Liverpool golfer shortlisted for top award

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A LIVERPOOL golfer who has revitalised his club’s junior section has been shortlisted for the England Golf Awards 2019, sponsored by adidas Golf.

Mark Feeney, from West Derby Golf Club, is one of four finalists for the prestigious Volunteer of the Year Award.

The winner will be announced at a gala dinner, hosted by BBC Breakfast presenter Dan Walker, at the Royal Lancaster London on Thursday, March 21.

Feeney has received multiple nominations for the way he has transformed the club’s junior section in just a couple of years.

Despite having a full-time job and a young family of his own, he’s put his heart and soul into the section and been rewarded with a rapidly growing membership of very happy young golfers.

He’s won the praise of the parents for the way he encourages children of all abilities, even setting up a short course for beginners. He runs weekly competitions, holds a Ryder Cup event and put on a presentation evening which attracted 120 people.

The section has grown from just two or three juniors to more than 40 members – and some parents have joined the club as well.

One of his nominators summed up: “Mark’s philosophy on golf for junior players is brilliant: let them play and have fun and they will love the game and only get better…Thanks Mark for making my boys love golf – and I think that comes from everyone associated with this club.”

Feeney’s challengers for the title include Judith Sandford of Cheadle Golf Club, Cheshire, who has given the ladies’ section at her club a new lease of life by encouraging 60-70 women to Get into Golf.

The others are Susanne Lesley and Owen Davis from Royal Ascot Golf Club, Berkshire and Marcella Tuttle, from The Links Golf Club, Newmarket.

England Golf chief executive Nick Pink said: “These volunteers are quite exceptional. They put in countless hours to help other people have a great golfing experience and our game is the richer for them, and the many thousands of other volunteers across England who do the same.”

Tickets for the England Golf Awards black tie dinner cost £90 per person and include a drinks reception and a three-course dinner with wine. More information at www.englandgolfawards.org

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