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JA “Bill” Stout

“Bill” Stout was known as “the long hitting Bridlington Dentist”. He was a strong and enthusiastic golfer of considerable ability.

The son of a timber merchant, he was born in 1896 in Whitehaven where his home Club was Seascale. The family connection with Seascale was very strong, three members of his family taking their turn as Captain. He had five brothers, all over six feet tall. During the First World War Bill served in the Army with the rank of Captain. After demobilisation he went to Liverpool University to study dentistry, qualifying in 1924.

Bill was a regular player of the Seascale Links and recorded the best scratch score in the years 1928, 1932 and 1935. In 1928 he was elected an Honorary Member of the Club. Bill Stout was probably the most outstanding player that Seascale had produced and became the first member to have his name placed on the “Seascale Scoreboard”, which was erected in the Smoke Room. He was also a talented cricketer and played league cricket throughout his top class amateur golfing career.

At Ganton, before the 18th hole was lengthened, Bill Stout is known to have driven the green, a distance of over 300 yards. He is also reputed to have played every hole at Ganton except one (hole not known) at one time or another in two strokes.

In 1928 he won the English Championship at Royal Lytham and St. Annes Golf Club. He represented England between 1928 and 1932.

He played for Great Britain & Ireland in the Walker Cup in 1930 and 1932. In the course of the 1930 match at Royal St. George’s Golf Club he took part in one of the most exciting 36 hole matches played in the Walker Cup. Playing against twenty-one year old Donald Moe from Portland Oregon, Bill was 7 up with 15 holes to play. He lost at the last green to a birdie. He had not played badly but Moe had played superbly. In the locker room afterwards, Bill walked across to Moe to congratulate him, “Donald”, he said, “that was not golf – that was a visitation from God.”

Bill Stout was Captain of Ganton during 1932 and 1933 and President from 1966 to 1969, when he was elected an Honorary Life Member. He died in 1974.