Tee Time Booking Systems – Guidance for clubs following the end of COVID-19 restrictions.

England Golf has issued guidance for clubs on the benefits of tee time booking following the lifting of restrictions as of 19 July 2021.

Within its document, other examples are also provided for clubs who wish to maintain roll-ups. Read more:

If you wish to download a personal copy, please click on the download button below:

A Framework for Playing Golf – Updated for 19 July 2021

Looks like the time you have all been waiting for is about to happen on Monday 19 July 2021.

Following the government’s planned removal of national COVID-19 restrictions, and subject to any further changes, England Golf’s current ‘Play Safe, Stay Safe’ guidance will be updated from 19 July.

It looks as if we can return to playing golf as we did pre-COVID, even to removing Flagsticks for those who have been frustrated by having no choice but to leave the flagstick in and enjoy the social side, again, at the same time.

Beware, however, that the CONGU rule changes during COVID-19, such as not raking bunkers, modified holes or preferred lies within bunkers, will no longer be in operation post 19 July 2021.

For more information read the document below:

If you wish to download a personal copy of the Framework, please click on the Download button below:

Enjoy getting back to playing golf as we know it, but be vigilant and still Stay Safe and Play Safe.

England Golf – Update on Independent Golfers 3 July 2021

England Golf – Update on Independent Golfers 3 July 2021

Probably more for information than for anything else, but relevant to any of you are not members of any golf, yet.

The move to offer golfers in England, who are not members of Golf Clubs, official World Handicap System Handicap Indexes moves ever closer.

England Golf, in a recent update to Independent Golfers, is inviting players to pre-register for its digital platform offering World Handicap System indexes to non-club members.

This new digital community, which will offer official handicaps to non-club members, has opened for pre-registration.

England Golf is appealing to players to become one of the first subscribers to iGolf, which it calls a “historic progression for the amateur game in England”.

Branded as England Golf’s official digital community, it will give players the chance to receive an official WHS handicap index and personal liability insurance while connecting players who are not members of clubs across the country.

The scheme, which is expected to launch officially later this month, will cost subscribers £40 per year and follows the launch in Scotland of OpenPlay, the first scheme for independent golfers in the UK.

Wales and Ireland are expected to follow with similar initiatives in the coming months.

Independent golfer programmes have attracted much controversy but are a key feature of the R&A and USGA’s plans, following the launch of the World Handicap System, to make golf as inclusive as possible.

England Golf has projected that at least 25,000 golfers could sign up to the scheme within the first 12 months of its launch with 125,000 within five years.

That could bring in as much as £5 million to the organisation, with costs estimated at about £2 million. England Golf has pledged that they will shoulder the running costs and any surplus made would be reinvested back into golf.

Last month, Richard Flint, the England Golf’s chief operating officer, said clubs should back themselves and not worry about the independent golfer scheme as some concerns have persisted about whether it would provide a pathway or entice people to leave club membership.

He said that giving nomadic players an official handicap was “not competing with club membership” and asked whether handing non-club members a World Handicap System index was taking away a reason to be a member – harming both recruitment and retention – Flint said: “Handicap isn’t the biggest driver of why individuals join a golf club”.

To find out more about iGolf, and to pre-register an interest in joining the scheme, visit England Golf’s iGolf website.

England Golf Covid-19 Play Safe, Stay Safe – Update 15 June 2021

In light of the prime minister’s latest update on national COVID-19 restrictions, England Golf has confirmed that the current ‘Play Safe, Stay Safe’ guidance will remain unchanged.

They will continue to work with golf industry colleagues and liaise with the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) as they look towards 19 July 2021– the next projected date on the government’s roadmap out of lockdown.

England Golf sincerely hope that from 19 July 2021 it will be possible to withdraw all ‘Play Safe, Stay Safe’ frameworks – including the restrictions on the removal of flagsticks, use of rakes and pre-booking of tee times – as clubs return to their own pre-pandemic protocols.

England Golf Independent Golfers – Update 25 May 2021

England Golf Independent Golfers – Update 25 May 2021

The latest update from England Golf states that they have finalised their offer to Independent golfers (non-members of golf clubs) of the opportunity to join a new digital community of golfers aligned to England Golf. This means:

Firstly, the scheme will be open to all golfers, with a home address in England, regardless of age.

Any golfer who has left a golf club within the last six months will not be eligible to join.

However, once outside this six-month period, any lapsed golf club members may be allocated a handicap index based on scores in the system dating back to January 2018.

The provisional launch date and opening for registration is early July.

Secondly, following online registration for an annual subscription of £40, golfers will receive:

  • A World Handicap System handicap index
  • Personal liability insurance
  • Access to the ‘My England Golf’ app to post scores, track progress and engage with friends.

