DevonGolf were crowned the County of the Year for 2024 at the England Golf Centenary Dinner & Awards at The Midland Manchester Hotel - a wonderful achievement. Devon were shortlisted as finalists alongside Buckinghamshire and Hertfordshire, all of whom put forward a strong case. 

Hosted by former golf star and Sky Sports presenter, Nick Dougherty, The Midland Manchester Hotel welcomed 450 guests and recognised heroes from across the country who have gone above and beyond to make the game of golf what it is today. Each award winner received an engraved glass trophy and a gift hamper to mark their amazing achievements.

Nick James, Chair of DevonGolf, receiving the award with Director Yvonne Alford said: “We’re a unified county after merging in 2018 and what we’ve achieved over the last few years has been fantastic. This award is the icing on the cake and a reflection of where we are.

“Our biggest achievements have just been getting more people playing golf and we’ve done some great work getting our development squads together, getting more people out and involved in golf clubs, working collectively together for the purpose of the county. 

“Geography isn’t on our side with most of our clubs around the edge of the county and we rely on volunteers - and without them we wouldn’t get anywhere near done as we do. The volunteers make all the difference and we’ve got to continue to build that support group.

Back: Simon Wood (Golf Access), Ben Martin (England Golf), Nick James, Brian Newman, Tim Aggett
Front: Hannah Stephens, Yvonne Alford, Chris Eddowes, Paul Cloke, Colleen Skornia, Geoff Green,
Wendy Stanbury & Rosie Burnham and MIA - Vicky Holloway

Within the DevonGolf pathway, with the help of an incredible volunteer network, DevonGolf has established thriving development squads for boys and girls. The Development Squad led by Brian Newman, sees girls and boys as young as 8 involved with a girls' and a boys group of 20-plus enjoying their golfing journey together, at county, regional and national level. DevonGolf provide the training sessions and our county team managers (Hannah Stephens, Mark Sangster, Marc Mulligan and Brian Newman) give up great swathes of their time to help support and encourage the youngsters in their golfing journeys. None of which could happen without the support of the Devon clubs who share their facilities to help shape the youngsters' golfing future.

DevonGolf offer a free county card to all of its affiliated members as part of its affiliated member benefit package. Subsequently, county card events have been set up each year which is inclusive of all handicaps, attracting over 1000 different golfers to these events.

DevonGolf have worked closely with leading development programmes such as Golf Access, supporting 20 clubs (50 per cent of the county but available to all clubs) with products to deliver to junior and beginner golfers, providing the first year's package completely free. Simon Wood, Mr Golf Access, shared the evening with the DevonGolf attendees in acknowledgement of his ongoing work to bring new golfers to the game. For more information about Golf Access click here.

Devon are also supporting an initiative to encourage their golf clubs to increase their sustainability by partnering up with Zellar to enable clubs to receive free guidance on the many ways small savings and changes can be made to save money for the club and resources for the planet. 

Devon are quickly becoming ambassadors of change to help grow the game of golf by demonstrating the many benefits that come from unification and were the first county nationally to adopt the ED&I policy (Equality, Diversity and Inclusion) at county level.

Representing DevonGolf at the England Golf Centenary Dinner & Awards were Nick James (Chair), Paul Cloke (Operations Manager), Chris Eddowes (Finance Director), Yvonne Alford (Club Services Director), Brian Newman (Junior Development Director), Vicky Holloway (Women's Team Manager), Hannah Stephens (Girls' Team Manager), Rosie Burnham (Women's Inter-Club Manager), Wendy Stanbury (Competition Co-ordinator), Tim Aggett (Competitions Director), Geoff Green (Immediate Past President) and Colleen Skornia (former Competition Co-ordinator). Simon Wood (Golf Access) and Ben Martin (former Devon county team player and now the England Golf Club, Counties & Membership Development Manager) joined the celebrations.

Nick Dougherty & Nick James
Paul Cloke, Nick James & Yvonne Alford
Rosie Burnham & Paul Cloke
DevonGolf - Winners!
Chris Eddowes, Nick James, Hannah Stephens & Paul Cloke














Ben Martin, Paul Cloke & Wendy Stanbury
 Rosie Burnham, Tim Aggett & Wendy Stanbury


Return to News Page

Created by intelligentgolf version 10.1.2.