Friday, 27 January 2017

Ayrshire's Boost on back of The 2016 Open



Economic benefit of The Open

£110 million benefit to Scotland from last year’s event at Royal Troon.

Hosting The 145th Open at Royal Troon delivered more than £110 million worth of benefit to Scotland, according to an independent study announced by First Minister Nicola Sturgeon
today.

The Open, which attracted 173,000 spectators to the Ayrshire coastline in 2016, delivered an economic impact of more than £64 million according to the study compiled by Sheffield Hallam University’s Sport Industry Research Centre.

In addition, the country benefited from an additional £46 million in destination marketing benefit thanks to the exposure afforded to Scotland from the Championship, which was broadcast on television in 193 territories to more than 600 million households worldwide.

The research, which was commissioned by The R&A, VisitScotland and South Ayrshire Council, concluded that Ayrshire alone benefited from spending by event specific visitors and on event infrastructure amounting to £23 million in economic impact.

Almost half of the spectators who attended The Open (49 per cent) travelled from outwith Scotland, while two-thirds of Scots spectators came from outside Ayrshire. 62 per cent of non-Ayrshire residents indicated they would return to South Ayrshire for a break within 12 months.

The Open is the world’s oldest and most prestigious professional golf championship and is held in Scotland more than any other country, on average three out of every five years. The 2016 Championship was seen as something of a homecoming for The Open, having first been played at Prestwick Golf Club in 1860, just a few miles from Royal Troon.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, who attended the Championship in July 2016, said:

“Hosting The Open is a chance to see one of the world’s most popular sports return to the country where it all started, so these are brilliant figures which highlight the huge economic benefit that bringing home such a prestigious championship has for Scotland.

“Troon is a fantastic course enjoyed by players and spectators alike, both for the quality and challenge of the course, and the remarkable scenery. However, it’s much more wide-ranging than that - it showcases Scotland’s ability to host world class events, it has benefits for local businesses and hotels - and it also inspires the next generation of players.

“We look forward to welcoming the world to Carnoustie in 2018 for the 147th Open Championship.”

Martin Slumbers, Chief Executive of The R&A, added: “The Open is one of the world’s great sporting events and generates substantial economic benefit for the host country. We were delighted with the success of the Championship at Royal Troon which delivered tremendous entertainment for the tens of thousands of fans who came along to see the world’s top golfers competing. Henrik Stenson’s victory after such a gripping duel with Phil Mickelson was one of the finest performances in the long history of The Open.”

The EventScotland team within VisitScotland’s Events Directorate leads on Scotland’s investment in golf events and has a long-running association with The R&A through its support of The Open.

Paul Bush, Director of Events at VisitScotland, said: “Scotland has a long and proud history of hosting The Open more than any other country and these figures illustrate the importance of the Championships to Scotland, not just in delivering economic impact and supporting jobs but in promoting Scotland as the Home of Golf and the perfect stage for major events to a global audience.

“The stunning pictures of the Ayrshire coastline that were beamed around the world from Royal Troon will have inspired many more visitors to Scotland. We look forward to welcoming The Open back to Carnoustie in 2018 and continuing our successful relationship with The R&A for many more years to come.”

Bill McIntosh, Leader of South Ayrshire Council said:

“The Open was a resounding success for South Ayrshire, with tens of millions of pounds of investment helping to support the local economy while marketing our area and many attractions across the world.

“The report found that 62% of non-Ayrshire residents said that they’d return here for a holiday, which is a fantastic endorsement of the welcome people enjoyed during their visits last year, something that will bring further economic benefits to the area.

“As the birthplace of Open golf, Ayrshire and Arran has a worldwide reputation for the sport, with incredible Championship venues, some of the top courses in the UK and, of course, our own eight links and parkland Golf South Ayrshire courses. We’re serious about keeping the sport alive and we’re already well placed to realise a long-term legacy from last year’s event and look forward to welcoming many more Opens in future years.”

Background

The 145th Open was played at Royal Troon from 10-17 July 2016 and attracted the top players from around the world to Scotland, the Home of Golf.

