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Morecambe Bay Golf Festival is huge success

Players at Morecambe Bay Golf Festival

The annual Morecambe Bay Golf Festival has been hailed as a huge success.

The event, which ran from September 5 – 9 at Morecambe, Heysham and Lancaster golf clubs, is held to raise funds and help out those clubs.

It was, at stages, impacted by bad weather this year but that didn’t dampen the spirits one bit.

“We had horrendous thunder on (the) Tuesday and Wednesday and on both of those days we had to suspend the competition for around an hour and a half and then we sent the golfers back out again to finish," said Tony Wilkinson from Heysham Golf Club, co-organiser.

“The festival has been going since 2000 and we’ve never had a year without bad weather on a day or two!”

All the golfers are amateurs and hail from all over the North West and other parts of the UK.

“It’s just myself, Gill Gardner and a small selection of helpers from each club who run it every year, free of charge," said Tony.

"It’s always been a boost to the end of the season really, and the fact it’s been going on for so long proves how successful it is. The three clubs are so supportive every year.

“It was initially started 22 years ago to extend the season, which ends in August, for the three clubs and to help Morecambe’s hoteliers and pubs and to bring a lot of people in, staying over and spending money. That’s how it started and it’s carried on from there.”

There were nine competitions held over the course of the week and cash prizes given to the top six players of each tournament.

Men’s fourballs, men and ladies’ team events, the open day event and the three day festival trophy were all played over the five days.

The festival trophy was won by duo Richie McPike and Keith Knight.

“The prize fund is split between the three pros at the clubs," said Tony.

"The balance of the festival funds is donated to the three clubs each year as payment for using the courses. The cost to play in the event is £20 per player so we get golfers from far and wide as it's a very reasonable price to play each of the three top class courses in the area. We also get our sponsors to cover the events.”

Sponsors include Lloyds Kia, Radcliffe and Bibby, South Lakes Windows and DGM Financial Planning Ltd.

There has been a significant growth in the popularity of golf in recent months, said Tony.

“Since lockdown, golf has increased in popularity and, across the board, our membership has increased by 20 per cent.

“As far as the festival is concerned, we’re taking bookings for next year. I’ve just done the team sheets for September 2023 and we’re 65 per cent full already, that’s because people who played this year want to do it next year so they book there and then. It’s pretty much guaranteed the festival will run next year, depending on sponsorships of course.”

Those interested in taking part in the festival next year, either as part of pair or a fourball visit here for more information.

 

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