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coronavirus

Campaign to save golf gets off to a flying start

A petition to enlist government support to keep the sport trading has hit 10,000 signatures in its first couple of days

 

A petition to keep golf courses open during the coronavirus outbreak has smashed through the 10,000 mark.

The UK Golf Federation’s #KeepGolfOpen campaign aims to gain Government support to ensure the industry can keep trading during the Covid-19 crisis.

Central to their thrust has been a petition on Change.org.

The ambition is to reach 100,000 signatures, while highlighting golf as a non-contact sport and emphasising the impact of what course closures could mean to the industry.

Launching the campaign earlier this week, the Federation fear as many as 30 per cent of courses could go bankrupt during the pandemic if they aren’t kept open – a scenario that would affect hundreds of thousands of employees and associated industries.

Summing up the first couple of days of the campaign, Doug Poole, UK Golf Federation chief executive, said: “I am very pleased with the reaction. It needs all the stakeholders in the industry to really sign up to this.

“It’s very easy for commercial companies to sign up, but the PGA have signed up and circulated our cause to their members and it needs all to sign up and make this work.”

He added: “We know there’s no reason why golf courses should close because it is possible to stay two metres apart.

“Don’t touch the flag, clubs are cutting holes so they are an inch above the ground, no rakes – it is possible for golf courses to stay open and give the health and wellbeing benefits we need.”

Click here to sign the petition.

What do you think of the campaign? Will you be signing the petition? Have your say in the comments or tweet me.

Steve Carroll

Steve Carroll

A journalist for 25 years, Steve has been immersed in club golf for almost as long. A former club captain, he has passed the Level 3 Rules of Golf exam with distinction having attended the R&A's prestigious Tournament Administrators and Referees Seminar.

Steve has officiated at a host of high-profile tournaments, including Open Regional Qualifying, PGA Fourball Championship, English Men's Senior Amateur, and the North of England Amateur Championship. In 2023, he made his international debut as part of the team that refereed England vs Switzerland U16 girls.

A part of NCG's Top 100s panel, Steve has a particular love of links golf and is frantically trying to restore his single-figure handicap. He currently floats at around 11.

Steve plays at Close House, in Newcastle, and York GC, where he is a member of the club's matches and competitions committee and referees the annual 36-hole scratch York Rose Bowl.

Having studied history at Newcastle University, he became a journalist having passed his NTCJ exams at Darlington College of Technology.

What's in Steve's bag: TaylorMade Stealth 2 driver, 3-wood, and hybrids; TaylorMade Stealth 2 irons; TaylorMade Hi-Toe, Ping ChipR, Sik Putter.

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