Archive for June, 2017

Golf Escapes Promotion…

Wednesday, June 14th, 2017

The Social Golfer & Golf Escapes

Welcome to The Social Golfer Golf Escapes Page…

Thank you for visiting our growing website community of golfers via Golf Escapes*.

In order to claim your new annual PRO Account subscription, register using the link below and follow the instructions given.

Following your booking with Golf Escapes, you will have been given a Voucher Code for which to redeem your 12-month TSG Annual Golf Membership.

In addition, once your account is set-up, please join the Golf Escapes Society Page by clicking here

Here you will be able to join games posted by like-minded golf travellers, exchange tips, offers and advice!

If you have any problem during this process, please do not hesitate to contact us and one of our team will be happy to help.

Call 01277 200 207

(Office Hours Monday to Friday 10am – 5pm)

GroupOn Registration button

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The Social Golfer - GroupOn Promotion

Looking for new golf partners? Can’t rely on friends to play? Want a handicap certificate?

“We believe that you should be able to play golf anywhere in the world at any time regardless of whether you belong to a golf club or not.”

“By joining our community you can arrange games with golfers in your area and with over 9,500 golfers worldwide…… right now, our ambition is to be the BIGGEST Golf Club in the UK!”

More about The Social Golfer PRO Account…

– The Social Golfer (TSG) is an online golf community with nearly 10k registered users…

– Receive Exclusive discounted green fees at over 40+ clubs in London & around the UK

– Get an official TSG Handicap Certificate

– Analyse and track your scores

– Receive exclusive travel offers from our partners

– Arrange games and find golfers in your areas via TSG email

– Read our 5K+ Golf Course Reviews

– Join in Official TSG Majors Tournaments

– Receive a monthly newsletter with Tips, instruction and offers from PGA Golf Professionals

 


 

The Social Golfer is the fast growing internet golf community run and managed by people who are genuinely passionate about golf!

Not simply another one of the all too common golf oriented “social networking” sites – The Social Golfer is aReal social network, where you actually leave your PC and get out and meet people and of course, play more golf!

Originally conceived by a team of web developers in 2007, the site is now owned and run by a team golf lovers, who want to make golf more accessible and affordable for all.

For more information on the site and its functions, please visit the FAQs section here

 


*N.B. This GOLF ESCAPES Promotion is only available to NEW members of The Social Golfer.

 

Oldest Golf Club in Asia….

Wednesday, June 14th, 2017

Oldest Golf Club in Asia - royal-calcutta-golf-clubThere more than 40,000 golf clubs established across the world but which is the oldest Golf Club in Asia?

TSG member Scottish Bob is an amateur golf historian who also collects golf scorecards from around the world wanted to know.

In a series of articles about the oldest golf clubs around the world here’s what he found out…

Which is the Oldest Golf Club in Asia?

Golf Clubs were well established and being played in both Scotland and England in the 1700’s with golf clubs like St Andrews, Royal Blackheath, Royal Perth & Musselburgh just to mention a few.

However, golf was also being established by the British on different continents all over the British Empire.

Asia is the largest continent with 48 countries and covers about 9 percent of the Earth’s surface and also is the most populated.

I know that at least 45 of those countries have golf courses and just maybe it might be more.

Which is the Oldest Golf Club in Asia – The Answer?

 

Which is the Oldest Golf Club in Asia?

I believe that there are over 300 golf courses in India and a large amount are run by the Military.

The East India Company who were the British government’s administrative & military authority in the 17th& 18th centuries decided to set up an administrative centre in Calcutta, and many of the British gentlemen who were based there loved their golf.

After a short period of time, they decided to create their own golf course and named it the Calcutta Golf Club which was located close the Calcutta airport. In 1910 the course was relocated to its present location at Tollygunge.

The club was meant for the use, exclusively by the gentlemen.

However, ladies were very reluctantly admitted to the club in 1886. The committee voted 43 for and 13 against and on the condition, the ladies be allowed to use the course in the mornings only.

Following a visit by King George V and Queen Mary in 1911, the golf club was granted Royal Status and named The Royal Calcutta Golf Club, which is fondly known today, by the locals as “The Royal”.

