Hampshire Ladies Golf has pledged to introduce more women and girls to the game through the extended promotion of existing opportunities, a range of new initiatives and by setting achievable targets for 2022 and beyond.
The county association has become the latest signatory to The R&A’s Women in Golf Charter, dedicated to boosting female participation, projecting golf as a family-orientated sport and highlighting the career opportunities for women within the industry.
Since it was introduced in 2018, over 400 clubs, counties, associations, facilities and golf organisations in England have signed up to the Charter.
Hampshire Ladies Golf already provides support and funding to help projects aimed at women and girls at its 74 affiliated clubs – including those on the Isle of Wight and the Channel Islands.
Now there is a renewed focus on driving participation and – crucially – helping clubs retain golfers who are new to the game and show potential.
At present, Hampshire, the Isle of Wight and the Channel Islands area has 5,300 women and girls in club membership, making up 14.6% of the county’s total.
From this total, the latest figures show 170 girls are enrolled in either junior or intermediary categories.
Helped by the appointment of a dedicated Charter Champion who will promote activations and report on the progress of charter aims, Hampshire will now assist many of these clubs to increase numbers through a variety of methods.
- Free taster sessions for clubs, in particular, those which may not have enough girl participants to enrol in existing programmes such as Girls Golf Rocks
- Delivery of at least three initiatives targeting women and girls aligned to England Golf campaigns
- Increased engagement through innovative use of social media platforms and community work
- Provision of academy tuition as a follow-up to taster sessions
- Extension of the performance programme to encourage and retain the most talented golfers
- Greater integration of players from the island clubs into ongoing projects
Hampshire Ladies Golf is also committed to extending competition access and opportunities for those already playing the game as well as ensuring safeguarding for all participants meets national standards.
Charter Champion Eilean Cunningham, pictured above left alongside county captain Jill England and the junior girls’ performance squad, said: “We’re really excited to become a Women in Golf Charter signatory.
“The Charter sits nicely with our core values and it’s important to us that we’re recognised as an inclusive and supportive county.
“Growing the game is at the very heart of everything we do: inspiring women and girls to get involved in golf and helping them achieve their goals, however big or small these may be.”
County captain England added: “I’m particularly keen to see the junior girls’ academy programme resurrected after the pandemic and to see the next generation of aspiring Georgia Halls.”
Ben Martin, England Golf’s regional manager in the south/south-west region, commented: “The completion of the Hampshire Ladies’ Women in Golf Charter was a straightforward process as many of their commitments were already in place due to the recent launch of their strategic plan.
“Both Kate Dymott, our club support officer in the region, and I are looking forward to working with Hampshire Ladies to help them fulfil their commitments and grow women and girls’ golf in the county.”
Is your club, county or golf facility ready to help more women and girls take up the game, continue to enjoy the sport or consider a career in the golf industry?
Click here for details on how to sign up for The R&A’s Women in Golf Charter.