Joy Hunter’s lifelong dedication to golf as a player, county training officer, office-bearer and course rating official has earned her the Gerald Micklem Award from England Golf.
Joy, a proud Yorkshirewoman, was recognised for her outstanding contribution to the game at today’s England Golf AGM held at the National Golf Centre, Woodhall Spa.
The Gerald Micklem Award – named in honour of the former English Amateur champion and Walker Cup player – was set up in 1990 by England Golf. Awarded on an annual basis, it recognises those unsung individuals who have made a positive difference to the amateur game in England.
Joy began her love affair with the game in 1954 when, aged just 10 and encouraged by her father, she joined Scarborough North Golf Club before later moving on to Scarborough South Cliff and then Ganton. As a teenager, she played for England girls in 1963 and then enjoyed 27 years in the Yorkshire Ladies’ squad.
Later in her golfing life, Joy enjoyed nine years in the Yorkshire Vets team where she became Northern County Vets champion four times. Yet Joy’s successes were not restricted solely to achievements on the course.
As a qualified PE teacher, Joy was able to use her people skills to good effect and an 11-year spell supporting the Yorkshire Ladies’ squad saw the white rose county win no fewer than nine championship titles.
In 1989, Joy took up a role on the ELGA Training Committee for the northern region before becoming chairman in 2000.In 1990, she became Yorkshire’s LGU Scratch Score Assessor and six years later became England’s representative on the LGU Scratch Score Committee.
Given her knowledge in matters relating to course rating, it was no surprise that, following the merger of the English Golf Union and English Women’s Golf Association in 2012, Joy was appointed as one of England Golf’s representatives on CONGU’s course rating committee before becoming England’s regional and Yorkshire’s course rating advisor.
Her love of the game and her commitment as a volunteer was further demonstrated when she became the ladies’ captain at York Golf Club in 1990 before accepting the honours of Yorkshire Ladies’ county captain in 1996 and then president in 2012/13.
Outgoing England Golf president Graham Yates presented Joy with her award to warm applause from attendees at the AGM.
“This is a huge honour for me and I’m thrilled to accept the award,” said Joy. “I was very surprised when I was told I was to be this year’s recipient. I actually knew Gerald Micklem when I was a younger golfer so this award is special for that reason.
“I first played for Yorkshire in 1963 and I’ve had the support of the Yorkshire Ladies County Golf Association support ever since in all I’ve done– it’s incredible to think it’s almost 60 years. My county has been superb and so supportive and I owe them a lot. I must also thank my family, especially my late husband Brian, for all their support. I’ve enjoyed all my roles in golf and feel so very lucky to have been involved in the game.”