The event was won by Swede Henrik Stenson following one of the most memorable final rounds in Open history as he went head-to-head with 2013 Champion Golfer of the Year Phil Mickelson, triumphing with a record-low score of 20-under-par.

The Open is golf’s oldest championship. Played since 1860 on iconic British and Irish links golf courses, it is the sport’s most international Major Championship with qualifying events on every continent.

Organised by The R&A, The Open delivers significant economic benefit to its host region, while the Championship’s commercial success supports the development of the game worldwide.

Many courses have hosted the event, with St Andrews being the most frequently used. 2016 was the ninth time that Royal Troon has played host to The Open.

Ayrshire is known as “The Birthplace of The Open” with the first 12 Championships played at Prestwick Golf Club from 1860.

Wednesday, 18 January 2017

World Event for Amateur Golfers Launched in Ayrshire, Scotland


The inaugural World Masters Golf Championship has been launched with a call to all amateur golfers over 50 years of age to take up this unique opportunity to play on the iconic links of Scotland – the Home of Golf.
The World Masters Golf Championship provides the opportunity to play competitive golf on outstanding courses in a fun, social environment.  The event is open to all golfers with an official handicap who are over 50 years of age as at 17 September, 2017. 
The Championship will be staged over four days from 18 to 21 September 2017, on some of the best courses in the world.  Follow in the footsteps of legends and take your opportunity to play some of the great courses of Scotland, included amongst them Royal Troon, Prestwick and Dundonald.
The World Masters Golf Championship is the brainchild of Hamish Grey (formerly CEO of Scottish Golf) and Andy Salmon (formerly CEO of the Ladies’ Golf Union and Deputy CEO of Scottish Golf), who have over 50 years of experience in sport and golf event management between them.
‘The idea is to stage an annual celebration of golf with a top quality championship for club-level amateur golfers here at the Home of Golf - playing competitive golf in a fun, social environment on some of the world’s leading golf courses,’ said Grey.
The format is individual stableford with prize categories based on handicap and age - along with the overall prize and title of World Masters Golf Champion.  Staged over four days there are two packages on offer –
Flight one:
Play Prestwick, laid out by Old Tom Morris, who was the Club’s Professional, the original home of the Open Championship which has been staged a total of 24 times on the links at Prestwick;
Western Gailes, a stunning links course that has hosted Open qualifying and major amateur events such as the European Team Championships featuring a young Rory McIlroy, amongst others; and
Glasgow Gailes, another classic links that hosts Open Qualifying and many major amateur events – where Colin Montgomerie qualified for the 2016 Open staged at nearby Royal Troon.
Flight two:
Play Dundonald, the links course of Loch Lomond Golf Club, Dundonald hosted the last two editions of the Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Ladies’ Open and two months prior to the World Masters Golf Championship will host the 2017 Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open Championship;
Kilmarnock (Barassie), boasting 27 holes of pure links fun, Kilmarnock (Barassie) has also hosted Open Qualifying as well as numerous Scottish amateur tournaments and the European Youths Team Championship; and
Ayr Belleisle, a James Braid designed gem that in the true traditions of Scottish golf is a public course owned by the local authority.
Limited to 240 entrants, the top 120 participants after three rounds will qualify to play the nine-time Open Championship venue, Royal Troon, and follow in the footsteps of legends such as 2016 Open Champion Henrik Stenson.  The remaining 120 participants will have the opportunity to play the excellent Glasgow Gailes.
This celebration of golf will be started with a welcome reception on Sunday 17 September and conclude with a gala dinner on the evening of 21 September.
Competitors will have the opportunity to explore the great beauty and history of Scotland around the World Masters Golf Championship – enjoying great Scottish hospitality and the event of a lifetime.
Click on this link to see a short video outlining the event www.worldmastersgolf.com/video and go to www.worldmastersgolf.com for full details of how to enter the Championship for the golfing trip of a lifetime.

Take your chance to follow in the footsteps of legends …