Formed in 1906, Hartlepool Golf Club appointed their first Lady Captain in 1923, when Mrs E Whittington took office.
This year, the Club has appointed 22-year-old Brittany Hill as the Lady Captain and in doing so have bestowed the honour and responsibility to the youngest ever player in their long history.
Hartlepool resident Brittany began her golfing with her father Graham from the age of five, when he would take her along to his practice sessions.
As a young teenager, she joined the ranks of Hartlepool’s junior golfers as one of the few young girl members.
Taken under the wing of lady member Mandy Crawford, Brittany began to show real promise on the course and it wasn’t long before she was playing in the Ladies’ Winter League with a handicap of 36.
Brittany has also represented both the county junior and county ladies’ teams.
After attending York University, where she studied business practise and accounting, Brittany has taken a trainee tax accountant position with the firm of Cousins & Co. in Middlesbrough.
Her rise to captaincy came from an idea her father had when talking to the men’s captain Neal Thornley.
Brittany said, “When I heard the idea I felt a bit reluctant, being so young and uncomfortable with public speaking.”
However, as the idea spread, it was the then lady captain, Brenda Corney who encouraged Brittany and offered her the role of vice-captain.
Although still hesitant Brittany said: “I saw how Linda had breathed some new life into the club and I thought why not give it a go? I didn’t want to pass up the opportunity and the honour”.
“Everyone was really supportive throughout the club and even though my hesitancy about speaking in public was still in my mind, my parents were very reassuring in helping me allay my fears.
“My acceptance speech in front of the club members went really well and I now have more confidence.”
“It’s going to be an exciting year and I’m really looking forward to the challenges and opportunities that will be coming along with the honour of being Lady Captain.”
Certainly the youngest to hold a captaincy in our region, the question was raised as to whether Brittany may be the youngest lady captain in the country.
Lyndsey Hewison of England Golf said: “I haven’t heard of anyone younger. I have come across two club captains, both male, who are aged 23 and 22.
“I’m sure Brittany is helping to change perceptions of golf.”