Rejection of Scottish Golf affiliation fee hike 'puts jobs at risk'

Scottish Golf

Plans to raise the affiliation fee for Scottish golf club members from £11.25 to £15 have been rejected by Areas, Counties and clubs at the Scottish Golf AGM.

The vote, which needed a majority of 50% to be passed, saw 235 votes in favour (46%), 270 votes against (52%) and 10 abstentions (2%). 

The rejection of the proposal will see a figure between £300,000 and £450,000 wiped from Scottish Golf's budget over the next 18 months and, after already cutting the workforce from 48 to 32 jobs, chair Eleanor Cannon has admitted that more jobs are on the line.

"In truth, the result is massively disappointing for the team at Scottish Golf," she said. "We've already cut costs to a dramatic extent over the last two years - around £700,000 - and, as a result of today, we've got an even bigger challenge. 

"It's getting close to £1.5m over the past two years and that's a pretty savage cut in a game that very much needs to grow in Scotland and we all want it to grow. Jobs are at risk now - absolutely."

Scottish Golf Flag

Despite the result, though, Cannon is defiant that she and her fellow Scottish Golf board members can help turn things around, drawing on the past six months - including the Future of Golf conference at the Corn Exchange in Edinburgh in December - as an overwhelmingly positive period.

"The reason I am doing this job is because of the situation we find ourselves in," she added. "I've been there in the business world and you need to be resilient, strong and utterly determined. 

"I'm doing it because the very people who have brought this vote to where it is today are getting in the way of those we want to reach in terms of the legacy we want to leave for the game going forward.

"We're in this for the long haul. Monday morning, we'll come back in and take this as an opportunity to do things differently. As a board, we'll reflect and get on with our jobs."

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