WHV Laws Of Constitution

Ref: 2007-1
Ref: 2007-2

A vote is required for any amendment or extension to the constitution or for any rule change, arbitration or executive decision made under its remit, unless the constitution itself or properly legislated rules expressly provide for an exception.

Where a vote is required it must be first proposed by an eligible member and then seconded by a different e ligible member else it is unlawful.

Vote Validity and Absences
A voting result is valid if all eligible participants were forewarned . If all eligible persons are present within the immediate physical locale on a Society event they are considered forewarned and a straw-poll is valid . Otherwise notification is required to forewarn and such notification must be timely (7 days in advance) and appropriate (the eligible member would be reasonably expected to receive the communication).
Prospective voters are automatically ineligible by Absence . Absence means that any individual not attending a society event, or missing the timely and appropriate communication, is ineligible for that vote and can not retrospectively influence the outcome.

Carried Votes
• A Returned vote must be unambiguously either for or against the proposition or in the case of an Election Vote a single candidate.
• A Simple Majority Vote (SMV) is carried when more of the Returned and Eligible votes are in favour of a particular proposition.
• A Qualified Majority Vote (QMV) is carried by a minimum of two thirds of Returned and Eligible votes.

Membership can be proposed and seconded by any Member at any Time. New Members are appointed by a QMV of the Board 2007-3 .
Players introduced at official WHV tournaments are automatically considered members unless they do not wish it or any member of the board objects. 2007-3.1
Membership grants right of entry to any Society event, and a vote on any proposal opened to membership. Members have a constitutional right to propose, second and vote in Votes of Confidence and Election Votes.

Elected Positions
Nominations may only arise at a General meeting. The President decides whether any arbitrary meeting is General. There is always a General meeting at the End of Season Society bash (Annual General Meeting, AGM) 2007-4 . All elected board positions are vacated at this meeting and a new board is elected. There is no bar on previous members being re-elected to the same, or a different, board position. All members are entitled to any voting proposition during the meeting.

Board Membership Votes
Individuals may nominate (propose) themselves for election. Unopposed candidates are automatically elected. All WHV Golf society members have a single vote. Where competition arises, each round of balloting eliminates the candidate with the lowest amount of votes. If candidates with least votes have an equal amount they are both eliminated. Where the vote is tied across the remaining candidates, the President casts the deciding vote.

Votes of Confidence
Should the vote not be carried by SMV all elected positions become vacant immediately, an Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) is held and re-election must start forthwith.

Other Votes
All other proposed votes are passed by Qualified Majority, considered under the constitution to mean a minimum Two-thirds Majority of Returned and Eligible votes.
As an example, suppose vote membership consists of 8 persons, with 8 returns at least 6 votes must be for the proposition, with 6 returns at least 4 votes.

Eligible members may appeal on grounds of polling validity or unlawfulness in proposal. Any WHV Society Member may appeal a proposal, rule change, or direction on grounds of unfairness. Appeals are decided upon by the Chairman after allowing for representations by the individual, the Constitutional Advocate and the Players' Representative.

Board Constitution

Executive members are entitled to vote on a board decision and any committee of which they are a member.

Life Member
President and Founder

Elected Appointments
Tour Director
Handicap Secretary
Constitutional Advocate
Player's Representative 1

Constitutional Appointments 2
Claret Jug Holder
Competition Sponsor 3

1. The Player's Representative must be nominated after all other elected positions have been filled. Board Members are not entitled to propose or vote for the Player's Representative unless their appointment is solely Constitutional.

2. Should a Life or Elected member also hold a constitutional appointment they are only entitled to a single vote.

3. Competition Sponsors are constitutionally appointed for the duration of the event they Sponsor, including any social activity associated with the event, and any decision making during its preparation and debrief.

Society Rules of Tour

Should a member or guest breach a Rule of Tour they may be subject to any penalty the board decides. This may range from the requirement to pay a forfeit or fine through to exclusion from Events or even the permanent removal of membership.

T1 Composition
T1.1 The tour comprises of four Majors and an unknown number of Minors.

T1.2 Minor events
T1.2.1 Minor events must be forewarned to the entire membership and can be proposed by any Member.
T1.2.2 At least 6 WHV members must have agreed to play, no matter how many actually make it on the day, for an event to qualify as minor.

T1.3 Promotion to, or Demotion from, Major Status is a board decision that can only be made during the close season prior to the Tour.

T1.4 The tour period is 1 st January to 30 th November.

T2 Ranking Points
All Tour events lead to WHV Golf Society Ranking Points (WGSRPs). The member with the most WGSRPs is declared the winner of the WHV Order of Merit at the end of the season bash.

T2.1 To qualify for the WHV Order of Merit a member must have played in 2 majors that tour. Members are entitled to appeal to the board for clemency if extenuating circumstances have made this commitment impossible.

