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Folkestone Golf Club, Radnor Park Avenue, Kent. (1888 - 1965)

The club was founded in 1888.

There is no mention of Folkestone Golf Club in the 1888/89 Golfing Annual.

In 1891 it was reported that the Folkestone Golf Club course was located at Broadmead Farm, half-a-mile from Radnor Park and Shorncliffe stations. The secretary was H A Beeching, Lloyd's Bank, Sandgate Road. Annual subscription was one guinea.

Broadmead Farm in the 1890s was at the junction of Cherry Garden Avenue and Cheriton Road. (On the opposite side of the road to The Harvey Grammar School nowadays.)

Competitions were regularly played at Folkestone during the 1890s. How long the club continued to play on the Broadmead course is, as yet, unknown.

The later Folkestone Golf Club course was laid out in Radnor Park on land owned by the Earl of Radnor. When the club actually moved to Radnor Park is still to be found. The club continued at this location until the mid 1960s when the land was sold. An 18-hole inland course with good greens and plenty of hazards. The railway station at Folkestone Central was ¼ mile away.

 

Folkestone Golf Club. Club button.

Folkestone Golf Club button. 

 

From The Golfing Annual 1891/92; Instituted 1890; Entrance fee £1/1s and annual subscription £1/1s; number of members 50; president, General Jackson; captain, General Gwyn; committee - General Sir B Edwards, C.B., Capt. Layton, E T Ward, Capt. Eccles, Rev. A Day, Major Blackhall; hon. secretary - H A Beeching, 4 Sandgate Road, Folkestone; club prizes - monthly medal (handicap); Morris Cross (handicap); Edward's Prize (ladies). The course which consists of nine-holes is over the meadows of Broadmoor Farm, kindly placed at the disposal of the club by Mr Jefferys. In the winter and spring the turf is excellent and the hazards are numerous. The putting greens are small but fairly good, and kept in good order throughout the year. In the summer there is very little play on account of the length of the grass.

On Saturday February 28th 1891 the first monthly competition of 20-holes, over the new 10-hole course was played (this is the only mention of ten-holes). The course at this time was in a rough state, and the hazards, which consisted of hedges and brooks were numerous. Mr Faithfull, a well-known golfer from Wimbledon and Felixstowe, played a fine game. Leading scores; Mr Faithfull, 97-10-87; Mr Ward, 123-25-98; Captain Eccles, 119-20-99.

The AGM was held in the Town Hall in May 1891. Those present; Gen. Jackson (in the chair), General Gwyn, Mr Ward, Captain Layton, Colonel Gee, General Sir B Edwards, C.B, Mr Morris, Captain Eccles, Mr Bentinck, Mr De Guerin, Rev A Day, Mr Walker Myles, Dr Alston, Mr Miller, Mr Calverley, Mr Beeching (hon. sec.) Although the club were grateful to the landowner, Mr Jeffrey, who let the club use the land free of charge, it was thought that the club should be seeking a more permanent home. After a long discussion a small sub-committee was appointed to see if Mr Jeffrey, or any other land owner in the district, could sub-let land for a new course. Officials for 1891; President - General Jackson; Captain - General Gwyn; Secretary and Treasurer - H A Beeching; Committee - Major Blackall, Captain Layton, Rev A G Day, Captain Eccles, Sir Bevan Edwards, C T Ward.

Result of the monthly handicap played in August 1891; Captain Eccles, 99-16-83; Sir B Edwards, 107-24-83; Mr Morris, 106-20-86; Captain Conwy, 27-07.

Competitions were regularly played at Folkestone during the 1890s. How long the club continued to play on the Broadmead course isn't, as yet, known.

Below is the result of the October 1892 handicap.

 

Folkestone Golf Club, Kent. Result of the October handicap 1892.

From the Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic News Saturday 15th October 1892. Image © Illustrated London News Group.

 

Below a professional match between Douglas Rolland and J Lloyd played in June 1894. 

 

Folkestone Golf Club, Kent. Result of a Match between Douglas Rolland and J Lloyd.

From the Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic News Saturday 23rd June 1894. Image © Illustrated London News Group.

 

In 1898 the December medal was won by Captiain Eccles with a score of 95-7-88, runner-up J W Jeffrey 98-5-93.

Below report from the Illustrated and Sporting Dramatic News March 1902.

 

Folkestone Golf Club, Kent. Report from the Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic News March 1902.

 

Folkestone Golf Club, Kent. Report from the Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic News March 1902.

 

Folkestone Golf Club, Kent. Report from the Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic News March 1902.

From the Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic News Saturday 8th March 1902. Image © Illustrated London News Group.

 

The following report accompanies the above pictures - "It is impossible to write a single word about the Folkestone links without a tender recollection of him to whom the club in its early days owed so much. Captain Eccles who had the knack, possessed by few, of going to the very root of the matter, his sudden death cast much gloom over Folkestone golf. Those who knew him best liked him most, and the memory of poor Eccles will remain for ever green amongst Kent golfers.