Thirdly, Independent Golfers will not be allowed to compete in County and National events, these remaining open to golf club members only.

If clubs wish to create an independent golfer-only competition or, alternatively, integrate them into some or all the existing club competitions; this would be at their discretion.

Fourthly, England Golf will carry out all administration duties so there will not be any extra work for clubs or counties.

They will ensure that the integrity of the handicap system will be maintained through a robust system of checks and balances. These include:

  • Processes on the app
  • Setting up of a national independent golfer handicap committee
  • Educating on rules of handicapping, rules of golf and etiquette
  • Opportunity for peer review

Fifthly, for any clubs which choose to actively engage with Independent Golfers who have joined the scheme, a process will be put in place for them to notify England Golf of opportunities they wish to promote to these golfers. This may, for example, include the following:

  • Green fee promotions
  • Competition and event entry, or
  • Club membership offers.

England Golf will communicate directly with golfers interested in exploring these offers and provide a platform to share details.

Further guidance will follow around what this could mean for clubs, points to consider and how the programme will work.

Sixthly, England Golf have said that any surplus revenue generated from this scheme will be re-invested back into our game and the areas of investment may include:

  • Special projects funding for golf clubs
  • Women and girls’ participation
  • Junior development
  • Support for disability and minority groups

Lastly, England Golf will publish further updates during June 2021.

You can read a full version of this update by Clicking Here or download a full copy of this update by clicking on the Download Button below:

You can also keep in touch with any new updates by following them on:

England Golf Independent Golfers – Updates

Correction to Information Re MyEG App

Correction to Information Re MyEG App

Apologies,

I have a correction to make to my information that I sent you in the 26th April Newsletter, ‘New insurance benefits exclusively available to England Golf Members’, regarding the MyEG App.,

It has been pointed out to me, by a subscriber, that I said you could now ‘enter your competition score’ via the App.

This is not strictly accurate.

The MyEG App only allows you to pre-register and post scores from general play rounds at any rated course in England via the ‘My England Golf App. It does not allow you to submit scores for any organised Club Competitions.

Please accept my apologies for any confusion I may have caused.

Tony

Using the R&A Course Handicap Calculator and Handicap Allowances

I recently received the following comment:

‘Why do we now have two different calculation systems dependant upon whether we are in GB&I or elsewhere? The RandA handicap calculator has a bizarre statement “with course rating minus par” …or “without……….” [for GB&I].

I thought the WORLD handicapping System was meant to bring us all together??

If you go to the USGA handicap tables, they are markedly different from the RandA calculations. That won’t confuse anybody will it?

And as for the 95% issue for Strokeplay and stableford….give me strength!

So an American and a Brit playing on a course in Turkey (covid-permitting), may have the same handicap index but different playing handicaps. To misquote Churchill : “Two countries separated by a common handicapping system!”’

With reference to:

‘Why do we now have two different calculation systems dependant upon whether we are in GB&I or elsewhere? The RandA handicap calculator has a bizarre statement “with course rating minus par” …or “without……….” [for GB&I]., and

 ‘So an American and a Brit playing on a course in Turkey (covid-permitting), may have the same handicap index but different playing handicaps. To misquote Churchill : “Two countries separated by a common handicapping system!”’

Your Handicap Index is calculated in exactly the same way as for all players worldwide, all Handicap Indexes are therefore comparable. It is not dependent upon the jurisdiction in which the Handicap Index was allocated. A 14.7 Handicap Index in the US is the same as a 14.7 Handicap Index in England, Spain or Turkey.

Differences, however, do arise in the Calculation of Course Handicaps depending on the location of the course being played, because some jurisdictions have not adopted the WHS in toto.

The R&A Course Handicap Calculator offers you an opportunity to see what a Course Handicap might be at different courses that you may like to play.

Depending on where you are playing your round and/or who you are playing with – you may or may not be required to include Course Rating and Par in this calculation. Check with the golf club, the Committee, or the Authorised Association.

When you use the R&A Course Handicap Calculator, determine the location of the course you wish to play.

From the location, determine whether Course Rating minus Par is used:

  1. Without Course Rating minus Par – (GB&I)
  2. With Course Rating minus Par – (Rest of the World bar Australia)
  3. Australia uses the Course Rating minus Par but then applies a 0.93 Multiplier so the R&A Calculator will not work for Australian Courses.

So, using the example above, the R&A Course Handicap Calculator:

  1. Choose between a 9-Hole Round and an 18-Hole Round
  2. Choose with Course Rating minus Par for your Course in Turkey
  3. Enter, Handicap Index, Course Rating, Par and Slope for your Course, if you do not know them Select the ‘Look Up’ Option
  4. Select ‘Calculate’ once you have entered all the information.
  5. Hey Presto! You will find that both players will play off the same Course Handicap for the same course.

