Positive outlook of clubs like Ladybank make golf a game for all

Springfield’s Jim Gales says the all inclusive ethos of golf courses like Ladybank are helping people with disabilities integrate further in society.

By Scott Inglis
Wednesday, 18th May 2022, 11:27 am
Updated Wednesday, 18th May 2022, 11:27 am
The winning team members following the SDGC Texas scramble at Ladybank
The winning team members following the SDGC Texas scramble at Ladybank

Gales, who is the chair of the Scottish Disability Golf and Curling group, recently welcomed invited guests, including Ladybank members, PGA teaching pros, the media and others from SDGC to the local heathland course for a Texas scramble competition.

Those invited were delighted to be given the chance to play to Open Championship qualifying venue and also see for themselves the positive relationship between SDGC and Ladybank Golf Course.

Gales says its hasn’t always been the case that those kinds of relationships have been in place across the board for golfers with disabilities and he is proud of the work done by SDGC to break down barriers.

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He said: “We have been asked many times if we think disabled people are being included in society and sport and, some 10 years ago, we would have had difficulty in answering that positively.

"But with the help of Scottish golf clubs like Ladybank we can now say that disabled golfers are very welcome at clubs and, if any difficulties are discovered, we are confident we can work things out.

"Since we began the group other countries have visited Scotland and taken away our framework and ideas and created or altered their own set up to be fully inclusive.

"Countries that are now inclusive with all disabled golfers, of all ages and abilities include: the USA, Canada, New Zealand and Norway, others are following suit and the SDGC is hugely proud of having started this process.”

SDGC is a national organisation with its roots firmly in north east Fife.

Since the charity was formed locally 20 years it has expanded significantly to offer golf and curling tuition to over 1000 disabled people.

The Texas scramble was won by Greg Mackie, current vice captain at Ladybank, Adam Storrie, the current SDGC team captain, Neil Mcvicar, a new member with the SDGC and Charles Paterson of Sky News.

Prizes were donated by Patricia MacLeod of Midas Media and Donald McKay of Wellsgreen.