Alistair Tait (right) receiving his Trophy & Volunteer of the Year Award at a ceremony which was held in Dingwall Academy on Thursday, 16 January 2014 as part of his commitment to ClubGolf over the years.
Since June 2005, Alistair Tait in some capacity has been involved in coaching the kids/youngsters at Fortrose & Rosemarkie Golf Club which has benefitted the Club and the community as a whole. We have seen the junior game of golf develop substantially and Alastair has been involved for 9 years with this growth. It is since Alastair took over the administration work as Coaching Coordinator and took on the task of dealing with the planning, admin, and promoting junior golf that our junior section has grown so much. In the last two years we have seen our junior membership rise from 94 juniors to 131 junior members in 2013. There were over 80 juniors enrolled in an active junior coaching programme. This was achieved by the efforts of Alistair Tait through his dedication and timeless work which has developed the youngsters from a ClubGolf beginner to becoming members of our Golf Club.
Alistair has been able to secure funding for the purchase of an IPad to use as a coaching aid. Alistair also worked on securing funding to provide three practice nets on our practice area. Also an equipment shed was built and Alastair’s talent as a Technical teacher were well used in this development. Alastair’s work has also been noticed by ClubGolf, our Scottish Junior Golf Strategy, and used as a model club for others to copy.
Alistair also set out a 3-hole mini golf course on the practice area so that the younger juniors can safely learn to play a few holes before they get introduced to the main golf course. He has assisted in countless juniors getting full handicaps with his enthusiasm and encouragement. He has helped to secure funding so Professional coaching can be brought to the club for the older children. This has proved very popular.
The ClubGolf coaching at Fortrose & Rosemarkie Golf Club starts each year just after the Easter holidays and continues after the school summer holidays until September. From the outset, Alistair is heavily involved in sending out an official letter/e-mail to all the parents to inform them of the dates and times for junior coaching for the season and then he divides the children into suitable groups. It is through Alistair’s fantastic reputation and getting the word out to the local community that over 80 children from across the Black Isle came for coaching after the Easter holidays with a total of 9 coaches taking one hour sessions . The numbers involved this year were exceptional.
In July this year a delegation from the French Golf Federation visited the Scottish Open and part of their visit was to come to Fortrose & Rosemarkie Golf Club and observe the coaches and ClubGolf juniors in action on the practice area. The party included the Director of the 2018 Ryder Cup Europe and French Professional Jean Van de Velde. Alastair organised his coaches and pulled in juniors for a demonstration afternoon session which was also attended by European Tour senior managers and Scottish Golf Union officials and ClubGolf Scotland’s Manager. This was a fantastic honour for the Club and those involved in the coaching. It recognised the hard work and organisational skills of Alastair which has made our junior section such a success. The whole afternoon was filmed for European Tour TV and has helped portray the Highlands as an attractive place to visit and play golf.
Alistair also helped to purchase new practice area targets which included 4 tractor tyres which were then painted and placed on the practice area to further enhance the area for the juniors. Alastair is constantly looking for improvements that he can make for the children and the coaches. It was Alastair that purchased and fitted mirrors to the storage shed on the practice area as a teaching aid. All of this was carried out by Alistair in his own time. He even painted the whole of the 3 covered bays before the French delegation arrived. He pays attention to detail and it shows in the success of the juniors and the enjoyment that the coaches get from working and coaching in a Club where plans are actioned and improvements are continually being made with Alastair Tait at the heart of the junior programme.
We at Fortrose & Rosemarkie recognise that other clubs, not only golf clubs, but other sports also will have worthy nominations. The icing on the cake for Alastair’s work and the proof that his planning, administering to the juniors and creating a model junior section is evident in Fortrose and Rosemarkie Golf Club being given the status of being a Scottish Golf Development Centre. The only Club in Scotland that has achieved this without having a PGA Professional and currently only 34 Development Centres in Scotland out of 550 Clubs.
Alastair would say that much has been achieved by team work. We say that much has been achieved by good leadership, consistent and dedicated time for juniors and the never ending support for his coaching workforce over many years and we suggest that Alastair’s voluntary work deserves to be recognised.
CLUBGOLF COACHING 2015
To commence during the month of May. More information will be available in due course to both the parents and the children taking part in the coaching.
Priorities & Arrangements for Clubgolf Coaching at Fortrose and Rosemarkie Golf Club.
1) Lessons will be organised during the months of May and June. These will run for four evenings, one hour each evening - £6.00-£8.00 to be paid at the start of the course to cover running costs. The lessons will take place on various evenings and at times to suit the coaches and the junior members.
2) Seven new coaches will receive training during the month of April.
3) We hope to encourage more girls to take up golf.
4) We hope to access funding to improve our practice facilities - now that we own the practice area.
5) An attempt will be made to encourage more juniors to obtain handicaps and to take part in junior competitions in the early part of 2016 and thereafter.