff of this respected local hardware business. As within their business, the service delivery, public relations, and HM hospitality matched their in-store customer relations.

The sponsorship involved many of Hardware Mecca suppliers, and in his address at the prize giving, Anton thanked and paid tribute for this loyal support.

A quote from Anton's speech is worth repeating, "In Harrismith we have great people, a beautiful mountain, a fantastic golf course, and a special Hardware Store".

Results - 1st: Murray Hume & Rupert Potgieter 48 points. 2nd: Koos Moolman & Tienie Els 48 points.


Whenever the above institutions are approached to come to the assistance of the Club, a reply of "no" is never ever even considered. The Bergview Complex as a whole, is nationally known as the ultimate travellers rest resort, providing a choice of cuisine refreshments, the 1 Stop petrol station and Quick Shop, and Hani Muller's hospitable Mountain View Inn. Ebbie Van Rooyen's Ocean Basket is the favorite restaurant for local seafood lovers. All these institutions and individual owners seem to have a "soft spot" for the Country Club, and continue to offer their loyal support.

The Club wishes to, once again, thank this Bergview Complex business group for their loyal support.

Results - 1st: Pieter Cronje & Jaco Coetzee 52 points, 2nd: Helgaard Beukes & David Pretorius 49 points.


The involvement of the above team, indicates the healthy state of the Club. If the youngsters get involved, the future is bright. In Helgaard, Monty, Lebo and David, the Club is indeed fortunate to have a group of committed young golfers who will no doubt take great care of the Club in years to come.

This sponsorship was a combined effort from this team to involve many other individuals and businesses. They certainly succeeded in their task of drumming up the support of so many businesses to provide the enormous range of prizes for the "overall" winners.

The Club expresses its sincere gratitude to the above four members, as well as to all the sponsors who supported this most important aspect of the tournament.


1st:      Helgaard Beukes & David Pretorius 140 points

2nd:     Fritz Valks & Jan de Jager 140 points

3rd:      Koos Moolman & Tienie Els 137 points

An outstanding effort by the "Classic" committee, the sponsors, the newly elected Captain, John Venning, as well as all who were involved.


Saturday 18th March:             Subway Shell Monthly Mug.

Thank you to Mark Russel for compiling this report