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Club History

Partick Curling Club – A Potted History

1800-1838 According to the Reverend John Kerr’s “History of Curling” published in 1890, up until 1838 when the RCCC was founded, 133 curling clubs were known to have been instituted.
1839-1842 The current RCCC records indicate that between 1839 and 1842 a further 23 clubs including Partick were instituted. The oldest recorded club being Kinross in 1668.
1842 The first record of Minutes of the Partick Union Curling Society were handwritten in April. The meeting took place on Friday 1st April in the house of John Adams, spirit merchant, Burns Cottage, Partick. Present were Mr John McMaster, President, Mr John Smeaton, Treasurer, Mr James Borthwick, Secretary, and four committee members.The first AGM took place in the house of Mr Sinclair, grocer and spirit merchant, on Monday 25th December 1842. Each man paid 1/6d for the dinner.
1848 The club became known as Partick Curling Club and a 5 year lease was secured on land known as “Clayholes” in Hillhead to be levelled for the purpose of establishing a Curling Rink.
1849

At a General Meeting of the club held in Mrs. Sinclair’s Curlers Tavern on the 13th March, the members were initiated into the Royal Caledonian Club. The pond was located west of Byers Road opposite the Curlers Tavern which was the only building on Byers Road north of Church Street at that time.
The AGM of the Club was held at this Tavern on Thursday 8th November.

The club was admitted to the Royal Caledonian Curling Club during the season 1849/50.

