Ryder Cup Derby Connections

Research validated by Historic England, whilst trying to save Allestree Park golf course from destruction, has revealed some interesting links between the golf course and the world’s greatest team sporting event The Ryder Cup.

Around 500 million people in 183 countries will watch the coverage over the next few days as the USA and Europe fight it out in a team golfing event.

Padraig Harrington Captain of the European team has commissioned an amazing inspirational video called “Make it Count” that is going viral inside and outside of the world of golf.

There have only been 164 players who have represented Europe since the competition started in 1929. 

To put that into context 5,780 people have climbed Everest, 570 people have been in space, yet only 164 have represented their country in this battle of greats!

Each player has been allocated a number denoting the chronological position of their appearance in the competition.  The current 12 players stand on the shoulders of the giants that went before them.

Number 45 in the list is a gentleman called John Fallon, who started his golfing career at The Derbyshire Golf Club (Allestree Golf Club). 

The Derbyshire Golf Club at Allestree was created by Harry Colt in 1929 and opened on 31st May 1930.  John Fallon was one of the first junior golfers, brought to the club by Tom Barber the Head Professional.

John Fallon represented Great Britain and Ireland in the 1955 Ryder Cup, partnering John Jacobs to win a point.  

The 1955 GB&I Ryder Cup Team

(J Fallon – Rear Centre)

[Yorkshire Post and Leeds Mercury – Tuesday November 24th 1953]

Perhaps his greatest honour came eight years later when he captained the 1963 Ryder Cup Team against a strong USA side led by golfing legend Arnold Palmer at East Lake, Atlanta. 

John was the first captain after the introduction of the format that included fourballs for the first time and saw the contest extended from two to three days.

The 1963 Ryder Cup Results

Captains – John Fallon [GB&I] & Arnold Palmer [USA]

Ryder Cup Player Number 98, world golf hall of fame entrant, Ian Woosnam is still wanting to operate the golf course and is offering free golf membership to all Under 18’s in the city.

The Full Derby City Council of 51 councillors have voted by a substantial majority to reopen negotiations to save the course, but the 9 minority leadership cabinet members have refused.

Where is the next Derby Ryder Cup hero coming from if there is nowhere for them to play?