The club is oldest Golf Club in India and the oldest Golf Club in Asia.

Til next time…

Scottish Bob

Scottish Bob - Bob Davies

 

 

 


N.B. To any golf historians reading this I apologise for any mistakes that I may have made, I have tried to ensure sure that my facts about the history were correct at the time of going to press.

 

Mayo is victor at The Social Golfer Par 3 Championship…

Tuesday, June 13th, 2017

The Social Golfer Par 3 Championship - Alan HaywoodGolfers from all over the South East of England gathered at the Kent-based club Pedham Place on 10th June 2017,  all hoping to be this year’s The Social Golfer Par 3 Championship winning golfer.

Meanwhile, the event celebrated a new format, making for an exciting finish….

The Social Golfer Par 3 Championship – The Day…

TheSocialGolfer.com (TSG), the online social networking community for golfers celebrated its 3rdth annual TSG Par 3 Championship at Pedham Place Golf Club in Kent with East London-based member Pete Mayo lifting the trophy!

The Social Golfer Par 3 Championship – The Format…

The event is normally played over the 36 holes on the Pedham Academy Course.

However, this year, instead of the standard stableford points determining the result, this year the TSG team created a new format whereby the event was played over 27 holes, with the top six points scorers going through to a 18th hole shoot-out!

The six qualifiers made it an exciting competition, with Brigitte Lockwood (Twickenham), Noirin Fitzgerald (Shepperton), Jaspal Ranoo (Woolwich), Noel Loughrey (Berkshire), Steve Slater (Essex) and Pete all making gallant efforts to win through.

Each shoot-out competitor was given two balls in a Nearest Pin competition with Mayo, Ranoo and Slater all making it to the Final.

Slater fell at the first play-off hole but after the second play-off hole, Mayo held his nerve to win over Ranoo.

The field ranging from 10 handicappers to 28 and the course (one of the best Par 3 in the South of England) proved to make for a hugely enjoyable contest.

The Social Golfer Par 3 Championship – What they said…

The Social Golfer Par 3 Championship - Pete MayoPete Mayo, Newly Crowned Champion said…

“A big thanks to Ian and Mark (TSG Team) for organising the day and to everybody else for making it such a great event. I thoroughly approve of the format (I would say that wouldn’t I).”

“On a serious note, TSG is by far the easiest way to play relaxed golf, with a good bunch of people. I have played lots of different courses since joining and you can track my progress and handicap online. I am looking forward to defending my title in 2018!

Speaking after the event Ian Mullins, Managing Director of The Social Golfer said…

It was a huge risk by changing the format of the day but it proved to not only add tension to the day but also gave the finalists a sense of what it might really be like to play in a real competitive event.”

“Let’s face it most golf days end with the reading out of the winners but the new format added additional spice to the day. Many thanks to Pedham Place and Tim Milford and his team for once again looking after us so well!”

 


By Ian Mullins

Woolston Manor Golf Club – The New Team…

Tuesday, June 13th, 2017

Matt Stables - Woolston Manor Golf Club

TSG Club Partner Woolston Manor Golf Club in Chigwell, Essex, has started a new, with the intention to become the leading golf facility in Essex….

With a new management team since the start of January 2017, led by associate director Lee Williams, there is a strong vision to implement a new level of experience for both golfers and non-golfers.

Woolston Manor Golf Club – The Vision…

Lee is aided by Director of Golf and Advanced PGA Professional Matt Stables who both have exciting developments planned at Woolston Manor over the coming months and years.

These new developments include…

– A Golfing Superstore in partnership with Totally Golf

– In store, you can ‘try before you buy’ option

– 30-day money back guarantee

– Complimentary customer fitting service

– Complimentary shoe fitting service

– Complimentary FJ glove fitting service

– A new Golf Buggy Fleet with On Pin GPS

– Enhanced Practice areas, Short Game Academy and Short Course

– A Four Shots Lower Golf Academy

– YMG Junior Golf Academy

– Ladies Masters Golf Coaching

– JamegaTour & Essex PGA Championships

– Motocaddy Authorised Repair Centre

– VPar Live scoring

– A fun and engaging members events

Woolston Manor Golf Club v2Woolston Manor Golf Club – The Course…

Woolston Manor is a great test of golf but in recent times it has had its challenges but with a new greenkeeping team which has doubled in size plus investment in new machinery; the course is getting back to its best.