1850 Mr Harvey of Castle Semple refused permission for the Grand Caledonian Curling Match to be played on Lochwinnoch. The match was played on a flooded field at Barr Meadow. Mr Harvey raised an action in the Court of Session against “all others” from curling, skating or going on the loch in time of frost. He lost in the Lower Court but won his appeal to the Supreme Court. Fortunately this case has remained unique and unlikely to be followed by any other Landlord.
1855 The continuous frost of January and February meant that many matches were played against other clubs as well as the Club’s own Rink Medal competition. On 27th January the annual Points Competition was played on the Club ice behind the Curlers Tavern.
1856 The committee met to suggest forming a Province with other clubs in the locality. The current lease for the pond at the Curlers Tavern was coming to a close and the land was to be used as a quarry. However, new ground was secured for curling purposes at Peel Street, Partick.
1858 Members of the club met at the pond to play a match for “coals for the poor”; losers to pay 2/-d and winners 1/-d each. The president’s party were the victors, and the result enabled a distribution of 24 carts of coal to be made. By this time it was not uncommon for the club to hold charity matches for “the poor of the Burgh of Partick”.Five rinks played against The Old Monkland Club at Gartcosh for a District Medal of the Royal Club. In February, William Morrison, Esq, of Argyle Street, Glasgow, presented the club with a splendid Silver Medal to be played for at points, and to become the property of the party winning it for three consecutive years, should this happen.
1859 The club members met in the Tontine Hotel on 29th April where Mr John Ross presented the club with the Bell which at one time was used by the Village Bellman of Partick from the date it bears until 1779. It must be competed for on an annual basis, the winner to retain it for one year.
1860 The Tenth (Dunbartonshire) Province was formed with Vale of Leven, Dunbarton, Carbeth, Allander, Kelvindock, Partick, Lennox Club and Duntocher.
1861 The members were invited to attend the Laying of the Foundation Stone of the Wallace Monument on Abbey Craig.
1865 The club still continued to distribute carts of coal for the poor.
1870 –1880 Grand Matches continued to be played at Carbeth Loch, Loch Ardinning and Dougalston Loch.
1880 –1890 This period was not one of hard winters, though there were four Grand Matches at Carsbreck, Ballechin as well as Province Matches at Lochwinnoch. In January 1881, a Match was played against Kilmaronock on Loch Lomond.
1884 An example of audacious wit - ‘The late Sheriff Burnett of Peebles, a worthy man and keen curler, was playing in a rink with J H, a well known Peebles character, a stonemason by trade, a first class curler, but a noted river poacher. Indeed, the Sheriff had nearly every winter to send him to prison for illegal fishing. On the present occasion, the poacher was skip and the Sheriff was about to play, when the former addressed him thus: “‘I say, Shirra, dae ye see that stane?” “Aye, Jock,” answered the Sheriff. “Ah weel, Shirra,” says Jock, pointing the stone with his kowe, “just gie that ane sixty days”.’
1893 The club negotiated a 20 year lease at £7 per annum with the Town Council for ground at the Balshagray Avenue end of the almost completed Whiteinch Park, and lost no time in having a pond formed. This was duly opened on 8th January 1894.
1894 –1895 A very long, hard, cold winter resulted in Loch Lomond being frozen over which meant many matches were played there.
1899 At the AGM in October, a letter from Mr M Hunter Kennedy was read stating the if the club could obtain from the Commissioners the necessary amount of ground to form two artificial rinks, he would find money to make them. In October, Bailie Kennedy presented a plan of a house which he proposed to erect and present to the club. Messrs M H and J Kennedy were thanked by the President, Mr McColl, for the handsome gift of two artificial rinks and Bailie Kennedy for his equally generous gift of a new clubhouse.
1901 –1910 The new clubhouse and pond were formally opened at the beginning of the season 1900-01.A Resolution was passed at a meeting on 20th December 1901 that on account of the growth of the Burgh, and that a great number of the present members resided outwith the Burgh boundary, the Bell could not at any time be taken beyond the Burgh boundary.
1910 –1920 In 1912, Partick as a Burgh was absorbed, along with Govan and other areas, by the City of Glasgow Extension Build.In 1911, power was switched on for the pond lighting and when “Jack Frost” was not around, Crossmyloof was used as a venue for curling.
1914 –1918 The First World War had an impact on those able to play the game, although at the 1913 AGM it was noted that the membership was eighty. Furthermore, despite the annexation of Partick into Glasgow, the boundary rule for the Bell still applied.
1920 –1930 The club joined the Glasgow Province in September 1922 and the pond was still leaking even after it was mentioned at the AGM in October 1918. It was felt this was the result of the Corporation disturbing the ground for the purposes of growing vegetables during wartime. There were no games played on the pond during the War.
1930 –1940 At the AGM on 9th October 1930, the question of admitting ladies was discussed, but it was resolved not to do so meantime.A new 10-year lease was negotiated in 1932 but the pond continued to leak.
1940 –1950 Due to War restrictions on lighting after sundown and some curlers being away in the forces (several were killed during the war), meetings were held on Saturday afternoons and generally without a quorum of members present.
1950 –1960 At the 1954 Bell Dinner, Mrs H J Craig presented the club with a silver Quaich in memory of her husband (H J) and it was to be competed for annually.
1960 –1970 This was a period of many changes, with the park losing land to the raised approach road to the Clyde tunnel. The excavation work was seen to considerably disturb the ground immediately surrounding the clubhouse and the ice rink. By 1964, there was a serious leak at the pond.In 1969, concern was raised by members about the management of Crossmyloof Ice Rink and the state of the ice.
1975 On the 31st October, Mr Harry Shirley invited Lord Elgin as president of the Royal Caledonian Curling Club and President of Broomhall to be “My Lord” at the club’s Curlers’ Court. Thus started a relationship with the two clubs which resulted in an annual competition between them and an invitation to send members to each club’s Curlers’ Court every 3 years. Two members of Broomhall are also invited to the Bell.
1977 The Constitution and rules were revised by a small committee with Bobby Davidson as Chairman.
1983 The Ground Lease for the pavilion and pond had lapsed for 14 years. A new lease of £25 per annum was agreed with Glasgow District Council.
1986 The Summit Centre at Finnieston opened and the club moved away from Crossmyloof without a backward glance despite playing there since 1906.
1992 The members celebrated the 150th anniversary of the Club at the Bell dinner with Mr. Douglas Forbes as President and with Lord Elgin the invited guest.
1995-1998 .The Summit Centre was in financial difficulties and was closed in 1997. The club then used Paisley for one year followed by Greenock for season 1998/99.
1999 Braehead Ice Rink is open for business in September and the club started playing there along with many others.
2000 A millennium bonspiel was organised by the president, Gordon Kinloch with numerous clubs participating. The RCCC president and his wife were invited guests.
2001-2002 Nine members were “made” at a Curlers Court. The Lord and Lady Provost attended a “Cheese and Wine” at the clubhouse to celebrate the centenary of the pond and clubhouse.Rev. Dougald Cameron was club chaplain from June 2001 until May 2003.


2004 The Rev. Campbell McKinnon was appointed club chap
2005-2006 The club started having weekends away for members at Pitlochry in January 2006At the June AGM, the constitution was amended with six minor changes.A Curlers Court was held for six members.
2007

At the June AGM the Constitution was amended again to ensure that any surplus or gains require to be re-invested in the club.

2015

After a club vote women members are welcomed to the club for the first time in its history.  No change to the constitution was required as there was nothing in the club rules to specifically barr lady members.  A number of new members from the fairer sex then joined the club for the 2015-2016 season.

Province History

Partick is a founding member of the 10th Province. Follow this link for a potted history of the province.  (.pdf document.)