Can Golf It! make golf more inclusive and accessible?

By: August 16, 2022

Stephen Smith, the chief neuroscientist at PSYenz, recommended once ‘Sell the lifestyle, not the health, benefits of golf’.

He believes promoting immediate returns such as being out in the fresh air or meaningful time with the family or making new friendships is far more motivating than trying to sell long-term benefits such as health.

These are worth mentioning because the R&A has just revealed its new golf concept – Golf It!that will open in Glasgow in 2023. It is really in line with Stephen Smith’s recommendation.

Golf It! concept map

Golf It! will be its new community-based golf & entertainment facility located on the south bank of Hogganfield Loch, following the redevelopment of the Lethamhill golf course.

The vast new indoor and outdoor attraction is a new innovation and marks a significant financial investment by The R&A towards its purpose of making golf more accessible and inclusive.

The new facility will feature a range of introductory golf formats including a twist on pitch and putt, adventure golf, and community putting greens plus a double-decker floodlit driving range and a new look 9 hole course for all the family to play. 

These will sit alongside other attractions and activities such as

  • padel tennis courts,
  • nature trails,
  • bike hire and
  • street food-style dining and
  • drinks area.
Golf It! food court

This project is likely to create more than 100 new jobs. Martin Slumbers, Chief Executive of The R&A, said:

Golf It! will enable people of all ages, abilities and backgrounds to be a part of a community-driven facility that levels the playing field and provides new pathways into golf.

We want Golf It! to be an exemplar format for working hand in hand with the communities it serves

Golf It! – features

  • A short game area with three adventure golf courses, a Park Golf pitch and putt, and a family putting green for people of all ages to enjoy.
  • A 55-bay floodlit double-decker Toptracer driving range, including bespoke family bays and simulators.
  • A golf equipment library with easy access to hire equipment for anyone who wants to try it before they buy.
  • Seven Lochs Visitor Centre with nature trails that link to Scotland’s largest urban nature park.
  • Street Food by The Big Feed.
  • Fit, Build, Play retail area by Scottsdale Golf.
Golf It! driving range
  • 3 Padel tennis courts by Game4Padel
  • Early Years Nursery operated by Lullaby Lane
  • A long-term education program across Glasgow with the aim of providing in-curriculum golf experiences to 42,000 children across the city.
  • A community orchard and gardens.
  • Free bike access in partnership with St Paul’s Youth Forum.
  • Golf It! booking and business solutions powered by Sweetspot.

Golf It! has already won the backing of a range of delivery and community partners, which includes

  • Glasgow City Council,
  • Glasgow Life,
  • Heritage Lottery Fund,
  • Scottish Golf,
  • Golf Foundation,
  • Active Schools Network,
  • GEO Foundation,
  • Toro,
  • Acushnet,
  • Scottish Power, and
  • Adidas.
Golf It! driving range bays

I think this is a promising project, especially because it is family-centric + expressing a contemporary lifestyle. Women-centric services could be a great added-value service.