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Costa Blanca 41 Club
​​A place in the sun for the Ex-Round Tabler​​

History 2011 - 12




​​​​As a DJ might say announcing a top record that had not come up through the charts, “straight in at number 1” came new chairman Bob Oxley, due to Peter Whitehead’s ongoing medical treatment in the UK. New VC was Phil Fraser, with Ted Homewood and Jim Thomas elected Treasurer and Secretary respectively at the 2011 AGM. Born within cheering distance of Sheffield Wednesday’s ground, like most boys from his end of the city, he disliked Sheffield United, so it was ironic that in his late teens/early twenties he found himself working the turnstiles of both clubs on alternate Saturdays.
​​’From school, I joined the English Steel Corporation as a Commercial trainee, spending two years doing an HND in Business Studies and working in various office sections including Transport, Personnel, Purchasing and Accounts. I elected to return to Sales, but after a year, I decided that I could do better ‘on the road’, so I joined the Beecham Group promoting toiletries and proprietary medicines in non-chemist outlets. The company moved me to the East Midlands to take over grocery key accounts, after which I left to go into management in Nottingham with the ‘Wonderloaf’ bakery division of Spillers.

Over the next 16 years I worked for a number of ‘Fast Moving Consumer Goods’ (FMCG) companies with responsibility for National Accounts. I got married, had three children and moved house three times, eventually ending up in Buckinghamshire. I joined Sawbridgeworth Round Table, then, due to a job relocation, transferred to High Wycombe, where I was both Chairman and President of Table, then Chairman of Wycombe Old Tablers and a member of High Wycombe 41 Club. Mirroring me, my wife Joan also became Chairman of her Ladies Circle, then Circle Area 13, each year after me’.

Andrew Johnson hands over to Bob  Oxley

​​‘As Chairman of RT Area 25, Thames Valley, I was presenting the Charter to a new club in Thatcham when I was offered a job by the inaugural chairman’s guest. I declined, but a month later, I was made redundant. I followed up the offer, but was not happy with its credibility. However, I was sufficiently interested in working in the industry, and I have spent the last 25 years in financial services, both as an independent in the UK, and over the last 8 years, taking over an existing business here in Spain.’
A ‘Hi/Bye’ dinner was held at the Montevideo Restaurant in Benitachell. Calpe hosted the Boule challenge, and we had a paella party at Casa Ogden, a visit to the desalination plant in Javea with lunch at L’Hort, and a car Treasure Hunt with lunch at the Montgo, Javea. Ladies Night was at La Tosca, Javea, and Christmas lunch at the Salamanca, Jalon.

A small number of members attended the Cluster in Gibraltar, with a ‘pirate night’ welcome party and an aborted caves tour, (due to a missing key), following the AGM on Saturday. Undaunted, we remained in the 
​​hotel to watch the Rugby World Cup, followed by the final night party with excellent food and music, and no border problems on Sunday morning re-entering Spain. New member Bob Gordon and wife Sylvi were welcomed to the Club.

We ended the Club year with a visit to a bodega in Murla and lunch at the Piscina, Parcent; a visit to the Iris Gardens in Pinos with lunch at L’Amancera, Teulada, and an almond blossom tour with lunch at the Cooperativa, Parcent. The Charter Dinner was held at El Elefante, Javea.

The club lost two more past chairmen, founder member Jack Cope  

Iris Gardnes in Pinos
​​and ’father of the club’ Tony Ogden. Jack died age 92 peacefully at home in the UK. Tony had not been well for some weeks after he took ill on a cruise around South America, and died in Javea.   A well liked member not only of our club and Javea Golf Club, but by many in his local community, and amongst the Iberian ex-Tablers clubs.

He had made himself indispensible in dealing with the club’s publicity and member communications. This ‘Club History’ is a legacy to his quarter century of writing newsletters, which it is hoped will be continued by future members.

Ted Homewood stepped in to continue the newsletter, but the website, maintained externally at the time, was largely ignored. A bench presented by Tony’s friends, 41 Club and Golf Club members, sits on Javea golf course as a permanent memory of his contribution to the community.

Many Spanish property owners have their own unique approach to recession. They increase the rents to their tenants, even though the shops and restaurants renting their property, now with less 
Tony Ogden
Chairman  1990-91
Jack Cope
Chairman  1998-99
​​customers, are struggling to make a living. Due to redevelopment, Bon Appetit had closed down, and the Club moved to L’Hort, Javea. Then the landlord there increased the rent and L’Hort closed. In desperation, the Club tried the Bull & Bear, Benitachell, Javea Golf Club and the Montgo, Javea, before finally settling at Chez Urs.

On a positive note, past chairman Peter Twelftree recalls a bookshop that for 30 years had been located in the Port opposite the Police Station that was renovated by the landlord who then hiked up the rent. Forced to relocate, the tenant found larger premises in the pedestrian alley near the Sabadell Bank. With better browsing, an affordable purchase price, generous ‘no-time-limit return re-sale’, and some real ‘gems’ on display, Peter recommends a visit.

                                                                                                                                               …to be continued…

This is the seventeenth of a series of articles on the history and development of the Costa Blanca 41 Club. It is being compiled from a large number of newsletters recovered from files held by Tony Ogden, who played a major part in the development of the Club and later in the development of the group of clubs now known as the ‘Iberian Cluster’. All the text above in italics is directly quoted from newsletters published at the time, and the web posting and additional illustration images are provided by Gordon Macnab.

Ted Homewood/Bob Oxley

                                                   Home Page

Ted Homewood
Chairman 2005-06

Bob Oxley
Chairman  2011-12

​​Another instalment in the history of our Club​​​​