Golf has traditionally been a sport associated closely with the older generation. Whilst a misconception – the patience and etiquette the sport embodies has certainly leant more to the imagination of the older rather than younger generations. With time though, has come the popularisation of the game and with that, golf clubs have become more accommodating to the wider population. Offering generous rates, discounts and incentives to attract the younger generations. In doing so, it seems they have ironically forgotten about the older generation. In the sense that, they are being left out from special membership discounts/incentives. Despite the elderly being the most prevalent golfing demographic, many frustratingly cannot afford to pay the full membership fees or continue to do so due to financial constraints.
Less Than A Fifth Of Golf Clubs Offer Membership Discounts/Incentives for Seniors
With the research definitively focused on seniors, GolfSupport.com carefully reviewed 244 golf clubs from 15 different towns and cities across theUK: Leicester, Manchester, Oxford, Newcastle Upon Tyne, Liverpool, Nottingham, Leeds, Southampton, Birmingham, Glasgow, Coventry, Edinburgh, Cambridge, Bristol and London. Focusing specifically on each golf club’s membership structure, we looked to find found out if they had any membership discounts/incentives especially for seniors.
When conducting analysis of the gathered data, we found that a mere 45 of the total 244 reviewed golf clubs had a reduced membership price and/or incentives available to seniors. This means that less than a fifth (18%) of golf clubs offer discounts/incentives for seniors, even though they are one of the most prominent demographics in golf.
Breakdown Of UK Golf Clubs Reviewed For Senior Membership Discounts/Incentives
Our data analysis has conclusively found that not only are membership discounts/incentives considerably lacking for seniors but it seems to be more prevalent in certain towns and cities compared to others. With 41.7% of the golf clubs having senior membership discounts/incentives, Leicester has the highest proportion of senior price friendly golf clubs among the reviewed towns and cities. Leicester is then followed by Manchester (36.8%) and Oxford (35.7%).
At the bottom of the table is London, which has the largest amount of golf clubs reviewed but unfortunately the lowest-proportion of senior price friendly golf clubs, with only 6.8% offering special membership discounts/incentives for seniors. Above London is Bristol (7.1%) and then Cambridge (9.1%).
The research also noticed that golf clubs had a varying criteria as to what age qualified as being senior. For most of the reviewed golf clubs that offered senior membership discounts/incentives, it was determined as being 60 or 65 and over. Other golf clubs were higher in their age classification for seniors, with 70 and above or 80 and above.
It should also be noted that during the period in which the research was conducted – a golf club in each of Manchester, Edinburgh, Newcastle and Cambridge had a discounted membership offer for seniors but the prerequisite was that they needed be a continuous member at the golf club for either 15 or 20 years respectively to attain the benefit. These four golf clubs were not counted as having a senior membership discount/incentive as the offer was not open to prospective new seniors looking to join.
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UK Golf Clubs With The Best Deals For Seniors
With only 45 golf clubs offering membership discounts/incentives exclusively for seniors, we scoured through all of them to narrow down the best deals. The golf clubs with the best deals for seniors are as follows:
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Campsie Golf Club (11 Miles From Glasgow City Centre)
Situated in Lennoxtown, a village encapsulated by an array of sensational views, the 18-hole golf course has some very enticing offers for seniors. Senior men with no prior membership to the club can join for an annual fee of £361.05, 39.4% cheaper compared to the full male membership cost of £596.05. Similarly, senior women with no previous membership to the club can join for a yearly payment of £178.25, 42.2% cheaper compared to the full female membership cost of £308.25.
Centurion Park Wallsend Golf Club (4 Miles From Newcaslte Upon Tyne City Centre)
Alongside a range of exciting facilities such as a driving range and golf academy, Centurion Park also boasts competitive membership rates for seniors. Men aged 65 years and older as well as women aged 60 years and older, can play golf on the 18 hole course for £355 per annum. That’s a discount of 29.7% on the normal adult membership price of £505 per year.
Kirkby Valley Golf Club (7 Miles From Liverpool City Centre)
Seniors can also count on an additional discount on membership at Kirkby Valley Golf Club. Men and women over 65 can either pay £350.00 for an annual five-day membership or £440.00 for an annual seven-day membership at the golf club. That is a 20.5% discount on the normal adult five-day annual membership rate of £440.00 and 26.7% discount on the normal adult seven-day annual membership rate of £600.00.
Gotts Park Golf Club (3 Miles From Leeds City Centre)
The 18-hole golf course, conveniently positioned in close proximity to Leeds city centre, has a similar pricing framework to Kirby Valley Golf Club. Though at Gotts Park Golf Club, both men and women can be five years younger (60 years and older) to qualify for senior membership rates. Men and women over 60 can either pay £350.00 for an annual five-day membership or £430.00 for an annual seven-day membership. That is therefore a 12.2% discount on the normal adult five-day annual membership fee of £440.00 and 20.5% discount on the normal adult seven-day annual membership fee of £490.00. Additionally, the golf club offers monthly payment options, should they be needed.
