Isette Pearson was born in 1861 and was the mother of Surrey Ladies Golf Club and L.G.U.
She moved with her family to Putney in 1879. She joined Barnes Golf Club thus beginning her association with Surrey Golf. She moved to Wimbledon Golf Club and under her influence the L.G.U. was established in May 1893. Isette Pearson was President of Surrey Ladies Golf Club from 1900-1912.
Miss Pearson was a confirmed spinster, but she set the rumour mongers gossiping in the roaring twenties by marrying twice, when she was well into her fifties.
It was proposed that Surrey should hold a Championship played over two days to determine Surrey's Premier Golfer, Miss Pearson donated a trophy for this event, the Pearson Challenge Cup, but Isette Pearson did not agree with the proposed format. Some felt it should be a scratch event and others thought it would be a handicap event, it was made clear by Miss Pearson that she thought the cup should accommadate all golfers.
She suggested that five or seven players played for The Pearson Challenge Cup, from each club afiliated to Surrey played against each other in a league competition. A format was worked out and by 1910 Middlesex, Hertfordshire and Kent were included.
The rules were tweaked over the years and the format became a team of seven players of handicaps between 15 - 32 from each club playing home and away. The Pearson Trophy was born.
In 2007/8 the format was changed to handicaps 13-32 and matches played off full handicap difference.
E.W.G.A. The Pearson Trophy.
The Pearson Trophy was started in 1910 by Miss Isette Pearson, later Mrs Miller.
She was involved with it until 1914 and was co-founder and secretary of the L.G.U.
Originally, it was for Handicaps from 1 to 24 (Scratch did not exist then) and teams
consisted of an odd number of at least 7 a-side, depending on how many wished to
play on the day.
One suggestion put forward for Herts, Kent, Middlesex and Surrey being the Counties
involved was that they had the easiest rail access to London.
This made travelling to matches more convenient, as it was usually done by train in
At first 12 clubs took part, but by 1991 this had grown to 151.
In 1921 it was suggested that higher handicaps were involved and in 1922 it was
changed to 13 to 30 (30 was then the maximum handicap for L.G.U. competitions).
At the time everyone had a professional caddy and there were complaints about
players using their relatives to save money!
The Pearson Trophy came under the jurisdiction of the L.G.U. and in 1948 there were
E.L.G.A. was founded in 1952 and the Pearson Trophy was handed over to them,
with the E.L.G.A. Secretary attending committee meetings.
In 1955 a new Trophy was purchased, with the magnificent original one going to
the Golf Museum.
The four counties each contributed 50p per club (10/- in those days) and Herts gave
£9, Kent £8.50, Middlesex £13 and Surrey £19. The Trophy cost £40 and the engraving
including the letters E.L.G.A. cost a further £9.50.
In 1959 E.L.G.A. South East were asked to take on the cost of the Pearson Trophy
but they refused. However it was agreed that entry fees could be charged and
it became self-supporting.
Each County appointed its own Manager and Deputy, who were responsible to E.L.G.A.
In 1960 results were sent out and copies sent to E.L.G.A. In 1962 the Pearson Trophy
Managers did their own minutes and the E.L.G.A. secretary no longer attended the
meetings. A treasurer was appointed and in the future reports were sent annually
The Trophy is insured by E.L.G.A. and in 1967 was valued at £200 and although it is
now worth very much more it is insured through them.
In 1969 the Pearson Trophy finally came under the wing of E.L.G.A. (South East).
The Individual counties involved appoint their Manager and Deputies, who give a
report of the years results and activities at the A.G.M. of E.L.G.A. (South East).