What Are Golf Clubs Doing To Help Members During Lockdown?

Whilst some golfers are angry during these times, many feel obliged to support their clubs during the Covid-19 lockdown

What Are Golf Clubs Doing To Help Members During Lockdown?
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Whilst some golfers are angry during these times, many feel obliged to support their clubs during the Covid-19 lockdown

What Are Golf Clubs Doing To Help Members During Lockdown?

The times we are living through right now are unprecedented, with families losing loved ones and businesses and employees facing financial difficulties.

Some businesses that face difficulties are golf clubs, which came out of 2020 in differing states.

A proportion clubs will be thriving after the golf boom last year, although many will be struggling during this third lockdown with no green fee or food and beverage revenue.

Many members are also struggling - so what are clubs doing to help its members during these times?

As said above, many clubs will find themselves in financial hardship so a large proportion simply cannot help their members.

Other clubs consider their members as shareholders, whom they desperately need the support of during these times.

We asked you social media what your clubs are doing:

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However, there are financial and non-financial ways clubs are helping their members during the third lockdown.

Some clubs have extended renewal dates, meaning golfers can get something like three free months on top of their annual subscription.

Related: Golf subscription fees due? Here's why you should pay them...

Others are putting on virtual events, like Formby Golf Club, which is running online events including club history evenings, instructional sessions with the professional, quiz evenings and evenings with the club's professional sporting members.

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For many clubs, simply staying in contact with members is at least some way of helping during these times.

Giving updates on the course and photographs of members' favourite holes as well as regular communications are nice additions.

Some golfers told us that just keeping the course in good condition is what they ask for, with many mindful that the course would have been closed or in poor condition anyway.

Greenkeepers are still working, whether that be in full teams or rotational skeleton teams, giving members the anticipation of playing again knowing that the course can recover during the winter months.

Other clubs are offering up credit on members' bar cards as a thank you for supporting them, although many golfers simply say that having a course for them to come back to is all they ask.

Here's what our audience said -

'Money onto your bar card for not being able to play jan/feb. Still wanting fees in this month for the year which is understandable to make sure we have a golf course to go back to. Plenty of on course work being done so hopefully will be better for the future!'

'Sure we would have had very little golf anyway with the frost, rain etc. Clubs rely on their members to pay their subs if they can afford it. They have nothing coming in with clubhouse, restaurant closed and a course still to maintain to go back too. It is what it is. I don't expect anything and rightly so. Just can't wait to get back playing whenever that is'

'If it’s a traditional golf club they shouldn’t need to do anything. All the members are effectively shareholders and we’re all in it together to ensure the club survives'

'Letting people terminate their membership early. I've cancelled, just can't justify £100 a month for a course i cannot play for the 3rd time in a year. After losing my job last year and uncertainty still looming, family and bills come first over golf unfortunately!'

'Clubs are a business like others, if no additional revenue coming in. Extend membership renewal period perhaps but you are effectively reducing income for the year by 25% with three months extension, not sustainable by most clubs I imagine.'

'First lockdown they froze it. Second lockdown nothing. 3rd lockdown zero correspondence. Pretty poor really.'

'The way the weather has been recently the course would've been closed anyway. Times tough for golf clubs, not sure they need to do anything.'

'Doing instructional videos off the pro online to help with members game during lockdown 3'

'£65 to put on bar card when/if we return'

'Thonock Park have frozen every months subscription while we haven’t been able to play, after massive spend on Karsten Lakes last year, this is something that all (most) members appreciate. Many thanks to Ping (club owners)'

'We are compensating members for lost golf in 2020 three months, which is being spread over three years. Our membership goes Jan to Jan and thankfully many are not taking us up on the offer and understand the meaning of being a member.'

Let us know your thoughts on this topic on social media

Elliott Heath
News Editor

Elliott Heath is our News Editor and has been with Golf Monthly since early 2016 after graduating with a degree in Sports Journalism. He manages the Golf Monthly news, features, courses and travel sections as well as our large Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages. He covered the 2022 Masters from Augusta National as well as four Open Championships on-site including the 150th at St Andrews. His first Open was in 2017 at Royal Birkdale, when he walked inside the ropes with Jordan Spieth during the Texan's memorable Claret Jug triumph. He has played 35 of our Top 100 golf courses, with his favourites being both Sunningdales, Woodhall Spa, Western Gailes, Old Head and Turnberry. He has been obsessed with the sport since the age of 8 and currently plays at West Byfleet Golf Club in Surrey, where his handicap index floats anywhere between 2-5. His golfing highlights are making albatross on the 9th hole on the Hotchkin Course at Woodhall Spa, shooting an under-par round, playing in the Aramco Team Series on the Ladies European Tour and making his one and only hole-in-one at the age of 15 - a long time ago now!

Elliott is currently playing:

Driver: Titleist TSR4

3 wood: Titleist TSi2 HL

Irons: Mizuno MP-H4 3-iron, Mizuno MP5 4-PW

Wedges: Cleveland RTX ZipCore 50, 54, 58

Putter: Odyssey White Hot OG #5