Four different all-weather playing surfaces from Huxley Golf have been used in the creation of a state-of-the-art outdoor teaching academy established at the 3 Hammers Golf Complex, Coven, near Wolverhampton, Staffordshire.
Believed to be the first of its type in Britain, the new ‘Learn 2 Play’ academy has been designed to allow a full range of golf shots to be played safely and securely within a fully-enclosed area measuring 900 sq yards (750 sq m).
Dedicated to teaching beginners, ladies and juniors the fundamentals of golf, the academy was designed and commissioned by 3 Hammers’ owner, Ian Bonser, and installed by Huxley Golf’s appointed local distributor, Bob Cheetham, whose company, Intercity, is based at nearby Pattingham.
The new academy complements a host of other individual and group teaching, coaching and practice facilities at 3 Hammers which include an 18-hole short course designed by Sir Henry Cotton, a golf performance studio with 3D video motion analysis and a 390 sq ft (36 sq m) Huxley indoor putting green. There is also a fully-automated 23-bay floodlit driving range and a golf shop, bistro and bar.
Owned and operated since 1986 by Ian Bonser, the 3 Hammers Golf Complex is staffed by qualified PGA professionals who are able to provide advice, information and assistance on all aspects of golf from equipment selection and purchase through to improving and fine-tuning one’s game.
Conveniently located between the centre’s driving range and short course, the Learn 2 Play academy measures 98ft long by 82ft wide (30m x 25m) and is enclosed on all sides by 30ft high (9m) netting walls, plus roof, all supported by purpose-built steel framework.
The four Huxley all-weather surfaces used within the academy were selected to allow an unlimited variety of shots to be played within a totally secure area, enabling safe coaching of beginners, learners and others new to the game.
“I’d been wanting for some time to provide a dedicated outdoor academy for beginners, learners and ladies,” commented Mr Bonser. “We found a suitable location adjacent to the driving range and commissioned the production of a purpose-designed steel frame. Fully covered with netting, it has produced a safe, controlled environment where tuition can be provided without worrying about golf balls coming into or leaving the area.”
One of 3 Hammers’ PGA professionals, Piers Ward, echoed Ian Bonser’s praise, “It’s a great facility, ideal for teaching newcomers and those who don’t want to be exposed to the limelight of a public driving range or an indoor academy,” he said. “The playing surfaces are as close to the real thing as you can get without any of the maintenance. When lessons are finished, all of the professionals like using the academy to practise their own shots as the all-round netting means we don’t have to walk far to retrieve the ball.”