Forgotten Golfing Greens Of Scotland
 Forgotten Golfing Greens Of Scotland

Longside Golf Club

Longside Golf Club - 1.  Instituted 1906.  First Course. A 9-hole course on two fields, of 24 acres in all, on the Faichfield Estate. 

      “In 1906, with the co-operation of the new laird of Faichfield, Sir George MacPherson-Grant, several gentlemen in the area got together and on a twenty-four acre site near the Peterhead to Banff turnpike road, took a ten-year lease on two fields on the Faichfield estate. They laid out a course on undulating ground with a valley towards the northwest. It was considered that the limits of the course would give considerable variety in the method of approach to the different holes. The tee for the first hole was placed by the entrance to the Mill of Faichfield; the first hole was in the corner of the field next to Faichfield House. The “Golf Club” gave up the lease of the ground about two years before the First World War.

New Golf Course At Longside

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Opening Ceremony

 

"Longside in its natural aspects has been more favoured than most places in Buchan. Besides green fields, it has woods and swelling heights, with the Ugie holding its quiet course through the landscape. The village is not a congested area, but spreads out hither and thither at its own sweet will, and its appearance is much enhanced by the trim gardens attached to the houses. To add to its attractions for strangers and pastimes and recreations for the inhabitants, Longside bethought itself of forming a golf course, and a club was recently established.

  Dr Bruce was appointed President ; Dr Wood, Captain ; Mr J.M. Whyte, Secretary ; and Mr George Smith, Treasurer. These officials, along with a small committee, and with Dr Wood as the moving spirit, at once set to work to get a golf course.

Several places were examined regarding their suitability for the purpose, and negotiations were finally entered into with Sir George Macpherson Grant, Bart. Of Ballindalloch, who is proprietor of the estate of Faichfield, for the lease of two fields on his ground, which were considered by the committee as admirably fitted for their needs.

  A ten years lease of the ground has now been taken, and already the course has been prepared and is now in a state for play. The new course consists of nine holes and is situated at the side of the Peterhead and Banff turnpike, about a mile and a half East of the village of Longside.

  The ground contains almost 24 acres, and has been in use for many years as pasture land.

Owing to the length of time the fields have been under pasture, there are here and there, evidences of growth and moss, but the greens committee found no difficulty in selecting spots suitable for greens. 

  Unlike the golfing, which is usually experienced when played in grass parks, the possibilities of variety of sport in the new course are remarkably good. The surface of the ground is undulating, with a valley towards the North-West, and considering the limits of the course, there will be considerable variety in the method of approach to the different holes. The tee for the first hole is placed near the entrance gate for the course at the Mill of Faichfield. The first hole is situated at the corner of the field next to Faichfield House.       Throughout the course, which extends to nine holes, the grass is of good quality, short and springy, and there are practically no rough or bare patches, apart from the regulation hazards.

The committee of management have taken upon their shoulders considerable financial responsibility and they are to be warmly congratulated on their spirit and enterprise.

Already over 40 members have enrolled their names, including several ladies, and as the existence of the course becomes better known outside the district, there will doubtless be a large accession to the membership.

  The ceremony of opening the course took place on Saturday afternoon. There was a very large attendance, including ladies and gentlemen from Longside and the surrounding districts.

  Mr Burnett-Stuart of Dens and Crichie, who performed the opening ceremony, was accompanied by Mrs Burnett-Stuart, and among others present were :- Sheriff Ferguson, Kinmundy ; Mr Ferguson Yr., of Kinmundy ; Rev. R.S. Kemp, Old Deer ; Rev. Richard Henderson, Longside ; Rev. Benjamin Olcock, Port Erroll ; Dr Wood, Longside ; Dr Forgie, Strichen ; Messrs W.E. Hutchison of Caingall ; J.M. Whyte, Longside ; John Whyte, Do.,; George Smith, Bank Agent, Do.; Robert Cheves, Retired Bank Agent, Do.; George Davidson, School Board clerk, Do ; Bruce Saddler, Do ; William Hunter, Crookednook, Do ;A. Thomson, Butcher ; W.J. Milne, Newmill ; Thomas Forrest, Lubqubarn ; John Peter, Teacher, Aberdeen ; James Raitt, Mintlaw ; Evan Bisset, Peterhead ; George Duncan, Do.; William Hacket, Do.; Robert Gray, Do.; J.W. MacGregor, Do.; A.N. Younie, Schoolmaster, Kinmundy ; Joseph Penny, Late of Millhill ; William Smith, Teacher, Blackhills ; A.L. Wood, Secretary of Stonehaven Golf Club ; Robert Roy, St Fergus ; John Farquhar, North Blackwater, Do.; William Reid, Miller, Faichfield ; John Oldman, Farmer, Thunderton ; Etc.

