England Golf recognises ‘outstanding contributions’ made by individuals to grow the game
THE inspirational winners of the first England Golf Awards have been recognised for their outstanding contributions to the sport and to growing the game.
They were celebrated at a gala dinner for their excellent and innovative activities, which support the England Golf strategy, ‘Raising Our Game’.
The strategy calls on all who care about the sport to work together to create a brighter future for the game, with aims including producing more members, more players, stronger clubs and identifying and developing winning golfers.
Jake Conroy, 19, of Little Hay Golf Club, was named the ‘Young Volunteer of the Year’. Jake, who has cerebral palsy, champions both junior and disability golf, and spends much of his time volunteering. “I never expected to get anything for volunteering,” he said. “I enjoy doing it and I get a massive buzz from it. It’s good to see people with smiles on their faces.”
The ‘Volunteer of the Year’ honour went to Margaret Bedford of Strawberry Hill Golf Club in Middlesex, in recognition of her tireless work in transforming the junior section at her club and raising the profile of Strawberry Hill in the local community.
The ‘Lifetime Service Award’ was presented to Anne Herbert of Gosforth Park Ladies in Northumberland. Anne, who has just retired as president of the Northumberland Ladies’ Association, was recognised for her work with her club, county, region and county vets’ association.
Gareth Snelgrove, a PGA coach at Hagley Golf Club in Worcestershire, was given the ‘Talent Pathway Award’ after creating a scheme that offers school pupils a taste of the game - with the emphasis on fun - and follow-up opportunities for coaching in the club’s junior academy and golf club membership. “
The ‘Participation Award’ was presented Scott Rusbridge and Tom Hide from the Coastal Golf Academy in Essex, whilst Leighton Buzzard’s Ken Wilson was given the ‘Membership Award’.
The ‘Modernisation Award’ was presented to Mark Rozenbroek of One Stop Golf in Hull, after he realised his dream of creating the ‘ultimate golf gaming centre’ where people of all ages and abilities can enjoy the game.
“It’s fantastic to be recognised by England Golf and winning a national award is very special,” he said.
Windlesham GC in Surrey was named the ‘GolfMark Club of the Year’ for its great work in getting more juniors and beginners into the game, whilst the ‘Coaching Achievement Award’ was presented to Graham Walker of The Oaks in Yorkshire. Walker was honoured for his many achievements as lead coach to the national men’s squad.
“This is a massive achievement for me and I’m immensely proud,” he said. “I love working with the players and getting them to improve to become the best they can be.”
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