Airport Chaos Keeps British Golfers at Home this Summer
Four! A voice rings out crisp and clear across the British countryside shortly followed by a soft thud as a gold ball lands and bounces to a halt in the middle of a swathe of closely cut grass. There was a time when if you wanted a top rate golfing holiday your immediate thoughts turned to Florida.
But in the light of the airport chaos and travel disruption experienced last summer, many brits are shunning the sun kissed links of Florida and are looking for something closer to home instead, and why not, we invented the game didn’t we?
The ancient game as seen a lot of changes in its long history. While some historians believe the game developed from a game originally played by the ancient Romans, it is generally accepted the game of golf as we know it today originated in Scotland in the 15th Century.
Apparently while Scotland tried to rally its army in order to defend itself form its old adversary one more time, the national love affair with the game caused many to forsake their military calling and head off to the sand dunes for a game of Golf instead. The first notable record of its popularity came when the Scottish parliament of King James II banned the sport in 1457.
The ban had little effect in stopping the people playing the sport but it was in 1502 that the game got a royal seal of approval from King James IV. Through the 16th Century the game spread out across Europe as King Charles I introduced it to England and Mary Queen of Scots took the game over the North Sea to France.
The first 18-hole course was created at St Andrews in 1764. and golf’s first major, and the world’s oldest tournament in existence, is The Open Championship, also known as the British Open, which was first played in 1860 at the Prestwick Golf Club in Ayrshire, Scotland.
And the rest, as they say, is history.
Sport is a vital part of the United Kingdom’s cultural identity and a major contributor to its economy. Interestingly, golf has seen a huge growth in popularity in recent years, and since 2016 has equalled the popularity of football and cricket with the number of golfers in Great Britain and Ireland growing from 3.6 million to 5.7 million.
Much of this growth has been driven by a new positive approach to marketing the sport, by both golf clubs and specialist golfing resorts like The Manor & Ashbury Resorts in Devon.
Another major factor is the increasing evidence that golf can have significant physical and mental health benefits, such as helping to reduce stress and anxiety and reducing the risk of cardiovascular issues
This growth has come in the wake of a general move towards a healthier life style through the whole of the United Kingdom has helped grow the number of players in the United Kingdom, Recent research by the government revealed that around six million adults in the UK planned to exercise more, eat more healthily and lose weight.
Golf is the ideal sport to help those 6 million people achieve that healthier life style. In addition to the obvious health benefits, the rise in popularity of golf will also bring significant economic benefits, on both a local and a national level.
Golf clubs will benefit from the increased revenue, as will companies providing equipment as new players purchase what they need to follow the sport. It will also be good news for those who are in a position to take advantage of the surge in popularity by creating new golf courses and new golfing resorts.
Resort managers could learn a lot from looking at the business model followed by The Manor & Ashbury Resorts. They offer golfing themed holidays and short breaks aimed at seasoned players but also provide courses with professional trainers for absolute beginners. However, the Astbury is far more than just another Golfing Hotel. With an outstanding 103 holes it is the largest golf resort in the UK and 9th largest in the world.