Brief History of ERPM Golf Club
ERPM Golf Club came into being in 1903 when 3 holes were built around the first school in Boksburg, a wood and iron structure that is still standing today. The building was also used as the first clubhouse and is situated on the right hand side of the first fairway.
In 1906, 18 holes were completed. The President at the time was Colonel Sir George Farrar DSO, who was instrumental in floating East Rand Property Mines Limited on 8th May 1893. The captain of the club was D McKay. The first recorded Club Champion was F N Critlends in 1913.
In 1926 under the supervision of Peter Coetzer, who served the club as Secretary / Green Keeper for 51 years, the fairways were hand planted by the members, and Fir trees were planted. Some of theses trees are still a major feature of the course. Many of these old Fir trees are dying.
ERPM has a number of Springboks that were avid members of the club, namely, Alma Truss, Jill Kennedy, Jimmy Boyd, Denis Hutchison, Neville Sundelson, Neville Clarke and Dean van Staden. As well as provincial players too numerous to mention, one of ERPM’s well know professionals, John Bland, playing with members on a Wednesday afternoon shot an amazing 59. He also holed out on the par 4 tenth playing against the club manager in a Friday afternoon four ball.
In 1992 the club was still controlled by the mine and soon thereafter the control and running of the club was solely in the hands of members. In mid 1992 a decision was taken to revamp the course and in October of that year work started. Using the same layout the greens were completely reshaped and rebuilt, the bunkers redesigned and the water reticulation system replaced. Between the 1st October 1992 and the reopening of the course on 1st May 1993 golf was played on 18 temporary greens. The chairman at the time, Willie Tredoux, had the honour of opening the new ERPM Golf Course.
ERPM Golf Club’s emblem is an owl sitting on a golf club. In fact all of the mine sports club’s have the same owl on their respective badges and flags. The owl came into being as the emblem as a result of the relentless sounding of the mine hooter, at regular intervals every day and night, which was activated by the steam driven boilers. The start of every shift was heralded by the hooter, as was the beginning and end of lunch and tea breaks. The hooter, it seems, was used for many other reasons as well.
Eventually, after numerous complaints, the hooter was silenced. However, “The Hooters”, the name adopted by ERPM sport teams during the early mining years, have not been silenced. “The Hooters” are a proud bunch of sportsman and sportswomen who are respected for their competitive spirit and loyalty to the owl of ERPM. During early 1999 the chairman, Mr. Ronnie Wiggill, secured a loan to rebuild the Golf Club’s club house. With the assistance of the Club Captain at the time, Brian Randall, the new modern club house was built and completed in 2002.
The new club house complex was opened by the chairman Mr. Ronnie Wiggill and celebrated with a week long festival of golf.
In 2004 ERPM Golf Club improved the security of the course by erecting a concrete palisade fence around the entire course.
In 2005 one of ERPM’s Springbok golfers, Dean van Staden, was appointed as Green Superintendent. The experience that Dean gained playing the professional tour was utilized to improve the greens and extend the tee boxes to lengthen the course. A replacement programme is underway to replace, with indigenous trees, those that have either died or fallen over.
ERPM Golf Club has not been immune to the modern way of golf course life and houses are in the process of being built around the course.