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The number of rounds played in the UK in the first quarter of 2023 went up by 400,000 compared to the previous year, according to a study.

A study conducted by BRS Golf, the leading provider of tee time management and GolfNow, the world’s biggest tee time marketplace, showed that in the UK between the start of January and the end of March, there was 5.6 million member rounds of golf processed, a nine percent rise from 2022.

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This was in part thanks to a remarkably dry February, where rounds were up by 500,000 alone compared to the previous year.

Perhaps an even starker comparison comes with the last pre-covid year, where so far, rounds this year are up by 100 percent, with 2.8 million rounds played in the corresponding months of 2019.

Every part of the UK experienced growth, with Northern Ireland enjoying a 17% rise from the previous year.

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However, one number that is moving in the other direction is membership, with a total of around 6,000 less members in the first three months of the year compared to last.

Over the course of the pandemic, membership numbers rocketed, likely due to the fact that being a member guaranteed people were able to play golf. Now, however, those numbers are beginning to slowly dwindle.

Although Northern Ireland has experienced the largest rise in rounds of golf, they, along with Ireland, have witnessed the largest fall in memberships, with 18 clubs losing more than 100 members in the first quarter of the year. Over half of golfers who have relinquished a membership have come from this region.

In Scotland, seven clubs lost more than 100 members, while in England, that number was 19 clubs.

The study also showed that visitor numbers to courses increased, with a 21% increase on the period from last year. Again, this was largely down to a February where golfers enjoyed very dry weather.

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Lewis Fraser As bunkered’s Performance Editor, Lewis oversees the content that’s designed to make you a better player. From the latest gear to tuition, nutrition, strategy and more, he’s the man. A graduate of the University of Stirling, Lewis joined bunkered in 2021. Formerly a caddie at Castle Stuart Golf Links, he is a member of Bathgate Golf Club where he plays off four.

Performance Editor

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