Here’s the top three things I learnt about the golf industry in the last month

Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir January 1, 2016 07:56

Here’s the top three things Alistair Dunsmuir learnt about the golf industry in December 2015.

Scotland’s new drink drive law has already taken its first scalp

At the start of 2015 we reported on a new drink drive law that was introduced in Scotland at the end of 2014, which is more stringent than the rest of the UK. Several golf clubs immediately reported significantly reduced bar and restaurant profits, and expressed concerns over their financial futures.

beer golf toyohara

And by the end of the year the new law was being partly blamed for leading to the closure of a venue – Blairbeth GC. Its captain said even in the summer the clubhouse lay empty because people “didn’t want to run the risk of being caught”.

The golfing associations like to spin a good news story

The latest Active People Survey figures from Sport England were, at best, mixed for golf, showing a sharp decline in the number of monthly golfers, but a small increase in weekly ones, in the last year.


But you wouldn’t think that according to the PGA or England Golf.

“It is heartening to see these results,” said the PGA while England Golf stated “these results will encourage all”.

But having said that, golf participation is actually booming at the moment

Although not necessarily among people wanting to play 18-hole versions of the sport.

The European Tour has carried out the first ever survey of all people who have been engaged in some form of golf activity at least once in the last year, and found that while 3.7 million adults and children played on an 18-hole course, almost double, a staggering 7.3 million people, have been involved in some other form of golf.

golf active people

The driving range had 3.1 million users, nine hole courses 2.2 million, golf computer games 1.9 million and golf simulators 400,000 for example.

The potential is there.


Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir January 1, 2016 07:56
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1 Comment

  1. Peter Kook January 7, 18:23

    I think you can discount the 1.9 million who have played a ‘golf computer game’!
    However the survey has missed out on the apparently growing popularity of ‘foot golf’ and ‘ crazy golf’
    It was certainly the excitement of putting the ball through the windmill aged about 3 that fired my 60+ year, lifelong passion for the game. Like most addicts I soon moved on to the harder stuff, pitch & putt and then later to the 9 hole muni.
    Here I am sat on the tee box playing the Great Orme pitch & putt with gran circa 1950 🙂

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