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Rodway Hill Golf Club, Mangotsfield, Glos.

Established in 1899 it was originally an 18 hole woodland course which was eventually reduced to 9 holes. Bristol Temple Meads and St Phillip’s stations were only a few minutes from the Rodway Hill course. When arriving at the station at Mangotsfield the clubhouse and course were just 200 yards away.

Thanks to Adrian Stiff who provided the following information on the image below. "The picture shows a few holes from the 18-hole layout. It shows the front nine, this was the nine holes that closed in the 1920s"

 

Rodway Hill Golf Club, Mangotsfield, Gloucestershire. View over the front nine holes.

The Rodway Hill course in 1914. Image courtesy of Adrian Stiff.

 

Rodway Hill Golf Club, Mangotsfield, Gloucestershire. Club button.

Rodway Hill Golf Club button. Image Courtesy of GolfTracer

 

  Secretary Professional/greenkeeper
1902 C W Bennett, 13 Clare Street, Bristol.  
1906 Percy Baldwin, 23 Clare Street, Bristol  
1900-07   Harry Waldron (p)
1914 P Baldwin, 16 Baldwin Street, Bristol.  
1907-14   A White (p)
1914-25   W Crofts (p)
1922 C R Blandford, 5 Leigh Road, Clifton.  
1928 W S Lockyer. S G Hazell (p&g)
1930s William Dickson (Dixon) S G Hazell (p&g)
1940-47 William Dickson. H Bressington (g)

 

Rodway Hill Golf Club, Mangotsfield, Gloucestershire. View of the later clubhouse.

Later image of the Rodway Hill clubhouse. Image courtesy of Adrian Stiff.

 

The first spring meeting was held on the Mangotsfield course on Friday 20th and Saturday 21st April 1900. Although the cub was only established the previous year there were already nearly 200 members. The course was in splendid condition for the Easter competitions. There were over 120 entrants in the various events, the results are as follows

Ladies competition, 9 hole medal, Mrs Aubrey, 56-8-48, Miss Higgins, 65-10-55.

The Edward Robinson Challenge Cup, with a gold medal for the winner, A S Mills, 89-8-81; E W Pratt, 100-16-84; W Sommerville jun, 94-9-85; W Riddel, 102-17-85; C W Bennett, 113-28-85.

The Boyd Challenge Cup, for handicaps  20 and over; C W Bennett, 114-28-86; Dr Imlay, 110-22-88; E C Gardiner, 116-28-88; A C Terry 109-20-89.

The Admirals Prize, a handsome capstan tobacco jar and silver mounted pipe rack to the winner; C P Sommerville, gross 89; A S Mills, gross 90; A W Carpenter, gross 94.

Eighteen hole foursome; W H Riddel and P Fussell, 104-17-87; E W Pratt and T Johnston, 105-16-89; A W Carpenter and A S Mills, 98-9-89.

Monthly bogey; C P Sommerville, 3down; C W Bennett, 3down; A S Mills, 4down; Dr Aubrey, 4down.

Following is the result of the April medal in 1900; H Fussell, 112-28-84; A H Walker, 111-25-86; R E Jones, 104-16-88; F J Selby, 114-22-92; W H Riddel, 110-17-93; J Bennett, 120-25-95; T H Young, 114-18-96; A C Terry, 119-20-99; E A Young, 117-18-99.

Result of a one sided club match played at Mangotsfield against Long Ashton on April 28th 1900.

Rodway Hill   Long Ashton  
A S Mills 12 H R Watkin 0
A W Carpenter 1 H J Bennett 0
T Johnstone 5 H W Aubrey 0
E W Pratt 0 T J Selby 0
R E Jones 6 L L Phillips 0
W St Maur Hill 11 E P Coleridge 0
  35   0

Below is the result of the 1900 May medal.

P Fussell 99 17 82
A C Terry 103 20 83
W Sommerville jun 93 9 84
E W Pratt 101 16 85
W St Maur Hill 102 17 85
W H Riddell 103 16 87
G H Foster 109 22 87
H G Fussell 113 26 87
J G Wills 117 28 89
G B Britton 119 30 89
F A Springford 115 20 85
T H Young 116 18 98
R Croal 121 22 99

Result of the monthly medal played on Saturday 11th August 1900.

R W Carpenter 82 9 73
A S Mills 82 8 74
C W Bennett 101 24 77
T N Fortey 112 35 77
E J Taylor 99 20 79
T H Young 105 18 87

In 1902 course records were, amateur W H Carpenter 86 and professional ? Coombe 84.