RE: ‘And as for the 95% issue for Strokeplay and stableford….give me strength!’

The whole idea of Handicap Allowances is to provide a fair and equitable way of determining winners in competitions, they do not affect scores submitted for Handicap Purposes

Under the WHS, equity is now based on a top 10% finish, previously it was a top 25% finish. In singles match play, the previous Handicap System slightly favoured the lower handicap player, however it is closer to 50/50 equity with the WHS.

For four-ball and other team formats, the handicap allowances have been slightly reduced to offset the increase in standard equity for individual formats. Essentially, a slight increase in equity for singles match play, as mentioned above, results in a higher handicap player having an advantage in team events. As a result, a reduction in most team formats is appropriate.

Today, a larger number of scores and/or simulations, than previously used, have been used to determine and validate the handicap allowances used in the WHS because of the access to much more data, worldwide, the USGA and R&A were able to generate handicap allowances that met the desired equity.

Previous handicap allowances were validated in the early 2000’s, however no significant changes were warranted at the time. With the opportunity to run completely new tests for handicap allowances with updated scoring data, the R&A and USGA have been able to determine the best handicap allowances to use in the current playing environment.

The WHS is a sound and fair handicapping system, based largely on the USGA system that has proved popular and stood the test of time, having been in operation for over 40 years.

My advice is to work with the system and don’t try to overthink it.

Go out, experience your golf on different courses and most  of all enjoy playing it.

Tony

New insurance benefits exclusively available to England Golf members

23 APR 2021

New insurance benefits exclusively available to England Golf members

England Golf, in partnership with insurance brokers Bluefin Sport, have launched ‘My Golf Insurance’ – a new range of benefits available exclusively to members.

England Golf automatically provides £10,000,000 personal liability insurance for all members of an affiliated club.

But, this automatic cover does not provide any insurance cover for your equipment, personal accident or hole in one insurance.

The new ‘My Golf Insurance’ product allows England Golf members the option to supplement their England Golf membership personal liability cover as well as insuring against other exposures, including financial protection for golf equipment, personal accident, and other benefits which can be found at My Golf Insurance.

The ‘My Golf Insurance’ product is underwritten by Chubb European Group SE, and is available to all England Golf affiliated members from Friday 23rd April 2021. Premiums range from £19.04 to £33.60 a year, dependent upon the level of cover you choose.

Exclusive to England Golf members, all cover options under the ‘My Golf Insurance’ will include up to £500 for third party property damage claims. This complements the £10,000,000 liability cover already provided by England Golf and effectively means that no policy excess would be applicable should an individual golfer be proven negligent for third party property damage in the UK. (There is no excess for injury to Third Parties).

The cover also includes a number of bespoke extensions such as, no age limit on the personal accident coverage, new for old equipment coverage, theft of equipment whilst unattended at a golf club, and more.

To find out more visit My Golf Insurance

“We’re thrilled to have helped design an insurance product with Chubb which will provide additional value for England Golf’s members, allowing them to purchase a range of extra covers. We have been working on this product for some time carrying out extensive market research and are pleased to be able to provide this tailored insurance to England Golf’s members, which we believe to be market leading in coverage and competitively priced to complement the liability protection provided already to England Golf members.” Daniel Thompson – Bluefin Sport.

COVID-19 Restrictions for Each Nation in GB&I

With the good news that Golf should be returning on Monday 29 March 2021 the PGA has broken down the latest COVID-19 restrictions for each nation and produced a helpful diagram explaining the tier-by-tier of golf activity allowed in your region.

*The diagrams were reviewed following the latest Government announcements in the week commencing 22nd February, 2021.

Click on the ‘Read More’ link to read a copy of the appropriate version for your Nation.

England Flag

England

Read More……

Scotland Flag

Scotland

Read More……

Northern Ireland Flag

Northern Ireland

Read More……

Republic of Ireland Flag

Republic of Ireland

Read More……

England Golf -All-Party Parliamentary Group for Golf February 2021 Infographic

With the full expectation that Golf can return from March 29 2021, the All-Party Parliamentary Group for golf has shared this infographic on the roadmap for the return to golf.

Each stage is highlighted to assist in understanding the change in restrictions during each stage of the government’s plan.

More detail and an in-depth update of the Play Safe Stay Safe guidance will be available early next week.

File Name: England-Golf-Roadmap-February-2021-Infographic.pdf

You can download a copy of the Infographic by clicking on the download Button below:

Will keep you posted as more information on Playing Safe and Staying Safe emerges

Keep safe and well

Playing Golf is on the horizon

Tony