I have to start this month’s report with my reflections of the 145th Open at Royal Troon in mid-July. Having endured the horrendous weather the year before at St Andrews, I was beginning to think that this was going to be a different story as the weather was absolutely glorious at the beginning of the championships.
Prior to the commencement of the ‘Open’, I was invited to play golf at Dundonald Links which is situated out on the west coast overlooking the Firth of Clyde. This is the day when I try and meet as many people from with the industry as possible – generally most of the face to face work gets done on these days before the tournament starts. A mixture of confirmed appointments, interspersed with impromptu meetings, gradually begin to reduce the list of people that I had programmed to meet up with. At the end of my week, which is normally the Friday afternoon and taking the time to reflect back, I very often ask the question why those meetings that were conducted on the golf course or in the sunshine seem to have produced a more productive outcome – and the world of golf seems a lot happier place.
Move that on 24 hours to the Friday morning and all of a sudden my meeting with a neighbouring golf association underneath the sound of perpetual rain dancing off the pavilion canvas, and our agenda seems to be a lot less productive than those earlier in the week. I am sure many of you can relate to being involved in meetings where the venue and the surroundings have almost dictated the mood of the outcome.
Continuing with the theme of meetings, over the last two years there have been endless gatherings between representatives of the GCMA, PGA and BIGGA to prepare the groundwork and the way forward for our joint educational initiative ‘Diploma in Golf Club Management’. On many occasions these lasted all day and were assisted with video links coming in from all over the country. Now, after all the work that has been put in by all parties, we finally launched it on August 1.
All of the details are now available on the GCMA website and can be found under the ‘Education’ tab at the top of the home page.
Maintaining the ‘meetings’ theme, both David O’Sullivan and I were invited to the South East regional meeting at Royal Blackheath GC, where it was good to meet up with the members from that part of the world. It was a most informative meeting that was followed by a game of golf on one of the hottest days of the year. Sincere thanks to Gordon Hogg and his team at Royal Blackheath GC for their hospitality.
At the time of writing, during the forthcoming weeks I am off up to Nairn GC with Fairstone Financials for their continued sponsorship of the Home Internationals. This will be the second time that I have been invited but is generally a good couple of days – and provide an opportunity to spread the word of GCMA and ensuring the brand is out there. This will then be followed by attending the North West region’s 50th anniversary event at Formby GC in mid-August. I will report on these in the September magazine.
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By Bob Williams