An English golf club has made international headlines after announcing that it will no longer distinguish tees on its course based on gender.
In a post on social media, Hartford Golf Club said that it has ended the tradition of men and women teeing off from explicitly different places. Moving forward, it will instead invite players to select which boxes they tee off from based on their ability.
Officials at the Cheshire-based club hope that this move will help attract more people – and women, in particular – to take up the sport.
“We’re just trying to be quite progressive,” said Paul Cunningham, Hartford retail manager and the person responsible for running their social media accounts. “We want to push the game forward.
“Golf is changing, and I think for the better. We’re trying to get rid of a lot of those traditional, outdated rules.”
A post on the club’s website added: “We are a progressive and modern golf club and we have moved away from gender-specific tees. We now have five different colour tees to play from and we want you to be happy to play from whichever tees will allow you to enjoy your game the most.
“We believe that sometimes playing from shorter tees, especially in the winter, could allow many of our golfers to enjoy their games even more.”
Predictably, the move has divided opinion. One Twitter user congratulated the club on its decision, saying: Play to your ability not to the colour of the tee. The game becomes more enjoyable and repeatable.”
Some, however, have rejected the idea and accused the club of virtue signalling.