Described as ‘Super Seniors’, Vivian Dixon, Mary Brown, Barbara Moore and Maureen Crimmins have racked up around 170 years of playing golf between them and continue to take to the course today.
At 94, Vivian is the eldest of the quartet followed by Maureen (87), Mary (86) and Barbara (84) and, according to Jan Curren, Women’s President Federal Golf Club, the ladies are an inspiration.
Most of the women were latecomers to golf, with their husbands often playing a role in their transition to the sport. Vivian said her husband stopped playing cricket and decided to play golf but “he wanted me to play” too.
While Mary said she came to the sport around 1970 after participating in starter lessons provided by the government.
The women have been long-term members at Federal Golf Club and Barbara fondly recalls joining the club in 1965. “I paid 35 pound to be a member here for 12 months and I’ve been playing ever since here,” she smiled.
Reflecting on their golfing years, the quartet acknowledged there have been changes, notably in dress code – it was previously skirts below the knee and long socks with slacks now permitted – and also gender rules.
“Women are now allowed practically to sit in any part of the lounge,” Vivian said, whereas previously women were only allowed in certain areas.
The women still play – Vivian, Mary and Barbara hit the course once a week with Maureen playing twice a week – and they acknowledge it is more than just the game.
“Golf is a game of etiquette and skill and companionship and exercise and beautiful surroundings,” Vivian said.
“I might leave my house at 7.40am and may not leave (the club) till 5pm if I’m being really sociable,” Maureen added. “It’s competitive with the golf but it’s a very social group of ladies.”