The Approaching War
Given the difficulties experienced by the Club during the Great War of 1914 – 1918, with bankruptcy and other deprivations, it is surprising no concern was expressed in the Minutes about the threat of war in the late 1930’s. Life carried on serenely. In 1937 and 1938 major plans were being discussed for course alterations. These included the relocation of the 16th green to its present position. Until then, it was located in the “cockpit” in what is now the lower garden of Challens Green. In 1938 the Club sold its land behind the 17th tee to Norman Birkett in part to fund course changes elsewhere. This raised the princely sum of £880! Should the Club ever be faced with unwelcome housing development behind the 17th tee, it should be noted that the contract stipulated that only one house could be built on this site.
image: An amusing note appeared in January 1939, it was resolved “to accept quote for insurance for injury when playing darts" at a premium of 10/- per annum
The serious drinkers were pleased when it was decided to sell off the stock of Dows 1907 vintage port at the cost price of eleven shillings per bottle. How nice it would have been to have kept these for the Club’s Centenary celebrations! Further, the good or lucky golfers were pleased too when in February 1938 it was proposed by the General Committee that “a member holing out in one shall be the guest of the club for the remainder of the day”! When did we start having to buy drinks for everybody?
The secretary, Commander Stanistreet, was clearly a popular man. A note in the Suggestion Book reads: “It is suggested that the secretary be asked not to have any more bouts of influenza; we miss him too much”.
And there was good news for the lady members too! It was agreed to delete the last two paragraphs of Rule 22, viz.: "Ladies must always give way to gentlemen on the Tee and through the Green. This ruling applies to all matches in which ladies are taking part". There is no mention of how rapturously this new ruling was greeted by the gentlemen of the Club! The ladies continued to have loving care bestowed upon them when a proposal was made that “lady visitors from the colonies be made temporary honorary members for not more than seven days as requested by the LGU”. And if that were not enough, it was suggested that a dartboard be placed in the dining room for the benefit of the ladies and their guests. No thought of war here – this was peace between the sexes!