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Saltford Golf Club (7 Miles From Bristol City Centre)
As well as being located close to Bath, Saltford Golf Club enables seniors (men and women) 80 and over to play at their golf course seven-days a week for just £276.00 a year. That’s a very generous discount of 69.3% on the full seven-day membership payment of £899.00. The 18-hole golf course is also complemented by a pro-shop, driving-range, club-house and indoor/outdoor practice areas.
Brent Valley Golf Club (West London)
Located in the village of Hanwell (West London), Brent Valley is a public golf course. This mean that individuals don’t need to become members in order to play there. Although attaining membership will not only allow individuals to use the clubhouse but also participate in regular competitions throughout the year. Men 65 years and over as well as women 60 years and over can gain membership at the golf club for an annual fee of £160.00. Brent Valley also has a pricing structure for those men and women 70 years and over, whereby they pay an annual sum of £140.00 for membership.
Backworth Golf Club (8 Miles From Newcastle Upon Tyne City Centre)
Backworth golf club is another fantastic choice for seniors in Newcastle Upon Tyne. They offer a range of different rates for senior membership. Men over 65 years can get an annual five-day membership for £410.00 or an annual seven-day membership for £430.00. Whilst women over 60 years can get an annual five-day membership for £389.00 or an annual seven-day membership for £409.00. The 10-hole golf course also offers seniors the ability to pay their chosen membership fee through various available and manageable instalment plans.
Ampfield Golf & Country Club (8 Miles From Southampton City Centre)
Blissfully glowing from being credited as the fourth best 18 hole par 3 course in the UK by Today’s Golfer, Ampfield Gold & Country Club charges men and women over 80 a subscription fee of £250.00 for membership. That is a 45.1% discount on the normal subscription fee of £455.00 for full adult seven-day membership. The golf club can also beneficially accommodates a variety of private events such as birthdays and large lunches/dinners, should such services ever be needed.
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We also conducted a nationwide survey to gather the views of seniors from across the UK to find out if they believed they should receive some sort of incentive or discount on golf club membership fees. The survey received a respectable 520 responses from a variety of seniors. Including those that were already apart of golf clubs as well as those seeking to join. The results of the survey overwhelmingly revealed:
“I love watching golf and it’s a fascination which I only developed when I retired three years ago. I have been keen to transition my sofa enthusiasm onto an actual golf course regularly. I have kept my eye on the membership prices of those golf clubs accessible to me but unfortunately their rates have consistently remained too high for me to be tempted. It’s a huge shame they don’t offer any discounted rates for seniors like they do with other age categories” – Mick (68) from Coventry
“I used to be part of a golf club in Bristol up until my late 50’s but due to numerous commitments constraining my time, I couldn’t justify renewing. I am in my 70’s now and with more time than ever, I have been looking to re-join a golf club. Prices in comparison to when I was a member in the past are significantly higher, hence I am finding it difficult to convince myself to join. I personally believe that golf clubs should be making more of an effort to offer discounts and incentives entirely for seniors. It will not only ease my intention to join but also other seniors facing the same dilemma” – Reginald (73) from Bristol
“I am currently a member of a golf club and pay the full seven-day subscription fee for those over 40. It is expensive and I don’t really understand why most golf clubs don’t offer a specific category for senior membership. I understand they have to provide cheaper membership options for the younger generations to attract them to the game but at the same time they must not alienate the older generation” – Beth (77) from Edinburgh
“Since retiring a few years back, I certainly became more interested in sports than I ever was. Initially I was just watching a lot of sports on TV but then came to the decision that I needed to become more active as I didn’t really have a routine anymore. Due to my back problems, I believed golf would be the perfect sport for me due to its steady pace. I am glad I made that decision because I have now been a member at my current golf club for the past two years. Despite my passion and admiration for the game, membership is expensive and realistically I can’t continue to keep paying such high prices. Therefore, I personally believe there should be discounted prices specifically for seniors, it would be really considerate by the golf clubs if they were to do so” – Richard (70) from Nottingham
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The findings of our research, that less than a fifth (18.4%) of the 244 reviewed golf clubs in 15 different towns and cities across the UK offer membership discounts/incentives for seniors suggests that seniors are not being accommodated within the pricing structure of numerous golf clubs around the country. Golf clubs should be making more of an effort to provide discounted membership prices to all demographics rather than a just a segmented few.
There is still some positive news for seniors, there are a small amount of golf clubs out there that do offer seniors access to affordable, competitive and attractive fees/rates especially for them.