At this early point in my golfing career most courses look much the same to me: grass, sand and ponds. But speaking to advisers, it’s clear there is fierce local loyalty.
I caught up with Mark Rogers, managing director of Birmingham-based Clay Rogers & Partners, at Little Aston Golf Club for the Second City Charity Golf Classic. It was clear his motivation for getting involved with the charitable event was in no small part due to the Brummie’s regional connections.
‘I got co-opted into being part of the organising committee as they needed a bit of fresh blood and, with my financial services connections, I was able to bring in some new teams,’ said Rogers.
‘Local pride is also important. It’s a historic event sponsored by the Professional Golf Association. Professionals come down to play, so it really is a proper tournament.’
With roots in Birmingham dating back nearly 50 years, and local celebrity members in attendance including comedian Jasper Carrott and Electric Light Orchestra founder Bev Bevan, the event will help Rogers build up his profile in the area.
But while local pride was a motivating factor for Rogers, the day is also about doing some good. ‘It sounds awfully altruistic but we take a lot out so it’s good to give a lot back; we support local charities and raise between £15,000 and £20,000.’
With the Norman Laud Association and the Duchenne Children’s Trust both standing to benefit from Birmingham golfing fraternity’s generosity, regional links certainly can produce an extremely positive outcome.
My funniest moment was playing with Jasper Carrott. He had a remote-controlled trolley and lost control of it, taking out a crowd of onlookers, driving through a bunker and nearly ending up in the lake.
Must-have piece of equipment: Ping 60 degree lob wedge
A great choice for clearing hazards with quick height rather than distance.