Partridge ready for take-off at Senior PGA Professional Championship after nightmare decade

Partridge ready for take-off at Senior PGA Professional Championship after nightmare decade


David Partridge will end an injury and illness-enforced decade’s absence from national tournaments when, flying the flag for Prostate UK, he competes in next week’s Senior PGA Professional Championship.

What turned out to be a nightmare 10 years for the Birmingham-born pro began within days of him qualifying for the 2013 PGA Professional Championship at Slaley Hall.

Partridge, 53, recalled: “I was practising for Slaley Hall when I fractured my spine. I hit a shot and felt a searing pain in my back. It transpired I had a stress fracture in one of my vertebrae and two blown discs. I couldn’t walk or stand up; I was literally crawling on my hands and knees and was in absolute agony.

“It took six to eight months for things to improve but not enough to play golf again. My consultant asked me if I had another career to fall back on and advised me to stop playing.”

Heeding the advice, Partridge retrained as a freelance sports photographer and worked for Getty, Rex Features and British Cycling. The onset of Covid and subsequent lockdowns meant the work dried up but worse was to follow when he was diagnosed with prostate cancer, albeit fortuitously.

“I was making breakfast and knocked a pan of boiling water over,” he explained. “I had third degree burns on my left hand and foot and was treated in hospital.

“When the dressing was changed a week later my wife observed my hand was a strange colour. So, I went back to my doctor to have the hand checked and during the conversation said this accident wouldn’t have happened if I hadn’t been so tired due to getting up seven or eight times a night to have a pee.

“That was enough for him to test me. My PSA test was through the roof and my prostate was enlarged. Tablets didn’t have any effect and an MRI scan revealed I had an aggressive cancer which, fortunately, hadn’t spread.”

Partridge underwent a prostatectomy and having returned to golf as head pro at Cricket St Thomas Golf Club in Somerset, he is on a mission to urge middle-aged men to be aware of the disease and get tested.

“Apart from peeing a lot, I felt perfectly healthy,” he continued. “Prostate cancer can just creep up on you and I’m trying to get that across to people. Since spreading the message five or six of my friends have been tested – one of them was diagnosed and is being managed.

“It’s not aggressive or bad enough to have treatment so thankfully through my nagging him to get tested it was discovered he had prostate cancer and it’s being managed. If I can encourage others to get tested, I will.”

In that respect, Partridge is working in conjunction with Prostate UK, a PGA Partner, and his golf bag at Romford and West Essex next week will bear the charity’s logo. In addition, should he earn any prize money from this event or any in the future, he will donate a percentage of it to the charity.

“It’s possibly a little premature to talk about prize money,” he admitted. “I’ve played just once competitively since returning to golf. That was in a pro-am at Minchinhampton last week – prior to that my last round in a competition was in that qualifier at Little Aston almost to the day 10 years ago. But whatever happens next week I’m looking forward to catching up with some old friends.”

Those include Liam Bond, the champion in 2021 and runner up last year, who will be among the favourites in the 240-strong field to claim the £6,000 winner’s cheque. In addition, the champion plus those finishing in the top 15 will qualify to play in the PGA Seniors Championship.

CLICK HERE to find out more about the 2023 Senior PGA Professional Championship.


Our Partners

  • Air IT
  • Banyan Tree
  • The Belfry
  • Coca-Cola
  • EVC
  • FootJoy
  • Gleneagles
  • PING
  • St. James's Place
  • Therabody
  • Titleist