Road to Open a big hit with local clubs

Staining Road to The Open1.jpgThe Road to the Open campaign was popular with members at Staining Lodge

MORE than 500 would-be golfers enjoyed a taste of the sport thanks to a special Road to the Open campaign.

Lancashire clubs used the visit of the Open Championship to Royal Birkdale as a springboard to growing the sport.

With the world’s best golfers in Southport to compete for the Claret Jug, public interest in the game was at a high – with clubs keen to show the range of opportunities available across the county to give golf a go.

A Road to The Open campaign was organised by England Golf, the Professional Golfers’ Association and the Golf Foundation with a range of activities to promote golf in schools, the local community and clubs.

It was supported by the Lancashire Union of Golf Clubs and the Lancashire County Ladies Golf Association while Open organisers, the R&A, provided additional funding for schemes in the county.

One of the clubs to take advantage of the funding available to support Get into golf activity was Staining Lodge, at Blackpool.

They staged a week-long Road to the Open golf festival, including free taster sessions for beginners of all ages, fun competitions including five holes followed by a cream tea, a Tri-Golf schools festival and a Glow Golf night-time event.

Both existing members and new faces to the clubs got involved – with a group of 17 also enjoying a trip to the Open for the final practice day. Follow-up coaching sessions are now being provided by the club.

England Golf regional manager Jason Budd said: “It was fantastic to see clubs across Lancashire taking on the challenge – and opportunities – provided by the world’s best golfers being on our doorstep.

“It was golf’s Olympic moment and it was great that those people reading about the championships or watching could find an opportunity to give the sport a go for themselves.

“Golf offers so many social and health benefits and now clubs are providing follow-up coaching for those who have got involved, which provides an easy pathway into the sport for those who may have felt daunted about giving it a go in the past.”

Other clubs to get involved in the project included Accrington, Aintree Grand National, Blackley, Burnley, Fleetwood, Formby Hall Golf Resort and Spa, Haydock Park, Lancaster, Lee Park, Longridge, Myerscough, Mytton Fold, Oldham, Rossendale, Southport Old Links, and Stand.

Get into golf is a national campaign to inspire adults to take up the game and is run by the England Golf Partnership through its network of County Golf Development Groups, supported by Sport England and National Lottery funding.

Get into golf opportunities include FREE taster sessions and low-cost beginner courses with PGA professionals. They are a fun and sociable way to start golf – and a great way to make new friends.

To find your nearest centre visit getintogolf.org and look at the activity map or call 0800 118 2766

You can follow Get into golf on Twitter twitter.com/getintogolf or on Facebook at facebook.com/Getintogolf

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