Ballyliffin Golf Club

Golden Jubilee Commerative Booklet 1947 - 1997

A New Clubhouse

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The balance figures for 1984 revealed that the year was a disastrous one for the Club - financially speaking. However; in subsequent years, with a marked increase in the popularity of golf in general, the Club performed with a much greater degree of profitability. A notable feature of this improvement was the dramatic rise in the number of societies coming to Ballyliffin. With increased profitability confidence was restored and thus in 1986 a firm commitment was made to undertake a major fund-raising programme to raise capital for the provision of a new clubhouse.

At the A.G.M. of lst February 1987 the Auditor declared that the 100 Draw had been a magnificent success and thus the Club had a credit balance of 102,826.74.

Mr. Kilcooleys House Committee Report to the same meeting stated that a final draft of plans for the new building had just been approved by Donegal County Council and that building work was due to commence the following day - i.e. 2nd February, 1987 with completion expected in May. The Official Opening of the New Clubhouse in 1987 perhaps symbolically represents the point when the sleeping giant that was Ballyliffin Golf Club, exploded onto the golfing map of the world to take its place amongst some of the greatest courses in the world. From this historic moment the Club would never look back: Ballyliffin Golf Club suddenly became a business that necessitated careful management. As a graph later in the Appendices section clearly demonstrates, from 1987 membership numbers mushroomed; green fees almost tripled and the number of societies playing increased to the point where they had to be regulated. It is a success story that would, undoubtedly have been beyond imagination a mere 3 years previous to the opening of the New Building.

Official Opening of New Clubhouse

The 41st A.G.M. on 31st January, 1988 is therefore significant in that it was the first held in the new custom built building. The Auditors report records that 71,000 had been spent on the construction of the building, a further 9,000 on furnishings with plans for future investment on a machinery store.

Jim Clafferty retires

A new era was optimistically dawning over the Club but as with every new dawn, changes follow. So it was in 1988 when Jim Clafferty decided to retire to be replaced by our present bar supremo Johnny McLaughlin. (Johnny's professionalism and charm undoubtedly adds much to the splendid atmosphere of the Clubhouse as the ever increasing throng of golfers to this golfing paradise will testify).

Jim Claffertys cherished memory is already etched into the hearts and minds of those who were fortunate to have shared his company.


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