More than 22,000 people took part in golf coaching and activities in 2011/12 thanks to an England Golf grant scheme. Over 10,000 of them were adult beginners.
The Club Coaching Grant, funded by Sport England, offers £500 to clubs which have achieved the GolfMark Award, which recognises junior and beginner-friendly facilities.
Clubs, supported by their PGA professionals, can use the grant for activities for adult beginners; for members and non-members aged 14-25; for sessions for new adult members and players to continue their participation; or for coaching for priority groups or families.
Over 380 GolfMark clubs took advantage of the grant in the year to 31 March 2012. They provided opportunities for an average of 61 people at each club and over half of all those involved have gone on to take further coaching.
Richard Flint, England Golf Development Manager commented: “Our GolfMark clubs are doing a great job of welcoming adults and juniors into golf and we are delighted to support them with this grant to try and increase participation and membership.”
A recent England Golf survey of GolfMark clubs revealed that 33% of the clubs which responded had increased their membership since achieving the award. Most of these (73%) felt that the GolfMark had contributed to this and almost half of them (47%) had created new links with local community groups, sports clubs and other organisations since achieving GolfMark.
There are 567 GolfMark clubs in England, with a further 571 working towards the accreditation. Regional and County Development Officers are available to support clubs through the accreditation process and provide ongoing guidance. For further information on GolfMark visit www.golfmark.org
The £500 Club Coaching Grant is available to GolfMark clubs in 2012/2013, with a focus on recruiting and retaining adults. Details of the grant can be found at www.englandgolf.org/coachinggrant The grants are made possible through Whole Sport Plan funding provided by Sport England to the England Golf Partnership, with the aim of increasing participation and sustaining involvement in the game.