Danielle Binder was just 20 years old when she was made Lady Captain at The Manor House Golf Club.
We spoke to her about her plans for the future, how she juggles volunteering with her job and studies, and of course, what she loves about golf…
I love how interesting the sport is. There is so much to learn from the technical side of golf, as well as the equipment and course management. People of all ages and abilities can play and it’s a very social game. I have always loved outdoor sports and golf is always in a beautiful setting.
How and why did you get started?
Throughout school I enjoyed all sports, mostly racket sports. When I was 17, I started to play golf at Chippenham pitch and putt. I worked there at the weekends and was able to play golf as much as I wanted. I naturally found the sport suited me and is where my love for the sport started. This led me to buy my own set of clubs and join a full 18-hole golf club.
Lady Captain at 20! That’s quite some achievement. How did it happen?
When I joined The Manor House Golf Club three years ago, I wanted to really get involved in the club and the ladies section. From this I developed a great relationship with the club and its members. As I am trying to encourage more young ladies into the sport, my club was keen to help me do this by me becoming Ladies Captain.
What do you enjoy about it?
I enjoy representing the club and to have a chance to make a real difference at my club. I hope that my age shows other young ladies that anyone can play, at any time in their lives. I really enjoy the social aspect of golf, and meeting new people from lots of different clubs.
I would say there are no downsides, just some difficulties when organising events and fitting my education studies in as well. But the club and other members are very supportive and helpful with this.
How do you feel your role will help to change perceptions about golf?
I would like to show young ladies that the old barriers that golf had no longer exist. It is a young person’s game as well now and it is a lot more accessible now for all. I want to show ladies and girls that golf is a great sport and even when people don’t have much spare time, they can play the game.
How do you actively encourage women and girls to play golf?
Apart from promoting young ladies in golf on social media, we recently held an open day at the club to help people experience the sport. This is an event we will be holding multiple times this year and has allowed me to make direct contact with potential new members, in particular young ladies.
Do you work or study? And at 21, you must also have a social life! How do you fit everything in?
I currently work full time as an Engineering Apprentice at BMW in Swindon and I am studding my Mechanical Engineering Degree alongside this. I have an active social life and like to practice my golf, therefore time can be tight sometimes but golf is worth the extra effort.
Are you involved in any other volunteering in golf, and what are your plans for the future?
At my club as Captains we have just agreed to sponsor the Wiltshire Juniors section to help them develop and train. They now use our facilities to practice and we also have had quite a few of them join our club. I really want to help the juniors develop their golf, as they are the future of the sport.
My plans for the future are to keep promoting the sport and my main goal is to increase the ladies section at my club. Personally, I would like to develop my own golf and strive to become a single figure handicapper.