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220-Year-Old Scottish Club Offers Golf for Life Membership


The world's seventh-oldest golf club, Crail Golfing Society in Scotland, is now introducing overseas membership for life for a single subscription of less than $4,000.

"Crail Golfing Society has always given a special welcome to overseas golfers," said Society Captain Alick Kubrycht. "Life membership provides an opportunity for golfers from all over the globe to become members of this ancient club and to play one of the world's greatest golfing gems for a modest one-off subscription."

The single subscription is 2,500, which at current exchange rates ($1.50 to 1) is $3,750. In return, the lifetime membership fee will entitle overseas members to eight rounds of golf every year in perpetuity. Members will be able to book these rounds up to one year in advance - and bring along golfing partners to take advantage of the eight guest rounds at nominal rates, which are included in the package. In an innovative move, the Society will link overseas members to local members, who will act as guides and "buddies."

Further features of the offer are a concierge service through the Club Manager for last-minute golf bookings on other courses in Scotland and some exclusive merchandise gifts.

Located only 12 miles from the world-famous St. Andrews courses, Crail Golfing Society was founded over two centuries ago, in 1786, and is a traditional Scottish golf club, owned and run by its members. The Society has two courses, Balcomie Links and Craighead Links.

Balcomie Links is renowned as one of the most interesting and testing courses in Scotland. It was redesigned in 1895 by the Old Tom Morris, and its 13th hole, a 217-yard par-3, which plays up a cliff to blind green, is said to be the inspiration for the hole played by Shivas Irons in Michael Murphy's famous book "Golf in the Kingdom." Craighead Links opened in 1998 and was designed by traditionalist golf course architect, Gil Hanse, to present challenging golf and take advantage of the magnificent views.

Demonstrating its confidence in the future, the Society started work in September on a new clubhouse to replace the current aging structure. Listed in Golf World as having one of the best five views in Scotland, the new clubhouse will occupy the same location as the existing building, offering panoramic views of the rocky shoreline and the courses.

"We have taken advantage of the recent change in the value of the dollar to launch this attractive life membership offer," said Kubrycht. "Additional revenue raised will contribute to the clubhouse remodeling costs, improving the facilities still further.

"As we are so close to St. Andrews, overseas members planning to make a trip to Scotland will have a clubhouse base available and rounds of golf for themselves and their friends, around which they can build their trip," he added. "With the Open Championship being at St. Andrews in 2010 and the Ryder Cup at Gleneagles, only an hour away, four years later, this is a good time to become a member at Crail.

"We have recognized that visiting golfers often like to have some local help and knowledge on tap and our 'local friend' program provides just that."

There are 22 golf courses within 20 miles of Crail, including the St. Andrews Links courses - the Old, New, Jubilee, Eden and much-talked-about new Castle Course - Kingsbarns, Dukes, Torrance and Devlin, as well as the traditional Open Championship qualifying courses of Scotscraig, Lundin Links and Ladybank - where all Society members benefit from a 50 percent discount on green fees.

Details of the new Overseas Life Membership option can be found at www.crailgolfingsociety.co.uk or by telephoning the Club Manager on +44 (0)1333 450686.