The Belmont Valley Golf Club

Thoroughly enjoyed my first round as a new member at The Belmont Golf Club. Quite an upgrade on school golf at the Goat Track. Prado style rather than a hitched lift on a Bedford farmers bakkie. Nostalgia for the old Grahamstown Golf Club lingers. I’ve shuffled through those ruins lost in space and time. 50c for golf, pie and a coke. Icy rain and wind buffeting one along the 15th. A million miles from anywhere.


Belmont is a fine course. Beautifully maintained. Ambitious but comparisons with The Gary Player can be made. Lush kikuyu (recent good rains), punishing rough and impenetrable bush. Far shorter (driver used sparingly) but equally tough on the anti-cart brigade given the heat and inclines. Twinning with Royal Port Alfred a golf tourists dream.

The old railway track to Port Alfred snakes through the course. Mostly fully reclaimed by bush. My guess last saw steam in the early 80’s but I could hear its hiss and cough in the burbling stream. The 15th green is agonizingly close to the snazzy club house. Would have dropped a Buffalo had a drinks-bearer been in sight. We soldiered on, the phone in my bag registering 8.1km and 43 flights climbed.

We’ll be back in 2 weeks. An excellent test of golf. Thanks for the outing Doug and Cliff. We’re definitely still walking but a caddy can drive our clubs!


Before moving back to Grahamstown in Oct 2017, Graeme was a bank executive based in the big smoke and craziness of Joburg. He has 20 years’ experience in the Payments Industry. He is a Chartered Accountant, has a Masters in Management by Research (MMR) from Wits Business School, and attended an Advanced Management Programme (AMP) offered by INSEAD (The Business School for the World!) in France.  

Graeme is the founder of The Grahamstown Project. It’s simple. He says, “Grahamstown is a microcosm of South Africa. If we can’t get this place to function properly then the whole country is stuffed. Many of the troubles we experience as a country today have their roots here in Grahamstown. it is here where black and white people first engaged in conflict on the African continent. It is here where 9 wars of dispossession over 100 years took place and virtually destroyed the amaXhosa nation. But we are where we are. I don’t have a British passport and the boat-trip back to where my ancestors came from is exorbitantly expensive. Furthermore, this is my home. I am a son of Africa. We must work together to redress the injustices of the past and move as one into a brighter future.”

Graeme is an avid historian, writer, vlogger and public speaker. Like and follow the Facebook page. Join him on a tour. Contact him. He would love that.