Moray-based Forres Golf Club has reported a sensational increase in over 200 members over the past six months.
It was recently reported that well over half (59%) of golf clubs in the UK experienced an increase in membership throughout 2020 – which is also proving to be the case at Forres Golf Club.
The club has welcomed over 200 new faces from the surrounding community since the summer of 2020, as well seeing a 40% increase in tee time usage.
“It has been a bit of a revival for golf,” explained club manager, Sean Blacklaw, to bunkered.co.uk. “We have seen over 200 members come in since last summer, those being a mix of our six-month and winter membership. It’s fantastic to see so many more people coming along."
The club enticed its most recent new members along with its offer of unlimited winter golf for only £70, of which over 80 people took up, and Blacklaw admits the added cash injection has been crucial.
“At the end of 2020, we surpassed our budget that we had outlined at the start of the year by about £15,000 for memberships alone. That’s promising for a year where we were closed for two months. Without that support, we would have been in a much different position and the members that came in after have obviously boosted our financial position.”
The worry for clubs is that when the lockdown lifts, new members won’t renew, but a survey of Forres Golf Club’s newcomers has revealed that 75% will definitely be carrying on their membership for the foreseeable future.
Under the current government guidelines, Scottish golf clubs can remain open, something which isn’t the case for clubs in England and Wales, and Blacklaw admits it is a welcome boost.
“From a business perspective, it’s really important we can continue playing golf. We are delighted we are open but more so for the members, as they have missed out on so much in the last year.
“To be able to still get them out there and get them a game is terrific from a physical standpoint and a mental health one as well. You can be stuck in the house and there’s only five or six hours of daylight a day and if we can help people who are looking to get into golf, that’s great.”