History of Dumbarton Curling Club (1815-2015)

The First 100 Years

“Since we have enjoyed good fellowship on the ice and are resolved that we will meet and form ourselves in a band of brotherhood and fellowship and that we will be called Dumbarton Curling Club.” - These are the opening words in the minutes of the first meeting held in 1815.  The exact location of the first meeting is not known, due to the original minute book being lost, but it's believed to have been held in either a local hotel or public house.

Dumbarton Curling Club is one of the oldest clubs in Scotland, and the oldest club in Dunbartonshire (Tenth) province.  

There is a recollection of an early visit to Port Glasgow Curling Club.  The members of Dumbarton travelled to Port Glasgow by ferry and then horse and cart.  After the match they made their way home by the same route.  It wasn’t until later that it was discovered some members had failed to pay the ferryman, with the shortfall being met by the club. 

The 2nd minute book was started in 1835, and one of the first entries was the formalisation of 12 Rules & Regulations to regulate play.  Rule 3 stated that the length of the rink shall be fixed by the majority of the players at the start, and shall not be altered during the game without the  consent of the majority.  

In 1838, the Grand Caledonian Curling Club was formed, and one of their first acts was to regulate the general rules of curling.  They adopted most of the rules set down by Dumbarton Curling Club in 1835, some of which are still in use today, but not rule 3 as the rink dimensions are regulated nowadays.  The Grand Caledonian Curling Club was renamed to the Royal Caledonian Curling Club (RCCC) Queen Victoria granted them a Royal Charter in 1843 following a demonstration of the sport.  Dumbarton Curling Club were admitted to the Grand Curling Club 1839.

In December 1840 the inaugural Dumbarton Curlers Court met and Dumbarton Curling Club played their first points competition on Dumbarton Mill Dam.

In 1860, Dumbarton, along with Allander, Carbeth, Duntocher, Kelvindock, Lennox, Partick and Vale of Leven curling clubs, formed the Dumbartonshire Tenth Province

Dumbarton (representing the North) competed in the 1878 Grand Match at Castle Semple, which was won by the South by 1,098 - 993. 

In October 1911, Dumbarton's played it's first game in an indoor curling rink at Crossmyloof Ice Rink in October 1911.  The above picture was taken at the opening night of Crossmyloof Curling Club in 1907.  The club continued to play at Crossmyloof until it finally closed in 1986 when the club moved to the Summit Center in Finnieston.

The club celebrated it's Centenary on 13 February 1920, the celebrations being delayed by 5 years due to World War I.  


 

The Second 100 Years

In December 1925, Dumbarton (again representing the North) fielded two rinks in the Grand Match held at Carsebreck, which the North won by 193 shots.

On 2 April 1947, 50 members of Dumbarton Curling Club attended the first Curlers Court since the end of World War II.  They were joined by another 40 new members who were initiated into the club that evening.

At the clubs A.G.M. in 1954, following the large influx of new members, it was agreed to limit the clubs membership to 120 playing members, and in 1960 the members also agreed that you must reside in the County of Dunbartonshire to be a member of Dumbarton Curling Club.  The latter rule of residence has since been repealed.

In 1977 Dumbarton made a clean sweep of all Dunbartonshire (Tenth) Province Trophies, a feat that had never been done before.

All through the clubs history, from it's founding in 1815, the members of Dumbarton played Lochs and Ponds, even after the club started playing on indoor rinks.  The last recorded match to be played on an outdoor pond or lake by Dumbarton Curling Club took place in 1983.

The club has also been represented in several Royal Curling Tours.  Jim Hutton was selected for the Royal Curling Tour of Germany in 1982.  In 1983, Bill Coutts was appointed as the team's Assistant Secretary for the Royal Curling Tour of Canada.  A third member, Bill Marshall, was included in the Royal Curling tour of Switzerland in 1998.

When the Summit Center closed in 1998/99, the club played their games at the Waterfront, Greenock and Greenacres, before moving to our current home at Braehead in 2000.

Dumbarton was honoured when Bill Marshall was elected President of the R.C.C.C. in 2009.

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