Threepwood Road, Beith, KA15 2JR     

01505 503166     

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History of Beith Golf Club

Extract from "The Herald", 14th February 1896

"Beith Club - The links were formally opened on Saturday, but owing to wet weather only a few completed the course. Mr Walter Williamson - writer, the Captain was presented by the members with a handsome driver as a momento of the occasion. Over 80 ladies and gentlemen have already become members."

Play continued over the nine holes opposite Grangehill until 1907 when the first major change took place - the move to our present course or at least the nine holes which formed the course between 1907 and 1995.

One Sunday morning in the early 1960's, the Clubhouse which was built following the lease of 1907, burned down, leaving the members with no accommodation or shelter. So with some haste, they set about finding a temporary building as a replacement. Fortunately at that time, Hunterston Power Station was being built and the club was able to buy a surplus hut and erect it adjacent to the 3rd tee - a chemical toilet had pride of place in the new building. There was even a bar!. This consisted of 2 or 3 crates of Struther's lemonade,  - members were on their honour to pay sixpence (two and half pence in new money) per bottle.

Gradually year by year the club progressed, course equipment was brought up to date and membership increased steadily. Competitions were being contested by an ever growing number of players.

It became obvious as the 1970's approached, that although the course was in better shape, the Clubhouse accommodation was sub standard and thoughts began to turn towards the provision of better facilities. A development fund was set up and many members still with the club will remember the weekly draw that raised money very successfully. After much hard work the day came when plans for a new Clubhouse were exhibited and after more hectic activity, the present Clubhouse was opened on 4th May 1974.

Completion of the new Clubhouse marked a turning point in the affairs of the club. It fairly quickly dropped its dependence on voluntary labour and became more of a business.

The game itself became more keenly contested both among the membership and inter club level. A Club badge, based on the flag of Beith was designed and introduced.

The ladies section, shall we say "blossomed" and the juniors "matured" into two comparatively self sufficient groups, the boys being taken under the wing of an adult member and taught the etiquette and sportsmanship of the game.

Later on in the 1980's, the Seniors' section was formed and the "Golden Oldies" are to be seen in action every Tuesday and Thursday.

The Club moved on through the seventies and eighties and into the nineties with both course and Clubhouse showing continuous improvement and in 1993 after purchase of land from Mr Hugh Knox of Hill of Beith the development of the course into an eighteen hole course was realised and opened in 1996.

2017/2018

The downturn in the economy, a lack of new members, and the natural retirement of older members has resulted in very many clubs struggling to keep going.

Golf itself has many problems in generating new ways to keep interest in the particpatory side of the game, but when you have so many attractions and so little time to do them, then people will naturally prioritise the way they spend their spare leisure time and cash. People just don't play as much golf as they might have in the past.

This has a knock on effect everywhere but members clubs of all types are feeling the pinch. It's a tricky situation, because without members, you can't have a club, nor a course, but without courses to play, golfers will drift off elsewhere. This means that the golf courses that do survive this downturn will be over subscribed, and probably expensive, so the members of clubs like ours will probably be lost to the game.

Things do change with time and Beith Golf Club is no different to anywhere else. If people don't want to play golf, or at least be a member of a golf club, then they won't.

In Autumn 2017, it was decided that we could not afford to keep going the way we were, as there was not enough income to keep the club running for the forthcoming year. The club did not have any debt so it was an easy enough decision to close down, because redundancies etc could be paid with what assets and cash were available to avoid having the members being pursued for any liabilities.

However, it was put forward that 9 holes may be a way to save the club as long as enough members committed to pay for one more season at least.
As of January 2018, a faithful band of members did promise to carry on for the upcoming year and hopefully all the trials and tribulations of the coming year will give us an indication whether it is a feasible long term project.

Here's hoping.

 

 

 




Beith Golf Club 2013