Like the neighbouring Dover links, Folkestone is only a nine-hole course, but still the large number of visitors who flock to the Kentish watering-places during the summer months generally express themselves as more than satisfied with it. In the near future, that is to say about  six months hence, that bugbear to golf, building development, will necessitate the abandonment of two of the present holes and the substitution of two others. However, as far as can be gathered, the committee do not view the matter with any vast alarm as it is thought - wrongly or rightly - that the new holes will be on better ground than the old ones. The first hole is 282 yards in length, with a road facing the tee, and if this be carried and a good line kept, the way to the hole presents no dangers. The second hole is a short one of 125 yards, there has been three or four holes in one, the green is guarded by a watercourse. The third 330 yards - is a nice hole, as a ravine must be carried by the drive while the green is carefully guarded by a bunker. The fourth hole is a long one, 420 yards from the tee with plenty of obstacles; first of all there is a hedge about 115 yards away, and when this has been carried two more bunkers meet you on the way to the green. The fifth - 222 yards - with only a bunker to clear. The sixth is a very long hole - 468 yards - in fact, the longest on the course, and on the way to the hole a bunker and wire fence have to be negotiated. The seventh, although much shorter - 230 yards - wants careful play, as at a distance of 118 yards from the tee a wire fence has to be carried, and the green is well guarded by a watercourse. The eighth is another long hole - 445 yards - the first shot is over another watercourse, there are pits on both sides for a pull or a slice. The last is a pretty hole - 180 yards - the green is guarded by a road. The bogey score is fixed at 79, the record of the course is held by C A Edwards who has been round in the fine score of 76. The present captain is Sir W Style, who has previously been captain at Royal Wimbledon."

From the 1905 Nisbet's Golf Yearbook; Instituted 1888; Membership of 87 gents and 72 ladies; hon. sec. - E W Mitchell, 8 Ingles Road, Folkestone; captain, Col. E A Jee; entrance fee £2/2s and subs £2/2s, ladies - £1/1s; nine-holes; green-keeper, W Porter; professional record - J H Taylor, 31+35=66, May 16th 1903; amateur record - A C Edwards, 36+38=74, April 27th 1903; terms for visitors, 2s/6d a day, 7s a week, £1/1s a month. The course is an inland one with good greens and plenty of hazards. The total length of the nine-holes is 2,671 yards. The Folkestone Ladies' Golf Club is a branch of the Folkestone Golf Club - same officials. Amateur record held by Miss Wood, 77.

In 1908 A J Balfour, leader of the opposition, opened the new (extended) course and clubhouse on 27th June.

Below is the result of a match played at Barham against Folkestone on Thursday October 9th 1913.

Barham Downs Golf Club   Folkestone Golf Club  
F G Mirfield (half) 0 J U Gaskell (half) 0
F W Morris 1 Dr Wilgress 0
Col Parker 0 H A Dickins 1
P D Baker 1 R P Shaw 0
Rev W A Newman 0 G D Katinakis 1
Col Hirst 0 W R V Webb 1
T R Stoney 1 M Rouse 0
S W Adams 1 W Standring 0
Mirfield & Morris 0 Gaskell & Willgress 1
Parker & Baker 1 Dickins & Shaw 0
Newman & Adams 0 Katinakis & Webb 1
Hirst & Stoney 0 Rouse & Standring 1
  5   6

 

Folkestone Golf Club. Early postcard of the golf links.

The Golf Links Folkestone. Pre WW1 Judges’ Postcard (Authors Collection).

 

In 1914 the secretary was E W Mitchell at the Golf Club Folkestone. The professional from 1913 to WW2 was A Whiting. There was a membership of 184 gents  and 147 ladies. The entry fee for gents was £5/50 and ladies paid £3/3/0. Subs gents £3/3/0 and ladies £2/2/0. Visitors’ fees were 2/6 a day, 10/6 a week and £1/10/0 a month. August 1st to September 10th 3/- a day, 12/6 a week and £1/15/0 a month. Xmas and Easter weeks 21/- or 5/- a day. Sunday play allowed with caddies. Local hotel at this time was Wampachs.

 

Folkestone Golf Club, Kent. Folkestone Golf Club Medal.

 

Folkestone Golf Club, Kent. Folkestone Golf Club Medal.

Folkestone Golf Club Medal by Vaughton & Sons. Images courtesy http://www.oldsportsauction.com/

 

From 1924 to 29 the secretary was Captain H A Cramer-Roberts. The professional was still Albert Whiting. Membership at this time of 200 gents and 130 ladies. Course records were: amateur A C Edwards with a score of 71 and professional A Whiting 66. Visitors were required to be members of recognised clubs. Fees were 3/6 a day, 15/- a week,35/- a month. Special terms for weeks beginning on Thursday before Easter and Whitsun and from the 24th December. There were also special terms for naval and military officers stationed and serving in Kent, also their wives. Local hotels were the Queens, Regina, Clifton and The Grand.

 

Folkestone Golf Club, Kent. The fourth hole and clubhouse 1931.

 

Folkestone Golf Club, Kent. The first hole from the clubhouse 1931.