 

Rodway Hill Golf Club, Mangotsfield, Gloucestershire. The new clubhouse in 1902.

Above, the new clubhouse opened in June 1902.

 

The formal opening of the new clubhouse took place on Saturday 7th June 1902. It contained a large dining/club room. There were also locker rooms and drying and dressing rooms with hot and cold water, a committee room and large kitchen. From the large verandah there were views of the surrounding countryside of Monmouthshire on one side and Lansdown on the other. Amongst those present were; president, Mr W Windus; capatain, E W Pratt; secretary, C W Bennett; treasurer, Seymour Williams, match secretary, Horace Walker. In his opening speech the president referred to the success of the club which was started by; Philip Fussell, Dr Imlay and W Hewat Riddell and others three and a half years ago. Immediately following the formal opening an 18 hole exhibition match was played between Vardon and Braid, followed by about 500 enthusiastic spectators.

In 1906 course records were, amateur C Sommerville 73 and professional A White 69.

Below is the result of a County Union match played at Rodway Hill against Churchdown on Thursday 10th October 1907. The previous match ended in a narrow win for the home team, but the Bristol team took ample revenge in this match, note the unusual scoring system.

Rodway Hill   Churchdown  
Rev A H Sharpley 0 F S Lunnon 2
H A Robbins 2 J F Steele 0
E W Pratt 2 E T Hancock 0
S V P Drapes 2 A Johnstone 0
Dr H W Aubrey 2 G A Baker 0
Ernest J Taylor 2 R F Guyton 0
A Quant 2 H R Milner 0
Rev J Bentley 2 B Jones 0
  14   2

In 1914 there was a membership of 265. Entry fees were £2/2/0 and subs £2/2/0. Visitors’ fees were 2/- a day, 2/6 on Saturday, 7/6 a week and 15/- a month. Sunday play was not allowed.

Below is the result of a club match played on the Rodway Hill course on Thursday 9th July 1914 against Filton GC.

Rodway Hill   Filton  
W F Cook 1 G S Downs 0
E V Cole (half) 0 A Palmer (half) 0
T Johnstone 1 V G Burkitt 0
Dr Aubrey 1 E J Bird 0
E W Pratt 1 A J Jacobs 0
C F Lacey (half) 0 W Harvey Barton (half) 0
R Ehlers 1 G R Popplestone 0
W F Lockyer 0 A H Goldman 1
S Evans 1 R Lake 0
S B Thorn 1 W H Curtis 0
  7   1

Also on Thursday July 9th 1914 Mr Crofts, the Portishead professional, went round in 70, five strokes below bogey. He went out in 33 but his scoring on the back nine was not so good, he did, however, finish with a two.

Result of the monthly bogey for July 1914; first division – A D Anderson, (scratch) all square; W F Cook, (3) 1down; F Moss, (5) 2down; F E Preston, (8) 4down; W de Lance Holmes, (5) 5 down; the winner of division two was Dr Brown, (10) 9down.

The monthly bogey was played on Saturday 22nd August 1914. A D Anderson went round in 72 (36 out and 36 home) this was three under bogey, result as follows; first division - A D Anderson, (scratch) 2up; H Brittan Evans, (8) 1up; H A Robbins, (scratch) all square; F G Lazenby, (2) all square; W F Cook, (3) 2down; S Evans, (7) 3down; F Moss, (5) 4down; W E Fursier, (8) 4down; second division – T Crawford, (14) 3down; H Litchfield, (11) 4down; W R Powell, (18) 5down.   

The autumn meeting took place on the 12th 16th and 19th of September 1914. All proceeds from the competitions, which amounted to £5/6s, would go to the War Distress Fund; The “Syston” Challenge Cup, 36 hole stroke play – P J Lee, 175-30-145; W R Powell, 202-48-154; The “Boyd” Challenge Cup, eclectic – P J Lee, 74-8¼-65¾; G J Mitchell, 82-12¾-69¼; C Plumley, 93-18-75; “Edward Robinson” Cup, medal – H A Robinson, 77 scratch; F Springford, 84-6-78; The “Cave” Challenge Cup, bogey – H A Roinson, (scratch) all square; D Ramsay, (+1) 2down.        

The annual meeting was held at the Commercial Rooms on Friday 25th September 1914. All officers and committee were re-elected. Mr H Brittan Evans was elected captain.

The death was announced of the popular president of the club, Sir Herbert Chapman, Bart., his death took place just a few hours after he had been re-elected at the above meeting. He was also vice-president of the Portishead Golf Club.

