Yesterday (13 September), the inaugural Parliamentary Sports Fair was held in the Palace of Westminster, and provided an opportunity for MPs and Peers to find out more about golf at the grassroots level.
The event was organised by the Sport and Recreation Alliance, as part of their #GetYourKitOn campaign to encourage Members of Parliament to support community sport and recreation. As part of the event, the Parliamentary Golf Group welcomed representatives of England Golf and Community Golf, who briefed Members on the work being done to encourage participation in the sport across the UK.
The focus was on Get into golf, a national campaign run by England Golf to inspire new golfers and delivered locally by golf clubs and PGA professionals. There was an opportunity for Members to practice their chipping and putting, and to hear about how they could get involved with the sport in their own constituencies.
Speaking after the event, Chairman of the Parliamentary Golf Group and Member of Parliament for Lincoln, Karl McCartney, said “I am delighted that Members of Parliament have had the opportunity to find out more about golf in their constituencies. Get into golf is a fantastic initiative to promote participation golf in communities across the UK, and we need to encourage Members of Parliament to learn more about the sport and its importance to the nation’s health and wellbeing.”
Co-Chairman and Member of Parliament for North East Fife, Stephen Gethins, added “golf plays an important role in communities throughout the UK, delivering health and social benefits as well as providing opportunities to play competitive and recreational sport. I would encourage all colleagues to join the Parliamentary Golf Group, meet golfers and fans at our regular meetings, and find out more about our sport.”
England Golf Chief Executive, Nick Pink, said “golf makes a huge contribution to the government’s agenda to promote an active and healthy lifestyle. In a 9-hole round a player will walk two to three miles, take over 5000 steps and burn over 450 calories, all within a couple of hours. We’re very pleased to have the opportunity to involve MPs and Peers and hope they will join is to spread the message about the health benefits of golf and attract many more people to enjoy our great game.”
Caroline Hardy-Evans, an England Golf County Development Officer briefed Parliamentarians on the Get into golf programme. She said “our campaign offers low-cost beginner courses and follow-on opportunities in golf across the UK. Golf is a sport for all, and we are determined to make sure that everyone has opportunities to play, and to continue to play throughout their lives.”