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Formby Golf Club

For many embryo golf courses the railway provided a connection with the outside world and Freshfield Station was the link that helped to establish Formby Golf Club. Uniquely, it also divided the club from its neighbour, Freshfield Golf Club which was situated on the other side of the line. Both clubs are featured in the early Minute Book of the Society with Formby as a founder member hosting the Annual Competition in 1927 and fielding a strong team including four Past Captains (all in single figures) in the top 10 scores. Freshfield Golf Club was converted into an aerodrome in 1941 and was not rebuilt after World War II.

The History of Formby Golf Club,written by Ivor Thomas in 1972, attributes the formation of the club to John Bushby who convened the first meeting on 11 December 1884 and acted as Hon Secretary for the first two years. He was never Captain, the honour of the first holder of that office going to William MacIver. The first members were 21 gentlemen who allowed ladies who were related to a member to play, except on Saturdays. The 9 hole course was on Mr William Halewood’s Warren and he was elected an Honorary Life Member and received £10 per “season” as rent. The season ran from 1st October to the Saturday nearest the following 15th April but the conception of golf as a part time activity was soon abandoned and in 1886 it was decided to rent the links for a whole year at a cost of £30 per annum.

The original clubhouse was primitive with a thatched roof and cost less than £3. It was enlarged five years later at a cost of £30 to provide a self-service “cellar cool” bar accessed by a trap door. In 1891 the Council authorised £2,000 to be spent on a permanent clubhouse which was further extended in 1895 but then destroyed by fire in 1899. Undeterred, the 483 members raised £7,000 to build an even better clubhouse which was opened on 4 May 1901. This included residential accommodation and set the standard for the future. A more recent refurbishment and extension has created a clubhouse to match the grandeur of the course.

By the early nineties the course had been extended to 18 holes and in 1896 Formby Ladies Golf Club was formed with a membership of 120. A separate pavilion clubhouse was built for the ladies and, uniquely, they have their own 18 hole course constructed inside the circle of the men’s 18. The men’s course has undergone changes over the years with the well known names of Braid, Willie Park Jnr, Hawtree, Taylor, Pennink and Steele all making their contributions. The club became a Limited company in 1948 and the future of the course was secured in 1963 with the purchase of the freehold interest of 400 acres for £24,500.

Formby has a long association with amateur golf and has staged the Amateur, the Brabazon, the English Close and the British Ladies’ Championships and in 2004 hosted the biennial match between the USA and GB&I for the Curtis Cup. It has supported junior golf through the Boys’ Championship and the Liverpool & District Colts, and the Formby Hare provides an open scratch competition for low handicap golfers. As a founder member of the Society Formby has had two Captains, F Stanley Morris (1951/52) and Peter Wilson (1973/74). Peter has also served as President of the Lancashire and of the English Golf Unions and in 2008 he was awarded the Gerald Micklem Award for services to golf. P B S (Sands) Johnson, to whom Geoffrey Leece passes considerable thanks for his assistance in this research, has also served as President of the Lancashire Union of Golf Clubs.

1884 W MacIver
1885 R D Welch
1886 R D Welch
1887 J S Beauford
1888 J Ainsworth
1889 E Hewer
1890 J Cullen
1891 J Shepherd
1892 J S Beauford
1893 R H Prestwich
1894 R H Prestwich
1895 J Hornby
1896 E Storey
1897 J Corbert Lowe
1898 C A Earle
1899 J Talbot Fair
1900 E C Hornby
1901 Lord Stanley
1902 J H Brand
1903 H A Sanderson
1904 R H Porter
1905 W B Leitch
1906 J H Evans
1907 T Croft
1908 Jos. Shepherd
1909 W Cluley Lord
1910 A B Rathbone
1911 R O'C N Deane
1912 C Blundell
1913 F W Rathbone
1914 W S Higgin
1915 A J Oakshot
1916 H Skelerdine
1917 D E Glynn
1918 J P Reynolds
1919 J H Coney
1920 A C Wilson
1921 W H Ridler
1922 W R Neilson
1923 R Fitzgerald
1924 A E Bennett
1925 H H Edgecombe
1926 B Hacking
1927 H de Bels Adam
1928 J Ravenscroft
1929 S J Lister
1930 J Walwyb White
1931 G W Fraser
1932 E E Fletcher
1933 F R Verdon
1934 Rt. Hon. 17th Earl of Derby
1935 A J Taylor
1936 H S Henderson
1937 R G N Henry
1938 T Stone
1939 T Montgomery
1940 T B Job
1941 T B Job
1942 T B Job
1943 T B Job
1944 P Forrester
1945 P Forrester
1946 T L C Heald
1947 F S Morris
1948 P J Taylor
1949 M G Garry
1950 W B D Stoddart
1951 Rt. Hon. 18th Earl of Derby
1952 W Paton
1953 S N Lister
1954 F Harvey-Isaac
1955 C C Birch
1956 S R C Walnsley
1957 W H L Lister
1958 E Senior Smith
1959 I Buchanan
1960 W Greenwood
1961 J Coney
1962 W Snell
1963 C R Walmsley
1964 G W E Ray
1965 J Lysaght Finigan
1966 J E H Wolff
1967 N H Stockley
1968 A W Hollway
1969 P H Wilson
1970 J B Machan
1971 A M Cheetham
1972 N A Woodhead
1973 J Nichol
1974 R A Spedding
1975 E S Atherton
1976 R J Cock
1977 L D Hayward
1978 N O K Gibbon
1979 S E Baucher
1980 K A Millichap
1981 T J B Roberts
1982 R S O'Mahony
1983 G W Thomas
1984 Rt. Hon. 18th Earl of Derby
1985 A G Lewis
1986 J Winter
1987 A M N Scorah
1988 P C Corkill
1989 M J Reece
1990 R J Guinee
1991 J E Burns
1992 P D Snell
1993 G B Capstick
1994 A L Lewis
1995 D J Appleton
1996 J E Kinder
1997 S G Povall
1998 G A Ensor
1999 P J Laker
2000 H A Thomas
2001 M J Neep
2002 S P Marsh
2003 J R Smith
2004 P B S Johnson
2005 B N Lewis
2006 B Birkinhead
2007 J D Parsons
2008 H F Smyth
2009 J B Harrocks
2010 G A Walsh
2011 A D H Cheetham
2012 N A C Roy
2013 T G Apel
2014 B J Billington
2015 M A Owen
2016 I N Jamson
 2017  A M S Webster  
2018  D A Hughes 
 2019 R A Wilson 

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