Golf Popularity Explodes
Beverly Golf Club Opening Day 1950
From the 1950s onwards, the surge of interest in women's golf throughout the State was far beyond what anyone from the Western Australian Ladies Golf Union (WALGU) could have imagined. In the first few years immediately after the war however, a number of hurdles had to be overcome. The Union needed to re-establish its former structures. At a meeting held at the Palace Hotel, the original office bearers were reinstated until an election could be held. Clubs that were affiliated prior to closure of operations four years earlier were circularised notifying them of proposed fixtures and the date of the State Championship. But despite the enthusiasm and commitment of council members, by 1947 the Union had only regained a little over fifty percent of its pre-war figures of 105 affiliated clubs. WALGU Minutes 1947. Even metropolitan clubs were having difficulty in fielding full teams for A Grade Pennants, which were considered one of the most important of Union fixtures for raising the standard of golf. WALGU Minutes 28/11/49. Members of the Union council guessed that the reason was "probably due to the fact that so many of our players had lapsed handicaps".
In those first few years after the war, the focus was on getting clubs under control of the British Ladies Golf Union (LGU) rules once again. "Much discussion took place on the matter of handicaps... it was stressed that all captains and handicap managers bring before their members that the British LGU strongly advises that at least six cards be returned each year" Minutes of the Union's council meeting Palace Hotel 29/4/49. Owing to the strict adherence to the LGU rule not to accept handicaps on preferred lies, country clubs were not inclined to rejoin the Union. The council came to realise that it was very doubtful whether small country clubs would be in a position to play without preferred lies for some time, and despite their desire to comply with the British Ladies Golf Union, had to make allowances for these clubs. WALGU Minutes Feb. 1950.
During the war years many golf courses in country towns had fallen into disrepair, and it was hoped that as they were rebuilt, more clubs would join the Union. However it took some time for people to recover from the impact of the war. Every community across the State had suffered losses, particularly of its young men; and as part of rebuilding, towns focussed on constructing plaques and memorials to remember those who had not returned. In the town of Pinjarra, where golf had been a central activity since the early 1900s, it was seen fitting to combine sport and a memorial in the form of a perpetual trophy to former club member, Colin Clarke who died in active service.