In 1914 clubs all over Great Britain were playing competitions and making donations in order to raise funds to support the war effort. In Gloucestereshire during October a scheme was adopted for the donation of sweaters for soldiers and sailors, particularly with winter approaching. A “War Medal” competition was played at Rodway Hill on Saturday the 10th October 1914 with all proceeds going to the War Fund, result as follows; first division – C F Lacey, 86-9-77; G B Britton, 86-5-81; S Evans, 90-9-81; second division – Dr W Brown, 84-13-71; C Weeks, 97-13-84; A D Parsons, 100-16-84.

A sad reflection of the times was reflected in the reduced entry for the monthly medal in November 1914. By this time members from many clubs had been called to serve their country in the Great War. Result of the medal played on Saturday 14th November; first division, handicap 12 and under, H Brittan Evans, 93-10-83; D Ramsay, 83+1-84; second division, W W King, 108-18-90.

Notices were being displayed in many clubhouses appealing for magazines and periodicals for the serving troops and sailors.  

In 1922 a reduced membership of 225. Course records were, amateur 68 and professional 69. Visitors’ fees on introduction were 1/6 a round, 2/6 a day, Saturday 5/-, 10/- a week, 17/6 a fortnight, £1/10/0 a month. There were special terms for five days.

Result of the qualifying round for the Captain’s Cup played in April 1923. The winner of the special prize was E T Winchester who had three scores of 70. Other good scores were; A D Chapman, 215; R W Musgrove, 216; D Hopper, 217; L F Barrett, 218; G Whitwell, 219; W S Lockyer, 220.

In 1928 S G Hazell held the course record of 73, must have been a revised course judging by earlier scores.

During the 1930s it was listed as Rodway Hill Golf Club, Mangotsfield, Bristol It was now listed as a 9 hole course with a membership of 250. Sunday play allowed without caddies.

In April 1933 Portishead played a home match against Rodway Hill Artisans, result below.

Portishead   Rodway Hill Artisans  
F W Thomas 1 P Watts 0
Dr J McCormick 1 F Payne 0
A J Short 0 A Monks 1
A H Thomas (Half) 0 H Hillier (Half) 0
D Smith 0 W Elms 1
R H Box 1 A Shepstone 0
S Manning 1 J Woodrough 0
L J Butler 1 P Durnsford 0
J E Jones 1 P Sheppard 0
H Cuff 1 V Wallington 0
R Sage 1 H Cull 0
A Pearce 1 R Osborne 0
  9   2

Below is the result of a club match (singles) played at Nailsea in May 1938. The home team also won the foursomes 4 matches to 1, same players involved.

Nailsea   Rodway Hill  
G Shermur 0 G Iles (6&4) 1
G W Coombs (3&2) 1 G Strawford 0
A Shaw 0 S W Long (5&4) 1
G W Martin (4&3) 1 H Hall 0
N W Allen (half) 0 A Hassell (half) 0
R A Pobjoy (5&4) 1 P Edwards 0
S P G Holland 0 A Gillard (5&4) 1
R A Maxwell 0 M Rosenthal (3&1) 1
C S Crocker (2&1) 1 J Howard 0
W C Tavener (2up) 1 W Hancock 0
  5   4

In 1940 and 1947 the 9 holes had a SSS of 71 and Par of 76, a much reduced membership of 160. Visitors’ fees on introduction were, 1/6 a round, 2/6 a day, weekends 2/6 a round.

It's great to receive "now" pictures of long lost courses. Thanks to Adrian Stiff for sending us images of the former Rodway Hill course. 

 

Rodway Hill Golf Club, Mangotsfield, Gloucestershire. View of the former course.

Features of the former course can still be seen.

 

Rodway Hill Golf Club, Mangotsfield, Gloucestershire. The undulating former course.

The undulating course.

 

Rodway Hill Golf Club, Mangotsfield, Gloucestershire. The deserted course.

Recent pictures of the deserted Rodway Hill course (March 2016.) 

 

Rodway Hill Golf Club, Mangotsfield, Gloucestershire. The course reverts to nature.

 

Rodway Hill Golf Club, Mangotsfield, Gloucestershire. The course reverts to nature.

A couple more pictures of the overgrown course taken in 2016. All the images above are courtesy of Adrian Stiff.

 

Rodway Hill Golf Club, Mangotsfield, Glos. Location of the Rodway Hill golf course.

Grid reference ST66335,75585, co-ordinates 366335,175585. In 1941 the clubhouse was requisitioned by the War Ministry, although the club was listed in 1947 it probably never recovered after the war.