GOLF CLUB PUTTS WOMEN AND JUNIORS TO TOP OF PRIORITIES

21 Nov 2008

A Gwynedd golf club is putting women and junior golfers to the top of its priorities with an expansion plan that’s in full swing thanks to National Lottery funding from the Sports Council for Wales.

Porthmadog Golf Club has been awarded £950 of Community Chest funding to expand the game and introduce golf to juniors, especially at primary school age, through the purchase of a Tri Golf Set (plastic clubs and rubber balls) and qualifying a club member to PGA coaching standard. The club also plans to purchase four sets of ladies golf clubs to introduce more women to the game by providing taster sessions and coaching.

Porthmadog Golf Club Manager, Gwilym Jones said, "We’ve always had a strong junior section but we need to generate interest in primary school aged youngsters. So we want to go into local primary schools with the Tri Golf Sets alongside Golf Development Wales. We have got a young member, he is 28 years old, and he wants to do the PGA coaching qualification to assist with the junior coaching.

"We have had two successful taster sessions for women golfers in the past that generated 15 new members. So we will carry that forward but we need to have golf clubs to lend because we can’t expect new members to shell out for new clubs.

"There is pressure on golf course income with increased cost and decreasing membership so any help to fund these projects is much appreciated and helps to ensure the future of our club and a thriving junior section."

Since the inception of the Sports Council for Wales’ Community Chest scheme in 1999, communities across the length and breadth of Wales have been investing heavily in sports and physical activity projects.

Chair of the Sports Council for Wales, Philip Carling, said:

"Community Chest has been and continues to be a huge success and is very popular throughout Gwynedd. The increase in funding and the greater scope of the scheme will increase its effectiveness.

"Panels based in each of the 22 local authorities in Wales hold the purse strings and have delegated authority to award grants to worthwhile projects. We want to hear of bright ideas and projects that will get more people in Gwynedd more active, more often."

As a result of the popularity and undoubted success of the scheme, the Sports Council for Wales is raising the level of grant. Organisations keen to develop sport and physical activity in Wales can now receive up to £1000 for a qualifying project over a 12 month period.

The scope of the scheme has also been widened. Grants have traditionally been awarded to sports clubs and sporting bodies. Now most organisations seeking to develop physical activity and sporting projects will be eligible for an award.

The Community Chest has recently been infiltrating additional areas of work such as the voluntary sector (e.g. Voluntary Youth Clubs, Women’s Institute) and the workplace, as well as continuing to support projects in the health and education arenas. So while funding the local football club might get the younger members of the community moving, backing a walking group will encourage more adults to get active.

To remove the obstacles and to get your project going, call your Sports Council for Wales regional office:

North Wales:

Or visit sports-council-wales.org.uk