Club History

Club Beginnings

In September 1912, golfers living in Bonnybridge were thinking about starting a Golf Club in or near the village. On 23rd January 1913 a public meeting was held in the Reading Room of the public hall in Bonnybridge to discuss the subject. It was agreed to start a club and to arrange another meeting to elect office bearers. The lease of ground on Muirhead estate drove loan was to be considered. At a further meeting on 30th January, Office Bearers were elected. The committee was left to draw up a constitution and Rules for the club, which were to be submitted to a general meeting of the members. A 14 year lease was secured of the ground on the Muirhead estate, which was considered suitable for a 9 hole course. About 3 months later the golf club gave up the idea of leasing the field on Muirhead estate, and moves were being made to consider arrangements with another proprietor.

It was a little over seven years later, in August 1924 that the club finally found suitable ground for a 9 hole golf course. The new course was to be on the current site at Roughmute farm. On the 9th of December 1924 a Meeting was held in Lesser Public Hall, Bonnybridge, of all interested in forming a golf club in the village.

Motion -
* “That a golf club be formed in Bonnybridge”
* A portion of Dunipace Estate be leased from coal owners Messrs Robert Addie & Sons Ltd for a period of 25 years at an annual rent of £55.00

A Committee was formed with the following duties:

a) To decide initial running costs and decide on entry and subscription fees.
b) Draw up a scheme for financing initial outlay in laying out ground, erecting a clubhouse and purchasing necessary equipment.
c) To make arrangements for the playing of cricket and hockey.
d) To publicise to all interested parties a general prospectus of the club.
e) To draw up a constitution and rules proposal for the first general meeting . Mr R Bell appointed Chairman of Committee, Mr L A Rae appointed as Secretary.

Meeting 11/12/1924

First meeting of General Committee

Meeting 23/1/1925

Dr J Young was co-opted onto Committee and became first Captain
Four schemes on how the club was to be set up were proposed, with scheme 3 being found to be the best option, Scheme 3 was to have 3 separate clubs i.e. Golf, cricket and hockey all sharing the clubhouse.
Revised estimate of the initial expenditure to set up the club would be £1,149.00 equivalent to £51000 today
A Report was received from Gordon Lockart (Professional Gleneagles) re the setting out and preferred layout of 9 holes
Annual Subscriptions were recommended as follows:
Gentlemen 31/6d (entry fee 10/6d)
Ladies 30/1d (entry fee 7/6d)

Sub-Committees were formed and consisted of:

a) Publicity Committee
b) Green keepers Committee
c) Course Committee
d) House Construction Committee

By March 1925 the following was agreed:
Local firms donated £100.00 in total and guaranteed any overdraft from Commercial Bank of Scotland
Planning Permission for a Clubhouse had been granted. Messrs Spiers (Glasgow) was appointed building contractor (final bill for the clubhouse build was £769.00)
Club to advertise for Tenant for grazing of sheep from May to November at fee of £10.00,to help maintain growth of fairway and rough, and bring in revenue.

Proposed byelaws were agreed:
1. Two permanent Sub-Committees were set up:
Handicap Committee
Ladies Committee
2. St Andrews rules of play were adopted
3. Members were allowed one visitor per month.
4. Ladies to have equal rights of play
5. Junior members were permitted to maximum of 25
6. A Cricket Club + Hockey club would be offered use of the grounds rent would be £15.00 from 18th April to 5th September.

50 applications were received for the Head Greenkeeper post .After interviews; Mr Hugh Shearer (Alexandria) was appointed Greenkeeper on a weekly wage of £2.00 per week. He commenced duties on Monday, 2nd March 1925 and the cost of moving his furniture to Bonnybridge was met by the Club. The greenkeeper was to be housed in Roughmute cottage next to the 2nd green. The committee then authorised the purchase of various items of greenkeeping machinery and associated tools:

1. Horse Mower
2. Hand Mower and other course accessories including barrows, spades, etc.
3. Two “reliable workmen” were hired to help the head Greenkeeper.
4. A club Horse “Jean” to be housed at Home Farm when not on duty at course.

Total membership on opening day 1925 stood at:
a. 114 Gents,
b. 65 Ladies
c. 13 Juveniles

Official opening day was set for 23rd May 1925
Opening day of the club was set for May 23rd 1925, new furnishings for the Clubhouse were agreed and the Green keepers wife, Mrs Shearer, provided “teas” at the Clubhouse for 1/-. non members paid 6d for entry.Copies of the club constitution and bye laws were posted in the clubhouse and the Opening ceremony was scheduled for 23rd May scheduled at 2.30 p.m., An exhibition game between Glasgow Professional Golfers J Sutherland (Baltimore) and W McMinn (Glasgow Golf Club) was to commence at 2.45 p.m. The Professional Golfers would be transported from Greenhill Station to the golfcourse and they would be paid £2.00 each to cover their expenses. Two caddies were provided, Mr Wilson, a committee member and Mr Shearer the greenkeeper.

Sergeant Grant and Constable Somerville were requested to be in attendance and Black and white rosettes were supplied by Miss Cassels at the Toll for the stewards,
The Captain and Secretary of Kilsyth, Falkirk Tryst ,Falkirk ,Denny and Polmont golf clubs were invited to the opening ceremony and Collier Brown (Falkirk) took photographs on the opening day.

The opening ceremony was carried out by The Honorary President’s wife, Mrs George Albert Ure,and the weather on the day was rainy with a good turnout of people.