Wick Golf Club
In September 1870 Wick Golf Club was established to organise competitions, set and administer rules and handicaps for its members. The committee arranged to play regular competitions on a six-hole course set out in Wick’s Society Park, now known as the Bignold Park and provided a practise area at the South Head overlooking Wick Bay.
A couple of years later, the club were permitted limited access to Reiss Links, about 3 miles north of Wick. A nine-hole course was set out in the natural links terrain with stunning views over Sinclair Bay, it’s nearby castles and the distant Pentland Skerries.
In the 1890’s a small pavilion was built and improved tenancy arrangements allowed golf to be played 6 days a week. Ladies were admitted as members and a professional golfer from St Andrews visited the area for 10 days to provide professional coaching.
In the 1907/1908, under the captaincy of Lt Col Henderson, the course was redesigned by Mr John Sutherland, Secretary of Royal Dornoch Golf Club, to extend it from 9 to 18 holes. In parallel with this, a new clubhouse was constructed including an integral house for a professional golfer/ greenskeeper. On the longest day in 1908, the club held a unique competition, a midnight golf tournament that started at 0230am and finished at 0530am.
WW1 had a little impact on golfing life at Reiss Links but WW2 put golf on hold for 4 years due to the risk of a German invasion from the north, after a fall of Norway in 1940. Reiss Beach was heavily mined and in 1945 had to be cleared of 2000 land mines, there was also significant damage to the golf course caused by large military vehicles and live grenade practice on the fairways. The course was repaired by the end of 1946 with the aid of German Prisoners of War from Camp 165 at Watten under supervision of a local professional greenkeeper.
The 1950’s/ 1960’s saw Sunday golf being permitted on Reiss Links and a licensed bar in the clubhouse. Infrastructure improvements to clubhouse and car park were completed, including extending the course to counteract the ever-improving equipment technology.
Wick Golf Club celebrated its centenary in 1970 with a challenge match between golf professionals Ronnie Shade and Eric Brown at Reiss Links.
In the early 1990’s, under the captaincy of Mr John Hunter, a new, spacious clubhouse was built and improved equipment storage and maintenance facilities provided. In 2002, with design advice from Irish professional golfer Ronan Rafferty, significant changes were made to several holes to improve player safety and to optimise the location of tees in the dunes.
Today, under the captaincy of Catherine Macleod, preparations have started for the clubs 150th anniversary, in 2020.
Access to the course does not normally require pre-booking and information is available on the competitions including walk on opens. Fees are reasonable and an honesty box is used to collect green fees. A small practice putting area is provided adjacent to the clubhouse. Nearby are 2 practice nets and a large practice area.
Further information is available on website.