Blackwood Golf Club was founded in 1920 with members having use of a 9-hole course at McTaggerts, around two kilometres south of Blackwood. The course closed in 1959 and the club moved to temporary accommodation at the National Park in Belair pending a permanent relocation.
A hundred acres were purchased at Cherry Gardens for £7500 in 1961 before Vern Morcom was engaged to lay out a new 18-hole course for the club. Toby Cumming takes up the story in his book The Golf Courses of Vern Morcom:
“The routing is impressive, particularly given that the steep timbered valley reduces the playable space to about 80 acres. For the valley, Vern proposed that two dams be built to ensure water supply. For the rest, he wisely restrained himself to a par 70 course of 6,433 yards.
His design included several strong doglegs; these were an inevitable consequence of the size and shape of the land, not merely reflective of the architect’s predilections. He did not participate in or oversee any construction; the course was built by the members.
When the course opened on 2 March 1963, it was a par 72, owing to the wishes of the committee. The stout par fours that Morcom envisaged for the 7th and 18th had their tees pushed back to become par fives. More extensions were to come. In 1976, the 12th (today’s 15th) was elongated (and) the 16th tee was set back the same year.
On what was still essentially an 80-acre area congestion was inevitable, despite (or in many cases, because of) the tree planting that had taken place to enforce the doglegs. There was a back nine bottleneck between the clubhouse and the valley, with too many holes in close proximity.
In 1990, Tony Cashmore was brought in to design three additional holes (11th-13th) on a strip of land to the south that had been purchased in 1975. His new 10th and 14th holes used parts of the existing course. The revamped layout opened in early 1993.”