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ThisWeekinFM’s Celebrity Open – In Aid of Centre Algarve

ThisWeekinFM’s Celebrity Open – In Aid of Centre Algarve
14 October 2021 | Updated 10 August 2022

ThisWeekinFM, together with Clarion.Golf, got back to their annual golfing event after a year hiatus during the pandemic. The event raised £3.5K for Centre Algarve, a charity holiday destination that provides tailored relaxation for people facing everyday difficulties, and their supportive family or friends. 

Woburn Golf Club was busy with attendees and a great day of golf and networking was had, and you can check out all the team photos here. Participants were also treated to a three-course dinner accompanied by some hilarious comedy from host, Aaron James.




The Winners


Nearest the Pin – 3rd Hole – Jake Venn (Grade One), 22 inches



Picture: a photograph of Jake Venn (Nearest the pin and individual winner) and Laurence Allen


Longest Drive – 15th Hole – Scott Fixter (Defluo), 328 yards



Picture: a photograph of Scott Fixter (Longest drive and individual runner-up) and Laurence Allen


Individual Runner-Up –  Scott Fixter (Defluo) (10 h’cap), 43 points

Individual Winner  – Jake Venn (Grade One) (18 h’cap), 46 points

Team Runner-Up – Grade One (Stephen Corrigan, Jake Venn, Jamie Chaney and Mickey Hazzard), 93 points (42 pts back 9)

Team Winner –  FSI (Jacob Tappin, Chris Naven, Nick Hardy and Jon Clark), 93 points (46 pts back 9)


In Aid of Centre Algarve


All proceeds from the silent auction and a portion of the team sign-up fee went to Centre Algarve in Portugal. Centre Algarve is mainland Europe’s only dedicated holiday centre designed to provide a range of facilities for people with special needs to enjoy. Careful thought and design were given to creating a holiday centre that is fun and totally accessible on the ground floor level to wheelchairs and special equipment.



Picture: a wet room at the Centre Algarve


As implied, accessibility is the main focus in the building design at Centre Algarve so standard gentle slopes and grab rails are just the start – the lower floor has been specially designed to ensure full easy access to every part of the centre. All doorways are a minimum of 90cm wide and have no steps or thresholds that need to be negotiated.

The extensive facilities include:

  • The discovery centre – containing a classroom, sensory and soft play areas, a kitchen and dining area, a large lounge or event space and an outside terrace
  • Sensory and vegetable gardens
  • A swimming pool and jacuzzi
  • Animal interaction experiences
  • Restaurant catering

These are built to the highest standards to be accommodating and comforting for all. For example, the swimming pool has an immersible hoist with flat tabled bed, enabling access to the water by fully controllable means. The 11,000 square foot patio and tiled walking areas are wide and spacious again without steps or obstructions. They also offer fully electric-hoist covered hygiene rooms with wet room and sit-down showers with handles. Raised flower and vegetable beds allow wheelchair users to enjoy the touch, feel and smell of the plants.


A Mission to Provide for Everyone


Founder and CEO of the charity 24 x 7 Special Needs Holiday Trust, Andy Mahoney, discovered that there was not a single holiday centre in Europe of this kind. After being heavily involved in the Special Needs field for many years, and often arranging free transportation for charity fun day trips he was approached by a member of staff that is now a Trustee, enquiring if he knew of any facilities that would cater for her fourteen-year-old daughter whom she had never been able to take away. Andy soon established that Special Needs Schools, Centres and families alike all struggle to arrange educational trips, find short breaks and take holidays abroad due to a lack of facilities across the whole of Mainland Europe.

He saw for himself that many laid claim they could modify rooms or facilities but in truth this often meant that compromise had to be made with beds, shower or bathrooms and other sometimes basic or modest requirements – very often it meant that any interaction with other guests or holiday makers was in many cases almost imposable for the family.

It took four years and the dedication of over 480 unbelievable volunteers to create Centre Algarve from the original building that Andy found. Local products have been used where possible including Patio Tiles made 4 km away by hand. Even the doors and windows were made in the local village by the same man that made the original ones 30 years ago.

For more information about Centre Algarve, please see their website.

Picture: an aerial photograph of the Duke's Course at Woburn

Article written by Bailey Sparkes | Published 14 October 2021


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