Women ban members of mens-only Muirfield golf club from sitting on Edinburgh park bench

'The members of Muirfield Golf Club are hereby excluded from sitting on this bench. By the order of the female population,' it read

Peter Walker
Monday 19 December 2016 17:31 GMT
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The plaque was placed by the anonymous members of Brass Monkeys
The plaque was placed by the anonymous members of Brass Monkeys (Edinburgh Spotlight/ Facebook)

Members of a men’s-only golf club have been “excluded” by the “female population of Edinburgh” from sitting on a bench in the Scottish capital.

A plaque was installed in Princes Street Gardens barring members of Muirfield golf club.

The 272-year-old club – which is the “honourable company of Edinburgh golfers” according to its website tagline – decided to continue barring women from becoming members earlier this year.

Of the 616 members involved, 64 per cent voted in favour of changing the constitution, but this was 14 votes short of the two-thirds majority necessary.

The club was subsequently stripped of the right to ever host the Open Championship and a poll released shortly afterwards found 80 per cent of Scots considered the ban “damaging to Scotland’s reputation”.

The plaque appears to be a response to that vote.

“The members of Muirfield Golf Club are hereby excluded from sitting on this bench. By the order of the female population,” it reads.

A picture of the new plaque on Facebook has attracted more than 10,000 likes, 320 comments and 2,300 shares.

The bench has gained a mixed reaction.

Dale Callow wrote: “Did you know there are more female-only golf clubs than male?”

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Gordon Stevenson added: “There are many other male and female-only clubs and societies. Are these to be made mixed-sex as well? Where does this stop? Get a life.”

The plaque was screwed to the bench some time shortly before 23 August by The Brass Monkey.

The anonymous organisation describes itself as an “ad hoc group of artists/activists who try and raise issues local and national through the medium of bench plaques.”

The group has previously put up a plaque opposing plans to demolish a skatepark and cuts to services for the deaf.

The Independent has contacted Muirfield for comment.

The plaque was today removed by the council after a flurry of media enquiries. An Edinburgh council spokesman told The Independent: "We have removed it because they have stuck their plaque on top of an existing plaque without permission."

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