Jamberoo Social Golf Club
This club originated in the mid 70s when four Jamberoo identities teamed up to play some social golf travelling to different courses. Eric Gardner and George Warby took a break from milking, Ron Freeman left a junior teller in charge at the bank and Curly Irvine organised a flex i from the Illawarra County Council. After a couple of years of this the foursome were ready for new ventures.
In 1976 a public meeting was held in the Jamberoo Pub and the Jamberoo Social Golf Club was formed. Curly Irvine as President, Eric Freeman as Captain, and the late Elsie Churchill as secretary, with a membership of some 20 hackers.
The Club then followed the lead of the fairway foursome and once a month early starts were the order of the day as the group toured the highlands courses.
In 1977 Kiama Council purchased the farm, alongside the Minnamurra River, belonging to the Tate family and the Social Golf Club, in June of that year, sent a letter to Council requesting consideration be given to the construction of a nine-hole golf course on the flood prone land.
Kiama Rugby Club also put in a request to move their playing arena on to a section of this land bordering Minnamurra Lane. These requests opened a Pandora’s Box with claims coming from other Jamberoo sporting bodies, petitions circulating and claims through aldermen and others that the land would be useless for anything other than farming. Many other locals also felt that the Golf Club members were mad to contemplate the development of a golf course on an area that was frequently under water.
Eventually, in July 1978, Council called for tenders for lease or purchase of land for various sport activities on the formerly ‘Tate’s farm’.
Negotiations between the Social Golf Club and Kiama Council continued through 1978 and 1979 until a lease of 18.28 hectares of land was settled in late 1980. A ‘picnic area’, alongside the Minnamurra River, where the present 11th green and 12th tee are situated was excluded from the original lease.
During the protracted negotiations, with many letters going between interested parties and Kiama Council plus ‘letters to the editor’ in the Kiama Independent, one letter stands out. It was published in the Independent and written on behalf of the Social Golf Club by the late Elsie Churchill. Elsie was possibly the major driving force in the push to gain a Golf Course at Jamberoo. In her letter to the paper Elsie, in reply to statements that the land was a flood plain and not suitable for a golf course, stated that, “Council should welcome with open arms a group of local citizens willing to turn this raging torrent into a picturesque, serene, quiet country golf club “.
Eleven hundred members and countless visitors have Elsie and the Social Golf Club Members to thank for we now have a challenging, lush 18 hole grass green course that is certainly picturesque, serene and quiet. Before the lease was signed, and well before the Club became incorporated, work commenced on April 23,1980 in clearing the land, ripping out old fenceposts and wire and slashing the paddock grass down to a playable height.
On April 27, 1980, Mr. J. M. Robinson, President of Port Kembla Golf Club and Captain Bernie Brodie, together with Arthur Saunders of Kiama Golf Club came to Jamberoo to help the local committee plan, design and measure the proposed golf course. The first area cleared was to include three holes south of Hyams Creek but the area in use did not include the present 5th hole, 6th tee, 8th green, 10th tee and 9th hole as this area was the ‘Equestrian Area’ and not included in the original lease.
On June 28, 1980 these three sand greens were laid on with a working group of volunteers, many of whom played the course later that afternoon.
May – First meeting to dissolve the Social Golf Club and form the Club into a corporate body. The Steering Committee elected was President, Ron Freeman, Capt. Alan Crapp, Sec. Geoff Boxsell, V. Pres. Eric Gardner, Vice Capt. Richard Taylor and Treasurer John East. Ladies could not hold executive positions on the Board due to N. S.W. Golf rules.
On June 28, three sand greens laid in the area south of Hyams Creek. Advice was received from Alf Harvey, Kiama Golf Club and work commenced in clearing and slashing. On Saturday, September 6, 31 starters hit off in a Stableford competition. A tractor purchased for $1300 and green fees set at $1.50.
Jamberoo Golf Club
February a Special General Meeting to adopt proposed constitution. May saw the first meeting of Incorporated Golf Club with the executive being Pres. Ron Freeman, V. Pres Eric Gardner, Sec. Geoff Boxsell, Capt. Alan Crapp, Vice Capt. Richard Taylor and Treasurer John East.
Cronin and Norris (Rick Norris) were appointed as auditors and Kearns and Garside (Sandy Rendel) as solicitors. (The Golf Club still operates through these two companies and is indebted to them for their great assistance in the development of the club to this stage.) Membership was now open. Entrance fee $10.00 and annual subscriptions $15.00.
Ben Churchill scored the Club’s first ‘Hole in One’ and Dave Papesch scored the club’s first ‘Eagle’
August was the First Annual General Meeting.
The new constitution now accepted by N. S.W. Golf and Jamberoo Golf Club became the first Golf Club that did not refer to men as ‘members’ and ladies as ‘associates’. Both sexes were “Members”.
At the first AGM in August Elsie Churchill took over the position as vice president, Trish Orgill took over the position as vice-captain and Betty Chittick was appointed to the Board. Problems were encountered with horses on the equestrian area eating newly planted golf course trees.
