Essex golfer Jan Tallentire has been so successful at encouraging other women to take up the game that she’s won a top England Golf award.
Jan, from Warley Park Golf Club, near Brentwood, was presented with the Participation Award at a gala dinner last night at the England Golf annual conference, which celebrated the golfers and golf clubs who make the game great and inspire others to play.
The award recognises Jan’s remarkable drive to inspire new women players. In just two years her efforts have given a taste of the game to around 170 women, more than 40 have signed up for Get into golf coaching courses and 26 have taken out a special nine-hole membership at the club.
She said: “I feel extremely honoured to receive this award, but for me the pleasure has been seeing many of the lady beginners carrying on playing as a group, and enjoying the game we love so much.
“New friends have been made, partnerships established and competitions played. It has been so very rewarding. Whereas it is often seems difficult for ladies to get into golf, I decided to take golf to the ladies. The results have been wonderful.”
Jan’s recruitment campaign started when she was Ladies’ Captain in 2014 and she decided to address the issue of declining membership of the ladies’ section and to boost their finances.
She organised and filled four experience days, attracting 80 women, Last year, she repeated the days with 90 women and this time more emphasis was placed on longer term involvement with the club by offering coaching, playing and social activities.
The unaffiliated membership of the nine-hole course costs just £198 and players can enjoy the advantage of regular and large holes and forward tees. Since last May, 26 women have taken out the membership and are successfully integrating with the ladies’ section, encouraging six of the beginners to consider full membership. In addition, three husbands of the novice golfers have also joined and are enquiring about full membership.
Warley Park’s PGA professional Craig Harman said “The club has been rejuvenated with all the new ladies. They have brought a new buzz to the club”.
Jan and the club have further plans for 2016. Three more ladies’ days and a new family day are scheduled for the spring. The club feels this is the natural route to attract more juniors and adult members. The club is additionally exploring the expansion of the 9-hole membership to existing members and making it an affiliated membership. To find out more contact Jan via firstname.lastname@example.org
Jan’s initiative supports the England Golf’s strategic plan, ‘Raising Our Game’ which calls on all who care about the sport to work together to create a brighter future for the game, including more members, more players and stronger clubs.
Jan Tallentire (right) receives her award from Liz Aitken of Sport England (Image © Leaderboard Photography)