Picture above: Players pictured before the Shotgun Start

Glass News’ Editor, Chris Champion, was fortunate to be invited to the Emplas Open and reports on the golf, and other action, that took place at Hanbury Hall.

A bit of practice before the off

Is there a micro-climate around Ware in Hertfordshire, or more specifically, Hanbury Manor?  Hanbury Manor is a hotel and country club complex that boasts a championship golf course originally designed by Harry Vardon and had a redesign by Jack Nicklaus 11 and, for the second year, hosted the Emplas Open Golf Tournament.  Is it clean living and honesty on the part of the Emplas Directors that provides two glorious days of good weather, picked out from interminable grey skies and rain, is it that micro-climate or just plain good luck?  Whatever, it meant that the shorts and short sleeved golf shirts were in evidence, and probably for the first time this year!

Gathered for the presentation dinner

Some 80 odd customers and suppliers turned out for the 2nd Emplas Open and were treated to a beautifully manicured course that was set up for a Seniors Tournament, the ‘Legends Tour’, that followed on from Emplas’ tournament.  In preserving the course for ‘the Legends’, buggies were restricted to those with a real need and, although there was much evidence of feigned limping, only a medical certificate qualified the owner for a buggy!  The only exception to this was the much-favoured drinks buggy piloted by Kush Patel and aided and abetted by Phil Dewhurst Junior.  Asking Phil to police Kush’s wilder excesses with a buggy was much akin to putting a fox in the chicken house!  Suffice it to say, all golfers were well watered – mostly laced with alcohol – as Emplas’ feted generosity kicked into gear.

Emplas’ Ryan Johnson and Jody Vincent get the grand raffle under way

But this golf gathering wasn’t all about food and drink excesses and having a good time.  Emplas take social responsibilities very seriously and wouldn’t stage an event such as this without ensuring that charity benefitted from the generosity of Emplas’ guests.  This year Emplas’ charity partner is Niamh’s Next Step, a charity dedicated to the research and support of children going through Neuroblastoma, a rare form of cancer that affects 100 children each year.  There were plenty of opportunities to raise funds during the day from Beat the Pro on the 16th, a long list of valuable raffle prizes donated by Stuga, Arkay Windows, Epwin, MDS, Hanbury Manor, Avantis and Rapierstar. And around £4,500 alone raised from the generosity of the hole sponsors which included, DOORCO, Avocet, Georgian Bar, Hurst, ALUK, Epwin, Rotox Winmac, Cotswold Architectural Products, WAIB, Glazpart, Arkay Windows, NW Metal Sections, Total Hardware, Window Widgets, MHA Bakertilly, Saint-Gobain, Rapierstar and Kubu.

Individual 1st place – David Pinder – 47 points.

This was a masterclass in organisation – nothing was left to chance and Emplas were well represented with a multitude of staff ensuring all their guests were well looked after and had a great time.  Credit must go to Mira Popovic and Aneta Slowak who took on the task of organising the event, and doing a fantastically good job, while riding herd on those larger-than-life characters of Ryan, Kush and Jody!  Their efforts were recognised with beautiful bouquets of flowers although most would agree that they deserved medals!


The event itself, the Emplas Open 2024, was both a team and individual event and involved a shotgun start for a Stableford competition with the 19 teams distributed around the course.  The beautiful day warranted the distribution of drinks although being force fed a can of gin and tonic as early as the 4th hole could well have influenced my own poor play!  For those looking to keep the calorie count high the snacks and chocolate bars being freely handed out plus a halfway house offering bacon and egg, sausage and egg, or both, and even a ‘greedy boy’ burger with all the trimmings, certainly filled the bill!

Padiham Glass – 1st placed team

With a free-flowing bar filling in any spare time it was, all of a sudden, time for the celebration dinner and to whet the appetite, a masterful film of the day, warts and all, filmed, edited and produced by Nathan Bushell and John Warren of Lasco Marketing was shown at the pre-dinner drinks.  Following the Charity Prize Draw the Prize, the presentation for the golf, masterminded by Ryan Johnson, saw a multitude of prizes handed out.

Team Trophy 1st place:  100 points    John Spiby, Padiham Glass

Jeremy Kemp, Padiham Glass

Ben Sorrell, Padiham Glass

Wayne Wright, Saint-Gobain

Team Trophy 2nd place:  98 points      Lee Stephens, Install Direc

Matthew Stephens, Install Direct

Robert Hilson, Install Direct

David Pinder, Install Direct

Team Trophy 3rd Place:  93 points       James Holloway, Worcester Trade Frames

Bill McCartney, Worcester Trade Frames

Ryan Johnson, Emplas

Alex Young, Exact Windows

Best gross score of the day and champion golfer: 74 shots by James Holloway, Worcester Trade Frames

Individual Prizes

1st Place: 47 points                                          David Pinder, Install Direct

2nd Place: 44 points                                         James Holloway, Worcester Trade Frames

3rd Place: 44 points                                          Wayne Wright, Saint-Gobain

Beat the Pro                                                           Richard Kisgory, Glazexcel

Longest Drive                                                       Josh Wyman, Newglaze

Nearest the Pin                                                   Jamie Crimmings, WSW

Best Dressed Team                                         IWS – Thom Emerson and David Haste.

It must be said that there was some excellent golf played and, equally, a fair amount of rubbish!  However, special mention should be made of Worcester Trade Frames’ James Holloway who, playing off just 9.6, carded a gross 74, that’s 2 over par!  Where’s the handicap committee when you need them!

With the prize presentation duly completed it was the turn of stand-up comedian Jamie Sutherland who, with his acerbic Liverpool wit, ripped into the assembled guests!  I’m still chuckling at some of his gags and interactions with the unfortunate few who caught his eye!  And what of the fund raising for Niamh’s Next Step?  To date, some £11,665 has been raised for this essential charity and, even as I write this, another £1,800 has been collected so the total to date is £13,465 and I suspect this total may well keep climbing.

And so the 2024 Emplas Open was all over bar the shouting and the inevitable night in the bar.  A great time was had by all and the Emplas team gave their guests a wonderful time.  With the promise that the Emplas Open 2025 was already being planned everyone departed with thoughts of what might be next year.  It was Gary Player who said: “The more I work and practice the luckier I seem to get!”  So it’s off to the practice range…..


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