Here’s our top three golf industry trends of March 2019

Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir March 24, 2019 17:09

From a motion tabled in parliament supporting measures to promote the health benefits of golf to society to another golf club’s purchase by a UK leisure operator, March was an encouraging month for the industry.

Business plans are saving struggling golf clubs

At least two UK clubs were both in danger of closing and, while neither are now flourishing, both look a lot more secure after putting together business plans.

Marland Golf Course in Rochdale has been saved thanks to a plan involving offering free membership and coaching for children, providing Get into golf sessions, creating a new coffee shop and seeking out sponsorship, while Craigie Hill Golf Club in Scotland has discussed converting its 18-hole layout into nine holes, selling some land and using the income to fund the creation of a purpose-built clubhouse.

Struggling golf club has its future saved

Brexit isn’t the only thing that parliament is discussing

The first ever Golf and Health Week – backed by all of golf’s governing bodies and professional golfers including Annika Sorenstam and Padraig Harrington – which is aiming to encourage golfers, non-golfers and lapsed golfers of all ages into taking part in the sport, is taking place in April.

Given the mental and physical health benefits of golf, it’s interesting to note that the week has inspired a motion that’s been tabled in the House of Commons by Stephen Gethins MP, who said: “We now have robust scientific evidence that golf delivers health benefits for people of all ages as health-enhancing physical activity and a preventer of a range of non-communicable diseases.”

Campaign to raise awareness of health benefits of golf to take place

Golf clubs are hot property at the moment

A number of leisure operators have been snapping up golf clubs recently. Dundonald Links in Scotland has been sold to Darwin Leisure, which now owns three golf clubs, Cherry Burton Golf Club in Yorkshire has been sold to Aureus Leisure, Warner Leisure Hotels has acquired the Heythrop Park Resort, on the edge of the Cotswolds, hotel operator Arora Hotels has purchased The Buckinghamshire GC and hotel brand Hilton has bought its first golf resort in Scotland – The Westerwood.

It’s not just leisure operators that are interested in golf clubs at present – the former Ladies European Tour golfer Fame Tate has acquired Stanedge Golf Club in Derbyshire and the private members’ Hazlemere Golf Club in Buckinghamshire has become proprietary – its sale alone attracted 10 bids.

Dundonald Links sold to UK leisure operator for more than £4 million



Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir March 24, 2019 17:09
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