The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews is to admit women members it was announced today, following a vote by members.
85 per cent voted in favour of admitting women.
2,400 members of the club were asked to vote by postal ballot on whether this ancient institution should allow women members. 75 per cent of members took part in the vote.
Following this announcement, women will be immediately able to join the club. The first women members are likely to be those most prominent in the world of golf, who have helped to shape the game. 15 women will now be fast-tracked to membership.
Peter Dawson, Secretary of The Royal and Ancient Golf Club, said: “I am very pleased indeed to announce that the membership of The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews has voted overwhelmingly in favour of welcoming women members. More than three quarters of the club’s global membership took part in the ballot, with a decisive 85 per cent voting for women to become members.
“This vote has immediate effect and I can confirm that The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews is now a mixed membership club. The membership has also acted to fast-track a significant initial number of women to become members in the coming months.
“This is a very important and positive day in the history of the Royal and Ancient Golf Club. The R&A has served the sport of golf well for 260 years and I am confident that the club will continue to do so in future with the support of all its members, both women and men.”
This leaves only three open venues which have exclusively male membership: Muirfield in East Lothian, Royal St George’s in Sandwich, Kent, and Royal Troon, which has separate men and women’s clubs.
Principal of the University, Louise Richardson, has previously spoken out in support of this move.