CLUB OF THE YEAR
Bowood Park Hotel and Golf Club
The family-run club offered free coaching to all juniors and sparked growth in membership from 187-350 in two years. A wind turbine provides energy and solar panels light up the range as the club tries to become carbon negative by 2026.
Clitheroe Golf Club
Opened a Performance Golf Academy in 2021 and a new floodlit range. Adoption of the Women in Golf Charter saw 38 new women members join in 2021. A new orange course caters for beginners while eco bunkering, the addition of hedgehog shelters and bug hotels promoted environmental issues.
Hazel Grove Golf Club
Became the 400th signatory in England to the Women in Golf Charter. The club partnered with the Stroke Association to run sessions and help local individuals discover golf as part of their rehab. All Saturday competitions are open to both men and women. A revised governance structure with a management board in place has set the club up for the future.
Weybrook Park Golf Club
Completed a 27-hole complex expanding playing opportunities for members and visitors alike. Membership has grown by 34% in a year. On the eco front, a skylark nest protection zone was introduced and a club beehive now produces the club’s own branded honey with profits from sale passed to charity.
COUNTY OF THE YEAR
Cambridge Area Golf Union
One of England’s smallest counties is proud to punch above its weight. All 20 affiliated clubs have bought into a junior training plan which allows young golfers from under 12s to the adult teams to compete locally and nationally.
An early signatory to the Women in Golf Charter, Kent has also ensured all 82 clubs and two facilities were SafeGolf accredited by September 2021. The launch of two successful Junior Disability Academies opened the door to new golfers. As a unified county body, it has a mixed-gender board, committees and a female county secretary.
A focus on improving social media and helping clubs with marketing tools has proved a huge success. A small county with only 29 clubs, Middlesex ran 31 tournaments for golfers of all abilities in 2021 allowing 1,542 players to experience the thrill of competition.
DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION CHAMPION
Black British Golfers
By creating an engaging and inclusive social platform showing black golfers and allies of all ages and abilities playing the game, the group has promoted the positive and fun side of the sport through their mantra ‘we’re here for the golf!’
Hannah has worked with the Muslim Golf Association to deliver their first taster day, and the Girls in Golf Society to promote the game to LGBTIQ+ women. By developing a female pathway at Stonebridge GC, she has transformed the membership and regularly assists with a junior programme featuring 180 kids, 50 of whom are girls.
As a wheelchair user golfer Terry, became the first ‘Handigolfer’ to become captain of a golf club, Tapton Park in Chesterfield. For eight years, Terry has volunteered as chairman of the Handigolf Foundation and led on organising events featuring a mix of wheelchair, disabled and able-bodied golfers.
Despite undergoing major spinal surgery in 2021, Ellie continued to promote disability golf by running three coaching sessions a week at Hagley Golf Club. She also organised golf days for the Dwarfs Sports Association and took over the England Golf Instagram channel during the English Open for Golfers with a Disability to great acclaim.
PARTICIPATION AND DEVELOPMENT COACH OF THE YEAR
Kevin Caplehorn (Lee-on-the-Solent GC)
As well as coaching the county under 14 and under 16 teams, Kevin has combined golf lessons to school kids with education on their environment. On the walk to the 5-hole academy course, juniors follow a nature trail and fill an activity book with facts about local wildlife.
Adam Chamberlain (Peterborough Milton GC)
Lessons involving local schoolkids, brownies, beavers and guides as well as a disability group called ‘Little Miracles’ has created fresh opportunities for juniors. Adam also made a dying member’s wish come true when he delivered a golf lesson to his autistic grandson in the garden so that the gentleman could watch on from his patio.
Aaron Cox (Blackwell Grange GC)
Aaron created a 6-hole junior course which has allowed him to step up his work with local schools and introduce junior tournament play. In his time at the club, the junior section has grown from 12 to 120. An innovative ‘Aced’ academy for the most talented kids has introduced coaching, physio and fitness profiles via a digital app.sues.
Beth Scott (Old Fold Manor GC)
Beth delivered coaching sessions for key workers and medically vulnerable children during 2021 and is working with three foster families to offer golf to children from unsettled backgrounds. In her time, the junior section has grown from 12 to 78 with 40 juniors earning official handicaps.
PERFORMANCE OF THE YEAR
England Women’s Team
Lianna Bailey, Rosie Belsham, Charlotte Heath, Annabell Fuller, Caley McGinty and Emily Toy combined to strike gold at Royal County Down in July 2021. England’s women knocked out the Czech Republic and Scotland before beating hot favourites Sweden 5-2 in a thrilling finale.
Rosie Bee Kim
Highlights of a stunning season for Rosie included victory at the English Girls’ Under 14 Championship at Morecambe and a win at The R&A Girls’ Under 16 Championship at Enville. The Buckinghamshire golfer also finished runner up in the English Girls’ Championship and represented GB&I in the Junior Vagliano Trophy.
The Gloucestershire golfer enjoyed a fabulous season winning five times on the US College circuit, earning her place in the GB&I Curtis Cup team and playing a starring role in England’s victory at both the European Ladies’ Team Championships and Home Internationals Series.
The Essex golfer became only the second player in history – the first being Justin Rose in 1995 – to win both the McGregor Trophy and Carris Trophy in the same year. The England boys’ squad member followed that up with a place in the GB&I side that took on Continental Europe in the Jacques Leglise Trophy and victory in the Justin Rose Telegraph Junior Golf Championship.
