Birchfield School in Shropshire hosted the first ever Independent Schools Association (ISA) Golf Skills Challenge.
The day which was run in partnership with GolPhin and England Golf consisted of activity stations where children could practice skills such as putting, chipping, pitching and full swings. The event was designed to provide an environment where pupils new to golf could compete alongside children that had played golf before in a fully inclusive competition, showing how golf is the ideal sport for schools. After the skills challenge, all pupils got to take part in a 7-hole par 3 competition where they could put all their newly learned skills into action on a course that was created on the school field.
Lee Dolby from England Golf said “It was a fantastic day and great to see so many young people enjoying golf with their friends and learning new skills. The level of improvement was amazing and seeing some of those that struggled in the morning develop throughout the day and enjoy the games and activities was just what is needed to encourage youngsters into the game.”
He went on to say “It is great to see ISA supporting this type of competition that is accessible to everyone, not just those that are experienced golfers. I know that many of the new young people taking part will have now been bitten by the golfing bug and we hope that by working in partnership with GolPhin, we can provide further opportunities for them back in their schools, through the GolPhin Schools programme.”
Headteacher Mrs Morris of Birchfield School, one of the schools taking part said “This morning’s festival was superb, it was so good to see the children enjoy the different activities on offer. There was something for everyone, both those with high skill levels and those new to the game.”
The festival marks the launch of a partnership between the Independent Schools Association, England Golf and GolPhin that they hope will enable the ISA’s network of over 500 schools to access a range of resources and educational programmes developed by GolPhin. Calum McPherson founder of GolPhin said “Helping children in their school environment discover golf is giving them the chance to discover the great game. Providing the resources for teachers that enable them to make it fun, team-oriented and engaging, leads to children wanting to play more.”
When asked about the partnership, Scott Brand of the ISA said “Sport is a major part of ISA activity and there is no doubt that the range and quality of the programme is becoming stronger each year. ISA Sport supports inclusion and opportunity, fair play and achieving your best through endeavour and determination. We are thoroughly looking forward to the partnership between England Golf and GolPhin, which will provide fantastic opportunities for our member schools for years to come.”
The winners of the festival were Birchfield A with Highclare 1 second and Birchfield B third.
For more information about how your school can get involved with the GolPhin educational programme, please contact the Sports Team at ISA who will be able to pass your details onto a GolPhin Representative.