The Meeting was held in the Crowne Plaza Hotel, Glasgow at 1.00 pm on Monday 9 January 2017. Unfortunately Eleanor Cannon, Chair, was unable to attend due to a family bereavement and her place was taken by Karin Sharp, Corporate Services Director.
Present: Blane Dodds, CEO of SGL, Karin Sharp, CSD of SGL, Eileen Scott, Secretary Dumfriesshire Ladies, Gladys McClymont, President Dumfriesshire Ladies, Pat Magill, President Galloway Ladies, Stephen Kingston, President South Aea and the Secretary.
Background: Blane Dodds outlined the work he had been doing since being appointed in August 2016 and set the scene for the Meeting. These included:-
Priorities for Growth
Growing the Game: dwindling membership and challenging times
Budget makes Scottish Golf more efficient – invest in Coaching Grant
Golf Data UK & Scotland with R&A; Golf is most popular partner sport
Total economic activity £4.46;
Scotland contributes 20% of economic benefit with 8% of population
7500 staff in UK, 1500 in Scotland
14% of consumer spending on UK sport
New Budget / Business Plan
Strategy of prioritising growth areas and services by reducing operating costs
One HQ at St Andrews – Not disbanding Areas and Counties and forming regional forums
SportsScotland: One year investment strategy leading to 4 year agreement
Submission including financials
Tactical / operational plans
Priority Affiliation of new process
Membership affiliation (categorise the simplified)
Greater accuracy – greater income
Create new model based on research
Multi Sport – create sports hubs (multi-functional facilities) for whole families as women tend to be family decision makers
One stop service for all Club; clear needs
Enhanced model golf programme
Partner with Development Company for proactive land developments
Explore other partners eg health and wellbeing
Quality facilities, value for money, main sporting amenity for community
Pilot Clubs to prove case then roll out programme.
Use case study Clubs that increase community sports assets through private finance by selling land for house building
Priority Scottish Golf Added Value
Governance in Child Protection
Other Priority Areas
Events / Corporate
Commercial / Sponsorship
Pro Ambassador Programme
The potential value is £1M
The discussion was opened up to include the representatives of the Ladies Counties and the Area.
Discussion: The following topics were discussed:-
Coaching: indoor coaching centres
Start in the schools
Charge £1 or £2 per session
Start with absolute beginners and progress to accomplished golfers.
Areas & Counties: NO new Regions. Some will be able to amalgamate quickly but not into bigger area. SGL to give support. Ladies Counties to be funded same as men
Area Team Championships and Ladies Counties Championship. These will continue this year but will be reviewed for next year. Commonwealth Spoons to continue
Website: Work on-going. Looking at communication and revamping website to make user friendly
Extra Ladies Trophies at Championship. Mistakes were made last year and will be rectified this year
Affiliation fees; Problems were pointed out and assurances given that these would be investigated.
Health and wellbeing benefits of golf
Who’s Who of Staff: Will be considered
Blane Dodds closed the meeting at 2.40 pm by stating that the visuals of his background presentation would be sent to all Areas and Counties as would a synopsis of all the comments made at the various meetings.
Conclusion: The Meeting was informative and Blane gave the impression he had a grasp of the situation and was trying to form a positive way forward. Assurances were given that all topics and concerns would be addressed. However it all could depend on how he responds to the promises he inferred to.