When the company had assembled at the first tee Dr Wood, Captain of the club, stepped forward and called upon Mr Burnett-Stuart to declare the course open.

  Mr Burnett-Stuart thanked the committee of the Longside golf club for the honour they had conferred on him by asking him to take part in such an interesting ceremony. He did not quite know what his duties were, because he had never opened a golf course before. They all knew that the game of golf was an excellent one, and great interest was taken in it. It was a healthy exercise to both old and young and was looked upon as a national game. He had to congratulate the people of Longside on the successful manner in which they had got up their club - ( Cheers ). He hoped it would be a great success and an attraction to the neighbourhood for many years to come. He then declared the course open.

  Dr Wood proposed a vote of thanks to Mr Burnett-Stuart for opening the course.

He thought, for its size, it was a wonderful course, seeing that it was only a fortnight since they got possession of the ground. The committee had taken into consideration the possibility of extending the course if the club became prosperous. On their behalf he had to thank Mr Burnett-Stuart for his kindness, and he asked him to accept a siver mounted Haskell Ball, which he hoped Mr Burnett-Stuart would keep as a souvenir of the occasion – ( Cheers ).

Mr E.R. Burnett-Stuart acknowledged in a word.

  Rev. Richard Henderson said it was a great thing for a soldier to fight under a fine flag, and it was equally important for a golf club to have favourable patronage. The patrons of their club were Sir George Macpherson Grant of Ballindalloch, General Russell of Aden, Sheriff Ferguson of Kinmundy, Mr James Murray M.P. ; Mr E.R. Burnett Stuart of Dens and Crichie ;Mr Robert Gray, Solicitor, Peterhead ; Mr David Martin, Solicitor, Peterhead ;Mr W.F. Hutchison of Cairngall ; Mr Robert Cheves, Retired Bank Agent, Longside ; and Dr Bruce, Edinburgh. He intimated apologies for absence from Mr David Martin, Peterhead ; Mr Patrick Irvine, Solicitor, Do.; and Mr Lawrence, Fraserburgh. They had with them that afternoon two of their patrons – Sheriff Ferguson and Mr Robert Gray – and he would call upon them to say a few words.

  Sheriff Ferguson said that, on behalf of the patrons, he had to thank Mr Henderson for the kind way in which he had referred to them. He had to congratulate the Longside club on having got such an excellent course, and also on the possibility of having it extended. As Mr Burnett-Stuart had said golf was a national and an excellent game. There were two games which a man ought to learn if he wanted to be happy in his old age. During the spring and summer he should devote himself to golf and during the winter to curling.

  Mr Robert Gray also made a few remarks. He was very glad to be present on that occasion because of the encouragement which the formation of that golf course gave to the capital of Buchan. The members of the Peterhead golf club had been for long contemplating extending their course to 18 holes, but he thought that Longside might yet have an 18 hole golf course before Peterhead. He hoped that the people of Longside would go on with schemes of improvement, and by and by they might have a motor omnibus playing between Longside and Peterhead, and bringing with it a contingent of golfers from the Buchan capital. The Peterhead golfers would no doubt give their Longside friends an invitation in return, and thereby they would stimulate friendly rivalry between the two clubs.

  Mr Burnett – Stuart then drove the first ball, which alighted on the green. The effort was hailed with loud cheers, and was considered a very happy augury for the future success of the club. Several well-known local golfers then did a round of the course, which was very favourably commented on for its sporting qualities.

  The Haskell Ball which was presented to Mr Burnett-Stuart bore the following inscription – “ Presented to Mr E.R. Burnett Stuart by the Longside golf club on the occasion of his opening their golf course at Faichfield, 7th April, 1906.”

(Peterhead Sentinel 14.4.1906)

"The new golf course, which was opened a few weeks ago at Faichfield, near Longside, has now been fully laid out, and is largely being taken advantage of, not only by the members but by visitors from other districts. The membership amounts to about 50, and includes players from Old Deer, Maud, and Peterhead. The course was visited a few days ago by Archie Simpson, the Cruden Bay professional, who, playing with Mr James M. Whyte, established a record for the course going round in 33, and 37, ( the course is a nine-hole one ), thus making a completed round of 70 strokes. Simpson’s driving and approach play were greatly admired. He expressed the opinion that the course was a capital one, with variety of play and good sport, and if an adjoining field, which is available, could be included so as to make the course somewhat longer, it would turn out one of the best nine-hole courses he had ever played on.

