Girls Golf really Rocks for Cheshire teenager Ffion Jones who is about to make history as the first female junior captain at her club.
Ffion, who only started playing golf 14 months ago thanks to the Girls Golf Rocks campaign, will be the 2018 junior captain at Eaton Golf Club in Chester.
The 17-year-old got into golf after her mum spotted an advert for Girls Golf Rocks, the recruitment campaign run by England Golf and the Golf Foundation which inspires more girls to take up the game.
At first Ffion was reluctant to go along to the taster session at Eaton as she didn’t think she would know anyone. But when she arrived she found she knew several of the other girls and in her own words “golf was a lot better than I thought.”
In fact, she enjoyed golf so much so that when her Gran offered to buy her a junior membership at Eaton for Christmas she jumped at the chance to join the club. She’s since been followed by her 11-year-old brother and the two of them can be found practising together at the club on most days.
Over the last 12 months Ffion has lowered her handicap from 36 to 21.8 and was the most improved woman golfer of the year for 2017. She has also played for Eaton in matches against other local clubs, is currently playing in Eaton’s junior winter league and recently, along with her brother, their friend and one of the clubs pros, won a night golf competition where they were the only juniors playing.
Ffion is studying for her A Levels at Christleton High School and then will take a gap year when she plans to work and play as much golf as possible to achieve her aim of getting her handicap down to single figures.
She will also be carrying out her role as junior captain throughout 2018 and hopes that this will help her to get to know the other juniors better and encourage more girls to become members of Eaton Golf Club. She would especially like to see more girls playing in the winter junior league next year to redress the balance in the league which this year has three girls and 19 boys taking part.
Eaton’s Head PGA Professional Bill Tye, commented: “I could tell from the start that Ffion was a talented ball player and she has excelled. She’s really, really keen, completely hooked on the game and we thought we would give her this honour.”
Ffion’s mum Hilary Jones – who is not a golfer - said: "All the members and the staff at Eaton Golf Club have been really good to the juniors at Eaton and I’m really pleased that I signed Ffion up for Girls Golf Rocks. It’s also great for me to see Ffion and her younger brother enjoying an activity together, golf is good for them as a physical activity but it also teaches them other things such as honesty and respect ".
Ffion herself says: “I really wish my mum had signed me up for golf years ago, I enjoy it so much and am really excited to be Eaton’s first female junior captain.’
Alison Lysons, England Golf Club Support Officer in Cheshire commented “It’s exciting to hear that someone coming through the Girls Golf Rocks programme has developed such a love for golf and is becoming her club’s first female junior captain. Eaton Golf Club has a great junior programme and Ffion’s experience will be invaluable in encouraging other young girls to take up the game of golf there”.
Lauren Spray, Women and Girls Participation Manager at England Golf added: “It’s fantastic to see how quickly Ffion has progressed through the programme, attaining a handicap in such a short space of time and getting it down to 22 is fantastic to hear.
“As part of Girls Golf Rocks we ask girls to become county ambassadors to inspire new girls who come into the programme. By being appointed junior captain Ffion will now be one of those vital role models to new girls coming into the programme and at Eaton. This is a fantastic success and we wish Ffion all the best with her A Levels and her year as junior captain!”
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