Set amidst the lush expanses of Kolkata’s Maidan lies a testament to the enduring spirit and passion of women in the realm of sports – the Calcutta Ladies Golf Club (CLGC). Boasting a rich history dating back to 1891, the CLGC is a beacon of female empowerment and excellence in the world of golf.
Founded by 12 visionary women on May 7, 1891, the CLGC is a prestigious club with a legacy spanning well over a century. Not just an emblem of Kolkata’s sporting culture, the club has carved a unique niche for itself on the global stage as one of the oldest women-centric golf clubs in existence.
Over time, CLGC has made a significant impact in fostering the growth of female golf in India. Its challenging course has moulded champions like Simi Mehra and Vandana Agrawal, echoing the club’s commitment to nurturing and recognizing talent.
A Stronghold of Women’s Empowerment
CLGC is more than just a golf club; it’s an institution run by women, for women. From ensuring that the bar is well-stocked to managing the staff, from deciding the menu to overseeing the scorekeeping, every aspect of the club is masterfully managed by its female members. As Dhritipriya Raydasgupta, the club’s president, proudly states, “Women handle everything.”
Delving into the Past
In a world where women’s participation in golf was rare, CLGC emerged as a radical game-changer. The establishment of a women’s golf club in Kolkata, a mere three decades after the first known women’s golf tournament in Musselburgh, Scotland, in 1811, underscores the progressive mindset of the city’s residents.
Lady Curzon and Lady Frazer, alongside other prominent women of that era, contributed to the club’s initial infrastructure. With regulations prohibiting permanent constructions on the Maidan, the club ingeniously adopted a mobile wooden structure on wheels in 1931. Some remnants of this innovative setup, such as the wheels and rails, still exist, bearing witness to the club’s rich heritage.
With membership numbers soaring to 433 by 1953, the club expanded its premises to include washrooms, a catering wing with a bar, and other essential amenities. By 1905, the CLGC had gained enough traction to host the prestigious All India Ladies Amateur Golf Championship, a tradition it continued until 1969.
Nestled within the heart of Kolkata, the CLGC boasts a nine-hole golf course, an 18-hole putting green, and state-of-the-art practice facilities within the clubhouse. The club regularly organizes golf training camps and tournaments, offering members ample opportunities to hone their skills.
A visit to the clubhouse is like stepping into a serene oasis. Surrounded by verdant greenery and adorned with flowerbeds, it is the perfect venue for informal gatherings. With a well-stocked bar and a delectable multi-cuisine restaurant, members and guests can relish culinary delights in the company of loved ones.
For those interested in exploring this sanctuary of women’s golfing excellence, the club is located at Hospital Road, Maidan, Kolkata, West Bengal 700071. Further details can be found on their official website: https://calcuttaladiesgolfclub.in/.
In essence, the Calcutta Ladies Golf Club is not just a club; it is a legacy, a symbol of women’s resilience, passion, and prowess in the world of sports.