It was originally designed Neil Coles MBE and the renowned golf course architect David Williams designed the 18 hole championship golf course which was opened in the spring of 1994 and since that time it has hosted several large tournaments.

The course measures 6510 yards from the white tees with a par of 72.

Woolston Manor is regarded throughout the south-east as one of our finest courses with some of the most demanding holes, a true golfing challenge.

The legendary Gary Player described it as one of the best young courses that he had ever played – praise indeed!

The course is built to USGA specifications with generous teeing areas, dramatic bunker shapes, water in play on twelve holes, and creates an enjoyable game experience for golfers of all abilities.

Woolston Manor Golf Club – Next Steps…

With enhancements to the course, the clubhouse plus the experience and services that are now available atWoolston Manor it is very exciting times….

We look forward to welcoming ALL TSGers to the course and hope you will experience personally the new direction that Woolston Manor Golf Club is heading in!

Book a tee time at Guests Rates at Woolston Manor Golf Club Today!


By Ian Mullins

 

New Golf Formats…

Tuesday, June 13th, 2017

GolfSixies - New Golf FormatsOver the last few years there have been many initiatives introducing new golf formats to the game, but is all the razzmatazz necessary to get people playing golf?

We asked Emma Ballard, Head of Digital at Medi8 Limited, PR agency to American Golf and many other brands. She is also the UK Ambassador for Womens Golf Day.

New Golf Formats – Why are they here?

In recent times, there has been a real push to get more people, especially women & children, playing the game.

With the number of people playing regular golf over the last 10 years declining, governing bodies, golf organisations and professional tours have tried to come up with ways to reach out and get golf back on peoples’ agenda.

Back in 2006 when numbers were healthier, you’d find the majority of golfers out on a golf course playing 18, 9 holes or pitch & putt, the driving range and of course, the holiday requirement of a bit of adventure golf!

The use of indoor simulators was on the increase and if you lived near the outskirts of London you could make your range sessions much more fun by going to Top Golf.

Oh, and on a slight aside, social media was in its infancy.

Since then, as the numbers declined, golf has had a go at redefining itself by attempting to alter the format and make the game look more fun and appealing to a younger generation.

New Golf Formats – Where did it begin…

It started at club level with the introduction of PowerPlay Golf, 9 holes with 2 flags, and through other initiatives like SPRINT6GOLF, it culminated in the European Tour’s GolfSixes event this May.

They threw lots of new ideas into the tournament, golf got its version of a Hollywood makeover, creating a lot of buzz and excitement amongst spectators.

But what I wonder is whether this is necessary, is this the way forward for golf?

Looking at golf today,  your options to play are endless, there is everything that I have mentioned that was available back in 2006, but now most ranges are also equipped with some indoor golf facilities.

It’s no longer frowned upon to want to play a quick 9 holes, pop-up adventure golf in cities is commonplace and if you don’t fancy hitting a ball you can kick one at the hole in the form of FootGolf.

Considering social media again, it’s now an integral part of our lives, a fabulous tool to promote a golf facility with an ability to be able to target a much larger audience and with the likes of TheSocialGolfer.com you never have the problem of finding someone to play with!

Golf in itself hasn’t changed, like tennis or badminton, the process and mechanics of hitting a ball is just the same, it’s only the club you are using and the ball you are hitting which have altered over the years due to the vast investment into research and development.

Emma Ballard - New Golf Formats

New Golf Formats – My View…

So why with so many more playing options than 10 years ago and the basic method of swinging a golf club unchanged is there a need to focus so much on the format of the game?

I suggest we don’t mess with the format, the game works perfectly well as it is?

Surely we need to focus time and effort at a local level, low cost marketing the wonderful facilities that are available by making use of some, or all, of the low-cost social media channels on offer.

