Worrying Times

Crazyface

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Just seen a post on FB from my place. 6 months taster membership for £500. Hmmm, apart from giving new members the best 6 months of the year for about half of what current members have just podded out £1k for 12 months, 6 in slush and mud and probably closed. That's really annoyed me. But why have they done this? Well, I've asked around and it appears we have lost 40+ members. We don't have a huge membership as it is so to loose 40 is a big blow. But to annoy those who have paid up, by this offer, is infuriating. I think we should be made aware of the situation.
 

Crazyface

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We've already established in the past that Crazyface doesn't give much of a toss for his club's sustainability, he just doesn't want anyone else getting a better deal than him.
That's harsh. My group of lads knew the club were going to loose ten members. Common knowledge. Steps could have been put in place to prevent this. But no. Push on regardless. No pro active actions taken. Then just a reaction to members leaving which annoys the ones who are there. Great idea. Previous steps attracted a group in, but have they stayed? Nope. All gone, apparently. Maybe if they found a way to keep current members, that would help. Even the head greenkeeper, who is in the know about the finances, doesn't think the club will survive much longer, and that was his assesment last yea Now we've lost 40, does this bring closure even closer ?
 

D-S

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Around this area we are beginning to see signs of the end of the COVID boom. More clubs have no waiting lists anymore, those with waiting lists are saying that they are shorter, more clubs advertising for members with a few being seriously short.
Unsurprising given living costs and subscription increases. It’ll be interesting to see the County returns on affiliation numbers in due course.
 

fenwayrich

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It does sound like a pretty desperate measure. My club has lost around 25 out of 650, due to natural wastage, and have accepted a similar number of new people. They have paid full subs (apportioned) and the entrance fee. A 6 month membership would have gone down like the proverbial lead balloon.

Mind you, we are one of the few parkland courses fully open in the winter, save for the odd day or two.
 

Ye Olde Boomer

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The club needs to recoup 40k somehow, probably not ideal for current members, is the alternative the club closing?
It's very sad to see clubs and / or public green fee courses close.

Our club has a Donald Ross course that opened in 1906,
and since it screams out loud if you try to stretch it much beyond 6000 yards,
it's the perfect venue for me.

However, there was a little executive length course nearby that was exquisitely maintained
and I could actually walk it with a trolley instead of riding a cart as I do "at home."

I loved to play it at least two or three times every summer,
but they sold it to a developer two or three years ago.

It wasn't my home course, but I was heartbroken nonetheless.
 

Hobbit

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Losing upwards of 20 members is, probably, a figure most clubs are familiar with. And most clubs will see that 20 members will be pretty much covered in new members over the coming year. In reality, there isn’t a financial loss as the scenario is repeated year after year, and intelligent budgeting recognises that cycle.

However, losing 40 members in total is a worrying figure. What is the current financial shortfall? Will the club be approaching the current members to cover that shortfall? What areas of spending will be cut? What are the club going to do differently to ensure there isn’t a repetition?

As for offering short term memberships to cover the shortfall, at least the club is trying to bring in much needed funds.
 

upsidedown

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We expect to lose 20 members a year . But then recoup that with new ones joining throughout the year. Since our new Course Manager took over we now have a waiting list and from June will be introducing a joining fee at 75% of membership .
 

Arthur Wedge

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We have had to now cap juniors and our waiting list is over 130

If a club is losing members and has been able to keep up the interest from the Covid boom then it’s down to two things , poor product and investment into the product, or poor management

Any decent course with decent management should still running well
 

Crazyface

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The club needs to recoup 40k somehow, probably not ideal for current members, is the alternative the club closing?
I think we are close to that. It would be a travesty if it happened. Imho it's the best course around, BUT, like a few, has a very steep hill on one hole. The older lads leave coz they can't do it anymore. It's also a tough course. If you are short off the tee, then you are going to struggle on the front nine. We have a lovely fella, plays off about 35, who cannot, ever, hit over the two valleys on 4 and 7,band ends up playing a huge up hill shot on both from the 8th fairway. It's a bit criss crossy at those points. So it's a proper test of golf. This puts some people off as well. The back nine cannot be developed as it's on a flood plain. Not sure what use that land would be.
 

Crazyface

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We have had to now cap juniors and our waiting list is over 130

If a club is losing members and has been able to keep up the interest from the Covid boom then it’s down to two things , poor product and investment into the product, or poor management

Any decent course with decent management should still running well
This is what a mate has been saying for years. We need a manager in to drive everything. As it is, we are run by well meaning members who haven't a clue. They are also too pally with the greens staff who are allowed to do what they want. They do a tremendous job, but could do more in the winter months to show course improvements in the spring and therefore invigorate the members. Like a nearby course has done and we've lost loads to them this year, and they charge a lot more and a joining fee. So you see it's not about money.
 

Oddsocks

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This is what a mate has been saying for years. We need a manager in to drive everything. As it is, we are run by well meaning members who haven't a clue. They are also too pally with the greens staff who are allowed to do what they want. They do a tremendous job, but could do more in the winter months to show course improvements in the spring and therefore invigorate the members. Like a nearby course has done and we've lost loads to them this year, and they charge a lot more and a joining fee. So you see it's not about money.

So back to @arthor’s comment, it’s poor product. If the club won’t invest in a GM (the impression you give) to lead the club in a professions and overall capacity it will no doubt fail eventually. It’s a ship with no captain.
 

jim8flog

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Just seen a post on FB from my place. 6 months taster membership for £500. Hmmm, apart from giving new members the best 6 months of the year for about half of what current members have just podded out £1k for 12 months, 6 in slush and mud and probably closed. That's really annoyed me. But why have they done this? Well, I've asked around and it appears we have lost 40+ members. We don't have a huge membership as it is so to loose 40 is a big blow. But to annoy those who have paid up, by this offer, is infuriating. I think we should be made aware of the situation.

When we have had similar offers (ours are normally in the winter months) it has been a one time offer and cannot be repeated the following year. Originally we did have his flaw in the system and the same group from another nearby club up every year because their course closed so often

The past few years though has seen no necessity for it but I wonder if it may come back in because of the loss of members following a big increase in annual membership fees.
 
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