England Golf chief executive says it is time to abolish golf dress codes. So, what say our Niggle team?
Alex Perry: I’m very much in the “you should be able to wear what you want on the golf course” camp.
Steve Carroll: Same.
James Savage: I wouldn’t dream of telling anyone else what to wear.
Mark Townsend: I haven’t worn a pair of branded golf trouser for at least three months now and it’s given me a new lease of life. I genuinely think there is a huge gap in the golfing clothing market for decent clobber with more than a little nod to the 1970s.
Steve Carroll: Bay City Rollers or The Jam?
Mark Townsend: My new range would be headlined by Raymond Floyd’s 1976 polo and then go back through all the big major wins…
Alex Perry: I love those polo shirts. Penguin still do them like that.
Steve Carroll: I find myself increasingly wearing golf shoes at very odd times and places.
James Savage: One day on a recent holiday I noticed I was wearing four pieces of golf clothing – to the beach.
Alex Perry: Golf clothing off the course is one thing – but what about proper non-golf attire ON the course. If dress codes were abolished at your club and someone rocked up to the tee in a Manchester United shirt, you’d bite your tongue?
James Savage: I’d have no problem with people wearing anything at a golf club.
Dan Murphy: What is ‘non-golf attire’? What does that even mean? We are mired in the language of it all.
Alex Perry: Jeans? Football shirts? Generally things that are barred from a golf course.
Dan Murphy: There’s no such thing. Only in the imaginations of golfing dinosaurs. Nobody else cares.
Alex Perry: As I said, I’m playing devil’s advocate, but go on the website of literally any golf club and you’ll see a heavily detailed section on what you can and can’t wear.
Mark Townsend: Slight twist on that: What are your apparel no-nos? I’ll start with a gilet…
Alex Perry: Not the gilet!
Mark Townsend: I can’t differentiate a gilet from people in Made in Chelsea. With a half sleeve it’s sort of OK but then that’s probably not a gilet. Which is all quite odd as the tank top might be the most underrated item of clothing on the planet.
Steve Carroll: Isn’t a gilet and a tank top pretty much the same thing?
James Savage: I’m not a gilet fan. If it’s cold enough, why not just wear a jumper? Why keep your chest warm and let your arms get cold?
Alex Perry: A gilet provides the warmth or a jacket and the swing freedom of a polo shirt. Perfect.
James Savage: Except your arms aren’t covered up? Doesn’t anybody else notice this? I feel like I’m taking crazy pills.
Steve Carroll: Shorts, shorts and shorts. And stupid trousers. And gilets. And white belts.
Alex Perry: I’ve made my feelings on shorts very well known.
James Savage: I don’t mind a white belt – can brighten up a dull outfit. I’m not having white trousers though.
Dan Murphy: Chinos with trainers, a look perfected by Jim Furyk, is up there.
Alex Perry: I’ll add shoes that look like football boots.
Steve: Visors. An affront to headwear. And those trainer socks that don’t even reach the ankle. What are they all about?
Alex Perry: Nothing wrong with a sock that doesn’t cover the ankle, Grandpa Steve. Looks much better than those that come half way up your calf.
Steve Carroll: Both are, frankly, horrendous.
James Savage: What does it matter if you’re never wearing shorts? Shorts with long socks pulled up is not a good look.
Steve Carroll: I can see them when you’re wearing those slim fitting trouser things that ride up to your knee. Essentially shorts, I suppose.
Mark Townsend: I fold my ankle socks down so they are basically invisible, think Martin Kaymer on a Wednesday but without the glistening forearms. The club where I grew up insisted on only white socks and up to the knee. On a warmer day we looked like the cast of It Ain’t Half Hot Mum. So nobody under the age of 60 ever wore shorts.
Alex Perry: Why does anyone think it’s a good idea to turn up looking like Rickie Fowler circa 2012? He grew out of it years ago, why haven’t you?
Dan Murphy: Less a fashion statement than it is to show what a fun person you are on the golf course. No, I am detecting a very different vibe.
Alex Perry: Well if I’ve learned one thing, it’s that we’re a forward-thinking bunch.