Muirfield Open Future in Doubt After Women Vote

36% of members voted against allowing women members

Women Members At Muirfield
(Image credit: Getty Images)

After only 64% of Muirfield members voted to allow female members, the R&A will no longer consider the venue as an Open host

Members of Muirfield, the Honourable Company of Edinburgh Golfers, have voted to remain a men-only club.

A ballot was staged where a two thirds majority was needed to change the membership policy to allow women members. In an open letter the Club Committee had recommended that the membership vote in favour of a resolution to admit women as members.

However, results from the ballot show 64% of members voted for allowing female members, whilst 34% voted against.

The Honourable Company of Edinburgh Golfers Captain, Henry Fairweather said:

“The Honourable Company is a members club, and, as such, the members decide the Rules of the Club, including its membership policy. Women will continue to be welcome at Muirfield on the course and in the clubhouse as guests and visitors, as they have been for many years.”

The R&A, golf's governing body across the world barring the USA, has announced that it will no longer take its biggest event, the Open, to venues where women cannot be members.

This rules out Muirfield hosting the Open for at least the near future.

Martin Slumbers, Chief Executive of The R&A:

“We have consistently said that it is a matter for the Honourable Company to conduct a review of its membership policy and that we would await their decision.

“The R&A has considered today’s decision with respect to The Open Championship. The Open is one of the world’s great sporting events and going forward we will not stage the Championship at a venue that does not admit women as members.

“Given the schedule for staging The Open, it would be some years before Muirfield would have been considered to host the Championship again. If the policy at the club should change we would reconsider Muirfield as a venue for The Open in future.”

Muirfield has hosted 16 Open Championships and one Senior Open Championship. It has never hosted the Women's Open Championship.

Elliott Heath
News Editor

Elliott Heath is our News Editor and has been with Golf Monthly since early 2016 after graduating with a degree in Sports Journalism. He manages the Golf Monthly news team as well as our large Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages. He covered the 2022 Masters from Augusta National as well as five Open Championships on-site including the 150th at St Andrews. His first Open was in 2017 at Royal Birkdale, when he walked inside the ropes with Jordan Spieth during the Texan's memorable Claret Jug triumph. He has played 35 of our Top 100 golf courses, with his favourites being both Sunningdales, Woodhall Spa, Western Gailes, Old Head and Turnberry. He has been obsessed with the sport since the age of 8 and currently plays off of a six handicap. His golfing highlights are making albatross on the 9th hole on the Hotchkin Course at Woodhall Spa, shooting an under-par round, playing in the Aramco Team Series on the Ladies European Tour and making his one and only hole-in-one at the age of 15 - a long time ago now!

Elliott is currently playing:

Driver: Titleist TSR4

3 wood: Titleist TSi2

Hybrids: Titleist 816 H1

Irons: Mizuno MP5 5-PW

Wedges: Cleveland RTX ZipCore 50, 54, 58

Putter: Odyssey White Hot OG #5

Ball: Srixon Z Star XV