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Münster Golf and Country Club, Handorf.

The German magazine “Tennis und Golf” reports in its No. 35 / 1910 that 4 gentlemen, bank director Ruegenbarg, Dr. Fulda, Dr. Jacobshagen and Dr. Juergens came together to set up the Golf- und Land-Club Münster.

It seems that the driving force among the initiators of golf in Münster was Major a.D. Klingemann, spa director of Norderney, where golf had been played since 1923. He established contacts with the local golf instructor Dürk, who designed the plans for the course in the Hornheide and gave interested ladies and gentlemen golf classes inside the local town hall during the winter of 1930/31. In 1931 the club was officially registered with the local authorities. Klingemann was the first honorary secretary of the club until at least 1935.

Originally the golf course was planned to be on an area between the “Ostpark” on the banks of the Dortmund-Ems-canal and Boniburg.  It was eventually decided to build the course in Handorf-Hornheide on an area which was particularly suited to golf being typical Münsterland parkland. The 30-hectare site was leased from the city of Münster for a period of twenty years. However, the golf facilities had to be financed by the Münster golfers themselves. This approach was not entirely surprising from the city of Münsters viewpoint as the golf course would hopefully attract more tourism to the area. In particular, they hoped to compete with their Dutch neighbours, where there was a golf course in Hengelo, just an hour away.

The golf course, with just three-holes, was officially opened on August 8th 1931. Without sufficient funds available to build a clubhouse the neighbouring Kaffeewirtschaft Ringmann was selected as the temporary clubhouse. The consistently sandy ground with heather and broom was particularly suited for a golf course with no drainage necessary.

By 1932 a fourth hole had been added. 

 

Munster Golf an Country Club, Handorf. A rare view of the golf course.

A rare picture of the former golf course. Christoph Meister collection.

 

In August 1936 the German “Deutsche Golfzeitung” reported the official opening of the 6-hole course with a standard scratch score of 71 both for ladies (4,636m) and gentlemen (5,085m). The club now had 53 members. Mr. Ebelt was the club president (“Klubführer”) thanking the initiators Holtmann, Holtmann-Dieninghoff and Kolberg. Mr Jos. Brinkmann hit the opening shot. Young local player Willy Hecker, playing off a handicap of 10, created the first course record with a score of 87. He also won the longest drive prize with 195m. The club had now built its own modest clubhouse which was fully operational..

By 1939 the standard scratch score had been increased to 74 playing over 5,205m for gentlemen and 4,725 for the ladies.

At the outbreak of WW II the course was confiscated by the Luftwaffe and became part of the Münster-Handorf - Dorbaum/ military airport. At the end of the war both clubhouse and course were completely destroyed.

In 1950 a group of 10 golfers from the Golf- und Land-Club around the last President Mr. Brinkhaus set up a new “Golf- und Landclub Münsterland” at Burgsteinfurtthat which is still in operation today. When the Golfclub Münster-Wilkinghege was founded in 1963 golfers from Münster again tried to use the old area from 1931, but all efforts proved to be unsuccessful as the area was still confiscated following WW2.

The Google Map below shows the area once occupied by the Münster-Handorf-Dorbaum/military airfield and golf course.