By driving people through the door, golf clubs/venues can use the pathways into golf that are already available to get more people back playing and gain new recruits along the way.

Essentially golf is fun and has a great social side to it too.

With the ability to make it part of family life, a sport that anyone can play and an ever ageing population – it’s time to ditch the razzmatazz and new golf formats and get back to simple ways when golf sold itself!


 

 

Golf Escapes & The Social Golfer partner in new alliance…

Tuesday, June 13th, 2017

Il-Picciolo-Etna-Golf-Resort-Spa-Golf-EscapesThe online golf networking community TheSocialGolfer.com (TSG) has announced that itself and leading provider of Golf Holidays, Golf Escapes, have formed a strategic partnership which they hope will provide unique and great value to their respective followers…

Both companies have agreed on a one-year, detailed and unique activity plan whereby The Social Golfer will promote Golf Escapes packages and offers in its monthly newsletter and via the onsite TSG email.

All TSG members will receive a £25 discount on every booking made through Golf Escapes (T&C’s apply)*

In return, Golf Escapes will be offering everyone that books a golf package with them during the agreement, FREE annual membership to the popular online golf club worth £25 each.**

Furthermore, Golf Escapes will be an Official Partner at all TSG’s Major competitions throughout the year including their flagship event The Social Golfer OPEN which attracts over 70+ golfers from all over the south-east and as far away as Botswana!

This year, the event takes place at Farleigh GC (Part of the Foxhills Collection) in Surrey, on 30th July and Golf Escapes and their hotel partners will give all TSGers attending, the chance to win a luxury golf trip to Il Picciolo Etna Golf Resort & Spa in Sicily.

Finally, as part of the agreement, The Social Golfer will host a Golf Escapes Society page, whereby the Golf Escapes team will be able to liaise directly with its own customers, posting additional offers and packages in the co-branded space.

Thus providing the Golf Escapes team, with the opportunity to have a great dialogue with its customers even when they are not travelling.

In addition, both parties will be sharing golf editorial and articles and social media content across their networks.

The deal, negotiated between Golf Escapes Commercial Director, James Bryan and TSG Managing Director, Ian Mullins will run from June 2017 to May 2017 with the option to extend beyond this period.

The Social Golfer & Golf EscapesCommenting on the partnership Bryan said “We first met with Ian in March this year and it quickly became obvious that their way great synergy between our two brands. Ian and his team are growing a fantastic interactive platform on which golfers can participate in golf games in the UK and abroad, and we have no doubt that this kind of agreement can only help us to grow the awareness of the Golf Escapes name among a very golf savvy audience. The Social Golfer is already providing superb value to its users and we can compliment this perfectly. I can’t wait to start working together!”

Mullins said “We have been working on finding a right golf travel partner for TSG for a while now but as soon as we sat down with James, we knew immediately we were talking to the right partners, with the same approach to customer service that we like to offer our members. James is the consummate professional and has already demonstrated that he does what he says he’s going to do. We are so pleased to be partnering with a company with such history and focus on providing golfers with a depth of information and expertise – it’s going to be fun!

For more information, please contact, theteam@thesocialgolfer.com or james@golf-escapes.com


Terms & Conditions…

Below are the T&Cs of the £25 discount as promised;

– This promotion entitles TSG members to a £25 discount from any Golf Escapes Ltd holiday booked for 2 nights or more for a group of 4 or more

– This promotion is valid for all TSG members but may be stopped without general notice

– Only one discount per booking may be used

– This discount cannot be used in conjunction with any other Golf Escapes offers, promotions or vouchers

– This discount is not exchangeable for cash or another voucher

– Any additional cost exceeding the value of this voucher will be paid by the redeemer

– This discount is exclusive to TSG and cannot be transferred or used by non-TSG members and cannot be used retrospectively

– This discount is valid only at Golf Escapes Ltd and can only be used towards the balance payment of a holiday and cannot be used for a deposit payment


** Only open to new members of TSG

Groupon Promotion….

