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Epping Golf Club, Essex.

Founded in 1890 with a nine-hole course on Epping Plain.

The professional from 1891 to 1894 was David Hyde and J Cordell in 1895. 

The following is from the Chelmsford Chronicle Friday 4th September 1891. "The Epping Golf Club came off with flying colours in an encounter with Harlow on Saturday. Two "Foursomes" were played, Major Tait and J Pearson, representing Epping, defeating their opponents, Dent and Caldwell, after a very stubborn contest, by two holes on the two rounds, and the Rev G Ward Saunders and H B Yerburgh, beat the Harlow champions, Mr Lyall and Rev Lewis Cockerell, by one hole."

 

Epping Golf Club, Essex. Pre 1895 club button.

Gilt one piece club button for Epping Golf Club with the pre-1895 Pitt address. Image courtesy of Dixon Pickup.

 

The following information is taken from the 1892-93 Golfing Annual. "The course, which is laid out on a common known as Epping Plain, forming part of Epping Forest, consists of nine short holes and the hazards are whins, bushes and ponds. It is one mile from Epping Station (G.E.R). Monthly handicaps are held on the first Saturday of each month."

The monthly handicap was played on the 1st June 1893 in lovely weather. Owing to the long drought the greens were very untrue and bumpy. Result; H B Yerburgh (secretary of the club), 97-15-82; Rev E T Satterthwaite (Disley Golf Club), 92-9-83; G Sewell, 105-15-90; Rev E Grain, 116-22-94; Rev G W Saunders, 110-15-95; J Pearson, 113-15-98; A Sewell, 123-25-98.

In the monthly handicap competition  in July 1893 there was a strong wind blowing which enabled long driving at some holes. One member drove two successive balls, which with the run on them measured 204 and 240 yards from the tee, the latter being a record on the Epping course. Result; A E Woodward, 3down; H B Yerburgh, 4down; Rev J W Saunders, 5down; R Lyall, 8down; Major Tait, 11down; P M Evans, 12down; A Sewell, 13down.

The winner of the August 1893 monthly bogey was T Tilliard, 2up; four tied for second; H B Yerburgh, S Chisenhale Marsh, Howel J Price and Major J C Tait.

Result of the May 1895 medal; H B Yerburgh, 106-15-91; A Kemp, 104-6-98; J Pearson, 115-15-100.

In the medal competition in July 1896 the winner of 15 and under handicap was H B Yerburgh, 94-14-80; handicap 16 and over was Rev E H Grain, 115-25-90.

Thanks to Dixon Pickup for the following information. The hallmark silver (Birmingham 1910 by Crisford & Norris) award button, below, is for Epping Golf Club. Lettering exactly as per the earlier gilt uniform type. This indicates that the club was alive and well just prior to WW1.

 

Epping Golf Club, Essex. Epping Golf Club Award Button dated 1911.

Epping Golf Club award button competed for in 1911. Image courtesy Dixon Pickup.

 

It seems that the club went into abeyance at the time of WW1.

The next appearance was in 1930 with a 9-hole course laid out at Bridge Farm.

Many thanks to Neil Sjoberg, manager of the current Epping Golf Club, for sharing his memories and allowing us to use the images relating to the former 1930s club that appear below.

“The Epping Golf Club that appeared in the 1930s had a nine-hole course (18-tees) located behind the Merry Fiddler public house. The clubhouse was part of Masons Bridge Farm and was only for the use of the members. My father, Charles, played there and along with other visitors would pay their green-fees at a little hut behind the pub.

I have found various entries in the South Essex Gazette having looked through all copies from 1930-39. It mainly provided competition results and saying that the course was in good condition etc. It also gave the results of inter-club matches which included matches against Nazeing Golf Club, now defunct.

A friend of mine provided the booklet (below.) One Sunday I decided to pay a visit to Masons Bridge Farm with the score book and to try and find evidence of the clubhouse that used to be within the farm buildings. The occupants who were there at the time said that they had removed the old lockers in 1996 and when they pulled up the floor-boards they found thousands of beer bottle tops. The old kitchen worktop still had the club bottle opener attached and the doorstep to the former “clubhouse” Still had the brass plaque bearing the name “Epping Golf Club.”

Later the owner brought us two old Patterson’s signs dug up in his garden; one was marked “Replace Divots” and the other one says “To the 12th tee.” These signs are on display in our present clubhouse.

It’s interesting to note the names on the information page below, particularly that of the Vice-President; Rt. Hon. Winston Churchill.”

 

Epping Golf Club, Masons Bridge Farm. Booklet issued by the club in 1930s.

 

Epping Golf Club, Masons Bridge Farm. Booklet issued by the club in 1930s.

 

Epping Golf Club, Masons Bridge Farm. Booklet issued by the club in 1930s.

 

Epping Golf Club, Masons Bridge Farm. Booklet issued by the club in 1930s.

 

Epping Golf Club, Masons Bridge Farm. Booklet issued by the club in 1930s.

 

Epping Golf Club, Masons Bridge Farm. Entry from the 1938 Golf Round London.

 

Epping Golf Club, Masons Bridge Farm. Entry from the 1938 Golf Round London.

Above two pictures are From 50 miles of Golf Round London issued in 1938. Above images courtesy of Neil Sjoberg.

 

In 1932/33 there was a membership of 110. The secretary was T L Collison, Bridge Farm, Epping, telephone number 53. Listed as a nine-hole course. Visitors' fees were 1/- a day, 2/6 at weekends and bank holidays. Local Hotel was the Thatched House.

In March 1933 Fred Carr of Stoke Newington, a club member, holed in one at the par 3 fifth hole.

The following advert appeared in the Hertford Mercury and Reformer in August 1939 - Two waitresses wanted at Golf Club and to assist in house; liberal wages and good tips; one whole day and four evenings off  each week, apply personally or by letter to Epping Golf Club, Fiddlers Hamlet, Epping.

Although the Epping Golf Club was listed in the Golfer's Handbook from 1940 to the early 1950s the club had disappeared at the time of WW2.

Epping Golf Club, Essex. Location of the 1930s course.

Along with many courses Bridge Farm was requisitioned for the war effort in the 1940s, there were attempts to reconstruct the course following WW2, unfortunately the efforts came to nothing and the course disappeared in the early 1950s.

Grid reference TL47470,00880, co-ordinates 547470,200880.