T2.2 Minor Events score as follows

T2.2.1 1st place scores (2 x number of Members actually playing) points

T2.2.2 Each subsequent place scores 3/4 [previously ½] the points of the previous place with a minimum points score for any competitor of a quarter of the winning points score. For a 10 player minor this would mean scores of 20, 15, 11, 8, 6, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4.
[Deleted T2.2.3 : The remaining members in the field score a point for turning up.]

T2.2.4 In Mutliball competitions, the winner is the person who won most holes with their ball etc.

T2.3 Major Events score as follows

T2.3.1 The points allocated to Minor Events (T2.2) are doubled [Previously trebled].

T2.3.2 There is an assumption that at least 6 members play no matter who turns up, i.e. the minimum point allocation to the winner is 36 24.

T2.3.4 All points are further doubled [Remains the same because Major multiple has been reduced to doubled rather than trebled] for the Claret Jug Weekend.

T2.2 Minor Events score as follows

T2.2.1 1st place scores (2 x number of Members actually playing) points

T2.2.2 Each subsequent place scores 1/2 the points of the previous place to a maximum of 1/2 the members in the field. (e.g. 4 or 5 members - top 2 only; 6 or 7 members - top 3 only; 8 or 9 top 4 etc.)

T2.2.3 The remaining members in the field score a point for turning up.

T2.2.4 In Mutliball competitions, the winner is the person who won most holes with their ball etc.

T2.3 Major Events score as follows

T2.3.1 The points allocated to Minor Events (T2.2) are trebled.

T2.3.2 There is an assumption that at least 6 members play no matter who turns up, i.e. the minimum point allocation to the winner is 36.

T2.3.4 All points are further doubled for the Claret Jug Weekend.

T3 Competeition Reports
T3.1 The competition report must be written by the winner and submitted to the board within a fortnight of the victory or the WGSRPs earned may be forfeited.

The minimum constituent parts of a match report shall be defined as follows:

* A brief description of what took place at the event
* Details of all prize winners, including cash prize amounts and any other prizes awarded
* A minimum of 250 words of text

T4 Lingo
T4.1 Where appropriate, all written WHVGS communications must refer to 'Stapleforth' points and 'Mutliball' format instead of alternative descriptions members may have heard elsewhere. Members are further encouraged to use this correct terminology in conversation during Society events.

T5 Apparel
T5.1 All members must wear an official WHVGS shirt at events unless explicitly authorised otherwise by the board. If a member has lost, forgotten or mislaid their shirt they must purchase another one.

T5.1.1 If there is no shirt available, the Member must still pay the full purchase price.

T5.2 A member may wear an official blue WHVGS shirt at any time. The Orange (King of the Majors) and yellow (Tour Leader) may not be worn outside of Tour events.
T5.3 Official WHVGS shirts must never be re-sold, loaned, leased or donated to another member or outsider.

T6 Funding
T6.1 Funds are generated under the model devised by the Secretary. This is currently a sustainable formula based on competition entrance fees.

T7 Socials
T7.1 The End of Season Social is a compulsory event organised by the President for a date after the competition calendar finishes in December.

Competition Rules and Scoring

The Rules of Tour supersede any other formal law. Where they don't apply, Local Rules and the Royal and Ancient Rules of Golf are the sole authorities in that order, with the following exceptions:

R1 Recording of Scores
R1.1 Scores can be recorded on a single unsigned card by a single person if everyone within the recorder's playing group accedes.

R2 'Gimmees' and 'Tap-Ins'
R2.1 The Competition Sponsor may allow 'gimmees'. He will stipulate the conditions under which they are given, but a player may never grant a 'gimmee' to themselves or someone on their own team.

R2.2 On the accedence of another player whose ball lies off the green, a player may 'tap-in' from the green while the flag is in place in order to not slow the game down.

R3 Sharing of Clubs
R3.1 The Competition Sponsor may allow the sharing of clubs, including the borrowing of clubs for shots, under situations other than those allowed by rule 4.4 of the R&A Rules of Golf, but must stipulate the conditions that allow this.

R4 Lost Balls
R4.1 If a player considers there is a significant chance their ball in play may not be found, they must play a provisional ball.

R4.2 In accordance with the Rules of Golf unless a ball is declared lost by a player before being discovered by any player, that is the ball in play and any replayed shot was provisional and is now dead.

R4.3 If a ball is looked for, declared lost and no provisional was played, the player has the option of dropping the ball at a position where the ball would most likely have finished due to the Strength and Direction of the shot.

R4.3.1 The player must have expended appropriate effort and care to look for the ball.

R4.3.2 The player scores as if his replayed shot had landed at this location. This is the equivalent of a 2 stroke penalty - i.e. If the ball was lost from the tee then the shot following the drop will be the 4 th; if the ball was lost from the second shot on the hole it will be the 5 th , etc.