A team was entered in the White Horse Cup men’s competition for the first time. Membership numbers in December were 128 men 78 ladies and 21 juniors (227 total). A mowing roster of 30 to 40 members was drawn up, plus a roster to service the ‘starters shed’.
The equestrian area became available for lease at $75 per year and work was commenced on clearing this area. May 1982 membership now 259. Hydraulic gang mowers were purchased. Doug Canty, the Port Kembla Golf Club professional, gave advice with regard to course layout.
Elsie Churchill did not seek re-election to the Board due to ill health.
An 18 hole layout is examined White Horse Cup team placed third in their competition. Dave Papesch moved up to President from the Captain position. The lease of land finalised and purchase with negotiations arrangements made with Kiama Council.
First grass green laid. Ben Churchill given permission by the Board to purchase broom handles to be used as flag pins. Land settlement finalised with Kiama Council. Kiama Council informed the club that they would not proceed with the Jamberoo bypass that was planned to cut across portions of the newly developed golf course.
Elsie Churchill passed away. Subscriptions were increased to $30 and the competition fee to $2
Proposal for the Jamberoo Golf Club to amalgamate with Group 7 League’s Club. The proposal was controversial and discussions continued through to May 1988 when group 7 withdrew their proposal due to their new development program. Amalgamation discussions were initiated with Jamberoo Bowling Club. A huge working bee was held to lay three grass greens with turf obtained from Kiama Bowling Club.
Trish Orgill appointed President.
Peter Townsend appointed President. September 16 – 18 holes laid out and played on for the first time.
Jamberoo Ladies win first pennant for the club.
The successful 1989 Ladies Pennant team, l – r: Jenny Grey, Glad Miller, Shirley Walsh, Trish Orgill, Helen Young
John Duncan appointed greenkeeper. To this stage all work on the course had been done through volunteer labour. Club given an interim golf rating of 60.90. Negotiations with Kiama Council with regard to leasing extra land next to Tate’s Place. Huge working bee held laying turf on three new greens with grass from Kiama Bowling Club.
John Duncan completed his apprenticeship and is awarded “Illawarra Apprentice of the Year’. Major repairs carried out on the banks of the Minnamurra River with assistance from Kiama Council and Cleary Bros. Amalgamation discussions continued with Jamberoo Bowling Club. 10 year Anniversary celebrations.
New course layout to be played on a trial basis. The new layout was adopted and is the present design that members now play. Fees set at $85, juniors $10 and Saturday competitions $4. Clive Kingswood elected as Captain.
Fees set at $95 and juniors $15. Office set up in the upstairs section of the Bowling Club. The upstairs section of the Bowling Club is carpeted and supplied with furniture by the Golf Club.
Timber signs constructed by Bill Carter were erected at each tee. The positions of the 2nd, 11th and 18th tees were reviewed. New second green into play.
Plans drawn up for a new starters shed. The foundations for the new pump house were laid and power connected to the area. A framed photograph was presented to Bas Rutledge in recognition of his work on the golf course.
The area containing the present 4th green is leased from the Bowling Club. Frances Johnson appointed as administrative officer. 18 permanent grass greens completed and a celebratory weekend held. New starters shed completed. Car park purchased and outstanding debts finalised. Dam in front of the 16th green enlarged and the new pump house completed and a computerised watering system installed. Warren Fraser elected Captain. State Treasurer agrees to waive stamp duty on any amalgamation between the Golf and the Bowling Clubs.
Purchase of residence and shop alongside the ACF store. Purchase of land around 16th green. Peter Townsend resigns from his position as President to be replaced by Barry Walker. The car park is sealed and the starters shed upgraded. Jamberoo veterans kick off. Membership at this stage closed at 1200. Tees improved and plans with regard to a dam on the second hole drawn up.
Flood on August 18 washes out most of the old bridges and damages the fairways bordering Hyam’s Creek. Thanks to the efforts of course director Bill Carter and his group of 30 volunteers (the “dad’s army”) the 2nd, 11th, 13th & 18th tees were rebuilt, new tee signs were erected and the creek was reshaped and the banks reinforced.
New tree planting undertaken to define fairways. Building of lake in front of 2nd green commenced. Trish Orgill elected Captain.
Neville Hutchins elected Captain.
Phil Lewis is elected President.
Tom Burge elected Captain.
Lance Fredericks elected Captain.
Linda McGlinchey starts as Office Administrator.
25 year anniversary celebrations
Adrian Gehrmann sets course record 65.
Fourteen year old Jordan Widdicombe matches course record 65.
Men’s C Pennant team beaten in final of Pennant 4-3 against Vincentia at Worrigee GC.
Beaten finalists L to R: Chris Leckey, Steve Oppert, Terry Spicer, Tony McRae, Peter Francis, Athol Casey, Dave Ransom (c).
Not in photo Larry Kent
Lance Fredericks becomes President
Phil Green as Captain.
March – Serious flooding of course.
First White Duck Charity golf day held at the club raising funds for prostate cancer research.
Phil Green resigns and David Ransom appointed Captain.
Tornado hits course causing massive damage – 24th February. Green staff and volunteers work tirelessly to repair course. Overall 47 trees are downed and many more damaged.
