Global Edition

Walker to Compère Golf Service Industry ‘Oscars’

3.30pm 7th January 2015 - Management Topics

Dan Walker (left) presenting a 59Club gold flag award to last year's Ultimate Members' Club, Wentworth
Dan Walker (left) presenting a 59Club gold flag award to last year’s Ultimate Members’ Club, Wentworth

Popular award-winning BBC sports presenter Dan Walker will be the compère once again when the fifth annual 59Club service excellence awards take place next month at Marriott Forest of Arden, Warwickshire.

Regarded by many as the ‘Oscars’ of the golf service industry, the awards’ evening – on Monday, February 23 – is the culmination of a day of seminars on the theme of ‘customer relationships’. The awards are designed to recognise excellence within the golf industry throughout 2014 and the evening will also see the presentation of 59Club’s coveted gold and silver flag designations.

Heading the line-up of speakers for the day’s seminars are three market specialists, offering a variety of experience in different, beneficial areas. The chief operating officer at Bellerive Country Club, Missouri, Jeffrey Kreafle, will deliver two seminars. The first focuses on the importance of communication with members, while the second explores how challenges can be levered positively to recognise major future changes.

Colm Hannon, the founder of the Rugby Business Network, will talk about the ‘creation of business networks via digital platforms’, while Felicitas Media’s Nathan Sansby will undertake an interactive seminar on ‘customer services via social media’.

Awards up for grabs include the ultimate golf experience; golf group of the year; golf operations team of the year; sales team of the year; and best retail experience, plus a number of individual accolades. And it will also be awarding the highly valued Gold Flags, for which only eight UK venues achieved the required standard in 2013.

Previous award winners include four-time Ryder Cup venue The Belfry, 2010 Ryder Cup venue Celtic Manor Resort, The Vale Resort, Marriott, De Vere, Wentworth, Stoke Park, Close House and Goodwood, among many others.

This year’s awards’ evening is sponsored by;; Swatkins; Methven; Felicitas Media; Tacit; Fluid Productions; Pro Shop Europe magazine; and the Midlands and North (UK) region of the Club Managers Association of Europe (CMAE).

Simon Wordsworth, chief executive at 59Club and a fellow of the PGA, said: “The series of seminars will show how to develop, enhance and retain new and existing clients using a variety of communication methods. They will be presented in a mix of lectures, interactive sessions and workshops using the latest social media techniques.

“This is always a busy and exciting day for us at 59Club, with an extensive day of seminars directed at staff and management and then the awards dinner in the evening – and we are delighted Dan Walker is, once again, able to join us. It gives us a chance to celebrate all that’s good in the industry while enjoying ourselves and meeting like-minded individuals.”

59Club, a PGA Official Supplier, is fast becoming the industry standard for measuring and comparing customer-service levels and analysing all key revenue streams for golf venues, and is committed to the on-going development of club managers and PGA professionals.

The unique benchmarking and training service has already benefited hundreds of PGA members and golf course operators. The services include a series of mystery shopper recorded-enquiry calls and live visits, followed up with regular analysis and training to ensure venues can identify trends and compare, improve, or maintain, service standards.

To book a place at the seminars, the awards’ evening, or both – taking place on Monday, February 25 – please contact Prices start at £75pp plus vat. For more information contact


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