A Brief History of Collinstown Pitch and Putt Club
|ST. MARY’S PITCH & PUTT CLUB,
St. Mary’s Pitch & Putt Club, Collinstown, Co. Westmeath was formed in 1971 and registered with the Pitch & Putt Union of Ireland in 1975 and is now one of the most renowned and popular courses in the country. The introduction of the game to Collinstown was the brainchild of local curate at the time – Fr. John Kiernan and in May 1970 with the help of a lot of willing locals work commenced on the construction of the course. Fr. Kiernan was the architect of same and what a fine job he did with the area provided, in ensuring that safety prevailed. The fact that the terrain was very flat made things that much more difficult and the greens had to be highlighted in some way so elevated greens were built.
The first Committee for 1975 was as follows:
Chairman – Rev. Fr. T. Mullen (R.I.P.)
President – James Lynch
Vice-Chairman – Donie Weldon
Treasurers – James Daly (R.I.P.) Miko Fay (R.I.P.)
Secretary – Val Healy
Comp. Secretary - Pat Morgan (R.I.P.)
Captain – James Daly
Other Committee members – Patsy McDonnell, George Correll, Billy Buckley(R.I.P.), Thomas Healy (R.I.P.), Aidan Garry (R.I.P.), Feichin Morgan, Dr. J.J. Cox, Tommy Timmons, M. Bergin.
The club was recognised as being one of the finest in the country in 1977 when it was honoured with the staging of the Ladies National Matchplay Championships. In 1978 an automatic sprinkling system was installed at considerable expense which has proved absolutely invaluable in the management and maintenance of the greens to championship standard. In 1981 the club was again honoured when we were awarded the hosting of the Gents National Strokeplay Championship Finals.
In 1986/87 work commenced on our new clubhouse and our dreams were realized when the official opening took place on the 20th May 1990. The cost of same was in the region of £5,500 and this was completely paid for from various forms of fund-raising by a very hardworking and dedicated committee of the day.
We had our fair share of champions down through the years. In 1978 two of our members Feichin Morgan and his brother Pat (R.I.P.) were part of the Westmeath team which won Inter-County honours that year. In 1978 Pat was also Leinster Strokeplay Champion a fete which was emulated by his brother Feichin on two occasions afterwards. Paul Bray was Leinster Matchplay Champion in 1993 and Ann Kelly was Junior Leinster Strokeplay Champion in 1994. Raymond Coleman and Liam Buckley were also Leinster Champions. In 1995 we extended our clubhouse to incorporate the toilet block which had previously been separate and we also added a new modern kitchen.
1996 had to have been our biggest year with the daunting task of hosting the National Inter-County Championships in September of that year. Our hard working committee succeeded in making it a championship to be proud of. We also successfully hosted the Leinster Inter-Counties in 2001.
In recent years the success has continued in the club with several of our members achieving honours to be proud of. Alan Hanlon, a former Leinster Champion when he was a member of his previous club Campions, and Paddy Browne were proud members of the Irish team who won the European Championships in Holland in 2005. Paul Bray and Liz Quinn won the National Mixed Foursomes in the early part of this century. Paddy Browne and Moira Nugent were also victorious in the Leinster Mixed Foursomes. John McDonald and Brian Caffrey also achieved champion status on the Leinster stage.
Our current committee and set-up in Collinstown is as strong as ever and the foundations and ambitions of the club and its members will secure an exciting and promising future for the club.