  Dr Bruce, of Inverquhomery, one of the patrons of the club, has kindly offered to present prizes to the club for competition, the details and conditions being left to the committee to arrange. The prizes will likely take the form of trophies to be awarded by annual competition, the winners to hold the trphy for one year"             (Aberdeen Journal 5.5.1906).

"A special meeting of the golf club was held on Tuesday evening – Dr Wood, the Captain of the club, in the chair. The chairman said that the club had already given timeous intimation to the proprietor of Faichfield that they intended to take advantage of the break at the end of the fifth year of the club’s tenancy of the fields, as at Whitsunday, 1911, and offer to take the fields from year to year at a reduced rent. After a full discussion, it was unanimously agreed that, owing to the rent proposed to be charged, when considered along with the heavy expense entailed in maintaining the course in playable condition, the club could not see their way to continue their occupation of the course after Whitsunday next, and the secretarywas instructed to intimate the decision of the club to the proprietor.

  As there was a unanimous wish that the club should, if possible, be carried on after the expiry of the present lease next May, it agreed to appoint a committee to make inquiries regarding the possibility of providing a course in the immediate vicinity of Longside, and to report to a future meeting of the club.

  Dr Wood, The Rev. R. Mackay, Colonel Hutchison, Mr George Smith, Bank Agent, and Mr James Whyte were appointed to act on this committee."

(Aberdeen Press and Journal 29.10,1910)

 Second Course. It was not until 1921 when a lease was taken out on a twenty-seven acre site on the Inverquhomery Estate near Greenbrae, and a new course built there, that golf again became available to the folk of the village. The captain of the new club was Dr Wood, Vice Captain, Mr J.M. Whyte, Tiffery and joint secretaries and treasurers Mr Birnie, banker and Mr Cran, chemist. The nine hole course was laid out by Mr Heron, formerly greenkeeper at Craigewan, Peterhead. The first tee was situated at the southwest corner of the field next to Inverquhomery House. A full iron would have been required to bring the player within a short distance of the first green situated on a small plateau with a furrow on one side and some rough ground to the east, to punish a sliced drive. The last hole, a distance of some 220 yards, ran along the south border of the field next to the Longside to Yokieshill road. The full length of the course was about 2400 yards and a par round would be about 36 when the greens were in good order. Jimmy Hislop can recall Dod Noble, the “mullart” at the meal mill at Cairngall, telling him that he cut the fairways with a “sheltie and reaper.” Walter Marshal Bruce of Inverquhomery presented a “quaich” to “Longside Golf Club” in 1923. There are only three names on the trophy, William Russell 1923, Dr Wood 1924, Herbert Fowlie 1925 and 1926 and again Willie Russell in 1927. The quaich is in the present clubhouse, although not played for at present. The course fell into disuse in the early 1930s and the club disbanded in 1933. £10 was donated to the Longside Lighting Communuty and the balance of £71 was placed in a savings account to form the nucleus of a fund for provision of a Bowling club in Longside.” (LAP)

 Course was laid out in the field immediately to the left of Inverquhomery House

Longside Course Opened

 

"There was a good attendance at the formal opening of Longside golf course for the season. The opening game between teams chosen by Major Hutchison and Mr J.M. Whyte, was much enjoyed. Several of the lady members had a round during the afternoon. One or two new members were present. Tea was served in the clubhouse after the first round."

(Aberdeen Press and Journal 6.5.1924)

Peterhead v Longside

 

"Over the Inverquhomery course, Longside, on Tuesday, Peterhead defeated the home club by 10 matches to 1."                       (Aberdeen Journal 4.8.1927)

Its all over

 

"At a meeting of the former members of the golf club, held in St John’s Hall, Mr W.M. Bruce, of Inverquhomery in the chair – was called to decide what should be done with the funds remaining and amounting to £81.

  With increased travel facilities there was little likelihood of a golf club being again formed in Longside and Dean McKay moved that the sum of £10 be handed over to the lighting committee and the balance placed on savings account in the North of Scotland bank to form a nucleus of a fund for the provision of a bowling green for Longside. That was unanimously agreed to.

  Messrs W.M. Bruce, John Beddie, J.M. Birnie, and Dean Mackay were elected trustees of the fund and also appointed members of a provisional committee for the raising of funds and making the finding of the meeting known to the public.

  It was decided to return the various cups and trophies to the donors. The members expressed their appreciation of Mr J.M. Birnie’s work as treasurer of the former golf club"

(Aberdeen Journal 4.6.1933).

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