Golfing disaster boosts Golf Care calls by 50%

2016 01 24 Hours In Ae John Willoughby

Golf insurance company Golf Care reported a 50% surge in calls on the evening a Channel 4 documentary was shown where a golfer was put in a temporary coma after being hit in the face with a club.

Retired fireman John Willoughby, 53, was accidentally struck in the face by a golf club at Deangate Ridge golf course in Kent, with the club having such an impact that it snapped and John had to be given emergency treatment at the scene by Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance’s doctor and paramedic.

He was put in an induced coma to prevent his brain from further injury before being flown by helicopter to St George’s Hospital in London after the incident in June.
"We had 50% more calls than we’d usually have" - Lisa Meadows

John’s case aired on the acclaimed Channel 4 documentary, 24 Hours in A&E, and Golf Care marketing manager Lisa Meadows said the show clearly had a significant impact on fellow golfers across the country.

“Straight after the programme that evening – we don’t usually do much business in the evening – we had 50% more calls than we’d usually have and the next day everyone who was calling up was referencing the TV programme,” she told



“We knew it was coming on so we were tweeting about it in the run-up to it airing but we didn’t realise it would have an impact to the extent in which it did, which was great from our point of view. It obviously resonated with golfers out there and it’s a great opportunity for us to educate people on the dangers of playing the sport.”

Nine out of ten golfers still don’t have golf insurance and although such incidents do prove to be great for business, the company would never wish for accidents to occur but, when they do, embrace the opportunity to educate people on the safety risks.

“We never come at this from an ‘ambulance-chasing’ point of view. When we looked the case, we didn’t want it to be scaremongering on our part – we want golfers to be safe on the golf course. But it certainly helps our message that there is a risk. People think golf is fairly safe and doesn’t pose the same risks as other sports so instances like this help to get our message across to people and this was clearly reflected in the response this particular programme received.”

Golf Care :: For more information

To find out more about Golf Care, the UK’s No.1 specialist golf insurance, visit

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