Cochrane Castle Golf Club was established in 1895 at Craigston Farm, Johnstone on land leased by the then Laird, G.L.Houstoun. Charlie Hunter, who replaced Old Tom Morris as professional and greenkeeper at Old Prestwick, carried out the original course layout.
Over the years many changes in layout have taken place, the most significant of which followed the compulsory purchase of ground in 1949 by the Town Council for house building. Eight holes were lost and new ground had to be obtained. In the following year the legendary James Braid designed new holes on land beyond the existing seventh green and the course extended to 6500 yards. The new holes were remote from the clubhouse and did not prove to be popular with the members and were soon abandoned.
Change was so frequent in the fifties that Cochrane Castle was locally known as the course with ‘greens on wheels’. Eventually land which now constitutes the ‘bottom six’ was acquired and the existing layout evolved.
A number of members have brought great distinction to the Club. John Caven played in the first ever Walker Cup in 1922 primarily as a result of reaching the final of the British Amateur Championship that year at Prestwick eventually losing on the 36th green. Dean Robertson won the Scottish Amateur Strokeplay Championship in 1992 and the Scottish Amateur Championship a year later. Barclay Howard was Scottish Strokeplay Champion in 1997.
Both Dean and Barclay represented Great Britain and Ireland in the Eisenhower Trophy and Walker Cup.
Donna Jackson played for Scotland in the Ladies Home Internationals in 1990. All golf enthusiasts will recall the thrilling exploits of Barclay Howard in winning the Silver Medal in the 1997 Open Championship at Royal Troon. The first hole at Cochrane Castle has been named Barclay Howard in his memory.
The Club has won the Scottish Club Team Championship on three occasions, these being in 1985 at Helensburgh, in 1991 at Ranfurly Castle and most recently in 1996 at Alloa.