Monday, June 5th, 2017

The Social Golfer - GroupOn Promotion

Welcome to The Social Golfer Groupon Page…

Thank you for signing up to The Social Golfer PRO account with Groupon*.

The Social Golfer - GroupOn PromotionIn order to claim your new annual subscription, register below using the following link and follow the instructions given.

If you have any problem during this process, please do not hesitate to contact us and one of our team will be happy to help.

Call 01277 200 207

(Office Hours Monday to Friday 10am – 5pm)

GroupOn Registration button

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Looking for new golf partners? Can’t rely on friends to play? Want a handicap certificate?

“We believe that you should be able to play golf anywhere in the world at any time regardless of whether you belong to a golf club or not. By joining our community you can arrange games with golfers in your area and with over 9,500 golfers worldwide…… right now, our ambition is to be the BIGGEST Golf Club in the UK!”

More about The Social Golfer PRO Account…

– The Social Golfer (TSG) is an online golf community with nearly 10k registered users…

– Receive Exclusive discounted green fees at over 40+ clubs in London & around the UK

– Get an official TSG Handicap Certificate

– Analyse and track your scores

– Receive exclusive travel offers from our partners

– Arrange games and find golfers in your areas via TSG email

– Read our 5K+ Golf Course Reviews

– Join in Official TSG Majors Tournaments

– Receive a monthly newsletter with Tips, instruction and offers from PGA Golf Professionals

 


 

Groupon - The Social GolferThe Social Golfer is the fast growing internet golf community run and managed by people who are genuinely passionate about golf!

Not simply another one of the all too common golf oriented “social networking” sites – The Social Golfer is aReal social network, where you actually leave your PC and get out and meet people and of course, play more golf!

Originally conceived by a team of web developers in 2007, the site is now owned and run by a team golf lovers, who want to make golf more accessible and affordable for all.

For more information on the site and its functions, please visit the FAQs section here

 


*Note, this Groupon Promotion is only available to NEW members of The Social Golfer.

 

The Shire London – TSG Course Review….

Saturday, June 3rd, 2017

The-ShireFor all the media training players get these days, it’s no wonder that some of today’s tour players can come across as both drilled and bland when interviewed.

However, for those that grew up in the seventies and eighties with the likes of Lee Trevino, Gary Player, Fuzzy Zoeller and Payne Stewart.

All these guys came with a large dose of personality, the man that stand above all these great players is the one and only Seve Ballesteros.

The man not only had a cavalier approach to the game but also received one the rarest accolades in sport, by being known by one name only….Seve!

Not only was he was full of charm and good humour in front of the cameras but his approach to the game was both exciting and creative.

So when the opportunity to play at the ONLY golf course in the UK designed by the late, great man, we jumped at the chance!

The Shire London  – The Clubhouse…

The Shire London v4The location of The Shire London could not be more convenient for nomadic golfers.

You leave junction 23 on the M25 and head down the A1081 for no more than a mile or two, you’ll be met at the entrance by a modern statue of the man.

The Clubhouse is modern and comfortable with a mix of tables and sofas that offer you a great chance to relax and enjoy a breakfast or lunch before heading out on the course.

Inside there is also a Gym (for members only) and a well-stocked shop with plenty of Seve branded goods to purchase.

We were met by a very smiley Tom, who was quick to show us where everything was and was keen to take the time to chat with us.

This is something many lesser clubs could learn from, as it not only leaves a lasting impression but it also makes the visiting golfer enjoy their day more.

The Shire London Golf Club  – The History…

The Shire London - Seve BallesterosIn early 2000, the Menai-Davis family invited Seve to visit the UK to take a look at a large piece of land north of London, on which they wanted to create a new unique style golf course.

In 2001, just 72 hours after Seve’s first visit, a deal was agreed. Soon afterwards, the Spanish legend and his team set about creating what would become known as  The Shire London.

Over the next five years, the ground was developed into the 18-hole Ballesteros ‘Masters Course’ and the 9-hole Ballesteros ‘Academy Course’.

Seve visited the site regularly in person throughout the build, making himself available constantly to answer questions regarding the design and build process, until the project’s completion in 2006.

