Royal & Ancient Golf Club Finally Lets in Ladies

The 260-year old club based in St. Andrews, Scotland, has voted to allow female members.

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The Royal & Ancient Golf Club in St. Andrews, Scotland has voted to admit women into the historic club.

Peter Dawson, the club's the secretary praised the vote in a statement on Thursday, reporting that 85 percent voted for the change in policy. Three quarters of the clubs's 2,500 members participated, according to The New York Times.

I am very pleased indeed to announce that the membership of The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews has voted overwhelmingly in favour of welcoming women members."

The 260-year old organization has been one of the most storied institutions in golf. It has also been home to one of the sport's biggest tournaments, the British Open.

Nevertheless, the club has faced increased calls to change its all-male membership policy, including from the former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown in 2012. Earlier this year a spokesman for HSBC, a major British Open sponsor, indicated that the bank was uncomfortable supporting an event held at an all-male course.

Two years ago the Augusta National Golf Club in Georgia, which hosts the Masters, bent to pressure and broke its all male policy with a vote to admit female members.

It remains to be seen whether Scotland will make a similarly historic vote today.

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.