THE number of golf competition rounds played in Australia continues to increase while the decline in golf club membership numbers has slowed, according to the latest industry report.
The encouraging findings are contained in the 2015 National Golf Club Participation Report, just released by Golf Australia in conjunction with Golf Management Australia (GMA).
The fourth report of its kind, an investigation showed a 0.5% decline in national membership numbers in the 2015 year, with city based clubs doing much better than their regional counterparts.
In regional areas, which account for 60% of the national member mix, there was an overall decline of 0.9% in net membership.
Membership numbers in metropolitan areas fell by just 0.4%.
The report highlights that 34% of clubs across Australia actually reported a net increase in member numbers for the year.
The data also showed a continuation of the growth in competition rounds being played, with a 1.9% increase recorded in 2015.
Cameron Wade, Director of Golf Development at Golf Australia said “The 2015 outcome is the smallest annual membership decline recorded since 1999. Off the back of another sub 1% membership decline in 2014, a declining attrition rate and steady growth in competition rounds played, these results present an encouraging outlook for club golf in Australia.”
Other key findings in the report include:
- National membership numbers across Australia were reported as 397,063 golfers.
- Females account for 20% of national members – a 1% decline from 2014.
- Reported member numbers for social clubs have increased over the past five-years from 10,975 in 2011 to 20,745 in 2015.
- The average age of club members across the country is just over 55 years with the average age of male members (53.4 years) being 9 years younger than females (62.5 years).
- 54% of the national club golf membership base is aged 55 years or greater.
- Junior members under the age of 18 account for 3.6% of total members.
- Approximately two thirds of clubs in Australia have less than 200
members, with 83% having less than 500 members.
- While clubs of over 1,000 members account for only 4% of all clubs
across Australia, they account for 24% of individual members.
- NSW has the most number of golf clubs with 378, and the
highest average member size of 394.
- 54% of the national club golf membership base is aged 55 years