It’s difficult to define why Mayo exiles took so enthusiastically to golf, it certainly was not part of their upbringing back in Mayo where any type of “stick” games were rare and Golf was for “Big Shots”. Nevertheless the game became very popular among Mayo exiles in London in the 1970’s and many became members of the various golf societies around then. View Captains & Presidents
The Mayo Golf Society was formed in 1982 by a group of these enthusiasts to give Mayo exiles an easy introduction to the game and to widen and strengthen the circle of friends from the county living in London in a new friendly social dimension.Oliver Foye, Paddy Hughes and Peter McGeever were among the first to come up with the idea of forming this society.Michael Durkan became its first President. Oliver Foye its first Captain. Jim Beisty its Treasurer, and Peter McGeever its Secretary.
Over 30 years on, the Mayo Golf Society still fulfils that role and has introduced the game to many new members every year – it now boasts to being in the top 10% of all the 15,000 Golf Societies throughout Great Britain and Ireland. It has been a huge success both as a golf society and a social benevolent society.
It is also a member of the Union of Irish Golf Societies GB. It hosted the National Championships at Finchley Golf Club in 2000 which were a great success and co-hosted them in 2011 at Bookman’s Park Golf Club.
In 2011 our A team won the national championship title and put in a valiant effort to defend the title in 2012 at Forest Pines Golf Resort in Lincolnshire coming home in second place with the silver medal.
The society is closely linked to its sister organization the Mayo Association – London founded in 1962 which celebrates its own 50th anniversary this year.
Members from both organisation’s came together in 1988 to set up the Safe Start Foundation. A registered charity dedicated to offering a safe environment to young immigrants to London. Over the years is has helped over twenty five thousand young people find their feet and still continues this great work. It has also expanded to provide social services for the elderly Irish at various centers in London.
This was only made possible by the generous efforts of both organizations in organizing Golf days and Charity events to raise funds to put the Safe Start firmly on the road.
However, more than anything else, its role in providing a hub for Mayo people to get together a few times a year to share the ‘wonderful game’ and the “craic”, was probably it’s most important. On the course many a business deal was struch. Even though today some of its members share dual allegiance with other counties and many nationalities have been represented in the guest lists throughout the years – it always feel great to be among ‘your own’.