The Golf Club

According to The Sportsman`s Holiday Guide 1897, a fine 18 hole golf course existed in the Castlegregory area – “about 3 1/2 miles in circuit it lies along the coast and is quite the first course in the Kingdom of Kerry”. The Golfing Annals continued to list Castlegregory until 1905. The course would appear to have fallen into disuse with the reconstituting of Tralee Golf Club in 1907.

In the late 1980s the idea of a golf course in Castlegregory was again mooted. Local man Maurice Fitzgerald had long harboured a desire for a links course in the vicinity, and eventually a general meeting of interested people was held in Tralee Bay Hotel in 1988. The outcome of that meeting was the renting of 57.28 acres of land beside Lough Gill, near Stradbally village, from Mrs. Peggy Griffin.

Later, a small bit of ground was acquired on lease from Mr. Sonny O`Donnell (this is now the site of the 7th green). A committee was formed and under the chairmanship of Dr. Tony Sills, work commenced on a nine-hole links golf course in 1989. The course architect was Dr. Arthur Spring and construction manager was Mr. Michael O`Shea. FAS, the National Training and Employment Authority, provided twelve workers for the project. In 1990 Mr. Martin Rice took over as Chairman of the Committee. Resulting from general meetings it was agreed to seek 75 Founder Members. Each Founder Member contributed £600 Irish Pounds to the project. The full list of original Founder Members is on a plaque, which is now on display in the Clubhouse.

In December 1994 Ms. Joan Ferriter became the first full time employee in the clubhouse, and in April of the following year Mr. Mike Dowd, as head greenkeeper, and Mr. Joe O`Flaherty, as his assistant, became the first full time workers on the course. In 1999 Dr. Michael Foxe was appointed as consultant agronomist to the Club.

Over the past fifteen years the club has developed and grown to its current level of over 460 members. The ambition to develop into an eighteen-hole facility has been ever present. With this in mind, parcels of adjoining lands have been acquired in recent years. At present negotiations are underway with other neighbouring landowners with a view to securing the additional land required to build an extra nine holes.

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