Walsall Golf Club

History

The Walsall Golf Club founded on the 19th March 1907, is a Club steeped in tradition. On this date a limited number of gentlemen met at an inauguration meeting specifically to form a Golf Club. The land was then leased from Lord Bradford for a sum not exceeding £117 per annum, at a location known as the Gorway.

Following the formation of the Club, six holes were laid out with the advice from J H Oke, Club Professional at Sutton Coldfield. The course was officially opened on Bank Holiday Monday, 5th august 1907, when it was reported the Captain and Honorary Secretary 'drove' the first two balls.

After one year the course had been enlarged to 14 holes and a Professional was appointed together with a Caddymaster. The entrance fee at that time was 4 guineas and the annual subscription was 2 guineas.

The membership then stood at 149 members and at this point it was decided to organise a Ladies section to help finance the Club, limited to 100 lady members.

Sadly, several members were killed in action during the First World War, including the Club Professional - Mr Higgins - details of this can be seen on the Memorial Tablet in the snooker room.

After the war, a decision was made to enlarge and improve the course and in 1919, Dr MacKenzie was appointed; the course was increased to 18 holes and 9 new greens were laid at a cost of £2000.

Soon afterwards the local council informed the Club of their intention to build a ring road through the course and after lengthy negotiations, it was agreed that the local authority would pay for a new course to be constructed and would donate £2600.00 for a new Clubhouse, the land to be leased with rent reviews every 7 years. The new location was to be the Gorway just a short distance from the original links.

Dr MacKenzie, widely regarded as one of the finest golf architects in the world, was again appointed to design the new course and oversee construction. This was officially opened ion 25th March 1930.

Notably, Dr MacKenzie designed and built several courses throughout the world and was responsible for Royal St Georges, Royal Troon, Lahinch and Moortown, Whilst designing our course he was also putting the finishing touches to Augusta National, both courses in fact, share the MacKenzie trademark two-tiered greens and easy walking from green to tee.

During World War II, the clubhouse was damaged and a Steward of Salvage was appointed. An air raid shelter had to be built and trenches were dug to prevent the landing of enemy aircraft. In 1943 the Club was instructed to turn the land over for arable farming, but after D-Day this idea was dismissed.

Today, we are widely regarded as one of the premier golf locations in the Midlands, regularly hosting such prestigious events as Midland& Staffordshire Championship events.

Our Club Professional, Richard Lambert, holds one of the largest stocks of golfing equipment and clothing in the Midlands, which he offers at very competitive prices. Richard specialises in the organisation and running of Corporate Golf Days and is a past chairman of the PGA.

Society and corporate days are encouraged and can be tailored to meet your requirements. We offer a high standard of service and catering together with a full range of beers and spirits and a well stocked wine cellar.

Our Clubhouse has been extensively refurbished and visitors will find a warm and inviting welcome from our staff. Our recently opened "Empire Lodge" Halfway house is proving to be a very popular with visiting societies in the Summer months and is a picturesque addition to the course. The course itself is fully mature with a completely new irrigation system and the layout has barely changed from Dr MacKenzie's original design.





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