The 1991 Masters Champion and World number one golfer for 50 straight weeks in 91-92 is totally committed to Barbados. Ian Woosnam lives most of the time in Jersey but like the snowbirds, when the cold starts to bite, he can’t resist his lovely home at Royal Westmoreland in St James.
            This amazing golfer, the only Welshman to win the Masters, fell in love with Barbados years ago. He came from humble beginnings on the farm to being the best in the world. Practicing in his garage to hit the lid of the bin, travelling to tournaments in an old VW van, eating cold baked beans so he could afford to enter…These are the sacrifices of someone who is driven.
            The rest is history! ‘Woosie’ as he is affectionately known, is a household name with anyone that knows about golf.  He has played in 8 Ryder Cups but his most famous Ryder Cup Win as Captain at the magnificent K Club in Ireland will remain with him forever as a great moment in his life. Along with winning the Masters at Augusta of course!
            Ian will be 62 and golf is still a passion, training young hopefuls and playing in various competitions around the world. He does have other ambitions and thankfully Barbados is the beneficiary.
            Ian’s daughters both have the Type 1 Diabetes disease. One of them, Rebecca, was diagnosed by Barbadian Dr. Oscar Jordan about 20 years ago when she was 10.  In a recent health study in Barbados, over 20% of the population is diabetic – a staggering statistic! Most of the diabetes is Type 2 – a type of diabetes which often stems from poor diet and lifestyle. Type 1 you are often born with and for many, it goes undiagnosed. Ian’s aim is to change this and to help the Type 1 diabetics on the island – find them, treat them and educate them.  The Ian Woosnam Type 1 Diabetes Registry is a result of this aim. This Registry, which is the first of its kind in the Caribbean, is designed to identify persons living with Type 1 diabetes in the Barbados community, and provide a safe and supportive environment for patient engagement. To date, almost 200 persons living with Type 1 diabetes have been identified.  If you are living with Type 1 diabetes, and would like to be registered on The Ian Woosnam Type 1 Diabetes Registry, please contact Dr. Michele Lashley or Ms. Krystal Boyea at
            Six years ago, Ian partnered with Dr Oscar Jordan and Cally Boyea CEO (whose daughter Krystal is also a Type 1 Diabetic) at the Barbados Diabetes Foundation in an attempt to raise funds for this organization, the dream of Dr. Jordan, himself an avid golfer. The centre was built with funds from the Maria Holder Memorial Trust and is in Warrens, St Michael. It’s a state of the art building which is a one -stop -shop for diabetes patients including screening facilities, dialysis, specialist diabetes doctors, podiatrists, a nutritionist and a Retinal Screening Administrator.  The Barbados government helps with the running costs but there is a shortfall and upon hearing this, Ian Woosnam stepped up to the plate.
            In 2016, he put his name to a Ryder Cup Style Golf Tournament held at Apes Hill Club – Barbados vs the Rest of the World.  In 2018 his second event was hosted at Royal Westmoreland. The two teams comprise 36 players each, all outfitted in matching shirts thanks to Gildan Sportswear. The event is a match play format with each team vying for the honours. Teams are sponsored by many private individuals and corporate Barbados. There is also a grand auction in the clubhouse afterwards with amazing sponsored items – some donated by Ian such as tickets to the Masters at Augusta or to the next Ryder Cup.
            When this event first started in 2016, they raised over $150,000.  In 2018 it increased to almost $300,000. Ian leads a team of organizers including Mrs. Yvonne Brewer, Mr. Shane Johnson and Mr. Roger Beale. They are working towards bigger and better things when the competition takes place February 25th, 2020!
            “The centre is in need of solar panels to cut the electricity costs,” said Ian, “We are hoping to raise enough to do that and lower the maintenance costs.”
            Above all, Ian Woosnam is keen to raise awareness of Type 1 Diabetes. You can see his mind working when you chat to him. He wants to take this competition to a different level in the future – perhaps involving more celebrities – without the event losing its competitive charm.
            Watch this space as this is definitely the start of something big for Barbados!
            For details of this charity event or to make a donation you can contact Shane or Roger at Alleyne Real Estate (T) 246-432-1159 or email