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:
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.
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.
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