Ballybay Golf Society History.
The inaugural meeting of the Ballybay Golf Society took place in the Pearse Brothers clubroom on the Castleblayney Road on the 3-11-1982. Sixteen people attended that meeting, namely: Gerry Bell, Danny Cosgrove, Mick Feeney, Paul Flynn, Martin Gleeson, Canon Lennon, Pat Lynch, Eamon McAleer, Damien McBride, Charles McCarthy, Paul McCarthy, John McQuaid, John Moen, Peadar Murnane, Seamus Sammon and Joe Traynor. The society is deeply indebted to these men who had the vision and foresight to structure golf in the Ballybay area. From the outset our society has been affiliated to the G.U.I.. In 1990 an EGM was held in Rossmore to discuss the adoption of a proposed new constitution. A draft of the proposed constitution had been sent to all members and it was formally accepted.
Our competition format has changed very slightly since 1983 when there was an overall, three categories and a front and back nine winner. We now have additional prizes including: best gross, longest drive, nearest the pin and the very popular 2’s competition. Any suggestions for other novelty events would be most welcome at the AGM. Some members have achieved a ‘Hole-in-one’ while playing in society outings, these include; Kevin Duffy, Martin Gleeson, Gabriel Kerr and Peadar Lynch. In the early days the two major competitions were the Captain’s Prize and the Ballybay Cup which was later called the Duffy Cup after James Duffy, a prominent golfer in the area. Today our major competitions are; Captain’s Prize, President’s Prize, Duffy Cup and Matchplay(Seamus Sammon Perpetual Trophy). In the early eighties the Golfer Of The Year prize had three categories: Senior, Junior and Novice.
Early minutes state that the membership was paid annually at a cost of £5. In 1983 meals cost £3 in Rossmore and £40 was spent on prizes. In 1991 the membership fee was £40, this was increased to £50 in 1992. In January 1991 there was £700 balance in the bank account. In 2006 the membership fee was €180.
Initially there were 9/10 outings per year, a format which has been kept to the present day. Over the years we have frequently played Clones, Castleblayney, Rossmore, Nuremore and Mannan Castle. Other courses visited include Ardee, Ashfield, Belturbet, Bundoran, Cavan, Dundalk, Dungannon, Greenore, Headfort, Killymoon, Longford, Moyola, Omagh, Royal Tara, Seapoint, Slieve Russell, Virginia and Westport. We extend our sincere thanks to all these clubs for the hospitality we have received over the years.
In 1983 a charity outing was held, the proceeds of which were donated to local charities. Every year since we have organised a charity event or in the absence of such we have made a donation to charity. In 2006 €700 was raised for Ballybay Hospice.
In 1984 the society travelled to Bundoran on the 31st of August. This was the beginning of the traditional weekend away. Since then several weekends have been spent in Bundoran and in 2006 a group of 16 travelled to play St. Andrews in Scotland.
Traditionally a team event takes place on the weekend away and in certain years a full outing has been dedicated to a team event. In the last few years the society has organised a scramble to encourage new members to take up the game of golf.
In 1994 a team first represented the society in a match against Clontibret Golf Society, which Clontibret won. In 2002 the society entered a team ai The Star On Sunday All-IrelandGolf Society Competition. We have entered into this competition annually since. Our best achievement so far in this competition was in August 2005 when we qualified for the final which was held in Faithlegg Castle. Out of some 160 teams we finished fourth overall. The team captains that year were Gabriel Kerr and Denis Parker and for the record the team was; Francie Boylan, Kevin Duffy, Sean Farmer, Kenny Farrelly, Kieran Finlay, Paul Fitzpatrick, David Lennon, Johnny McEntee, Paddy McKeown, Denis Parker, Macartan Sammon, Gerry Traynor and Tom Ward.
The society jumper and t-shirt with the crest was introduced in 1994 and to this day is worn with pride by the members.
We have been very fortunate to have a constant supply of sponsors. We are deeply indebted to them for their generous support over the years.