Here’s three top trends from the UK golf industry in June

Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir July 1, 2022 08:59

From adventure courses opening all over the country to new calls for men’s and women’s professional events to be staged together, June was much more than just the launch of LIV Golf.

Adventure golf is becoming big business

Several venues, from golf clubs to private businesses who’ve bought up space in major shopping centres, have opened adventure golf courses, with themes ranging from dinosaurs to farms, this spring and summer.

They’re seen as a great way to introduce golf to children, but they’re also generating a lot of revenue at the moment.

One council that’s just opened an adventure golf course in Henley has said it is now expected to make a profit of around £60,000 a year.

“It’s looking way above predictions at the moment,” said a spokesman.

Can golf emulate tennis when it comes to men’s and women’s tournaments?

In June Linn Grant became the first ever female winner on the DP World Tour when she won the Volvo Car Scandinavian Mixed, and it immediately led to calls for elite women’s golf to be played at the same time as men’s.

As we see at Wimbledon, it is possible for one venue to host at least two major tournaments at roughly the same time.

Linn Grant. Image by Tristan Jones/LET

Bronte Law, who won the Aramco Team Series at Centurion Club, just days after the venue hosted the inaugural LIV Golf Invitational, has called for golf to emulate tennis.

“If we can play at the same course, get the same TV coverage, there’s no reason why our purses can’t increase,” she said.

In fact, with shotgun starts as we’re seeing with LIV Golf, it could even be possible for a top men’s and women’s tournament to be played on the same course on the same day.

Bigger clubs need smaller clubs

This month sees the 150th Open, which promises to be the biggest ever.

But it’s worth noting that many bigger clubs rely on smaller venues, and that has been highlighted by Royal Liverpool’s attempts to save Hoylake Municipal.

The smaller venue provides practice facilities and the ‘tented village’ when the larger one hosts the Open, but it closed this April when its council voted for £20m of budget cuts.

Royal Liverpool has therefore submitted a bid to run the club – and The R&A has written to Wirral Council to say it is “a key part of the Open golf championship infrastructure.”

It seems to have worked – the council has said that Hoylake Municipal (and Brackenwood Golf Club) can be part of a community asset transfer scheme, and therefore can be saved.

Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir July 1, 2022 08:59
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