The Club was originally founded as the Blackmore Vale Golf Club in February 1894 using a 9 hole course near Sandford Road and by March that year had 42 members.
Within a year the club moved to Clatcombe Farm, where it stayed for 5 years before moving again to Lenthay Common for a decade, before practically retracing their steps to the current site at Clatcombe. The County Record Office confirms the Club’s planning application for the current site was approved in 1910.
At this time the club dropped the Blackmore Vale name and became the Sherborne Golf Club and played on 9 holes, eight of which were sited on the existing course on the northern (clubhouse) side of the lane.
The club remained as 9 holes until 1936 when the famous open champion and course architect James Braid designed 10 new holes on land south of the lane and totally redesigned the old nine holes to become eight of an entirely different character. This development of the course was funded by £50 debentures sold to the members, see picture.
Now the Club had a high quality 18 hole course and was ready to enter the Premier League of County golf. But the war intervened. For the war years the Club reverted to 9 holes and much of James Braid’s work was lost to agriculture. After the war the club continued as 9 holes for some time, with a further setback being the loss of the Clubhouse and almost all of the club’s records in a disastrous fire in 1955.
Preliminary work to bring back the lost 9 holes began in 1959. As the club had no money for the project, each committee member was allocated a green and with the help of volunteers using their own tools, and the help of the local Youth Club clearing stones from fairways, the lost holes were gradually brought back into play over a period of 5 years. To celebrate the return of the 18 hole course in 1964, there was an exhibition match between Peter Alliss, John Jacobs, Bernard Hunt and Dai Rees.
Over the remainder of the 20th century there were some small changes to the second, third and fourteenth holes and improvements to the Clubhouse.
In 2000 parts of the course were remodelled and lengthened, losing two short par 3 holes, two short par 4 holes and a par 5 hole, gaining new second, third, fourth, tenth and eleventh holes, being four par 4 holes and a par 5 hole, by building three new greens, reusing two of the existing greens and extending the course into the practice ground. The Club continues to maintain two of the greens from the holes that were lost, for use as high quality winter or alternative course greens when the need arises.
Recent improvements include new 8th and 11th men’s back tees, moving the men’s 13th tees to reflect the original Braid design and extensive landscaping work to improve the appearance and definition of the second, third and fourth holes, with many positive comments about the improvements which are almost completed.