During this period, the Menai-Davis family worked on the Clubhouse and infrastructure with the key ambition to make members, their guests and other visitors feel comfortable, relaxed, welcomed without any of the stuffy formality which characterised other golf clubs in the area.

The Course also boasts a small six bay driving range meaning everything is catered for!

On 2nd July 2007, The Shire London opened for green fees, having held a member’s weekend a month earlier.

Later, events would mean that tragically, The Shire London will forever remain Severiano Ballesteros’ one and only golf course design in the UK.

The Shire London Golf Club  – The Course…

The Shire London v5So the first thing you notice on the card as you make your way to the first tee is that this is like no other course you’ve been too.

Yes, it was Seve’s insistence that there should be an even mix of par threes, fours and fives, and that no two consecutive holes should play to the same par…. and it works!

The first hole starts with a pretty Par 3 to ease you into your round but note, you are playing across water.

Just the first of 14th holes on the course that include water in their layout. You’ve been warned.

The holes then rotate with a Par 4, Par 5 returning to a Par 3 again, and so on.

Surprisingly, this doesn’t break your flow, but actually, compliments ts your play.

Of course, the tee boxes are perfect. Of course, the greens are as good as you play anywhere in the area.

And yes, the rough is long, forcing you to play the kind of shot Seve would want you to.

The Shire London v2The standout holes:

Hole 4 – A pretty 140 yards Par 3 (across water) a big flat green to give you a chance

Hole 7 – Another inspiring 118 yard Par 3 that finishes on an island green (across water – again!)

Hole 9 – An uphill 400+ yard Par 4 flanked by mature trees and a well-protected green

Hole 11 – A 500+ yard straight Par 5, but leave enough room to clear the centred oak in the approach to the green

Hole 13 – A short tee shot to the turn and long 3 wood, gives you a birdie chance but go long off the tee and you’ll be in trouble.

The Shire London - 18th holeHole 15 – An ascending fairway with a right dog-leg that invites you to hit an expansive flat green. Another birdie opportunity.

Hole 18 – A good drive on this  365 yard Par 4 will tempt you to go for the green….but beware of the ‘S’ shaped water feature, as you’ll need to be pinpoint accurate if you want to avoid a bogey.

This hole provides a superb vista for those watching you finish in the clubhouse.

Seve clearly enjoyed designing golf course after his retirement from the game and although I am sure he would have preferred to have continued playing, this course allows his name to live on for generations.

We are very lucky to have this memory of him!

The Shire London Golf Club – Green Fees….

The Shire LondonPrices below are valid from May 1st 2017 to October 31st 2017.

Call 020 8441 7649 or 0208 440 4009.

BALLESTEROS MASTERS COURSE

Monday-Friday: £60 (Junior U-18 £25)

Weekends: £75 (Junior U-18 £40)

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FOUR-BALL DEALS in 2017

– Mon-Thu: £195 per fourball, before 12 noon, food included

– Friday: £205 per fourball, before 12 noon, food included

– Sat-Sun: £230 per fourball, afternoon only, no food included

– Bookable up to 7 days in advance.

– NOT AVAILABLE ONLINE – TELEPHONE BOOKINGS ONLY

Please Click Here for our current Special Offers.

The Shire London Golf Club – The Verdict…

The Shire London v7With much to enjoy as you make your way around the course, you will have to be having a very bad day if you don’t enjoy this course.

And you can’t help thinking that the great man is enjoying watching you test your skills on ‘his’ stage.

Given the course is still only a decade old, I can see the trees maturing well as they provided a great backdrop for the course.

One tiny criticism, as with most members clubs, there is limited signage between holes, something paramount for the visiting golfer. However, this is not something that will cause you too many problems, as the scorecard has a useful map on the back.

Overall, we like this course,  you will be hard pushed to find a friendlier, more challenging, and of course more iconic golf course in the whole of the South East.

If you get a chance to visit this course, either on a corporate day or for social golf, do….this is a course that all TSGers will enjoy!

TSG Verdict: 4.5 out of 5

 


For more information, please visit the TSG course page – The Shire – London