R4.3.3 The ball can never be dropped in a cut of the course where the 'lost' ball would have been plainly visible; e.g. fairway or first cut rough. The ball must always be dropped on the nearest surface where loss is likely.

R4.3.4 If the lost area is a copse or similar where there will be natural obstacles to the flight of the next shot, the player must lob the ball into this area, attempting to mimic the flight of the lost ball to ensure the lie is fair in terms of obstruction to the next shot.

R4.3.5 If the group agree the ball has been pilfered or moved by a 3 rd party then the drop is allowed on any surface without penalty

R4.3.6 If the strength and direction would have most likely placed the shot in a Hazard or Out of Bounds, then the usual scoring and placement options apply under the Rules of Golf or Local Rules.

Constitutional Amendments in 2007

2007-1: With the ratification of the Constitution by the President and Founder the section 'Status Quo: Constitution In Absentia' was removed.

Status Quo: Constitution In Absentia
Until the formation of the formal constitution (see ratification below) the composition and status of the WHV tour and associated events is under the sole discretion of Professor Ash.

2007-2: With the ratification of the Constitution by the President and Founder the section 'Ratification' was removed.
This constitution becomes ratified on a passed vote by the WHV Golf Society Initiation Committee. The composition of the WHV Golf Society Initiation Committee is decided on by the WHV Golf Society President and Founder ("The President"). The WHV Golf Society Initiation Committee is disbanded following the ratification and serves no further purpose.
Initial Organisation
(a) WHV Golf Society Membership ("Membership")
The President is automatically a WHV Golf Society Member ("Member"). Individuals formally in the disbanded WHV Golf Society Initiation Committee are also automatically Members. The President asks for proposals of further Members within a defined time-frame, for which the eligible voting membership is all current Members.
(b) Board of Directors ("Board")
The President is automatically on the Board.
The President asks for the Nomination and Seconding of all Elected WHV Society positions with the exception of the Player's Representative in the form of a valid poll of all Members.
Should any of these positions not be nominated and seconded, the President can directly elect a Member to undertake that position. He is entitled to remove Membership from individuals that refuse to take a Board position under these circumstances. Once all such positions are filled, nominations are taken from remaining Members to elect the Player's Representative.
Constitutional appointments to the Board are in effect as soon as the initial constitution is ratified.
Initial Rules
The basic Rules are ratified with the constitution. Specifics must be delivered at the earliest possible convenience by the bodies or persons detailed with that responsibility by the constitution.

2007-3: At a board meeting following the Brissle Open it was decided to simply the membership structure: Associate Membership was removed from the constitution to provide a single layer.

2007-3.1: Mr C Gregory writes " In the spirit of trying to promote inclusion, it was also agreed that new players may be introduced to any tournament by any member and be considered WHVGS members from this point provided that no member of the WHVGS Board objects to their inclusion. This process will be managed by exception so assent will be assumed provided that no objections are raised. Should an exception be raised, the matter will be decided by an immediate QMV of those WHV Board members present. Should the vote be positive, the player will be afforded full membership rights with immediate effect. Should the vote be negative, the player will generally be permitted to play within one of the WHVGS groupings although will be afforded no membership rights and therefore will not qualify to formally participate in the competition being played. Should there be insufficient Board members present to form a quorum for the vote, then the majority vote will be assumed to stand until such a time as the next QMV may be possible. The quorate WHVGS Board will not however necessarily be bound to ratify the former decision."

2007-4: At a board meeting following the Brissle Open it was decided to agree the tour period as being January until November. This made it appropriate to move the Annual General Meeting to the End of Season social in December.

2007-5: Mr W Spittle had a vote carried before the P.E.A that allows the wearing of Blue WHV golf shirts at any time, removing the previous restriction of T5.2 " A member may not wear an official WHVGS shirt at other times without first seeking the express permission of the Board.".

2008 Constitutional Amendments

2008-1: Reduction in Board composition

As 2007 was such a pivotal year for the WHVGS and there was a requirement for an extended Board, to ensure that the Constitution was drawn up in a suitable manner, to stand the society in good stead for a long and successful future. During the 2007 AGM, it was concluded that the Board should now be streamlined and a number of the positions were combined. The changes to the Board structure are detailed below:

President and Founder :
As per 2007, the President's principal duties are to raise the Society's profile within society polite and impolite. Management analysts had questioned whether Baxter's propensity to get involved with the minutiae will reconcile easily with the demands of being a figurehead, but such concerns are unfounded.

Captain (Formerly the Chairman):
As per duties of the Chairman in 2007, with the responsibility to oversee executive decision by the Board and in the case of the 2008 Captain, to learn about golf and the rules of Golf from P Ash (Professor), who in 2007 taught him all about rule 4.4 of the laws of golf for which he is forever in his debt.

