Green Island Badminton Club

A Brief History of the Green Island Badminton Club

The Green Island Badminton Club began its playing existence circa 1956, in the venue of the Green Island Presbyterian Church Hall, known as Kirkland Hall. This building was located beside the present day Westpac Bank, but it and the old church no longer exist.The first recorded meeting for the club was 19th April 1956, but in the minute book, it says the previous  A.G.M. minutes were read and confirmed, indicating that there must have been an A.G.M. prior to April 1956 {but no proof of this has been located}, so maybe the club began in 1955.The last recorded meeting in Kirkland Hall was 10th May 1965, meaning that the first 9 to 10 years {if started in 1955} the club was based at Kirkland Hall. Player numbers during this period ranged from 14 to 20 approx, and were possibly all adult members, as all the minutes from the period refer to the "over 18 club". Kirkland Hall had the very distinctive feature of a sloping floor making games very interesting, and there was only 1 court at Kirkland Hall. The "over 18 club" had its last meeting, 13th April 1961 and as of 2nd April 1962 the constitution was amended and a name change from "over 18 club" to Green Island Social Badminton Club was instigated. Other games played at Kirkland Hall included Table-Tennis, Quoits, Cards, and Darts. Jumble sales were used for fund raising, a ladder and buttons system were played during club nights. According to the minutes of the A.G.M. on 4th March 1957 subscriptions were 12/6 {12 shillings and 6 pence} per person. Later on an extra1/- {1 shilling} per night was added.

It would appear the Club moved in June 1965 to the Civic Hall, part of the Green Island Borough Council building, which included the Civic Cinema {now a church, and once used as a studio for making children's television}. The first recorded meeting at the Civic Hall was 28th June 1965. The club remained at the Civic until late 1977, around 12 years give or take a month or two. Player numbers increased from 16 to 44 since leaving Kirkland Hall. Features of the Civic Hall were its wooden floor {without a slope}, 1 full sized doubles court, 1 singles court and a practice type court at the back of the hall. The great thing about this hall was all non-playing members were able to watch their clubmates playing from the raised stage. A downside of the venue was the lack of court space {higher membership} and the really low ceiling height. A ladder system of challenging other players was used at the Civic so that members could strive to better their game and climb as high as possible. Earliest record of subscriptions at the Civic are on 1st April 1968 being $4.00 for a single person, and $6.00 for married couples.

From the Civic Hall, the next move was into the newly constructed Sunnyvale Sports Complex as a foundation member of the Combined Sports Bodies. This took place in early 1978 with the 1st A.G.M. at Sunnyvale being recored on 3rd Apirl 1978. This move brought a massive increase of members with sometimes up to 80 people attending a club night. Sunnyvale has 3 full sized doubles courts and a much higher ceiling height. The complex is shared with the Squash, Cricket, and Soccer Clubs, and includes a common lounge and kitchen. There was a short period when interclub ties were held at Sunnyvale. Membership numbers remain steady with an average of 25 to 30 people regularly attending club nights. As of today, Sunnyvale is still the home of the Green Island Badminton Club meaning we are in our 37th {and counting} year of residence. The club considered a move away from Sunnyvale about June 1981 due to high rent, but this situation was rectifed with the Combined Sports Bodies. Subscrpitions in 1978 were $15.00 per single person.

The club still operates from Sunnyvale on Monday nights from 7.00pm till late, between early March and late October each year. As a financial member, players can compete in interclub and indeed any OBA or NZB tournament. Some coaching is available; in fact from time to time a professional coach has been made available by the club. Shuttles are supplied and the club has racquets available for beginners who do not yet have their own. From time to time fun nights are oragnised and each year players are encouraged to particpate in the Club Championships.From all three venues and the many years of playing, the club has always entered several interclub teams with some success along the way, supplied several representative players in all grades, and teams and individuals in the Biennial NZ Masters Games and local Masters competitions.

Off season and social activities have included; social volleyball, the annual Combined Sports Golf Tournament with the club being winners in 1973, {unfortunately the club has been excluded since 2014 after competing for 43 years consecutively}, annual Ten Pin Bowling {for which there is a trophy in honour of a past member who started the tradition}, car rallys, theatre outings, dinners, picnics in the early years, and visits from and to other clubs, both local and out of town.

Fund raising is a regular thing with the "Cheese Rolls" no.1, but perhaps the most interesting effort being our "Pig in a Barrow" raffle. This pig was wheeled through all the Hotels in Green Island and Mosgiel raising $200.00, not bad for 1980. The worst fund raising we had to undertake was to take our turn in the "Housie" run by Combined Sports Bodies at the Commercial Tavern, back when smoking was still allowed in bars and one would return home with smoked clothing, half closed eyes and in need of a shower and change of clothes.

The club has 5 life members.  1970 Dorothy Rennie, 1974 Doug Milne, 1993 Ron Maher, 1996 Sue Partel, and 2002 John Johnston . As a footnote, ladies mid-week badminton, known as Green Island Womens Badminton still functions out of the Civic Hall. It started in 1976 with 30 members, operating on Wednesday mornings from 9.00am to midday. They have a creche, run on a rostered basis, present membership is 18 and the fee is $2.00 a day. This club will soon be reaching it's 40th anniversary.

After many years at Sunnyvale the Club decided at the 2023 AGM to move to the Otago Badmiinton Centre at 101 Victoria Rd, St Kilda, this move provded immproved courts and lighting and a club room which has been put to great use. The move occurred insert date.

Many thanks to Ron Maher for his efforts to research and compile this History.