NT5036 : Playing the 15th hole at Galashiels Golf Course for the final time

taken 9 years ago, near to Galashiels, Scottish Borders, Great Britain

Playing the 15th hole at Galashiels Golf Course for the final time
Playing the 15th hole at Galashiels Golf Course for the final time
These golfers on the 15th fairway are playing the course for the final time as an 18 hole layout during a competition on 1st March 2008, as holes 10 to 16 on the top part of the course on Blaikie's Hill are to be made redundant. This is taken from the edge of the 12th fairway at the highest point on the course at the 300m contour, and although it is quite a climb to reach here, the effort is worthwhile for the stunning panoramic views to the town and the Border hills and valleys. The hill beyond the golfers is Buckholm Hill with William Law in the distance to the right. Rising costs and dwindling numbers have forced club officials to reduce the course from 18 to 9 holes.
The club was founded in 1884 as a 9 hole layout around Appletreeleaves House and along by the Ladhope Burn. In 1895 a breakaway group formed Torwoodlee Golf Club on the outskirts of the town and Galashiels Golf Club was disbanded in 1897. The club was re-formed in 1912 and extended to 18 holes to the present day layout that was designed by James Braid. Mr Hugh Roberts, the proprietor of Ladhope Estate, gifted to the people of Galashiels the land on which the course stands and which later became known as Ladhope Recreation Ground.
The club took over the running of the course in 1992 from the former Ettrick and Lauderdale District Council when the sport was strong throughout the country, but membership numbers have fallen over the last ten years and fewer youngsters are taking up the game. Under the revised layout, holes 17 and 18 will become holes 8 and 9, players will start rounds at the 3rd hole, and holes 1 and 2 are likely to be used as practice facilities.
As a former member who played competitive golf here for almost 30 years, I find the closure of the top part of the course very sad, but inevitable given the present day circumstances. I walked over the course on a lovely summer evening last year and was amazed to find the course almost empty and the clubhouse closed - changed times indeed from the vibrant club I used to know. Part of the course has now been handed back to Scottish Borders Council but no decision has yet been made on what will happen to the ground that encompasses holes 10 to 16, but it could return to open moorland and walkways. Over 100 golfers, including a number of past members, played over the Hill for the last time on the 1st March 2008, and it is hoped that by taking out the steep climb up the 10th fairway to the top part of the course, new members will be attracted to the 9 hole layout.
(Source of historical information: Galashiels, A Modern History).
(Source of some general information: article in local paper, The Border Telegraph).
Creative Commons Licence [Some Rights Reserved]   © Copyright Walter Baxter and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.
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NT5036, 66 images   (more nearby )
Photographer
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Date Taken
Saturday, 1 March, 2008   (more nearby)
Submitted
Thursday, 6 March, 2008
Category
Golf course   (more nearby)
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! NT 5006 3690 [10m precision]
WGS84: 55:37.3862N 2:47.6748W
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! NT 5011 3685
View Direction
Northwest (about 315 degrees)
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