Community support has helped Milford Haven to win the Wales Golf Junior Club of the Year Award.
There were 10 incredible junior sections shortlisted for the award, but the flourishing junior section of Milford Haven came out on top thanks to the sheer volume of provision for all ages and abilities within their junior section 52 weeks a year.
Milford Haven run around 70 competitions a year for all abilities, regular adult and junior competitions, New2Golf beginner schemes, Wednesday Night Girls Golf, using a six-hole mini course as well as the main course in summer, and an indoor bowling green in winter.
Representatives of Milford Haven golf club were due to collect the award at the Wales Golf Annual Awards Lunch at 2010 Clubhouse of Ryder Cup venue Celtic Manor, but unfortunately the event has been postponed because of the COVID-19 outbreak.
Junior organiser Simon Nicholas said, “This award is absolutely brilliant, there is a great junior culture in Milford Haven which has been there for the last 35 years that I can remember and probably before that as well.
“The amount of support we get from club captains and members is amazing. We run 70 competitions a year and you cannot do that on £2 a head per year from the juniors.
“The club members are very generous, companies in the area are very generous, helping us run proper competitions or just having fun.
“We get great support from the golf club staff, particularly PGA Professional Elliot Harding who does the coaching of New2Golf at the Club.
“Pembrokeshire County Council sports development officer Alan Jones, Wales Golf for the New2Golf schemes and the fantastic Ping Welsh Junior Tour, as well as the great group of young players at the Club along with the parents and guardians for whom no journey is too great – these are all key too.
“Some of our juniors travel all over the country to Wales Golf events such as the Mini Masters aimed at New2Golf players, while we are one of the top five clubs in the numbers supporting the Ping Welsh Junior Tour events.
“Winning the County Championship and playing in the Welsh Team Finals in Builth Wells last year was the icing on the cake for us.
“Junior captain Hollie Jenkins is a really good example of the success of the schemes. She is involved with Wales squads at junior level but also comes to every junior session she can help out and play with the younger players coming through.
“There is a strong culture in the boys group too, so there are role models for the younger people to aspire to join, but Hollie has made a big difference to the girls group.”
The other nine clubs on the shortlist for this award were Betws Y Coed, Brynmeadows, Builth Wells, Cardigan, Carmarthen, Cilgwyn, Llantrisant and Pontyclun, Machynys and Wrexham.
Wales Golf chief executive Richard Dixon added, “Congratulations to Milford Haven who do a remarkable job in developing juniors, but also congratulations to the other nine clubs shortlisted who all do tremendous work as well.
“Junior development is obviously the life blood of our game and the work going on all round Wales shows it is good hands in many clubs.
“The sheer scale of what Milford Haven achieve separated them out slightly, from introducing beginners, attracting them to stay in the game through club membership, all the way to those who go on to compete at elite level.
“Congratulations and thanks to everyone involved at Milford Haven for the work they do in this area, as well as those other clubs round Wales doing such outstanding stuff.
“We look forward to making the formal presentation of this well-deserved award at an event later in the year.”