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Walton Heath sign Women in Golf Charter

Walton Heath has become the latest English club to sign up to The R&A's Women in Golf Charter.

The renowned former Ryder Cup venue has committed to increasing the numbers of women and girls participating in golf with the introduction of a three-year rolling plan.

This strategy will see the club actively strive to increase membership, develop women’s, girls and family golf while also encouraging more women to become closely involved in the administrative elements of the club.

All this is in line with The R&A’s modernising vision of growing the game and the enthusiastic adoption of a fresh approach has already started paying dividends for the popular Surrey club.

Walton Heath captain Alison Taylor and Kate Hill, who sits on the club’s general committee, are leading the drive as charter champions.

Taylor explained: “We already have an academy that started in 2016. It has been very successful and nine women have graduated to full membership this year.

“Everyone in the academy has a mentor to help them integrate into the club. In addition to group and individual lessons run by the professionals, there are regular playing sessions with mentors.

“We are now also hoping to introduce a similar initiative for girls.”

Hill added: ‘’Among the seven core commitments which form the basis of the Walton Heath Charter is a desire to increase the ladies' section to a minimum of 120 playing members.

“On January 1 this year we had 94 members and that figure has now jumped to 105, which is a very significant increase.

“Until recently, we were averaging just one new member a year, so this is an extremely positive step."

Walton Heath's aim is to increase the number of women members by 10 a year and create a community of girls who will enjoy learning and playing together.

Taylor and her vice-captain at Walton Heath already sit on the club’s board and other women will be encouraged to stand for committee positions in line with the charter’s aims and objectives.

Taylor added: “Walton Heath is a traditional club but we recognise the need to look forward to the next generation of golfers.

“We want grow the ladies’ section and be the family friendly club that women and girls want to join. Signing up to the Charter provides us with a great foundation to achieve this.

“We are proud to be the first golf club in Surrey to adopt The R&A Charter and to pledge our commitment to supporting the continued growth of women and girls golf.”

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