Here’s 3 things we learnt about the golf industry in May

Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir May 25, 2018 16:50

Holiday homes are big business for golf clubs

In April we found two golf clubs that want to build hundreds of homes between them, and recently we reported on one club that wanted to sell its clubhouse to have it replaced by apartments and another that was willing to convert nine of its holes into housing.

Now we’ve found an Essex golf club that is warning that it could close down if it isn’t allowed to build 10 two-bed holiday units. It is clear this is a financial lifeline for the industry.

Golf club ‘could close down’ if it doesn’t build holiday homes

Nine-hole golf is booming

It’s long been said that the obvious way to cut the amount of time it takes to play a round of golf, which many believe is too drawn out, is by offering fewer than 18 holes. In recent years, however, there hasn’t been much data to show if this is actually a popular measure.

That has now changed. Figures from all the home golf unions show nine-hole golf is currently soaring; the most stunning increase is in Ireland where the number of competitive nine-hole rounds increased by more than 200 per cent between 2016 and 2017!

Large jump in number of nine-hole golfers

The governing bodies really want more women to play golf

There’s never been so many initiatives launched by different governing bodies, all with the same objectives, at the same time.

A ‘women’s charter’ to change the way golf is run has been launched

The R&A has set up the ‘Women in Golf Charter’ that will develop new projects for women’s golf, the PGA has unveiled a female-focussed ‘We Love Golf’ PR campaign and England Golf has created ‘Women on Par’, a project involving innovative golf scoring and socialising.

It’s common knowledge that the number of female golfers in the British Isles is low – figures range from just 12 to 16 per cent according to different research. However, these programmes are working – golf clubs in both Northern and the Republic of Ireland have reported that the number of female golfers has gone up by a third in just two years.

 

Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir May 25, 2018 16:50
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