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Hay Golf Club, Powys. (1903 - WW2)

The club was founded in 1903.

The nine-hole Hay on Wye Golf Club course was originally on the Warren. The Warren is located to the west of the town and north of the old L.M.S.R railway line, the station was one mile from the course. Local hotels were the Crown and the Castle (Temperance). Later, when this course was found to be inadequate, the club moved to Hay Common near the reservoir, where a sporting nine-hole course was laid out under the leadership of H R Grant and T J Madigan, who were associated with the club for many years and were winning competitions in their 70s.

In 1906 the secretary was Arthur Chapman, Bank House, Hay (then in Herefordshire).

Although the Hay Golf Club had a very successful existence the course ceased to exist following the outbreak of WW2. There is however evidence that the Hay Golf Society lasted well into the fifties. The society played competitions on Builth and Kington golf courses.

During 1956 T J Madigan was in the chair at a meeting held at the Swan Hotel. He was congratulated by members of the society on the success he had achieved on the golf course during that past year. Amongst the appointments made at the meeting was that of Mr H R Grant, the then ninety year old veteran and a pioneer of golf in Hay, who was elected president; Mr T J Madigan was to be captain; Mrs T D Nutt ladies’ captain; Mr Clive Grant match captain; Mr A E Birch treasurer, and Mr J T Pritchard secretary. Mr T J Madigan was the owner of a local Motor Garage.

In 1906 the secretary was Arthur Chapman, Bank House, Hay (then in Herefordshire).

Following article from the Hereford Times March 27th 1909:-

The Hay Golf Club was established in February 1903. Mr A Chapman whose name is familiar in Hereford cricket and golfing circles, and who, we are pleased to see, has lately returned to Hereford, started the club in the first instance. Its membership now numbers over 40, eloquent testimony of the popularity of the club, as Hay is not a large town.

Situated on Hay Common about a mile from the town, the course can boast a beautiful situation, surrounded as it is by some grand scenery, and visitors to the district should certainly give the links a visit. The annual subscription is only half a guinea, and the terms to visitors 1s a day, 2s/6d a week and 5s a month. They will find the course a very sporting one.

The following figures give the approximate length and bogey for each hole; One – 240 yards, bogey 4; Two-140-3; Three-130-3; Four–220-4; Five-220-5; Six-320-5; Seven-300-5; Eight-380-5; Nine-240-4; Total – 2,250 yards, bogey 38.

The course is a difficult one, which may be imagined when we say that the bogey has not yet bee equaled. The nearest approach to the “Colonel’s” figure is 39 by C Owen Griffiths and 40 by A Chapman. As will be seen the course is a nine-hole one with hazards consisting of gorse, bracken and hedges. The grass is short and the lies distinctly good, indeed for the summer months the links are ideal, and compare most favourably with other inland courses. The greens are on the small side, which may have something to do with why the bogey has never been beaten.  

Mr A Chapman was hon. secretary and treasurer of the club, but since his departure from Hay, Mr C E Tunnard Moore has taken these positions on, and the same gentleman has also done excellent work as captain of the club. His address is Dulas, Cusop, and doubtless he will give further information which may be required by players.”

The professional in 1911/12 was C E Moore.

In 1914 the secretary was W Giles. There was a membership of 50. There was no entry fee and subs were 12/6. Visitors’ fees throughout the early 1900s were 1/- a day, 2/6d a week, 5/- a month. Sunday play was not allowed at this time. It was reported that the club was in a flourishing condition and had a ten guinea balance to its credit. 

 

Hay Golf Club, Powys. The golf course.

Postcard of the Hay course and Radnor Hills. Authors Collection.

 

Below are competition results from May 1915.

 

Hay Golf Club, Powys. Competition results from May 1915.

From the Western Mail Wednesday 26th May 1915. Image © Trinity Mirror. Image created courtesy of THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD.

 

Results of the Whit-Monday competitions held in May 1934, although the weather was cold the meeting proved successful; Graystone Cup, medal play, members only, handicap limit 18, C R Ryman, 80-12-68; I J Madigan, 79-9-70; Terence Madigan, 86-16-70; President’s prizes for the best nine holes; C R Ryman (6) 31; G Lewis (6 ½) 32 ½; Terence Madigan (8) 33; Southwick Bowl, ladies medal play; Mrs B Watkins, 105-30-75; Mrs T D Nutt, 108-26-82; Miss B Jones, 133-30-103; Carey Cup bogey, D Maddy, 1up; T D Nutt, 2down; B Watkins, 3down; Ladies open bogey, Mrs T D Nutt, 7down; Mrs B Watkins, 13down; Best 36 holes medal, D Maddy (26) 143; B Watkins (22) 144; Terence Madigan (32) 146; Driving competition; first, W W Hughes, second, D Maddy, third, T Madigan; ladies, first, Mrs T D Nutt, second, Miss B Jones, third, Mrs B Watkins; Approach and put, first B Watkins, second, W W Hughes, third, B C Grant; ladies, first, Miss H Jones, second, Mrs Watkins, third, Mrs Nutt.

Result of a club match played at Rhayader in May 1934.

Rhayader   Hay  
H C Rowlands 1 W W Hughes 0
F Waite 1 C R Ryman 0
T C Price 1 G Lewis 0
W Sylvester 0 D M Maddy 0
T Griffiths 0 H R Grant 1
R L Ryder 0 T Madigan 1
Capt G Lewis 1 A E Birch 0
  4   2

Saturday 9th June 1934. Playing in the Breconshire annual championship competitions at Merthyr, Mrs A E Birch and Mr W W Hughes of Hay, won the Breconshire Mixed Foursomes Cup (18 hole bogey).

From the early 1920s to the club’s last year in 1940 the secretary was H R Grant, 6 Castle Street, Hay. In 1940 the course had a SSS and Par of 69 and a membership of 70. Visitors’ fees were, 2/- a day, 7/6 a week, 15/- a month. Sunday play was allowed after 2pm.

 

Hay Golf Club, Powys. Location of the former course.

Location of the Hay course on Hay Common. Grid reference, SO22490,40690, co-ordinates, 322490,240690.