Late in 1958 a committee was formed by Mr HL McGuigan (Road Board Commissioner) to study the concept of a sporting complex on Tasker’s Reserve. This area of land had been set aside for this purpose three years prior to the calling of the first meeting. This complex was to cater for golf, bowls and other sporting and social activities.
On January 17th 1959, a meeting of local residents was held in Medina Hall to hear the proposal. The Chairman presented the plan and it was endorsed by 205 interested people each paying a fee of 10/6. A Steering Committee was formed and given authority to pursue the club formation. At the first committee meeting on March 19th 1959, members were asked to subscribe to interest free debentures purchasable by monthly installments. Mr McGuigan handed over a cheque for 143/17/0 being subscriptions for 274 members. In April, the President, Dr HL Pearcy was given power to negotiate loans totaling 40,000 pounds with BP and BHP and the State Government.
These funds were to be used to erect a suitable clubhouse and to finance the commencement of sporting activity. The first golf annex meeting was held under a shady tree outside Wheatfield Cottage on April 12th, 1959. This cottage was to be our clubhouse until the completion of our present one. It was built in 1842 and was owned by several families, mostly farmers. The most famous of these was John Forrest, later to become our first Premier and to receive a Knighthood. After the meeting, all present assisted in a busy bee. Further sporting annexes were formed in 1959. The Archery, Bowls and Pony Club were introduced.
Archery and the Pony Club disbanded in 1963, and due to unrest between the two remaining annexes, the bowlers left the club in 1976 and formed a new club on land allocated to them in another part of the district. The Club Constitution was approved at a general meeting on June 4th, 1959 and plans for the clubhouse building, by architect Margaret Feilman were available for inspection. The cost was estimated 25,000 pounds. This amount being made possible by an interest free loan of 22,000 pounds from BP and a donation of 3,000 pounds from BHP.
After many hours of voluntary labour during the next 4 months, the farm land was transformed into 6 playable golf holes with marl putting surfaces and the inaugural game was played on 11th July, 1959, being a nine hole Stroke match using the 6 holes available. 30 members, 17 ladies and 4 visitors from Rockingham took part. These 6 holes are now being played as 16,17,11,8,5 and 7. A social evening followed at the cottage. At a meeting on 20th August, 1959 our 400th member was elected and from those 44 became our founding members. The contract for the building of the clubhouse was signed with Torrance Construction in November 1959.
Considerable reduction to the finish had to be made to keep within the available limit of finance. The building was completed during May 1960, and the first official function was held on July 3rd of the same year. First appointed club manager was Mr JP Connolly. The golf club was unable to get 9 holes playable for the 1960 season. The committee then entered a team in the Outer Suburban Pennants. The first championships were held in 1960 and Jim Mortimer became the first champion. The following year 2 teams were entered in the Outer Suburban Pennants, first and second divisions, with victories by both teams. First Division was to win their division for the next 4 consecutive years. All in all, they had won approximately 30 Pennants in the Outer Suburban.
The ladies joined the Outer Suburban Pennants in 1962 winning the Pennant that year and more since. The membership was over 400, so the licensing court required some areas of the clubhouse to be completed; a loan of 5,000 pounds was negotiated through the Shire Council. This money was to be spent on toilet extensions, showers and locker rooms.
By 1967, with over 100 players taking part in the Saturday golf competition on a regular basis, it was necessary to construct the final stages of the golf course. A loan of $46,000 was negotiated to construct these 9 holes with full reticulation. Completion of the clubhouse was included. The ladies entered Metropolitan Pennants with no success until 1991, winning 5th Division and advancing to 4th Division in 1992.
n 1970, the second 9 holes were completed. In 1973-1974, some interest was revived when a company considered mining sand from the western side of Tasker’s Reserve. Royalties from this were to be paid to the club and plans were drawn up for the construction of a further 9 holes when the mining operation was completed. This venture was not completed.
In 1975, the Inaugural Kwinana Cup Pro Am was played. This was won by R Peterson, an amateur. This has become an important date on golfer’s calendars. The men entered Metropolitan Pennants in 1976. They played in ‘C’ Division, winning that Division in 1979 and so advanced to ‘B’ Division, winning that in 1981. They advanced to ‘A’ Grade. They won Division 2 in 1990.
Alterations were made to the course to have 2 Par 5 finishing holes with greens, where the bowling rinks had been. Murray Dawson came to the club and advised on the construction of the 2 holes. To utilize the course to it’s full potential, it was decided to introduce a semi-public concept. In August 1979, Professional Richard Brain was appointed golf course controller.
The Junior Rooms were converted to a pro shop and Richard stayed till 1981. In the same year Jock Borthwick was appointed to the position and the current Professional, David Robinson was a junior member of the club. A new Pro Shop was built and opened in December 2000 which was separate from the clubhouse. The old pro shop was converted to offices when the downstairs area of the clubhouse was renovated at the same time. In the year 1983, a special committee was formed to organize the 25th Anniversary events for the following year. This committee was to raise money and sponsorship for social events and golf competitions. Past members were contacted and the response was overwhelming.
In April 1984, a cocktail party was held for 120 guests and members. It was a great success. A painting of the cottage by Kerry Cooke was unveiled; this painting was donated to the club by the artist. Arrangements were made to have the golf course photographed from the air, this was done again in 2003 and the difference in the course is clearly visible. On Wednesday 11th July, the Silver Anniversary of the inaugural game of golf, 108 members and guests took part in a competition, the main trophies being silver goblets.
A Birthday party was held on the 13th July where a special cake was cut. This gathering was also a great social event. 1992 was the 150th Birthday of Wheatfield Cottage. If you require further information or just want to talk to those who were there way back when, 4 of the founding members still play at Kwinana Golf club. What a handicap they must have after all this time