East Midlands: Northamptonshire union makes history

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Men's and ladies' unions first in country to merge

Northamptonshire’s golfers have become the first in the country to vote to merge their ladies’ and men’s county organisations.

At separate but simultaneous meetings, the men of the Northamptonshire Golf Union and the women of the Northamptonshire Ladies’ County Golf Association both unanimously agreed to take the historic step.

Union president David Foley said: “This is a fantastic outcome following months of work by the men and women of the respective county committees.

“We have demonstrated we can work together in a harmonious and effective manner. We are all looking forward to the challenges ahead and are excited by the new opportunities this merger offers us.

Following the merger, the new company – named Northamptonshire Golf Ltd – will be run by a board of directors of either gender, elected on the basis of “the best person for the job”.

"The future of golf in Northamptonshire is very bright." Ladies’ county captain Mary MacLaren said: “This is a very exciting time for Northamptonshire Golf – the task that lies ahead is both challenging and inspiring and I am confident that we will be able to enhance the business, sporting and playing opportunities within our county.”

In Northamptonshire, the benefits which are envisaged include streamlining administration and the production and implementation of a co-ordinated plan for golf development in the county. The single organisation will better represent the county’s golf at local and national level.

England Golf chief executive David Joy said: “We are delighted that this merger process has now been completed. All those involved in Northamptonshire are to be congratulated on the drive and vision they have shown in trailblazing to become the first merged county.

“I am sure this will prove to be a very positive step in further strengthening golf in the county and it is another important milestone in the modernisation of England Golf.

“There are several other counties actively engaged in merger discussions and this success in Northamptonshire will, I am sure, encourage other counties to explore the many benefits of a merged county golf organisation.”

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