Muirfield golf club votes to allow female members for the first time

The Honourable Company of Edinburgh Golfers (HCEG), who play at Muirfield, have voted to allow women members. Henry Fairweather, the captain of the HCEG, which owns and runs Muirfield, has announced that the rule change has been passed by 498 to 123 after a second vote, with 80 per cent of members in favour. Muirfield’s golfers knew that unless they voted to allow women members, the course could not host the Open, thought to be worth around £80m.

We look forward to welcoming women as members who will enjoy, and benefit from, the great traditions and friendly spirit of this remarkable club.

Muirfield club captain Henry Fairweather

The first vote last May narrowly failed to achieve the required two-thirds majority which meant Muirfield was removed from the list of Open venues. At the time, members claimed “foursomes and speedy play would be endangered” and that women would not be up to the standard required of members. The move prompted widespread condemnation, with Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon describing it as “simply indefensible” on Twitter.