About The Golf Society of Great Britain
The Golf Society of Great Britain (GSGB) was founded in 1955 by the late Sir Aynsley Bridgland, the owner of Prince’s Golf Club, with the aim of generating a spirit of goodwill and international friendship through a common sporting link, namely “the love of golf”.
GSGB continues to flourish with around 550 members from over 120 different golf clubs throughout the UK. It also has the support of some 40 “Participating Clubs”, from amongst the finest in the UK, who welcome GSGB members to play their courses at reduced green fees
Each year the Society runs 5 two-day meetings around the UK, each usually at a Participating Club together with another good course nearby. The meetings regularly attract upwards of 60 entrants and feature annual competitions for 12 sought-after gents and ladies trophies.
The Society also runs 2 overseas tours every year to specially chosen locations. In Spring recent tours have gone to South Africa, Chile, Tunisia, Argentina, Morocco, Mauritius, Kenya, Thailand and Arizona and in the Autumn members have enjoyed playing golf in Greece, Belgium, France, Italy, Austria, Turkey, Bulgaria and Ireland.
In addition to providing opportunities to play golf in special places the Society’s Meetings and Tours are popular social events engendering many long-lasting friendships.
The Society has a long history of sponsoring junior golf in the UK. A donation is made to the Junior Sections of Participating Clubs we visit for an event and numerous tournaments for golfers under the age of 14 have been sponsored for many years. The Laddie Lucas Spoon held at Prince’s continues to be an important event in the junior calendar.
The GSGB is a non-profit making association, run by a properly constituted executive committee elected annually by its members.
A document detailing the long history of the GSGB can be downloaded here.
New members to the Society are always very welcome. Go here for more details.
Interesting Early Days
Sir Aynsley Bridgland was assisted in founding the Golf Society of Great Britain by Jack Aisher. One of their main aims was to allow members to visit other participating clubs, at a reduced fee, thereby promoting fellowship through the game of golf. Jack served on the Committee and was for many years an Honorary Member. He was a country member of the Royal Cinque Ports Golf Club (Deal), being ineligible for full membership because he was “in trade” (he and his family owned Marley Tiles, the building materials company). This restriction was relaxed a decade later in 1958 and he became a full member at Deal.
He sponsored the BBC series “Pro-Celebrity Golf “presented by Peter Alliss at Gleneagles and Turnberry from 1978-1985. The golf stars that appeared in the series included Gary Player, Arnold Palmer, Lee Trevino, Tony Jacklin and Seve Ballesteros.
Sir Aynsley and Jack Aisher played a lot of golf together in the South-East corner of the country as Sir Aynsley owned both Prince’s and Royal Cinque Ports (Deal) and his clubs were clearly the core of the GSGB Participating Clubs. While Sir Aynsley played most of his golf at Prince’s, Jack was a Deal enthusiast and indeed enabled the members there to purchase the Club after Sir Aynsley’s death. He was President of Deal for over 40 years and continued to promote the strong links between the Club and the GSGB.
Sir Aynsley also provided the majority of the finance to initiate the research into the publication of the book “The Search for The Perfect Swing”, by Alistair Cochran and John Stobbs.
This book was compiled for the Society by a team of scientists under the direction of Dr Alistair Cochran and took five years of research and experiments to complete. The scientific work began in the Autumn of 1963 and culminated in the successful publication of the book in October 1968. The production of the book was the most prestigious and major effort ever undertaken by the Society. It was initially sold for three guineas.
It has been acknowledged as the best book dealing with the mechanics, theory and practice of the game that has ever been produced. Many leading professionals took part in the investigations including Bernard Hunt and Neil Coles. Their work led to the conclusions fully described in the book. It is a remarkable record of the efforts of the team of scientists devoted to the study, analysing the game’s human mechanics in hitting a golf ball, the ballistics of golf, interaction between the club and ball, spin, lift, and drag, theory, mental aspects of the game and many other topics.