Brief history of Golf in The Gambia

The earliest reference of golf in The Gambia dates back to the early 1920s. The Cape Golf Club was established by the British Army, having its course laid out across the parade ground of the Royal West African Frontier Force at Bakau (now the headquarters of the Guards Battalion).

In 1929 the Denton Bridge Golf Club was formed and a 9-hole golf course built, later extended to 13 holes at Denton Bridge. The Cape Golf Club joined the Denton Bridge Golf Club, closing the course at the RWAFF barracks at Bakau. The Denton Bridge Golf Club continued until the start of World War 2 in 1939, when it was taken over by the Royal Air Force.

On 1st July 1955 the Bathurst Club occupied premises at Fajara known as the Old B.O.A.C. Hall.

In 1958 an ad hoc committee was set up to explore the possibilities of creating a golf course in Fajara to replace the existing course at Denton Bridge.

20 years after the start of World War 2, golf was revived in The Gambia. A nine-hole course was built, opening in December 1959. The site chosen was well suited for that of a golf course.

In 1959 Mr. J. P. Bray (Commissioner of Police) became the first Golf Captain.

In 1963 honorary membership was extended to the Prime Minister, The Hon. D K Jawara.

Between 1970 and 1972, the Gambia Government donated £3,400 towards improving the golf course and 3 extra holes were constructed. Golf course improvements went on apace and the 18 holes were ready by June 1972. The golf course was fully operational by 1974.

On 24 April 1973, when Bathurst was renamed Banjul, Bathurst Club became Fajara Club.

In the mid 1970s the Gambia Golf Federation (GGF) was formed. The principal objective of The Federation was to help improve the golf course so as to bring it up to international standard (at no extra cost to Fajara Club) and to arrange the GGF Pro/Am. The first Pro/ Am took place in March 1977.

In 1979, under its overall plans to develop the tourist industry of the Gambia, and to further the sporting activities available to the visiting tourist, Government gave a grant of GMD17,000 to the Fajara Club for improvements to the golf course.

In 1999, the Gambia Professional and Amateur Golfers Association was established. It never really took off and was dissolved by its members in 2009. 

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