In June 1968 Frank O’Mahony, Pat Maguire, Sean De Nais, Eddie O’Sullivan and Maurice O’Keeffe discussed the possibility of starting a golf club in Bantry.
They surveyed the land around Bantry and the most suitable site was owned by Mr. McDowell of Donemark House. He generously offered his land in the picturesque Donemark area, comprising of 57 acres for a total of 15,236 punts, the same price he paid for it in 1953.
The cost of developing the land, including the 15,236 for the land purchase would be 38,000.
A committee of Frank O’ Mahony, Pat Maguire, Sean de Nais, Eddie O’ Sullivan, Maurice O’ Keeffe, Willie Cotter, Ted O’ Keeffe and Denis Shepley was formed and a public meeting was held in the Boys’ Club on 14 November 1968 to seek support for the project.
Another public meeting was held on 22nd May 1969 where the purchase of the land was formalised.
Now money had to be raised by the men and ladies committees that were formed.
THE FIRST COMMITTEES
President Frank O’ Mahony, Captain Eddie O’ Sullivan,
Hon. Secretary: John Griffin
Hon. Treasurer: Jack Matson
Competition Secretary: George Venn
Noel McCarthy, Maurice O’ Keeffe, Denis Sheply, Jackie McCarthy and Vinnie Walsh.
President Martha O’ Connor, Captain Nell Shepley,
Hon. Secretary: Joan O’ Leary
Hon. Treasurer: Bridie O’ Sullivan
Handicap Secretary: Vera Maguire
Breegen Monaghan, Eily Andrews, Margaret Clarke, Maureen Shanahan and Nora O’ Hanlon.
Fundraising would be an all concerning activity for many years with people participating in all sorts of activities including raffles, bingo sessions, cards, festivities and bazaars etc.
Eventually, after much blood, sweat and tears, Bantry’s new 9 hole golf course was officially opened on 22nd June 1975 by Mr. Pat Foley of the GUI. Another milestone was reached on 26th July 1980 when the late Jim Tunney, Minister for Sport officially opened the extension to the clubhouse and the first Pro Am Competition ever in West Cork was held in Bantry Golf Club that same year.
The official opening of the extra 9 holes (18 holes) was held on 31st July 1997 under the watchful eye of the club officials:
President: Maurice O’ Keeffe
Captain: John Barry
Lady President: Geraldine McCarthy
Lady Captain: Lesley Cotter
Percy Shannon, President Elect of the GUI cut the tape with Christy O’ Connor Jr. by his side.
The official opening of the current Clubhouse was held on 25th August 2000 under the watchful eye of the club officials:
President: Cornie O’Neil
Captain: Michael Milner
Lady President: Esther O’Driscoll
Lady Captain: Una Hurley
Pat Foley, Past President of The European Golf Union cut the tape.
Pat also opened the first Clubhouse way back in 1975.