The R&A paid a visit to 3 Hammers Golf Complex last week to see first-hand why this Wolverhampton venue is recognised as one of the most progressive golf facilities in the UK and a leader in golf development.
R&A Chief Development Officer Phil Anderton and Director of Business Development Jenny Brown spent the day meeting key members of staff as well as the diverse range of customers.
The multi-award winning golf venue is widely recognised as a pioneer. As well as being chosen as a pilot for revolutionary technology, including TopTracer, 3 Hammers has led the way when it comes to coaching programmes. Its first female specific schemes started over 34 years ago, and its outreach programmes have touched every part of the local community giving disabled children and disadvantaged youngsters opportunities that they would never have otherwise enjoyed.
Anderton, who is responsible for a number of development initiatives that aim to make golf more accessible and inclusive, was particularly interested in understanding how 3 Hammers works with the community. Projects such as the 3 Hammers Prostate testing campaign, which saw nearly 1,000 men tested at the venue, has created a valuable link with local residents and attracted new people to the venue.
“We are very supportive of golf facilities that are working to make golf more accessible and inclusive by breaking down the barriers that often prevent people from getting into the sport,” commented Anderton. “We enjoyed our visit to 3 Hammers where we learned more about what the venue is doing to attract more people into enjoying golf. We were impressed with what we saw.”
The R&A is also creating a community-focussed golf facility at Lethamhill in Glasgow. It is hoped that the development of the new venue, which Jenny Brown is overseeing, will attract more families into the sport by offering fun and exciting formats of golf.
“It’s been inspiring to hear how 3 Hammers interacts with and supports its local community. We are keen to learn from the individuals who are already delivering successful programmes and are very grateful for Ian and his team’s openness and support,” commented Brown.
3 Hammers owner Ian Bonser, who was on hand to show the R&A’s team around the facilities, added: “I hope that Phil and Jenny have been inspired by what they have seen here today. Here at 3 Hammers we create golfers. This is the start of their journey, and when they are ready we help players find a local golf club where they can blossom. We are able to do this by continually updating our facility with the best available equipment, working closely with the clubs in our local area, and ensuring that our coaching team is best in class.
“Our focus has, and continues to be, creating the perfect environment to start and continue to play golf, but what we are particularly proud of is that whatever stage they are at, all of these golfers still call 3 Hammers ‘home’.”
3 Hammers has a team of seven PGA Professionals employed to offer coaching to all levels of golfers. They also work with local schools and community groups to deliver coaching programmes to thousands of people across the West Midlands.