Beecroft-Cheltenham History Group

Golf

A newspaper report of 28 April 1906 reports that a number of golfers have decided to establish a golf course and Mr William Chorley had offered to make one of his paddocks in Cheltenham available.[1] The first President elected by the residents was a local doctor, Mark Cowley Lidwill who lived in Lorne, Beecroft Road Beecroft and now part of Arden. Dr Lidwill held a State handicap of 9 at the old Strathfield Club.

Despite this offer, ground was actually cleared at Smith’s Brush, which fronted Pennant Hills Road in the approximate location of the current Pennant Hills Golf Club. The first recorded gathering being recorded in November 1906.

In 11 May 1907 the Cumberland Argus reported:

 

“The first anniversary of the Beecroft Golf Club was celebrated on Saturday. In the afternoon there was an attendance of fully 60 at the grounds, where there was an approaching and putting competition between the ladies, and also the gentlemen. Mrs Carlos won the ladies contest and Mr Vernon the gentlemen’s after a very exciting contest with Dr Lidwill. Afternoon tea was provided by the ladies, and partaken of with relish. The gentlemen members had dinner in the evening at Mr Little’s, Dr Lidwill occupying the chair, and Councillor C Churchill Tucker the vice chair. Several songs were rendered during the evening, and altogether a very enjoyable evening was spent.”

 

L J (Len) Osborne won the first 3 championships in 1907-9 and represented the club at the Suburban Champion of Champions held at Royal Sydney in 1909.

The land on which the club was built had been bought from Edwin Smith by a group of 5 men[2] led by George Washington Eaton of Eaton’s Hotel at Pennant Hills. There was no licensed premises in Beecroft and so these owners applied for a liquor licence for the club. The application was refused and the owners promptly advised the club that they were selling the land and the club was to close.

The club moved to new premises bounded by Pennant Hills Road and Stuart, Campbell and Calga Avenues at Normanhurst. These grounds were not however considered suitable for competition matches and in May 1912 the club was disbanded.

In September 1922 a new doctor, Arthur C Holt, in Beecroft called a meeting at the School  of Arts and a committee was formed. In November of the same year, Robert Vicars purchased 100 acres for 4,750 pounds and offered the land at the same price to the club. The members established a company, issued debentures and completed the purchase. Distinguishing themselves from the previous venture they called it the Pennant Hills District Golf Club.



[1] Cumberland Argus

[2] Herbert Garratt, Robert Gaut, Charles Commerford, Michael Deery and Mr Eaton.

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