England Golf will launch its Strategic Plan for 2014-17 this week with a call to all who care about golf to join together to ‘raise our game’ to build a bright future for the sport.
The strategy will be launched at Moor Park Golf Club in Hertfordshire on Thursday, July 24. It sets out a vision of England Golf at the heart of a network of partners, taking action together to tackle the challenges facing the game.
The strategy aims to create:
– More players and more club members
– Stronger clubs
– Winning golfers
– Outstanding championships for golfers of all abilities
– Improved image of the game
– Excellent governance
“Golf is a big business with many opportunities,” said England Golf Chief Executive David Joy. “It contributes £3.4bn to the economy of England each year and it’s estimated that 2.8million people play golf at least once a year. It is enjoyed by men and women, boys and girls of all ages and abilities – it is truly a game for all, a game for life.
“But the sport is also facing significant challenges, with declining numbers of golf club members and a drop in overall participation.
“We ignore these trends at our peril and we all need to work together to raise our game and make the most of the opportunities which exist for golf.”
The strategy sets out frameworks for action by clubs, counties and England Golf and is the result of extensive consultation. Graham Yates, the England Golf chairman, commented: “This is a new and exciting development for us and it has been shaped by the opinions and comments of hundreds of interested parties.
“By working together in this way we will be better equipped to support golf clubs in these testing times, which is our principal concern. The strategy also means that we can focus more attention on aspects of our work which frequently go unnoticed, such as performance.”
The strategy has already received widespread support.
Jennie Price, Chief Executive of Sport England said: “This strategy is very encouraging and will help to focus attention on the importance of increasing participation in golf. We are very pleased to work with England Golf to realise these ambitions for the game.”
Sandy Jones, the Chief Executive of the Professional Golfers’ Association (PGA) joined the board of England Golf last year. He commented: “The PGA welcomes and endorses the launch of the England Golf Strategic Plan. It is vital for the game that we do all we can to welcome new players to the game, entice lapsed players to return and also encourage our existing golfers to play that little bit more.
The England Golf Strategic Plan sets out a road map which will assist us all in achieving these targets.
PGA Professionals throughout England already work hard to grow the game and provide encouragement to all who play or are considering taking the game up. If across the industry we all work together with total commitment then I have no doubt that this strategic plan can be hugely successful”.
Colin Mayes, chairman of the UK Golf Course Owners Association, added: “We’re delighted to work together to spread the message that golf is a game which is open to all and which has so much to offer the whole family. These are challenging times but clubs which listen to their members and visitors and act on their feedback will be able to take advantage of the opportunities which exist.
“This strategy is a very positive way to create more golfers, more members and stronger, well-supported clubs.”