Golf Development Wales was established as a result of Wales’ successful Ryder Cup Bid and focuses on encouraging more people especially women and children to take up the sport. GDW is a strategic partnership between the Golf Union of Wales, the Golf Foundation and the Sports Council for Wales. It is also supported by Ryder Cup Wales 2010 Ltd and The Professional Golfers Association.
Golf Development Wales, facilitates the growth and health of the sport via a number of initiatives outlined in its strategy called d3:
develop the golfer, develop the person, develop the sport.
The aim was for the Ryder Cup to change the face of Welsh golf for a generation. Here are some key successes since Golf Development Wales, the development arm of the Golf Union Wales, was launched.
- Junior Participation is up – around 1 in 5 children participate in golf – 35,000 Primary School children (18.4%) and 42,000 secondary school (17.9%)
- Around 150,000 people have tried golf directly through Golf Development Wales programmes
- 10,000 women and girls have been through female beginner group coaching
- The new Start Women Golfing scheme has one of the highest conversion rates to full membership in all sport at 40%
- More than 40 new or improved beginner golf facilities around Wales.
- There are five new Regional Centres of Excellence, spread around Wales.
- A recent Golf Development Wales initiative, Golf Awareness week, was taken up by more than 100 clubs and resulted in thousands of people in Wales playing golf for free and getting free lessons. Over 700 members joined clubs in that week. This will be happening again next year in April.
- Over 3,000 coaches and volunteers have been trained.
- A new GDW beginner national golf tournament was launched called the Mini – Masters.
What happens next?
- The 41 Legacy fund beginner facilities are up and running. They will make golf more accessible and will continue to promote the sport to newcomers.
- Golf Development Wales continues after the Ryder Cup along with all its schemes, future funding does not depend on the Ryder Cup.
- The Ryder Cup will inspire more people in Wales to take up golf. Golf Development Wales will be running a ‘Pick it up after the Ryder Cup’ free campaign at Legacy Fund facilities for those who would like to give it a go.
- Primary School Golf festivals will be run across Newport after the Ryder Cup.
- Skill Challenge Cymru will be launched. These are standard skills for all players to try, with a national, interactive leader board via the website for all to compete from beginners to Wales golf team players
Golf Development Wales www.golfdevelopmentwales.org