Frances Johnson retires after 17.5 years as office administrator in April.
Mens’ B Pennant team wins the IDGA Pennant at Wollongong GC.
Jamberoo’s victorious B Pennant squad 2013
(l to r): Adrian Bell (vc), Tom Persson (c), Paul Hazeltine, Pete Munro, Matt Bell, Jarryd Buckley.
(Not Pictured): Ray Orr
Michael Carr gets board approval to build a Golfers’ Lounge and Office. This would give the club a saving on overhead costs and place the centre of our operations on the course. Many volunteers work over the next 7 months to build the golfers lounge — mostly from recycled materials. The first stage is completed for $24 000, including a repaint of the golf shop, inside and out, thanks to Carl Edlinger and other volunteers. All golf operations moved to the new office in the extension. Official opening by Kiama Mayor Brian Petschler 2nd December.
Verandah and BBQ area completed by John Duncan and his staff, Shaun Langlands, Chad Casinelli and Martin Boatswain.
New solar energy array installed.
Jamberoo veteran golfers win the Trevor Bell Shield.
First Presentation Afternoon celebrated in new Members Lounge. Shirley Walsh and Ian Boles inducted into Life Membership of Jamberoo Golf Club.
John Duncan celebrates 25 year’s service to Jamberoo Golf Club.
Steve Rippon sets new course record 62 in March monthly medal.
White Horse Cup team wins the Golf Illawarra Pennant against Worrigee GC at Wollongong.
Jamberoo’s champion White Horse Cup squad 2015: back l-r Mark Cassel, Steve Jackson, Dave Ransom (c), Scott Hainsworth, Brian O’Hare; front l-r Larry Kent, Shane Townsend, Colin Booth, Chris Goodwin (vc).
New Roof over decking constructed by members Alan Thrower and Gordon Dill and volunteers.
Ladies Gold Pennant team win the Pennant.
2015 Ladies Gold Pennant winners
l – r: Marie Farrant, Trish Orgill, Shirley Walsh, Judi O’Brien (c), Lynne Beringer, Marilyn Wright and Kay Brennan.
Not in photo : Dell Brand, Linda McGlinchey, Margaret Stephens.
The first 4 hole-playoff needed to determine the winner of the Jamberoo Mens Open. Trent Cadger (The Grange) defeats Paul Fairall (Russell Vale) after both shot 73 in regulation play.
In a first for the club both White Horse Cup teams win their divisions and meet in the semi-final of the Pennant at Nowra Golf Club. The match is tied 3 games each necessitating a playoff which the Green team win on the 2nd hole.
The 2016 combined White Horse Cup teams
White Horse Cup Green team (aka the ‘Cowpats’) retain the Golf Illawarra Pennant winning the final
4-2 against Sussex Inlet at Shoalhaven Heads GC.
2016 White Horse Cup ‘Cowpats’
l-r: Shane Townsend, Larry Kent, Mark Cassel, Brian O’Hare, Scott Hainsworth and Col Booth (c).
Not in photo : Matt Tedeschi, Phil Adams.
Footgolf introduced. First game played on January 11.
John Duncan retires after 26 years service to the club as head greenkeeper. The course under John’s stewardship has matured into the lush, green golfing paradise it is today.
Martin Boatswain appointed as his successor.
Ladies golf committee continue to raise funds for the betterment of the club. Recent projects have included the installation of air conditioning, refurbishment of the kitchen and re-carpeting in the members’ lounge.
Paul Rodgers leads the team of volunteers in rebuilding the bridge across Hyam’s Creek on the 1st.
Inaugural Australian Open Footgolf held at the course. A great success.
All four male Pennant teams qualify for the semi-finals of the Golf Illawarra Pennants in another first for the club. In the B Pennant Jamberoo progress to the final defeating The Links Shell Cove 4 matches to 1; in the C Pennant Jamberoo also progressed to the final defeating St George’s Basin 3 -2; and in the White Horse Cup, both Jamberoo teams faced off for the second year running for a place in the final. In a remarkably similar result to the previous year the match was tied at 3 games apiece after regulation play forcing a play-off between the respective number ones. On the 3rd extra hole the ‘cowpats’, Mark Cassel was able to defeat the ‘flies’ courageous Greg Seymour to give his team the opportunity to defend their title and to make it ‘three in a row’.
The 2017 B Pennant squad:
back L-R: Anthony Smith, Jarrod Gehrmann, Pete Munro, John Paul, Adrian Bell
front L-R: Tony Panecasio (c), Ray Orr
absent: Pat Paris
The finals were held at Shoalhaven Heads and all teams performed exceptionally. The B Pennant were facing the Grange and it came down to the 18th hole in the last game for the Grange to emerge victorious 3 -2. The C Pennant, in a similar scenario, lost both their last two games on the 18th to also go down 3-2 to the Links Shell Cove. The White Horse Cup was even closer with two matches going into extra holes before Kiama denied us the third successive White Horse Cup pennant. The players represented the club with pride, exhibiting great sportsmanship and team spirit and are a credit to themselves and the club.
Floods again disrupt the course in March and April.