Lockdown #3 Member Bulletin #1

22 Jan Lockdown #3 Member Bulletin #1

Lockdown #3 Member Bulletin #1
I hope you’re keeping well and that you’re not becoming too stir crazy with the lack of golf. That said given the snow and the rain since Christmas we wouldn’t have been playing much golf anyway! Obviously with no golf now or on the horizon there’s not much news either, but I’ll try my best.

The annual survey of the UK Golf Federation shows that for 18 hole member controlled clubs:

• Average club membership is 600+. Our current golf playing membership is 543 (excluding deferred).

• All clubs experienced a COVID ‘bounce’ in membership numbers during the year. The average net gain in membership was 50 members (that is total new members less total leavers) and our net gain for the year ending 31st December 2020 was 77.

• Surprisingly the average age of club members was higher even after the new members. By contrast we have seen a very large increase in members under 35 years of age and therefore a decrease in the average age of our membership – even as all our established members are one year older! The average age of our membership was 61 years at 1st January 2020 and 56 years at the same date this year.

• The majority of clubs are proposing membership subscription increases averaging about 4%. Our own AGM in November agreed no subscription increases for 2021-22; and finally…..

• In 2020 the average BG member has played 12% more golf over the same period than in 2019 despite the club being closed for 10 weeks. Obviously many of us have had a bit more time on our hands and one member has even managed to find the time to play 135 times!

Your MC met by Zoom on Monday and the key take-aways are as follows:

• The Club is currently furloughing the bar staff and members of the green-keeping staff as required. The government’s Job Retention (or furlough) Scheme provides 80% of their average remuneration and the Club is making up the other 20%. The Club is also continuing to pay the Club Pro’s monthly retainer.

• To date the Club has received a total of £42.5k in non-repayable COVID grants and furlough monies.

• Although the management accounts for the first 9 months of our financial year show a healthy trading profit of £35k (excluding the government grants above) the current lockdown and future COVID uncertainties mean that not only will Q4 be challenging but financial management and budgeting for 2021-22 is extremely difficult.

• Regardless of the above the Club has sufficient cash to see us through to 31st March i.e. the end of the current membership and financial year.

• The Committee will consider membership renewal policy for 2021-22 at its next meeting on February 15th.

Note: For more information see the Management Committee minutes in the Members Area of the website.

As ever during these challenging times not all Management Committee decisions will meet with universal approval. However please be assured that all decisions are made in good faith, with the best information available at the time and in what we believe to be the best interests of BGGC. After all we are members too.

Our top priorities at present are ensuring both the on-going sustainability of the Club and that we’re in the best possible position to start golf and re-open the clubhouse again as soon as government guidelines allow.

Finally please don’t hesitate to contact me should you have any comments, questions or suggestions.

Ian Silverthorne