Course closures in March were quickly followed by a green light from the Government of Jersey in April, allowing play to resume, and the sport still appears to be benefitting from ongoing restrictions elsewhere. Many other sports – indoor activities in particular – remain on hold as Covid-19 health guidelines ease but tee bookings are reportedly full from dawn to dusk.
Staff at The Pro Shop at Les Ormes sent out an online plea for more second-hand clubs last week, having sold most of their stock, while the St Brelade course is attracting a large number of bookings for physically-distanced golf.
‘So many people are playing now ... that’s across all the courses in the Island,’ said Les Ormes’ head greenkeeper Oliver Pennington. ‘Golf has had the biggest boom in years ... we are full from 6am to 8pm at the moment and The Pro Shop’s never sold so many second-hand clubs.’
The Pro Shop sales assistant James Newton said: ‘Golf being one of the main sports you can play right now is a positive for us.
‘More people are playing now who maybe only played really casually before and they are buying second-hand clubs which are newer than the ones they had previously.
‘We are looking for people to part-exchange their clubs because we didn’t have many in stock – and what we did have was turning over quicker than normal.’
Pennington added that club competitions have not yet returned while on-course restrictions do remain in place. Bunker rakes and ‘Out of Bounds’ posts are still absent in an attempt to avoid transmission of the virus, while holes are not set at the correct depth.