In 1932, the Béghin brothers Joseph and Henri, well known Industrialists in sugar refinement and golfing enthusiasts, decided to build a nine hole golf course on their grounds in Thumeries. This golf course was reserved for their large family, their friends and guests.
The Thumeries Golf course was born…..
An excellent English Architect, Percy Boomer was given the task of designing the course. He managed to turn to his advantage the land which was resolutely flat but surrounded by woods. He built holes that were made difficult by the use of : bunkers, wooded areas, dog legs etc….to the pleasure or….despair of the players. It was a typically English course, planted with magnificent trees.
During the second world war the fairways were converted into potato fields, but thankfully the greens were not abandoned.
Following the liberation, and under the influence and energy of Ferdinand Béghin everything came back to normal and competitions began once again between the brothers, cousins and friends. During this period there were many Industrialists from the Lille area who played the nine hole course appreciating its calm and serenity.
After 1970, the Béghin family started to break up and the golf course became more and more abandoned. In 1978 Mr Pierre Malle, Ferdninand Béghin’s brother in law, suggested opening the course to players in the Douai and Lille area.
An association was created with founding members : Pierre Malle, François Pollet, Robert Fabritius and Pierre Bavière. The association took the course over through a lease agreement and sought new players. Within a short period the number of members grew to fifty. The course was still maintained by the Béghin Sugar refinery and for all the players at this time it was the golden age as the fees were merely symbolic….
Like most good things, this situation did not last long as the Association was faced with the need to take in charge the maintenance and general up keep of the course.
In order to assume this role, there was no other alternative than to increase the annual fees and incite more players to join the club. By 1980 the number of members had reached a hundred.
The interest in playing golf did not stop growing. By 1985, the Association had more than 200 members and the project for developing the course into 18 holes was considered. However, it was not until 7th May 1988 that the project was voted at the ASGTM.
An SCI was created with a first objective being to assume control of the grounds and purchase the nine hole course. This was not an easy task but thanks to the cooperation of Mr Ferdinand Béghin, support from the company Béghin-Say and the tenacity of all concerned, particularly Mr Guy Scotté, the objective was finally achieved.
Designing the new nine hole course was put in the hands of a young French Architect, Jean-Manuel Rossi. With an entirely different approach to his English predessor, Mr Rossi decided to change shape of the land, constructing small ponds, making a few hills and thus achieving a course that was modern, agreeable and varied.
In August 1988, work began on the first three holes on grounds opposite the Club House. The old nine hole course and Club House were finally purchased towards the end of 1988. As for the six remaining holes, planned at the far end of the course and on land belonging to Moncheaux, the administrative constraints delayed work on these holes until May 1990, and they were finally opened in September 1991.
So finally, the ‘old’ Thumeries Golf course created sixty years ago, found a new lease of life with its 18 holes. The dream of 200 players in 1987 finally became a reality.
The name became ‘Golf Club de Thumeries-Moncheaux’ and became a recognized course along with other well known golf courses.
Today there are about 500 members.