Originally founded in 1900, Boston Golf Club had a transient history in its early years. The first golf course was sited down Sleaford Road on land that was let for summer grazing. This meant that golf could only be played during the winter six months when it wasn’t being let as grazing land. In addition there were only nine holes. In 1903 the course moved to Tower Road in Boston and continued in much the same manner. Whilst not an ideal arrangement by modern day standards, the golfers of the early twentieth century appeared to be happy in playing winter golf on a nine hole course. This practice continued until 1923 when the Golf Club took on the lease of land at Pudding Pie from a wealthy Boston businessman, Sir Fred Parkes. This provided Boston Golf Club with a 12 month nine hole course.
The Pudding Pie course was situated immediately adjacent to the banks of the River Witham, adjacent to the mouth of the river. It had previously been poor farmland and this presented the new committee with initial major problems in grassing and drainage, even to the point where it became problematical as to whether the project could be carried through. However, it appears that these initial teething problems were overcome and golf was played over the Pudding Pie course for the next twenty six years.
Probably the highlight during the period at Pudding Pie was an exhibition match in which the famous American golfer Walter Hagan played. This match took place in August 1937. Initially Joe Kirkwood, a famous Australian golfer, was to have been Hagan’s opponent, but he unfortunately fell ill the evening before and was unable to play. Instead, Walter Hagan played the better ball of George Hempstead, the local professional, and Cyril Dawson, a club member with a 4 handicap. Hagan turned out the eventual winner by 3 & 2. Walter Hagan was Captain of the American Ryder Cup team at the time.
The elements were to prove the downfall of the Pudding Pie course. On the morning of Tuesday 1 March 1949 the combination of bad weather and extremely high spring tides caused the river bank to burst, totally flooding the course with salt water. The expense of repairing the resultant damage was too great and the course was abandoned. Consequently, Boston Golf Club was without a course for thirteen years.
In 1961 a local farmer, Bryan Cooper, bought Aqueduct Farm and offered it to Boston Golf Club. The farm comprised of forty seven acres of grassland and farm cottage and out buildings. Due to a lot of hard work by many members, under the guidance of Bryan Cooper and his son Phillip, the new twelve hole course was opened in June 1962.
In 1979 the Club acquired the lease of the two adjacent Cowbridge Islands at a cost of £10,000. These two islands were opened up in March 1980 to provide an 18 hole golf course in Boston for the first time. A further purchase of eighteen acres of land adjacent to the railway line was made in 1990 at a cost of £63,000. New holes were constructed, closing down two par 3’s on the Cowbridge Islands, to provide the course we see today with a SSS of 71.
Since Boston Golf Club has been at Cowbridge, the course has matured into a parkland oasis amongst the fertile Lincolnshire fens. Today it provides an excellent challenge to all standards of golfer. The local drainage system means that water comes into the equation at a number of the holes.
Renowned for the quality of the greens, Boston Golf Club today provides a tight and true test for any golfer.
(Acknowledgement is made to Peter Flynn – BGC Member, from whose book “Golf in the 20th Century and The Boston Golf Club” material was taken for the writing of this shortened history)
Boston Golf Club, Cowbridge, Horncastle Road, Boston, PE22 7EL
Telephone: 01205 350589 - Email us
Telephone: 01205 350589 - Email us