Wirral Golf Academy members visit The Open in Hoylake

Members of Wirral Golf Academy were given tickets by Wirral Council to allow young golfers to experience the return of The Open to Hoylake.

Among those visiting was four-year-old Rory Clinton visiting with dad Paul – who described himself only half-jokingly as “father of future Open champion”.

Rory, who is about to go to Our Lady of Pity school plays golf “every day” and said he loves going on a Saturday for lessons.

Nine youngsters attended on the first day of practice, Sunday 16 July, and the Academy was due to bring more youngsters later in the week.

Also attending was Isobel Smith, 12, who started golf during lockdown. She said, “My dad was practising in the garden and then he bought me clubs and I have lessons.”

Isobel is part of Wirral Golf Academy’s leadership programme and said, “I want to encourage more girls into golf and grow the game for women.”

Wirral Golf Academy was set up five years ago by Angela Dale, from Meols. She said, “I only started golf six years ago and was on the course with my coach and noticed there weren’t any children, and Simon explained it wasn’t easy for children to get into the game.

“So I went and did some research and with Simon Hooton as our head coach, set up Wirral Golf Academy. We are the only junior-only club in the UK and have helped 100 kids into private clubs.

“We also do things like go into primary schools and introduce golf to kids. We have delivered golf to 3,000 children in two weeks.”

Image: Members of Wirral Golf Academy with founder Angela Dale outside the Swing Zone at The Open in Hoylake 2023

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