Golf clubs in Durham are proving quick off the mark – by backing a national campaign to speed up the sport. Golf Express – which promotes 9-hole golf to inspire busy people to play more often – has been rolled out by England Golf.
The launch follows a successful eight-month trial in Staffordshire when more than 4,600 9-hole rounds were played.
Now four clubs across the county will launch the new campaign, with others set to follow. Billingham GC, Birtley GC, Houghton-le-Springs GC and Sharpley Springs GC will all be promoting Golf Express this summer.
- Birtley GC, near Chester-le-Street, is offering an £8 green fee for nine holes, Monday to Friday.
- Billingham are throwing in a free drink at the bar as well as nine holes of evening golf on a Monday/Thursday/Saturday and Sunday for £12.50.
- Nine holes at Houghton-le-Springs will cost just £10 Monday to Friday and £12.50 at the weekends.
- Sharpley Springs, near Seaham, is offering nine holes golf each Tuesday and Thursday (3.30pm-7pm) for £12.50.
Says Phil Graham, county officer for the Durham Golf Development Group: “Lack of time is often given as one of the reasons for people not taking up golf, but Golf Express is designed to encourage people to enjoy a shorter format of the game which may fit better into their busy lifestyles.
“Nine holes of golf can still provide all the health and social benefits associated with the sport, but may be more convenient for many people.
“Thanks to the support of clubs in Durham there is now an option for people with a busy lifestyle to enjoy golf and share the benefits of going on to become a regular player and potential club member.”
Clubs across the country are now promoting 9-hole green fees and offers to players on the GolfExpress9.org website.
Justin Rose, an England Golf ambassador, often plays 9 holes in practice and describes Golf Express as: “A great way to play all the game in half the time.”
On average, a 9-hole round can be played in just two hours, which can fit into a busy lifestyle, and it offers all the health and social benefits of the full game. In a 9-hole round a player will walk two to three miles, take more than 5,000 steps and burn more than 450 calories.
The appeal of the 9-hole game, which is compatible with the Rules of Golf and the handicap system, has also prompted the R&A to launch the new 9-hole championship for amateurs which will take place at Royal Troon on Saturday. Scottish Golf is also promoting the shorter format.
Golf Express offers places to play across the country through its online directory at www.golfexpress9.org which also features special offers.
Follow GolfExpresss on Twitter: www.twitter.com/golfexpress9
Like Golf Express on Facebook: www.facebook.com/golfexpress9
England Golf www.englandgolf.org
Durham Golf Development Group www.durhamgolfpartnership.com