• Home
  • /
  • Golf
  • /
  • LISTEN: Peter Alliss Says Women Who Want To Join Muirfield Should Marry A Member

LISTEN: Peter Alliss Says Women Who Want To Join Muirfield Should Marry A Member

LISTEN: Peter Alliss Says Women Who Want To Join Muirfield Should Marry A Member
By Conor Neville
Share this article

The stubborn old goats who comprise the membership of Muirfield Golf Club have decided they'd rather keep the ban on female members in place than continue to enjoy a place on the British Open rota.

In a letter circulated among the membership ahead of the vote, the conservative vanguard asserted that the admission of lady members would jeopardise the tradition of 'speedy play' which is so cherished by members. They succeeded in winning around more than one-third of the membership.

While the club has largely been condemned and derided for their hidebound stance, Peter Alliss, one of the finest commentators in the history of sport, any sport in fact, has offered a contrary view. He is perhaps better placed to empathise for these well-heeled old bucks.


[soundcloud url="https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/264941195" params="auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false&visual=true" width="100%" height="450" iframe="true" /]

It is in the nature of clubs. He says he yearns to join the Women's Voluntary Service but has more or less come to terms with the fact that he doesn't have the correct body parts.

The women who are there as wives of husbands, they get all the facilities. If somebody wants to join, well you'd better get married to somebody who's a member. I believe clubs were formed years ago by people of like spirit: doctors, lawyers, accountants, bakers, butchers, whatever they like.

And they joined in like spirit to talk amongst them and to do whatever. I want to join the WVS (Women's Voluntary Service) but unless I have a few bits and pieces nipped away on my body I'm not going to be able to get in.

It is in the manner of traditionalist conservatives to focus on the nitty gritty when a matter of principle is involved. He suggested that it's the wives of the members who are most opposed to the idea of allowing lady members. They - or their husbands - would have to fork out fortunes to pay for their membership fees. It's not worth it for 20 games of golf a year.

I was at the Open Championship two or three years ago and I used to go in for a coffee every morning. There's a very nice drawing room in the clubhouse at Muirfield and it was full of ladies who were all chatting - 'Hello, Peter how are you doing?' - and me in my usual, jocular, quiet way suggested, 'What great times are coming, you'll be able to join the club.'

And there was a look of horror on the faces of the ladies, ladies whose husbands were members, and I was met with 'Good Lord, no we don't want to be members.

'If we joined, our husbands would have to pay thousands of pounds for our entry fee and our subscriptions. We can come and play and do pretty much what we wish for nothing'.

Alliss's amiable patter wound up folk at the British Open last year when in an imaginative flight of fancy, he speculated that Zach Johnson's wife would treat herself to a new kitchen after his win.

Muirfield has held the Open twice in the 21st century, in 2002 when Ernie Els won it and most recently in 2013 when Phil Mickelson won.


Read more: The Farcical Letter That Was Sent Ahead Of Muirfield Female Member Vote

Join The Monday Club Have a tip or something brilliant you wanted to share on? We're looking for loyal Balls readers free-to-join members club where top tipsters can win prizes and Balls merchandise

Processing your request...

You are subscribed now!

Share this article

Copyright © 2023. All rights reserved. Developed by Square1 and powered by PublisherPlus.com