A notice in the local newspaper dated 29th January 1904 gives an indication of the intention to form a “new golf club for Blackpool”, under the motivation of one Mr R H Mabbott who is “interested himself strongly in the matter”. Together with a group of like minded individuals, they surveyed an area of 62 acres around The Knowle and found it to be suitable for a 9-hole golf course.
The club was incorporated on the 15th March 1904, and at the first AGM one year later it was reported that the course was open, playing magnificently, had already been extended to 18 holes and has a membership of 250 gentlemen and 33 ladies. It had made a profit of £50 and was using a cottage in Cornwall Avenue (with a thatched roof) as their first clubhouse. A more permanent arrangement ensued with the building of the clubhouse at 62 Cornwall Avenue until a move to its present home in 1928. The old clubhouse is still in existence and used as a Deaf Institute, with its north facing elevation originally opening up onto the 18th green.
The club remained as a tenant to several landowners, the main one being John Stirling Ainsworth of Cleator, with some parcels of land being sub-let to local farmers for grazing sheep and cattle. However, continued pressure to release more land for building as Blackpool grew in the early 1920s resulted in the epoch making decision to construct a new course and clubhouse centred on the highest point in Blackpool on Knowle Hill. HS (Harry) Colt was chosen as the architect in preference to James Braid, at a fee of a mere £200, with construction budgeted to be £3,500, and a further £10,000 earmarked for the erection of our present day clubhouse. The new course opened in 1927 and the clubhouse in July of 1928.
During the Second World War most of the “back nine” was taken over for military purposes or for the growing of crops and sheep grazing. Blackpool Borough became the new landlords in 1926 to coincide with the construction of Devonshire Road, and the annual rent was set at £750. With various reviews and lease extensions this arrangement continued until the mid-1990s. The club then made a further major decision to purchase the clubhouse and the surrounding land and to take on the course on a 120 year lease at the price of £1 million, thereby securing the future of golf at BNSGC.