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The Richmond Golf Club was founded in February 1891 at a meeting in The Greyhound Hotel in Richmond. The Club leased a course at Old Deer Park before moving to the current location in Petersham.
Being relatively close to Westminster, many of the Club’s original Members were Government ministers. These included three Lord Chancellors (Halsbury, Loreburn and Cave), a Speaker of the House of Commons (William Gully, later Lord Selby) and a Prime Minister (Arthur Balfour).
High office is no longer a requirement for Membership, but the connection is maintained in various competition trophies honouring our illustrious past Members: The Halsbury Cup, The Selby Challenge Cup and The Prince Arthur of Coonnaught Challenge Cup.
In 1924 our Captain was none other than the Duke of York who later became King George VI when his brother famously abdicated. His wife Elizabeth, who became the Queen Mother, was Patron of The Richmond Golf Club until her death in 2002. His uncle, Prince Arthur of Connaught who was a grandson of Queen Victoria, was a Member for many years and presented the trophy that bears his name.
The Don Memorial Challenge Cup is among the oldest and most prestigious golf competitions in the London area.
Winners have included Bernard Darwin (1901, 1920 and 1922), arguably the greatest golf writer of all time.
The Don Cup was inaugurated in memory of Patrick Don, Honorary Secretary of our Club, in the year of his untimely death, 1895.
At first, it was contested only by members of the golf clubs to which Patrick Don belonged.
They were Richmond, Royal Mid-Surrey, the R & A, Royal St George’s, Royal West Norfolk, Dalhousie (Carnoustie), Felixstowe, Littlestone and Eltham.
Participation has been broadened considerably in recent years, and since 1995, the trophy’s Centenary Year, clubs have also played as teams for The Don Centenary Salver.
The event usually takes place on a Friday in late July, and golf clubs interested in receiving an invitation for future years should contact the General Manager.