After 80 years as an unincorporated organisation the English Golf Union has amended its structure to both protect the assets of the Union and at the same time modernise the Union’s management.
The EGU is one of the largest sports governing bodies in England looking after the interests of over 1,900 golf clubs and 740,000 club members. The EGU also works to increase the continued interest and participation in golf through their golf development initiative ‘Get into Golf‘ and their Associate Membership Programme.
The new structure, which received the full approval of the County Unions, came into being on 1st November 2005 and will see the previous English Golf Union responsibilities split between two new and separate companies, The English Golf Union Limited and EGU Property Company Limited.
The English Golf Union Limited (EGU) will manage the core activities of the Union supporting players, clubs, counties and the hundreds of volunteers involved in the game, as well as the day-to-day management of The National Golf Centre and the courses at Woodhall Spa through a 100% subsidiary, Woodhall Spa Golf Management 2005 Limited. EGU Property Company Limited will own and manage land and buildings at the Woodhall Spa site.
The EGU, which had been an Unincorporated Association for over 80 years, recognized the potential unlimited liability exposure of its Committee members. The new structure ensures that this potential liability is removed. As an incorporated body the EGU is now limited by guarantee – the guarantee being the 34 County Unions, the National Association of Public Golf Courses (NAPGC) and the Artisans Golfers‘ Association (AGA) with the limit on that guarantee being £1.00.
The changes also included a streamlining of the management functions with the aim of improving the speed and efficiency of decision making so benefiting all the stakeholders of golf in England. Both the number of committees and the number of people serving on the remaining committees will be reduced.
Paul Baxter, EGU chief executive commented, “I am confident that the game of golf will benefit from the new structure. We now have a modern and efficient organisation which is qualified to take on the challenges that lie ahead.”
The arrangement does not alter the voting structure of the EGU. That remains with the 34 County Unions, the NAPGC and the AGA and the EGU emphasizes that it is these voting representatives that remain the vital link between the clubs and their individual members.
Baxter continued, “Throughout the entire process of establishing our new structure I have been delighted with the support we have received from our counties. They are after all the EGU. Their contribution has been constructive from start to finish. We should all be proud with the final result and I would like to thank those who made change possible.”
The EGU is a founding member of The England Golf Partnership (EGP) along with the English Ladies Golf Association (ELGA) and the PGA and is supported by the Golf Foundation and Sport England. The Whole Sport Plan for golf identifies how the EGP will achieve its vision of becoming ‘The Leading Golf Nation in the World by 2020‘ from grass roots right through to elite level
English Golf Union www.englishgolfunion.org