ON January 2, Brynhill buried one of its favourite sons, when the great John Collins was laid to rest.

These days the term legend is bandied about without much thought or merit, in John’s case however it is truly appropriate.

In 1971, when junior golfers were tolerated rather than encouraged, two Brynhill members, Digby Lloyd and Laurie Pugh, formed a junior section.

The solid foundations they were to lay were just the start, because when they handed over the reins to John in 1975 they weren’t just passing the baton to someone who’d pop up the club for a few hours on a Saturday to oversee the junior section, they were bringing in a guy who lived ate and slept junior golf.

Organising everything from coaching to transport John, together with the help of Carole Allen, was instrumental in bringing through dozens of golfers who'd go on to win regional and national honours, indeed three of Johns protégés, Stephen Dodd, Kyron Sullivan and Rhys Davies went onto play in the European Tour, with Dodd partnering Bradley Dredge to win the Golf World Cup for Wales.

As a course Brynhill has always punched above its weight, it is after all the best test of golf in the area but the amount of success John helped this club achieve is bordering on the ridiculous.

With a conveyor belt of junior talent spanning decades the Barry club saw its members win numerous Glamorgan Junior Team and individual championships, Welsh Boys Championships, British Junior and Senior Amateur Championships, Welsh Girls Championships the list is endless and the common denominator in all these victories was John.

Notably, Stephen Dodd won British Amateur Championships, Calvin O’Carroll British Boys Championships and Iestyn Taylor Welsh Amateur Championships, all won in close proximity to each other.

The inevitable happened and John was asked to assist first with the county and ultimately with the Welsh junior set up, Brynhill of course remained his first love.

So thank you John and rest in peace knowing your legacy lives on.

John was also awarded the Sir Michael Bonallack Award for his services to Junior Golf from the R&A.

Any juniors interested in taking up golf please contact either Nicky in the office or Matt in the pro shop on 01446 720277.

Junior membership subscription is free at Brynhill.