The Golf Foundation’s first ever Tri-Golf Festival Fortnight highlighted 22 new and established community golf projects that have opened up the sport throughout England and Wales to a wider audience, attracting boys and girls from different backgrounds and providing children, including those with special needs and learning difficulties, with sporting opportunities to aid their development.
Just under 200 schools took part, from as far north as Belle Vue Infants in Carlisle, to Newlyn school near Penzance in Cornwall. Festivals typically welcomed around 100 children, aged five years and up, from a number of local schools, with the accent very much on fun.
Feedback from the events, which finished, in the main, by early April, has been highly positive. Importantly, each festival has been organised by an ongoing community golf project led by a team of teachers, volunteers, junior golf leaders from golf clubs, PGA professionals and Golf Foundation development officers.
At Exeter’s festival for example, around 20 of the area’s schools took part on the day and Tri-Golf has certainly left its stamp on the city.
Golf Foundation regional development officer Glenn Ross said, “More than 20 teachers from the city have accessed training to deliver Tri-Golf via our Activator Workshops so they will be able to continue bringing golf to new youngsters. Such enthusiasm has been generated by the initiative that the programme has already been integrated into the primary school curriculum for Exeter for the autumn term.”
Further north, schools on the Wirral tapped into the growing excitement surrounding the Open Championship with their own Tri-Golf Super Festival. Around 100 pupils from five Wallasey primary schools played the Golf Foundation’s Tri-Golf game in a celebratory atmosphere. The festival follows three years’ work introducing Tri-Golf into a large number of the Wirral’s primary schools.
The 22 community partnerships are a sample of some 180 similar local sports partnerships the Golf Foundation is now working with as a partner with England Golf and Golf Development Wales. All the partnerships are dedicated to improving links between schools and private and public golf facilities and encouraging new players to have a go at golf.
The Golf Foundation www.golf-foundation.org