Chamber of Commerce women team up with golf club

Martyn Clapham
By Martyn Clapham February 1, 2016 12:09

A Midlands golf club has formed an innovative partnership with local businesswomen which is already helping both parties.

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Some of the Chamber staff at their after-work taster session (image © John Felix)

Gaudet Luce Golf Club in Worcestershire has now formed several links with local businesswomen, although this was the first with a business group rather than a local company.

It worked with the ‘Women’s Business Forums’ at the Worcestershire and Herefordshire Chamber of Commerce to provide golf tuition and networking opportunities to several businesswoman.

The idea came about when the golf and leisure complex began working with Mark Laing, Worcestershire county development officer, to forge new links in the local community and create an easy pathway into the sport and potential club membership for new players.

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Chamber staff, who had launched a new women’s participation programme, advertised the Gaudet Luce offering internally and nine women signed up for the two-hour evening at the club’s driving range. Most were completely new to the game.

Organiser Natalie Tanner, business development executive, said: “Nine women came on the event and really enjoyed it. Now, everybody plans to sign up for further ‘Get into golf’ events.

“A few of the women were sceptical about whether they would be able to hit the ball, but they soon discovered they all could.

“There can be a perception that it’s mainly men who mix golf and business, but the success of this taster event shows women are just as keen and love to play if they are given the opportunity.”

Mark Laing said: “Working with partners to put on taster events like this really does help to break down the barriers to playing golf.”

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The event with PGA professional Russell Adams covered golfing basics, such as how to stand, grip the club and hit the ball. It finished with a light-hearted competition to see who could hit the ball best using the skills they had just learnt.

The club also recently ran a special golf day for insolvency firm Poppleton and Appleby, which wanted a novel way to engage with women to discuss their field of expertise.

The greet and meet day included a warm-up session on the range with the club’s PGA professionals, a nine-hole Texas scramble on the par three course, a chat about golf, afternoon tea and networking.

The idea was extended into a six-week coaching programme while the ‘greet and meet’ day has been repeated for a local accountant and lawyer, with 60 people overall enjoying the taster sessions.

Mark Laing said: “I have been using Gaudet Luce to pilot some of our projects before passing on what we have learnt to the other five clubs in the county involved. These are Ombersley, The Vale, Kings Norton, Cleobury Mortimer and Kidderminster.”

Get into golf is the national campaign to inspire adults to take up golf, run by England Golf and supported by Sport England National Lottery funding. Gaudet Luce Golf Club is one of 100 clubs nationally taking part in an England Golf campaign to increase women’s participation in golf.

To see more about the Chamber of Commerce event, watch this video:

 

Martyn Clapham
By Martyn Clapham February 1, 2016 12:09
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