Harkett dies at Harpenden home
HERTFORDSHIRE has lost one of its best-known sporting personalities in the death on Friday of Clive Harkett at his Harpenden home. Aged 69, he had been in poor health for some time, but was present at the annual dinner of the Herts Golf Union only two
HERTFORDSHIRE has lost one of its best-known sporting personalities in the death on Friday of Clive Harkett at his Harpenden home.
Aged 69, he had been in poor health for some time, but was present at the annual dinner of the Herts Golf Union only two weeks earlier.
It was in golf and rugby that that he excelled, both in playing the game and being involved in administration. In golf, as a member of the Welwyn Garden City club, he played a major part in the progress of one of the club's junior players, Nick Faldo, and it was Nick who said: "He did so much to inspire confidence in me as I was moving towards 1975, the year my career was to take off."
As captain of the club that year it was through his efforts that the club agreed within the rules of golf to sponsor Nick as he progressed from county to national amateur success, before turning professional in 1976.
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The Faldo connection is just one phase of the outstanding service Clive gave, not only to the juniors but to all aspects of amateur golf, first as county junior organiser, then for three years from 1987 as president of the Herts Golf Union and for 13 years until retiring in 2004 in the demanding role of county secretary. He was also captain of the Herts Society of Golf Captains.
Clive was 19 when he arrived in Welwyn Garden City in 1957 from Pembrokeshire Continued from back page.
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where he was born, joining ICI, and stayed with the firm for 35 years before retiring in 1992. Working in the marketing section of ICI Plastics, he went to Kenya in 1964 for the company and played rugby with the Kenya Harlequins, becoming captain and playing against the visiting Harlequins from England. In golf, then 5 handicap, he joined Karen Country Club and played at Royal Nairobi and Muthaiga clubs.
In December 1975 Clive, as captain, hosted a celebration dinner at the Mannicotts club to mark Faldo's exceptional final year in amateur golf, the top table displaying seven trophies he had won - among them the Herts Boys and Herts County Championship - and Clive added another when he presented Nick with the Club Championship Cup which he had also won. And Nick said of him: "He had a big influence on us juniors - he realised there were youngsters with talent who needed encouraging."
Clive always had the support of his wife Peggy, who became known throughout the county as she was by his side at all the county tournaments, helping him check the players' cards, and her death three years ago was a blow from which he never recovered.
On his retirement as county secretary he said: "It has been a great life - I have enjoyed every minute of it.