Becoming a member / where to choose?

Thread starter #1
Joined
Jul 22, 2020
Messages
49
Hey,

So I took up golf a few months back, so far I’m loving everything about it (I can’t lie, I’m addicted). I’ve still got a lot to learn and I definitely need to improve somewhat so I’m playing better more consist golf but I’ve reached a point now where I would say I have reasonable understanding of the rules, course etiquette and I’m not hacking up the course like I was during my first couple of weeks.

So far I’ve mainly played at municipal / public courses, fortunately in the north east of England we seem to have a fair few of these, but I can’t help but think it would be nice to become a full member somewhere and enjoy/participate in the away days, events, competitions and social element that a membership offers.

When do others think its a good time to join a club (if ever) and how would you go about choosing somewhere to become a member?
 

casuk

Head Pro
Joined
Jul 13, 2017
Messages
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glasgow
I was doing the same only a few years ago before I joined a club, for me locality was key not driving at the time, and i went for the closest, thankfully it's a good course, I wouldn't say there is a good or bad time to join a club, you should try a few your interested in and make a choice then
 

rudebhoy

Q-School Graduate
Joined
Sep 3, 2015
Messages
3,093
Location
whitley bay
Hey,

So I took up golf a few months back, so far I’m loving everything about it (I can’t lie, I’m addicted). I’ve still got a lot to learn and I definitely need to improve somewhat so I’m playing better more consist golf but I’ve reached a point now where I would say I have reasonable understanding of the rules, course etiquette and I’m not hacking up the course like I was during my first couple of weeks.

So far I’ve mainly played at municipal / public courses, fortunately in the north east of England we seem to have a fair few of these, but I can’t help but think it would be nice to become a full member somewhere and enjoy/participate in the away days, events, competitions and social element that a membership offers.

When do others think its a good time to join a club (if ever) and how would you go about choosing somewhere to become a member?
Whereabouts in the North East are you?

My club (Arcot Hall) does an Academy membership. It's aimed at people just taking up the game, you get a mix of individual and group lessons, (which a great way of meeting potential playing partners at the same level), and access to the course weekdays and Sunday afternoons. It was £375 for 12 months when I did it 4 years ago, and you get £200 of that off full membership if you decide to go down that route at the end of 12 months.

It was a brilliant way for me to get into the game, have a look for something like that.
 
Thread starter #4
Joined
Jul 22, 2020
Messages
49
I’ll have a look at what’s in my area, some I’ll probably not be able to play as they are £50-60 a round (I can get 63 holes of golf for £63 on other local courses) although maybe I need to see it as more of an investment....

I’m based in Teesside, I’d probably say anything between Seaton and Darlington, and not higher than Castle Eden or lower than Northallerton.

I haven’t seen any there offer anything like that near me, but I’ve definitely not looked at every course/club, some offer a points membership that’s cheaper than a full membership and it costs you points each time you play (more points can be purchased as/when required).
 

IanM

Journeyman Pro
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May 18, 2009
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8,829
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Monmouthshire, UK via Guildford!
The point often raised on here is that is you divide the annual subscription by about 50 (playing nearly once a week) how expensive does the individual game feel? Plus a club has the social and competitive element to it.
 
Joined
Jul 22, 2015
Messages
2,828
Location
Glasgow
Hey,

So I took up golf a few months back, so far I’m loving everything about it (I can’t lie, I’m addicted). I’ve still got a lot to learn and I definitely need to improve somewhat so I’m playing better more consist golf but I’ve reached a point now where I would say I have reasonable understanding of the rules, course etiquette and I’m not hacking up the course like I was during my first couple of weeks.

So far I’ve mainly played at municipal / public courses, fortunately in the north east of England we seem to have a fair few of these, but I can’t help but think it would be nice to become a full member somewhere and enjoy/participate in the away days, events, competitions and social element that a membership offers.

When do others think its a good time to join a club (if ever) and how would you go about choosing somewhere to become a member?
I'd say you can join whenever you want. If you feel you'd be comfortable playing with other people, then go for it and don't feel too self-conscious. Most people remember what it was like to be a beginner and will not mind to see someone keen to learn.

In terms of choosing a club, it's tricky and varies from area to area. I'd say for a total beginner the course doesn't matter that much, but you probably want to avoid a big championship venue that is 6,500 yards long etc. It will take ages to play and probably destroy your game. Something short and sweet should be good to get going on, not take too long to play and enable you to have a handicap that you can play to and work on getting down.

Most clubs will have a mix of members, from cliques who want to play in their own little groups, to bigger casual games that you can join in and make golfing pals with. It's not always easy to find out what is in each club before you join, but I'd suggest if you join a club that suits your budget you should be able to find like minded people and it's just a case of turning up when you want to play (on non-competition days) and asking around on the 1st tee if you can get a game with other groups.
 
Joined
Jul 24, 2012
Messages
27,813
Joining an Academy is a good idea to get a feel of a golf club as well as of being with a group of 'like-minds' struggling to hit a ball with a stick - though I get the impression it's a bit like moving out of a flat into a semi-detached house, when you really fancy living in a detached.

When looking for a club - I 100% agree that whilst the track itself is important - you need to check out the roll-ups/swindles etc. Those get-togethers that happen at the same time every week and that you can just turn up unannounced to join in and to meet and play with a load of different members (though in these days of Covid19 you'll most likely have contact the organiser in advance to let him know you are intending to join in). Being a part of a roll-up then makes it much easier to turn up and join up with one or more who are about to go out - because you'll get to know members.
 

HomerJSimpson

Hall of Farmer
Joined
Aug 6, 2007
Messages
69,563
Location
Bracknell - Berkshire
My own club runs a buddy scheme for all new members (https://www.royalascotgolfclub.co.uk/join-us/buddy-scheme/) and also an academy (https://www.royalascotgolfclub.co.uk/join-us/academy-and-juniors/) so new members are made to feel welcome and improve from day one. I think it is vitally important to join somewhere that you can get regular games both socially (roll ups are a good way of meeting new people and getting a game at a regular time) and in competitions (if you are so inclined).

There are some key elements I'd look at when choosing a course including drainage (will it be closed in a bout of bad weather), policy for winter golf (do they go to temps), access to a tee time, practice facilities (again if you are so inclined), quality and condition of the course, level of service from the pro and office, and what is the 19th like
 
D

Deleted member 16999

Guest
I’ll have a look at what’s in my area, some I’ll probably not be able to play as they are £50-60 a round (I can get 63 holes of golf for £63 on other local courses) although maybe I need to see it as more of an investment....

I’m based in Teesside, I’d probably say anything between Seaton and Darlington, and not higher than Castle Eden or lower than Northallerton.

I haven’t seen any there offer anything like that near me, but I’ve definitely not looked at every course/club, some offer a points membership that’s cheaper than a full membership and it costs you points each time you play (more points can be purchased as/when required).
Another 7 mile north of Castle Eden, but Seaham GC is currently offering £279.00 for 7 day membership valid until 28/02/21.
Includes 10% discount in Clubhouse and free reciprocal at 3 other Courses, Consett, Ravensworth and Heworth (Nr York)
Possibly worth considering as a starter membership.
 
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