 

Folkestone Golf Club, Kent. Illustrated Sporting Dramatic News July 1931.

 

Folkestone Golf Club, Kent. Illustrated Sporting Dramatic News July 1931.

 

Folkestone Golf Club, Kent. Illustrated Sporting Dramatic News July 1931.

Above from The Illustrated Sporting & Dramatic News July 4th 1931. Image © Illustrated London News Group. Image created courtesy of THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD.

 

Folkestone Golf Club. Golfers at Folkestone - Who are they?

A gathering of golfers at Folkestone (1930s?). 

 

Result of a home match against Dover Garrison Golfing Society played in May 1932.

Folkestone   Dover Garrison  
W J Hatcher (half) 0 Col H S Poyntz (half) 0
F J Harlow (half) 0 Capt H R Kirkwood (half) 0
G W Lunn 0 Capt Cowan Douglas (4&3) 1
E F Webb (4&3) 1 Lieut Mackenzie 0
R Hall 0 Capt J S Ritchie (2&1) 1
Col W H Trevor 0 Lieut Oulton (3&2) 1
C F Nicholson 0 Major Leslie (6&5) 1
Col H Harrington (2up) 1 Lieut Johnston 0
  2   4

Below is the result of a match played at St Margaret’s at Cliffe against Folkestone on Sunday 17th June 1934.

St Margaret's at Cliffe   Folkestone  
Major McNab 1 W J Hatcher 0
R V Hare (half) 0 R Hall (half) 0
A Jack 1 Colonel Trevor 0
G Shuter 0 Captain Sobutt 1
G Pickard 0 L Noble 1
A L Green 0 C F Nicholson 1
W Garland 0 A E Norris 1
P S Neylan 1 T L Kendrick 0
Major McNab & A Jack 0 W J Hatcher & R Hall 1
R V Hare & A L Green 1 Colonel Trevor & Captain R Sobutt 0
G Shuter & G Pickard 1 L Noble & C F Nicholson 0
W Garland & P S Neylan 1 A E Norris & T Kendrick 0
  6   5

 

Folkestone Golf Club, Kent. Article from The Tatler February 1936.

From The Tatler February 5th 1936. Image © Illustrated London News Group. Image created courtesy of THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD.

 

Folkestone Golf Club, Kent.From the Bystander July 1936.

From The Bystander Wednesday 8th July 1936. Image © Illustrated London News Group. Image created courtesy of THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD.

 

Folkestone Golf Club, Kent. The Channel Challenge Cup 1936.

From The Illustrated Sporting & Dramatic News August 21st 1936. Image © Illustrated London News Group. Image created courtesy of THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD.

 

By 1940 there were few changes, the amateur course record holder who was now G D Hannay 65. The green-keeper was W Smith. The 18 holes had a SSS of 71.

In 1947 the secretary was W A Murray, telephone 3510. The professional was G A Gower and the green-keeper C Burton.

 

Folkestone Golf Club, Kent. Competition spoon from 1949.

 

Folkestone Golf Club, Kent. Competition spoon from 1949.

Competition Spoon from 1949. Thanks to Graham Rowley.

 

1951 and the secretary was Lieutenant Colonel E T Pain. The professional was G A Gower and the green-keeper J Hilder. The 18-hole course had a SSS of 75. Visitors fees were now 3/6 a round and 5/- a day, at weekend it was 5/- a round and 7/6 a day, £1 a week and £3 a month.

In the clubs final year in 1965 it was listed as Folkestone Golf Club (1954) Ltd, Radnor Park Avenue. Telephone 53510. The secretary was V S Woodiwiss. Membership was 400. The 18-hole course of 6,063 yards had a SSS of 71. The professional was C Whiting and the Green-keeper L Bell. Course Records were, Amateur W Pierce 69, professional H Weetman and S L King 66. Visitors’ fees were 7/6 a round, 10/- a day. June to September  10/- round or day. Weekend and Holidays 10/- a round 15/- a day. . Local advertised hotels were the Grand, Burlington, Garden House, Prince’s, Lyndhurst and Clifton.

The course can be seen on the Britain From Above link below.

http://www.britainfromabove.org.uk/image/epw000700?search=golf&ref=63

Folkestone Golf Club. The early Folkestone golf course.

An early postcard showing the former Folkestone course. Postcard by The Photocrom Co Ltd, London and Tunbridge Wells, Celesque Series.

 

Folkestone Golf Club. Layout of the Folkestone golf course.

Layout of what appears to be the later Radnor course.

 

Folkestone Golf Club scorecard.

Scorecard.

 

Folkestone Golf Club. Location of the Folkestone golf course in 1908.

Location of the course in 1908.

 

Folkestone Golf Club. Location of the Folkestone golf course in 1938.

Location of the Folkestone course at Radnor Park in 1938. There’s a new clubhouse and the course has moved to the south, there is also further road development, a sign of things to come.

Grid reference TR21950,36790, co-ordinates 621950,136790.

 


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The current Folkestone club is Sene Valley, Folkestone, site of the former Hythe Golf Club.