Cronulla Golf Club was officially opened on 15th December, 1923 by Sir William Vicars. Prior to this date golf was played from Cronulla Hotel, down and across Elouera Road and back along the beach side of Elouera Road. Forty five acres of land was purchased to build a nine hole golf course, which had a club house in the form of a large cottage. The function room now stands as the original cottage. In the early 1940s fifty acres of swamp land adjoining its boundaries was purchased and rezoned to extend a further nine holes.
After many working bees the course was extended from 9 holes to 12 to 16 and ultimately 18 in 1957. During the latter part of 1960s a substantial part of the club ‘s spare land (swamp) was acquired by the department of Education and used in the construction of Woolooware High School, its grounds and part of the car park at Cronulla Leagues Club. The club house was rebuilt and extended in 1969. Today the Golf Club is privately owned and controlled by the members.
Golf was first played in Cronulla on flat sandy lands between the Cronulla Hotel and present Clubhouse in 1921. The course began behind the Cronulla Hotel, with the 1st Tee being situated outside the back door, then up the hill to Ocean Street, down and across Elouera Road and past Mewton’s House: the return journey was on the beach side of Elouera Road.
The Hotel at that time became the 19th hole and the unofficial clubhouse , with club records being stowed in a dark cupboard beneath the stairs. When the game was finished each player contributed four shillings and sixpence and received two quarts of liquid refreshments and a plate of mixed sandwiches.
1921 – A company was formed for the purpose of establishing a golf club and an area of 46 acres, mainly swampy scrub was acquired at the present site – 93 members took up shares.
The original 9 hole course and clubhouse were owned by a group of shareholders who put up the money. They appointed a Secretary and paid the wages of the Greenkeeper and care-taking couple. The ordinary playing members had no say in the running of the Club other than having a committee to control the golfing events. Time sheets were not used and members organised games when they arrived at the clubhouse.
1923 – A 9 nine hole course was officially opened on 15th December 1923, by Sir William Vicars – President was F.L. Langdon
1924 – The original clubhouse was built.
The first Championship was won by Mr. S. R. Beatty. His daughter, Miss D. W. Beatty became Associate Champion and held the title for seven years. Mr Jack Hand won the title in 1925 and went on to win a total of seven Club Championships. This remained a record until Phil Holden won the title eight times. Mrs Linda Betts leads the Associates with eight Club Championships and 7 pairs Championships.
1927 – A requirement of membership was to take up debentures and pay an entrance fee of five guineas and an annual subscription of four guineas. These fees remained the same from 1923 to 1948 with Associates paying half the male rate.
The shareholders, who were the directors of the Club, were not truly representative of the Golf Club members: they lived outside the area and some had lost interest in the Club which, at one stage was under threat of being taken over by outside interests. As time went on , fewer playing members were shareholders and it became obvious that eventually there would be no one eligible for election to the Board of Directors.
1940 – Mr. George Harris joined the Club, purchased shares and became a Director. His influence encouraged other businessmen to join the club, with the result that sufficient money was guaranteed to outbid any outside offers.
About this time Frank Cridland offered fifty acres of adjoining swampland which, with rezoning expenses, would cost 500 Pounds. This offer was accepted and work commenced to extend the existing 9 holes.
Personal financial guarantees made it difficult to arrange a lease of the Club and World War II further delayed any changes in the organisation. After the end of World War II action was taken to establish a Cronulla Golf Club Limited.
CRONULLA GOLF CLUB LIMITED
1946 – With finance arranged through a bank the original company was wound-up and a new non profit company without shares was commenced for the purpose of conducting the Cronulla Golf Club.
1947 – A Liquor Licence was granted to the club. There were 200 Members and 114 Associates.
1948 – An additional 50 acres of swampland was acquired and work began on the course extension. A full-time Secretary and a Golf Professional were appointed. An Army hut was erected to provide temporary additional accommodation.
1952 – The temporary accommodation was removed and major alterations to the Clubhouse were made. Membership stood at 371 Members, with 244 Associates.
1953 – Twelve holes were brought into play.
1955 – Further alterations to the Clubhouse were carried out. Membership rose to 363 Members and 253 Associates.
1956 – Fourteen holes were brought into play.
1957 – On the 8th June 1957, members played a full 18 hole course.
1966 – One of the most ambitious course improvements in the State was commenced with the raising of a large section of the course to obviate flooding from Council storm water, and the installation of flood-gates to control the tidal flow which adjoined the course on the northern sector. A comprehensive watering system, costing $40,000 was installed to water the course from bores sunk in various parts of the property if town supply was rationed.
1968 – Work commenced to replace the old clubhouse with a luxurious premises to house the increasing membership . The new clubhouse was completed in 1969.
1970 – The largest private professional golf purse, of $10,000, ever held by an Australia Club saw the cream of Australian and overseas golfers competing for the Endeavour Masters Tournament. The event was won by Guy Wolstenholme on the 18th January, 1970 after four days of splendid golf.
During the 1970 ‘s land at the back of the 4th green was sold to the Department of Education.
1996 – After years of negotiation Sutherland Shire Council accepted responsibility for the volume of water entering the South Storm Water Pit on the golf course which was being punted through the Club’s drainage system to their storm water channel and was damaging the course. Storm water pipes were installed to carry the storm water at a cost of $1,200,000.
1997 – Major renovations to the Clubhouse were carried out to re-arrange the operations by centralising all functions in one area, at a cost $800,000. Membership at this time stood at – Members 1,153, Associates 550 and Non Playing 598. A total of 2157 members.
2010 – Major course renovations were completed with the opening of 5 new holes, being the first part of the Club’s Course Master Plan. Our club recently joined with Sutherland Shire Council, in a project to supply recycled water from the Cronulla Sewerage Treatment Plant which was destined for discharge into the ocean, to be further treated and pumped to Council playing fields and Cronulla and Woolooware Golf courses. The project was completed in 2011 and will ensure the Club’s long term irrigation water supply. To store and distribute the water, the Club installed two large storage tanks and upgraded its irrigation system. Assistance for irrigation and storage facilities was provided by a $300,000 grant from the Commonwealth Government.
2013 – Cronulla Golf celebrated 90 years of golf. In December 1923 a 9 hole course was officially opened on the present site but it was not until 1957 that 18 holes were finally opened. Today Cronulla Golf Club is a premier golf club in the region with a proud history, Golfing Membership of around 1700 and over 3000 Clubhouse Members.
2014 – A $4 million clubhouse renovation project was completed and the Club now boasts a new first class Brasserie, two Bars, Keno, TAB and indoor / outdoor gaming, with a function room to host weddings, birthdays and corporate functions which features panoramic views over the golf course.
Our Brasserie, ‘The Greenery Cronulla’ is open Tuesday – Sunday for Lunch and Dinner, with Menu by Dominic Ayres. The Greenery Cronulla is a one-of-a-kind place – casual and relaxed, but also polished so that it feels like a not-so-average outing; and priced at a point that makes it easier to frequent than a special-occasion venue.