England’s network of County Golf Partnerships introduced over 70,000 people to golf in the six months to the end of September, almost double the number who tried the sport in the same period last year.
The number of adults involved in once-a-week golf activity also increased. In addition, 23 Partnerships reported a total of 1,381 new golf club memberships during the six months. The increases were achieved despite the wettest summer in 100 years and the competing attractions of the London Olympics.
Richard Flint, England Golf’s development manager, said: “These are fantastic results for the CGPs and for golf clubs. It is clear that CGPs are benefitting from working more closely together and sharing examples of best practice. These successes are also good news for golf clubs and PGA professionals. They benefit from spending on coaching sessions, refreshments, green fees and memberships.”
All CGPs offer activities, such as taster sessions and coaching programmes with PGA professionals, to attract beginners and returners to the game, particularly those aged 16 and over. Highlights included a women's golf project in Cheshire that attracted 244 people with over 100 going on to further coaching and membership. Almost 2,000 people took part in tasters at events including the Ricoh Women’s British Open. Golf Weeks in the Midlands and the South West both attracted more than 2,000 people to taster sessions and follow-on coaching.