SUSTAINABILITY PROJECT OF THE YEAR
Beacon Park Golf Club
A hardy bunch of 12 members helped keep the club alive after part of the course was used for landfill and the condition of the land dwindled. Investment in fresh equipment and greens staff in 2021 has encouraged former members to return and new golfers to arrive offering hope for the future.
Drax Golf Club
As part of its ongoing Tree Regeneration Programme, the club asked members and those in the local community to donate their used Xmas tree, complete with rootball, in order that it be re-planted on the course alongside over 200 other new trees and bushes.
Edgbaston Golf Club
A project to increase wildlife diversity on the course and help the club achieve GEO certification has begun with the installation of three beehives and the creation of Edgbaston honey which has already won a local award.
Farleigh Golf Club
The club’s ‘Operation Pollinator’ programme helped bring more than half an acre of new wildflower areas to the course and re-introduce animal and plant life to the setting with future expansion planned for 2022.
TOURNAMENT VENUE OF THE YEAR
Farnham Golf Club
With volunteers, members, staff and sponsors combining, Farnham excelled for the inaugural English Under 18 Mixed Championship. With music on the range and a course prepared to perfection, the event attracted BBC South coverage and significant local sponsorship with profits reinvested in the club’s junior section.
Headingley Golf Club
An army of over 100 club volunteers made Headingley a welcoming co-host for the English Amateur Championships. An extra 20 green staff were kitted out as a ‘tournament team’ thanks to local sponsorship. Filled with confidence, the club now markets itself as a championship venue and is beginning to reap the rewards.
Malton and Norton Golf Club
With over 60 volunteers from the club on hand, outdoor catering facilities and gazebos constructed on site and extra staff recruited to maintain the course, the English Girls’ Championship was a huge success. Increased media activity and a live slot on BBC Look North helped promote the club to a wide audience.
Whittlebury Park Golf Club
An inclusive-thinking attitude at Whittlebury Park helped it stage a successful English Open for Golfers with a Disability. The 27-hole venue was carefully configured with the competitors in mind and accessibility in and around the venue was key to ensuring a safe and enjoyable event.
VOLUNTEER OF THE YEAR
Sandy Burrell (Weybrook Park GC)
Over the last 17 years, Sandy persisted in his vision to transform the club from a 18-hole venue into a 27-hole family-friendly facility with a young and vibrant membership. A stalwart of the club for over 29 years, the last 16 have been spent as course director.
James Dobson (The Leicestershire GC)
Starting from a base of 10 juniors seven years ago, James has helped develop the junior section to reach 100 members – 30 of them girls. James was also instrumental in the club introducing a family membership category which has provided benefits on and off the course.
Alan Plumb (Strawberry Hill GC)
Alan is the ‘go to’ man for everything from divoting to the academy programme. The past captain is involved in a schools’ programme, including kids from a local special needs school, but also works with ‘Age Concern’ to facilitate play for older golfers.
Christine Rixson (Addington Palace GC)
A key member of the Women in Golf team, Christine acts as a buddy, mentor and friend to any female taking up the game. Her friendly presence and hard work have seen participation numbers among women rise by 62% in a year.
YOUNG AMBASSADOR OF THE YEAR
In association with:
Isabella Brunskill (Enfield GC)
Issie helped publicise her club by writing a column for ‘Women and Golf’ during her year as junior captain. She also instigated major change at the club by asking for it to modernise and re-name the ladies’ section as the women’s section which it duly did following a members’ vote.
Eloise Feely (Northants County GC)
The 16-year-old captained the junior section and helped integrate the younger members into wider club activities – including the first-ever junior table at a champions’ dinner. A buddy to new golfers and a prolific fundraiser with an infectious personality.
Tilly Garfoot (Spalding and Woodhall Spa)
Tilly has helped shape the future for girls’ golf in Lincolnshire with her ideas and energy. A Girls Golf Rocks ambassador and a member of the Golf Foundation’s Girls’ Leadership Programme as well as a talented county player.
Kai Williams (Bedford and County GC)
Kai is passionate about encouraging other young black members of the community to give golf a go. In 2021 he used his platform as a Young Ambassador to champion diversity in the game and instigated a ‘take over’ of England Golf’s Instagram page for a day during the English Amateur Championships as well as the account of ‘The Jazzy Golfer’. Also became the first junior to join the committee at his club to give a young person’s viewpoint.
WOMEN AND GIRLS’ TRAILBLAZER
Hannah has used her infectious enthusiasm to help over 1000 women to take up golf. In particular, mums of kids involved in junior lessons are encouraged to make golf a family experience. A new female pathway created at Stonebridge Golf Club has proved a huge success as has a junior programme with 180 kids, 50 of whom are girls. Has also worked with LGBTQ+ community and Muslim Golf Association to encourage diversity in the game.
Alice established a thriving girls’ academy at Parkstone Golf Club and created a ‘Pink Ladies’ pathway to membership for women who not only enjoy playing the game, but also the social aspect of the sport. Over 30 women attend these weekly sessions.
Love.golf has provided fun and lively group coaching experiences for new and existing women golfers from diverse backgrounds in the community. In 2021, 500 women in England took part in coaching sessions including 40 women from the Muslim Golf Association enjoying their first taste of the sport.
Stacey has helped transform girls’ golf in Lincolnshire and used her vision to create the Lincolnshire Girls’ Golf Squad (LGGS). Through this group, junior girls compete, enjoy coaching sessions and skills development. In a year, the group has grown from 27 to 73 participants.