Matthew Turnock, the Resident PGA Professional at De Vere Mottram Hall GC, has been working with groups of all ages and abilities to enable them to enjoy a sport that offers many health and social benefits.
Now his work in developing disability golf sessions and beginners courses has been recognised after the club – which can be found between Manchester and Macclesfield – was named an Inclusive Centre of Excellence by the Cheshire County Golf Partnership.
Matthew, one of the PGA professionals who delivered free lessons to spectators in the Swing Zone at the Open Championship at Royal Liverpool, offers a wide range of pathways into golf.
He offers Get into golf group sessions for beginners with five one-hour sessions costing just £25.
He is also one of the Cheshire CGP’s seven Academy Programme coaches, who help promising young players develop their skills as a stepping stone towards potential county honours or to simply get the most from the game.
But it is his work with disability groups that has seen him receive a special PGA and ISPS Handa Academy award.
He has worked with groups such as special needs children, the Wheelies at Tytherington High School, amputees and adults and says of his commitment to help all groups: “It’s been very rewarding for me to be able to do this and with my own mother being severely crippled with Rheumatoid Arthritis for most her life, she was the inspiration for me to get involved.”
As well as providing an introduction to the skills needed to play golf, Matthew takes groups out on the par 3 course at Adlington to broaden their experience and offers follow up coaching.
Says Matthew: “All groups are able to get something from golf – we are able to tailor the coaching to suit their different needs. To see how determined they are that their disability will not hold them back is truly inspiring.”
Says Craig Thomas, county development officer for the Cheshire CGP: “Matthew’s commitment to ensuring golf is a sport open to all is exemplary.
“He has shown that it is possible to deliver coaching to a wide range of groups, who are then able to enjoy the many health and social benefits golf has to offer.”
England Golf Disability Manager Jamie Blair says: “England Golf is committed to developing more opportunities for disabled people to get into golf and play a game which offers fun, challenges and comradery.
“Over the coming years we want to see more clubs like Mottram and more pros like Matthew become the heart of their community and offer golf to everyone who wants to make it their game.”
Get into golf is a national campaign to inspire adults to take up the game and is run by the England Golf Partnership through its network of County Golf Partnerships, supported by Sport England and National Lottery funding.
Get into golf opportunities include FREE taster session and low-cost beginner courses with PGA professionals. They are a fun and sociable way to start golf – and a great way to make new friends. You can follow Get into golf on Twitter twitter.com/getintogolf or on Facebook at facebook.com/Getintogolf
Get into golf getintogolf.org
Cheshire County Golf Partnership www.cheshiregolfpartnership.com