Royal and Ancient Golf Club

The Club House of the Royal and Ancient Golf Club, St Andrews
©2022 Gazetteer for Scotland

The Club House of the Royal and Ancient Golf Club, St Andrews

Formed in 1754 as the Royal and Ancient Society of St Andrews Golfers for the purpose of organising an annual competition; the society changed its name to the Royal and Ancient Golf Club eight years later.

In 1854 a clubhouse designed by George Rae was built on the edge of The Links in St Andrews and c.1897 the Club became the governing body for the game of golf in all countries except the USA, Canada and Mexico. It has a membership of about 2500. Governance of the game, golf development and organisation of the Open Championship passed to a sister organisation, The R&A, in 2004. The club now concentrates on providing facilities for its members, maintaining the position of St. Andrews as the home of golf and preserving records and artefacts relating to the history of the game.

The Club's members play on St. Andrews seven links courses, the largest golfing complex in Europe, but the Royal and Ancient does not own them. Rather these are public courses, owned by Fife Council, but managed and maintained by St. Andrews Links Trust, which was created for the purpose in 1974. The Royal Bank of Scotland issued a banknote to commemorate the Club's 250th Anniversary in 2004

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