In addition the Captain duties include that of the 2007 Handicap Secretary. These responsibilities are to ensure that the WHV handicap methodology provides for fair competition during Tour competition. Initial indications are that the 2008 handicap calculation method will help to develop the competitiveness of the Tour, although Millers believes he is on course for a clean sweep and there is a belief amongst the Members that Prof P Ash should really be playing off 30+ to stand any chanc and should be offered a "w@nker's 'cap".

Tour Director:
As per duties of the TD in 2007, the key responsibility is to implement executive decision making to ensure the continued vitality and integrity of the Tour.

In 2008 his duties formally include the former responsibilities of the Secretary position, which were to manage the Society's funds to ensure its solvency and plan for its future maintained financial stability. Austin did jack all in respect of this and the TD did his best in 2007, although there were some financial irregularities at the AGM, when it became apparent that the TD's wife had had her hands in the "Christmas Club funds" and will hereafter be referred to Arthur Fowler. In 2008 the Board expects a documented financial model for the future of the WHVGS and lock on the petty cash box

Player's Representative:
As in 2008, the responsibility of the Player's Representative is to protect the interest of the average member during the decision making process. Hopefully this year he can be bothered to read the Almanac, therefore actually knowing the laws he is protecting)

*NB: Counsel / Constitutional Advocate: the position of Constitutional Advocate has been removed from the Board, but Prof R P Ash, will remain as Counsel to the Board in respect of Constitutional issues and will advise the board on all matters of constitutional impact during the decision making process and to maintain the Society's Constitution and Rules.

2008-2: Marking of the longest drive and nearest the pin, and acknowledgement of any another spot competitions

The position of the ball must be marked and suitably identified as the current leader of the spot prize competition, before the player walks away from the position where the ball has landed having played his next shot.

2009 Amendments and Updates

Prize for the Order of Merit winner

Proposed for Tour Director to procure a suitable trophy up to a maximum value of £50 from 2009 tour income. Trophy then to be awarded and returned during each AGM.


2008 Almanac to be drafted by the Captain with agreed constitutional changes incorporated. Draft then to be approved by Board and issued to the Society before the opening Tour event. Captain then to maintain Almanac during 2009 and forward to Simon for publication on the website to include revised handicaps at least one week prior to each Tour event.

Note to Board – the Almanac will continue to be the one definitive WHVGS record and the Constitutional rules will continue to be contained within it. There is therefore no separate document pertaining to the WHVGS Constitution.


At the start of each Tour year, the incoming Captain (or other Board member given the Tour handicapping responsibilities) has the option to propose an increase or decrease the starting handicaps of individual Members based on the prior year's closing handicap. The Member concerned will then have to opportunity to present their case to the Board, who will either approve or reject the Proposal.

In order to promote attendance at events, a handicap increase mechanic is to be trialled in order to prevent regular members being continually penalised for competing.

Handicap increases of 0.2 for a Minor and 0.4 for a Major will be given to those competitors whose stapleforth points for that tournament are below 1 standard deviation from the mean – This calculation will be performed by the Prof, probably not in his head.


Proposal to remove the detail appointing the previous Claret Jug winner to the Board and also the removal transient appointment of competition organisers/sponsors. Proposed to be adopted provided that the Captain ensures that the competition sponsor's governance rights over their competition are adequately protected elsewhere within the constitution (such as format of event, matchday scoring, sharing of clubs, gimmees/tap-ins, nearest the pin/longest hole; adoption of impromptu prizes/forfeits [e.g. hulk, krupnik/niblik challenge should it arise again] into WHVGS legend).

Voting at AGM

It is proposed that all Society members (including any past or present competitors) are invited to the End of Season Social and AGM although that the following rulings apply:

  • Only the current Board and those members who have qualified to be considered within the Order of Merit (as currently defined within the Almanac) will have the ability to vote on any motions.
  • Any member present at any part of the End of Season Social who has not qualified to be considered within the Order of Merit will be expected to make a financial contribution to the kitty for the evening at a level agreed by the Tour Director and President.

Definition of membership of the WHVGS

The agreed membership of the WHVGS shall be according to a record which shall be kept and maintained by the Tour Director. This list shall include all past or present competitors. Membership of the Society will not automatically lapse although the Board may propose amendments to the list as considered appropriate.

The membership shall be split into the following levels:

  • Full members – a full member for any tour year shall be all current Board members and any other member who qualified to be considered within the Order of Merit and so earned the right to vote at the AGM (regardless of whether or not they attended to the AGM) for the preceding tour year.
  • Standard members - a standard member for any tour year shall be any other member of the membership list kept and maintained by the Tour Director and shall include all past or present competitors. Standard members may include those who do not take part in the Tour but who have proven a historic or current commitment to the WHV cause.
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