Llanerch’s reputation has always
been that of a welcoming property. A
home away from home located at the
corner of Route 3 and Manoa Road in
Havertown, Pa. The Llanerch area became a residential Haverford Township
hotbed courtesy of the Pennsylvania
Railroad’s trolley line that ran from Philadelphia to West Chester. Today, some
sport (golf, tennis, swimming) and a
whole lot more camaraderie rule the
land once held in the 1890s by William
Pyott and Edward Longstreth.
“Certainly there are a lot of people with means who are members of the
club but everyone meshes here,” said Dennis Manno, 68, of Drexel Hill,
Pa., a 50-year member, said. “[When you pull into the club] no one cares
who you are or what you do. Just be on the first tee in 10 minutes.”
Current president Bob Pomante, a 30-year member, summarized it
succinctly, “It’s a good place with good people. The grounds, the friends
you create and the fact your family can grow up here, it’s all part of it.”
Add in a completely renovated and splendid clubhouse (redone in
2013) with its legendary men’s grill and balcony overlooking the 18th
green and the quality outside facilities that include a golf course designed
by Alexander Findlay – argued as the founding father of American golf –
and it’s no wonder that more than 100 members have been at the club
for 30 or more years.
“I’ve always felt this way, and I know this sounds trite, is that it’s just a
really good membership,” said Marty Farrell, 53, of Drexel Hill, Pa., who
caddied at the club as a kid and is the grandson of legendary pro Marty
Lyons. “I don’t know how else to say it. We have good people. Someone
asked Gary Player once, ‘You played all over the world. What’s your favor-
ite course?’ He said, ‘There is only one answer to that question. It’s your
home course because that’s where you play with your mates.’ It’s so true.”
Visitors are welcome as well. The gleaming example of the club’s
impeccable hospitality happens during the three weeks of the BMW GAP
Team Matches. Post-match festivities include a gaggle of members and
guests ( 20 to 60 or more) looking for a good time heading to the first tee
to compete in a 1-club tournament. Sides are randomly drawn. Food and
drink flow freely. Making new friends a mandate.
Just like it’s always been.o
LLANERCH, THE NAME, turns 100 this year. It is a welsh
word for open space.
Prior to that moniker, the club answered to: (in order) Delaware
County CC; Delaware County Field Club; Philadelphia Athletic Club
and Bon Air Country Club.
Regardless of what it was or is called, its backbone has always been the
According to club research, there is a belief a sand course occupied
the space as early as 1895. An 18-hole course “officially” opened in June
1903 covering 93 acres and measuring 6,300 yards.
Llanerch course designer Alexander Findlay is argued as the founding father of American golf.