Earlsferry Thistle Golf Club instituted 1875.                           "Small Club Big History"

Earlsferry Thistle Golf Club

A warm welcome to the Earlsferry Thistle Golf Club. We are a wee club with a great and proud history. We have been playing as a Club on the Elie Links in the scenic East Neuk of Fife since 1875. Neuk is the Scottish word for corner and here in this part of Fife we enjoy all year round golf on the Links. Closure of the course is a rarity, mats are unheard of and the playing on temporary greens is hardly ever. The setting of the course is by the sea and golfers on it enjoys panoramic views over the Firth of Forth and beyond.

We have a legal agreement with the “Big Club” (Elie Golf House Club) and pay a green fee to enjoy playing rights on the links. We have an all year round fixture list of competitions and play inter club matches. We are limited to a maximum of 60 male members and the Earlsferry Thistle Ladies Club who also use our Clubhouse are limited to 25 lady members.

At the Thistle we enjoy our golf and welcome all fellow golfers to play in our Open that is held in June each year. We currently  have our compliment of  60 full members and we maintain a small waiting list.  We always encourage  potential new members to come along and see what we have to offer.  An  online application form can be accessed  on the membership page.    The  Thistle Ladies Club also welcome new members. Enquiries should be made by e mail and that is  set out on our contacts page.      

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Latest News

COVID-19 Update (29 May 2020)

Scottish Golf has now published detailed guidance for the resumption of golf on 29th May 2020, following a proposed first phase in the relaxtion of the COVID-19 lockdown measures by the Scottish Government.  

Playing golf following extension to exercise in Scotland

The following groupings will be permitted to play Golf in Scotland:

  • Two Balls – may be from two households whilst maintaining physical distancing; and 
  • Groups up to 4 four players permitted at the discretion of the golf club (ensuring that only two households are represented in the group).

    Travel to the golf course from your home must be in line with Scottish Government guidelines – in Phase 1 local travel is noted as broadly 5 miles from home.

Scottish Golf would like to highlight that the Scottish Government continues to monitor its response to the COVID-19 outbreak closely and have not ruled out the re-introduction of restrictions which could see golf paused again if these guidelines are not being followed. 

The Golf House Club has issued the following guidance for members for the reopening of the course at Elie:

  • Players should only arrive at the first tee ten minutes before their time and leave the course immediately after completion of their game;
  • A queuing system will be in place for the first tee to ensure social distancing;
  • Players must follow all social distancing rules whilst walking over and playing on the course;
  • The course will remain closed until 8:30am each day to allow the greenstaff the ability to complete most of their essential cutting work in safety and relative isolation;
  • The clubhouse will remain closed (this also applies to the Thistle clubhouse);
  • The course restrictions that were in place immediately pre lockdown will remain. Bunkers will not have rakes, course furniture will be covered up or removed and players must not touch the pin; and 
  • Toilet facilities will be closed. 

Tee booking: With us only allowing members to play in the initial phase of lockdown release, there should be no need for booking weeks in advance. With that in mind, times will only be available to members and will only be bookable from 8am one week in advance as per July & August rules. This will also allow us to closely monitor tee time utilisation day by day over the first few days. If it becomes apparent that we don’t have enough capacity to accommodate all players wishing to book, then a limit will be put on the number of games a player can have in the week to ensure no one misses out.

View Scottish Golf's Guidance for the reopening of Phase 1.

See Link to Scottish Golf Union updates on COVID-19.

All Thistle club competitions are still suspended until further notice.

J N Smith and James Braid Open Competition Cancelled (15 May 2020) 

Due to the ongoing restrictions on playing golf as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic our Open Competition on 6 June 2020 has been cancelled.  For those who have already paid their entry fee for the competition you have the option to carry forward your payment to next year's Open or to request a refund. If you require a refund, please email with your address and the amount.


It will be 150 Years on the 6th February 2020 when our most famous member James Braid was born in Earlsferry.

Made an Honorary Member of the Royal and Ancient Golf Club, St Andrews in 1950 and commemorated in the World Golf Hall of Fame, Pinehurst, USA in 1976 his legacy continues to live on.  Read about his achievements in our James Braid Biography.