Supporting your Golf Societies

What, exactly, are Golf Societies?

What are golf societies?, what do they do? Where do they play? How do I join one?

You can find about out all of this, and more, on these pages.


Golf Societies

Golf societies are any group of friends or acquaintances who meet on a regular or irregular basis for the pleasure and purpose of social and/or competitive golf.

Golf societies differs from a golf club in that it does not own its own golf course, but tend to meet at various golf courses, as and where conveneint.

Golf societies are often “nomadic”, in that they enjoy playing at lots of different courses.

The main purpose of these societies is to provide opportunities to meet friends, to play golf and to have an enjoyable day on the links and afterwards in the bar, usually with a meal.

Golf: “A game in which a ball one and a half inches in diameter is placed on a ball 8,000 miles in diameter.

The object is to hit the small ball but not the larger.”

John Cunningham

There are infinite types of golf societies.

For pubs, villages, work mates, any group you can think of

There are golf societies associated with pubs, villages, professional organisations, ex pat communities, and work places. Think of any association of people, anywhere in the world, and it will probably have a golf society. 

Large and Small

Some societies consist of just a handful of members, such as work colleagues in a company accounts department, and some consist of many members, such as a regional professional organisation for architects, engineers, and the like.

Official and non-official

Some golf societies don’t mind whether members have an official handicap or not, others insist that all members have official club handicaps.

Some give members a “society handicap” whether or not they have an official club handicap. This is calculated based on results in society meetings. 

Let’s not forget that there more golfers in the world who are not members of official golf clubs than there are golfers who are members of golf clubs.

Just another way of enjoying golf!

Therefore, there are many golfers who welcome golf societies as a means of meeting other golfers, being given a society handicap, and getting into golf.

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Golf societies can be immense fun but also provide a competitive edge.

At one time I was a member of the Papyrus Golf Society, where I had to play off a society handicap of 9, even though my club handicap was 12. Harsh but it was all great fun.

Another society that I currently belong to is called the “Royal and Runswick Golf Society”. The Royal is the pub at Runswick Bay on the Yorkshire Coast. The same families take holidays at Runswick Bay in the same weeks every year and we therefore have a Royal and Runswick golf championship once per year.  

Royal & Runswick Golf Society

Enjoying coffee before the days play.

Some members of the Royal & Runswick Golf Society have official club handicaps and some don’t. This is not a problem to the members. We have an Annual General meeting in the pub and the condition of membership for new members is the cost of a round of drinks at the AGM. We have a Secretary to organise the golf venue, a Competitions Secretary to organise the day, a different Captain each year and a President who actually died more than ten years ago, but was voted to remain President in perpetuity. 

A Different type of golf society

I am a also member of another golf society, the “Military Hat Golf Society”, which essentially consists of friends who play together at York Golf Club, but not exclusively so. This is a more formal society where official club handicaps are expected. We have three away outings per year, in the spring, summer and autumn, all at different venues.  We try to visit as many different courses as we can over the years.

Each outing consists of 9 holes of team competition in the morning and 18 holes of individual Stableford competition in the afternoon. We have bacon butties on arrival at the chosen venue, soup and sandwiches at lunchtime and a meal and prize presentation in the evening. We have a Secretary, Competitions Secretary and Captain. We also have a Treasurer who is responsible for collecting the annual subscriptions of £15 and the costs of each outing. There are around fifty members of this society and between twelve and twenty will attend each venue. 

This golf society also forms the basis for a group of us, who go golfing to Scotland for five days golf each year. 

Members of the Military Hat Golf Society

Discussing missed putts after the round


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For Golf Club Captains by a Golf Club Captain

Do you belong to a golf society? Would you like to form a golf society?

I know of some golf societies that have hundreds of members.

Some golf societies have regular golf meetings, say every week or month. Some have matches against other golf societies, for example the Kings Arms Golf Society versus the Cross Keys Golf Society.  

So golf societies can be anything you want them to be: –

  • They might consist of a handful of members or many hundreds
  • They might require official handicap or might not
  • They might maintain their own handicap records or might not
  • They might have a formal constitution or might not
  • They might have only one meeting a year or might have many meeting

So, go ahead, talk to your pals and form your own golf society. It can take any form that you want tit to do. Just make sure you have fun.


Would you like your golf society to have it’s own web pages

Regardless of how large your golf society is, or how it is structured, you might wish to publish information about your society on a web site.

When fully operational will provide a means to enable you to do just that.

Please have a look at create your own Golf Society web site to see what facilities eGolfShare will provide for your society.

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