Leading a club pushing its way back into rankings lists and with projects happening on and off course, Royal Cromer’s Secretary/Manager is hugely optimistic about the future... We do feel like we are at a good point,” says Royal Cromer Secretary/Manager Jonathan Moore, “but it’s going to be a lot better again in five years.” There’s nothing unusual about a manager talking up their club – you’d expect it to be honest – but there’s something in Jonathan’s delivery that screams belief and conviction. There are plenty of reasons why he should feel so optimistic. A long-term development plan on the course is bearing fruit, with the club moving back into National Club Golfer’s Top 100 England list, and a full membership and burgeoning visitor portfolio. With governance changes also now in the works, we sat down with Jonathan to look at what’s been achieved at the Norfolk club, and what’s still to come... What’s your background in golf club management and what brought you to Royal Cromer? I went to University and didn’t necessarily know what I was going to be doing when I left. When I graduated, I was considering becoming a schoolteacher but I chose to follow my passion for golf. Initially, I became a teaching professional and, over time, I could see the way the PGA and golf clubs were moving. Obviously, coming from an education background, I had a decent grasp of the management side of things and my first combined role was at a small nine-hole course in Norfolk called Feltwell where I was Secretary, Manager and the Pro. When I moved to Royal Cromer, I gave up my PGA status to become a full-time General Manager. Was that a difficult decision? No, it was something I was looking to do anyway so it was quite an easy step on a number of levels. I was ready to avoid the half seven Sunday morning teaching slots! And I was keen to grow the management side of my career. Did you see that shift coming? A lot of PGA pros and directors of golf have gone into management now... I think I was one of the earliest. I remember my first GCMA regional meeting. I was in my mid 20s and I was probably the youngest in the meeting by 25 to 30 years. But you go now and 30 to 40-year-olds is about the average. There has been a huge change in the industry and particularly the role of the Secretary/General Manager in the 20 years I’ve been involved. It was clear, combined with my natural inclination to move that way anyway, where it was going to go. Golf clubs had to become slightly more professional. You arrived at Royal Cromer in 2014. Tell me about the club... It’s the second oldest club in Norfolk and roughly the 50th in England. It was founded in 1888 and Old Tom Morris came along in 1895 to extend it to 18 holes. It’s obviously got the...
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