Free coaching ‘will stop the downturn’11th October, 2012 by Alistair Dunsmuir
The manager of a London golf club has said that venues are struggling more now than ever before, and that those that don’t offer free coaching are likely to go under.
Neil Sjoberg, manager of Epping Golf Course, said that a mixture of the gloomy economic situation and a summer of heavy rain has meant that golf clubs have been hit hard.
“At the moment, the golf club business is almost freewheeling downhill. Clubs are diving into a very difficult time, much more than before,” he said. “I am getting this message from all around me.
“For the first time, at our new members’ evening, only 40 per cent of the expected new recruits turned up – usually we have more come than were invited.”
Despite this current downturn, Epping Golf Club has bucked the economic trends and performed well over the past five years, and Sjoberg is adamant why.
“I cannot imagine how any club can think for one second that they can survive, let alone grow, without a very active free lesson programme that is a big part of creating new golfers for their club,” he said.
“Any club without a weekly proactive section recruiting and training new golfers straight off the streets should be put out of their misery now!
“This is far more effective than marketing to golfers on others’ books with special offers.
“If every club in the UK trained just 10 new golfers this year the picture would be so much brighter.”