Nine-hole golf is growing rapidly across England

Tania Longmire
By Tania Longmire May 5, 2017 12:28

The organisation that runs amateur golf in England says that the growth of non 18-hole formats of golf has been a major trend in the last 12 months.

England Golf launched the Golf Express campaign last May to promote shorter and quicker formats amid concern that golf participation was falling due to the length of time it takes to play 18 holes.

It has revealed that in that year over 25,000 people played shorter versions of the game as a direct result of the campaign, and over 200 golf clubs use the website golfexpress9.org to post offers.

It also says it is increasing investment in the marketing campaign to create more interest around nine-hole golf and other shorter formats.

This comes as Bromley Golf Centre has branded itself as a Golf Express centre and top golfers like Charley Hull, Melissa Reid, Martin Kaymer and Padraig Harrington have all featured on a video endorsing nine-hole golf. Justin Rose also said he often plays nine holes in practice.

Claire Hodgson, England Golf’s head of participation, commented: “It’s been fantastic to see the growing interest in short format golf and to get the support of top players and celebrities.

“Golf Express has shown many golfers that they really can fit the game in alongside all their commitments – and that it’s a great way for families to relax and have fun together.

“It’s been great to reach so many people in the first year and now we’re looking forward to getting even more players and golf clubs involved.”

“Nine-hole golf has plenty of health and social benefits,” added an England Golf spokeswoman.

“It can be played in just two hours while the player walks two to three miles, takes over 5,000 steps and burns over 450 calories.

“There’s an even faster, more athletic version, promoted by British Speedgolf, which has recently partnered Golf Express. Speedgolfers jog between shots and can complete a full 18 holes in under 80 minutes, or nine holes in under 40 minutes.”

This weekend, the European Tour will hold its inaugural GolfSixes tournament at Centurion Club in St Albans, when two-man teams from 16 countries will compete over six-hole circuits, accompanied by showbiz razzamatazz.

And The R&A has introduced a nine-hole competition for amateurs across Great Britain and Ireland, with the final taking place on the eve of the Open.

 

Tania Longmire
By Tania Longmire May 5, 2017 12:28
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1 Comment

  1. greenfee May 5, 21:51

    This seems an excellent initiative though checking the Golf Express website I find there are no courses within 25 miles of where I live promoting the initiative despite there being many courses near me including a number of 9 holers. Clubs are missing an opportunity here I feel particularly the 9 hole clubs who are uniquely placed to drive Express Golf forward.

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