Canwick Park Golf Club began life in October 1893 as the South Park Golf Club, a 9 hole course situated on Lincoln's South Common.
As this was common land, all players wore red jackets to indicate that they were golfers. These early days were difficult for members, with horses and cattle often invading the greens. In 1897 the first Clubhouse was built behind St Botolph's Vicarage, and in 1913 the Southcliffe Golf Club was formed. Although using the same land, this time the wiring of greens was allowed to prevent animal traffic.
However, in 1915 the common land was requisitioned by the Government for training of soldiers, and as a testing ground for the then revolutionary "Tank" which was being manufactured at a local factory. It was only in 1919 that golfing activity was once again resumed on the course.
In 1923 a new Clubhouse, constructed alongside the railway bridge, was opened by the then Club President, Mr W S White. The Club continued to grow and prosper, and 1923 saw the Ladies hold their first meeting, electing Mrs E M Stubbs as the first Ladies' Captain. This was also the year that the Club renewed its affiliation with the Lincolnshire Union of Golf Clubs, and the Treasurer announced a credit balance of £24.00 (approximately value of £4,000 in 2006).
In 1926 the General Strike had a damaging effect, and in 1927 the financial position forced the Club to dispense with the services of Mr Ross, the Club's Greenkeeper. Once again it fell to members to maintain the course, and it was not until November 1927 that they could employ the services of Mr Les Clark, a good servant to the Club for many years in the role of Greenkeeper/Professional.
By 1934, the Club was once again in a sound financial position, primarily through a novel money raising football sweep devised by Mr Cecil Barnes. In April 1937, the Ladies made a formal application to join the Ladies' Golf Union.
During the 1940s, the Club granted to all members serving in the Armed Forces, free use of the Club and Clubhouse. Surprisingly, membership of the Club continued to increase during the war years, and by 1945 had reached a total of 200 playing members. However, a major blow occurred in 1945 when the Railway Company gave notice to the Club to vacate the land where the Clubhouse had stood since 1923. In February 1946, the Club managed to purchase 58 South Park which overlooked the golf course and became the new Clubhouse.
The City Council granted permission for three more holes to be constructed, thereby creating a start and finish near the Clubhouse. The alterations to extend the course to 12 holes took place in 1963. However, in 1972 members were shocked to learn that the City Council were intending to stop all sporting activities on the South Common. It was this incident that prompted the Committee to carry out a feasibility study into the construction of a golf course in Canwick Park, which is owned by Jesus College, Oxford. The four officers of the Club who were given this task were, The Captain Mr R A W Maycox, Vice Captain Mr J Smithson, Secretary Mr P J Richardson and the Treasurer Mr S Bell.
A lease was granted by Jesus College, Oxford, and a new Clubhouse was built with an 18 hole golf course designed by Hawtree & Sons of Croydon, and in 1972 The Southcliffe and Canwick Park Golf Club was formed as a Limited Company. The Mayor of Lincoln, Councillor T Ward, officially opened the Clubhouse on 21st May 1974.
The then Club President, Mr L J Meldrum MBE, performed the opening ceremony on 31st May 1975 of the new course by cutting a ribbon on the first tee. This ceremony was followed by a match between the President's Team versus The Captain's team.
In 1979 additional land adjacent to the course became available, and David Thomas re-planned the course with a Standard Scratch Score (SSS) of 70. This newly planned course was opened in 1981. On 4th April 1986, the Company name was changed to Canwick Park Golf Club Limited. The overall layout of the golf course has been changed three times since1974, resulting in the stunning parkland course that is Canwick Park today.
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