Extract from the Centenary Book on the history of Theydon Bois Golf Club.
"Quite what prompted the six founders to propose a golf course in Theydon Bois is unclear, but the golfing craze which was sweeping through England in the late nineteenth century can probably be attributed to the advent of the railway, people starting to holiday at the seaside and some local rivalry! Both Epping(1890) and Woodford (1890) are recorded as having established 9 hole courses: the Wanstead (1893) course comprised 12 holes whilst at Chingford an 18 hole course had been established (Royal Epping Forest 1888). The early club rules for Theydon Bois golf Club clearly specify that membership was principally for the locals, although some exceptions might be considered.
In the 1860’s the English courses literally could be counted on one hand and invariably owed their existence to a Scottish influence: Westward Ho!(1864) was the first seaside course and Wimbledon (1865) only started because of the London Scottish Rifle Volunteer Corps. But very soon there was a more local seaside influence."