Global Edition

Scottish golf – will bust follow boom?

12.15am 2nd March 2005 - Management Topics

Scotland’s second golf boom (1980-2003) resulted in a 27% increase in golf course facilities and in the construction of 70 golf ranges. Half of these new facilities were located outside central Scotland where the supply of golf facilities already exceeded demand. There are now 502 golf course facilities (558 golf courses): 72% members‘ clubs, 11% municipal, and 17% commercial.
The transformation of many members‘ clubs, mainly operated for amateurs by amateurs, into a series of separate and competing businesses requiring professional management, has taken less than a decade. For the first time in Scotland, supply of golf facilities now exceeds demand and many operators are facing significant administrative and financial problems.
The ‘Home of Golf‘, with its historic foundations can be described as a property of considerable character but in need of extensive refurbishment and modernisation. Many parts of its infrastructure are over 80 years old and are often based on outmoded traditions which do not address the expectations of the modern golfer.
Robert Price’s book* is the first independent and comprehensive analysis of how, by whom and for whom Scotland’s golf facilities are operated. Major changes in supply and demand, in management structures and in the roles of governing bodies and government agencies make this study not only timely, but also very necessary for planning the future of the game in Scotland.
The role of members‘ clubs, often dominated by males, as the principal providers and operators of Scotland’s golf facilities is critically examined and suggestions made as to ways in which their management can adjust to the rapidly changing economic and social conditions of the 21st century. Similarly, the roles of the Scottish Golf Union and the Scottish Ladies‘ Golf Association are assessed and the case is made for the establishment of a new Scottish Golf Federation representing all golfers and all golf organisations. While Scotland has a very high level of golf facility provision, the quality and accessibility of these facilities is shown to be unsatisfactory.
The book is divided into two parts. Part 1 consists of ten chapters analysing the provision, operation and usage of golf facilities on a national scale. Part 2 consists of the description and analysis of golf facilities in each of 19 regions (local authority areas or combined areas). A map showing the distribution of golf course facilities and golf ranges in each region is provided.

*”Scotland’s Golf Facilities”
Provision, Management and Usage,
By Robert Price
ISBN: 0-9549284-0-7
192 pages, 180mm x 240mm
Silk Board Cover
44 maps and diagrams, 29 tables
Price: £22 (plus £2 p/p)
Contact Dr R. J Rrice, 16 Northbank Road, Kirkintilloch, Glasgow, G66 1EU.

Target Readership: Owners, operators and managers (club secretaries, treasurers, committee members) of golf courses and golf ranges; Golf administrators, commercial golf developers and property agents; Planning authorities, Local Authority Departments of Leisure and Recreation, Tourist Boards, golf course architects, constructors and consultants; Students attending courses on leisure and recreation management, greenkeeping and tourism; Golf tourists and golf enthusiasts.


Part 1

Terminology, Sources and Dates of Data.
Historical Background
Pre-1730, 1730-1879, First Golf Boom 1880-1909, Consolidation 1910-1979, Second Golf Boom 1980-2003.
Classification of Golf Facilities
Members‘ Clubs, Municipal, Commercial, Inland Courses, Coastal Courses, Course Length and Difficulty, The Clubhouse, Quality Assessment.
The Players
Club Members, Non-Club Golfers, Professional Golfers, Professional and Amateur Tournaments, Frequency of Play, Use of Golf Facilities.
Members‘ Clubs
Distribution, Administration, Employees, Membership, Income, Expenditure, Classification.
Municipal Facilities
Links Management Committees, Local Authority Golf Facilities.
Commercial Facilities
Golf Courses, Golf Ranges, Golf Academies.
The Role of Governing Bodies and Government Agencies
County Unions, Area Associations, SGU, SLGA, LGU, R&A, The Scottish Executive, Sportscotland, VisitScotland.
Demand and Supply
Regional Variations, Visitor Demand, Golf Tourism, Scottish Golf Markets.
Present Status and Future Prospects
Members‘ Clubs, Municipal Facilities, Commercial Facilities, Governing Bodies and Government Agencies.

Part 2
Regional Distribution and Analysis of Scotland’s Golf Facilities
For each of 19 regions (local authority areas or combined areas) there is a list of golf facilities classified according to management type and indicating the location of each facility, its date of opening, number of golf holes, standard scratch score, landscape type and green fee classification. Golf ranges are listed separately. For each region there is a map showing the location of each facility using different symbols indicating management type and green fee classification: Classes 1, 2, 3, 4A (18 holes), 4B (9 holes).

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