London, England: In the on-going drive to modernise and grow the game, the Home Golf Unions in the United Kingdom have jointly issued a new governance guide for clubs.
The document provides tools, activities, discussion points and best practice ideas for clubs to take on board. Clubs can find pointers on how best to tackle the challenges of an evolving membership structure, constantly-changing legal requirements and all-important safeguarding procedures.
Wales Golf, England Golf and Scottish Golf have joined forces with the British and International Golf Greenkeepers’ Association, the Golf Club Managers’ Association, the Professional Golfers’ Association and The R&A, to provide this invaluable resource.
By co-ordinating a unified approach to good governance and setting this out in an easy-to-read format in the second edition of the guide, clubs the length and breadth of the country will now benefit from a strong template which can either be adopted or adapted to meet needs of individual organisations.
The guide includes varied case studies from England, Scotland and Wales which provide real-time reference points to demonstrate the practical benefits of adopting good practice at all levels of club management.
“We know golf club membership in Wales overall has recently gone up by almost 1,000, reversing a downward trend,” said Wales Golf Chief Executive Richard Dixon. “Good club governance is essential to change this trend for the long term. We are fully committed to supporting our clubs to do this, combining the support of our development team with this guide.
“We also know that increasing membership has been led by clubs with good governance, there are clear lessons in how they are showcasing the considerable benefits of club membership. They have adapted to cope with modern society and satisfy the needs of their members, as well as attracting new people to our sport.
“The Wales Golf strategy ‘Everyone’s Game, Anywhere’, is focused on inclusive golf and stronger clubs. Governance is a key part of that and we have worked hard, along with our partners, to produce Version 2 of this guide. It will be added to the resources and support available through Wales Golf to help clubs operate as more effective businesses.”
Richard Flint, England Golf’s Executive Director, said: “Encouraging and ensuring excellent governance has always been a key focus of England Golf. This is part of a wider strategy to inspire more people to get into golf and enjoy the many sporting and health benefits associated with our sport.
“In addition to the resources within this updated governance guide, our delivery team can assist clubs by providing tailored support to meet club needs and help grow their business.”
Duncan Weir, Executive Director – Golf Development and Amateur Championships at The R&A, said: “We all have a role to play in growing golf and if we are to achieve that goal then we have to modernise and make the sport more appealing, accessible and inclusive.
“Good governance in the running of clubs is a key element of ensuring that golf is attractive both to existing members and potential new members. This guide is designed to promote best practice in governance and act as a reference resource for clubs to help them continue to improve and develop their management processes.”