Fortrose and Rosemarkie offer innovative membership deal

Golf club bids to plug coronavirus black hole

Fortrose and Rosemarkie GC secretary Mike MacDonald.
Fortrose and Rosemarkie GC secretary Mike MacDonald.

A special lifetime membership offer is being made available at one of Scotland’s most picturesque golf courses as it bids to plug a black hole from the coronavirus crisis.

Fortrose & Rosemarkie, which sits on the north shore of the Moray Firth, is offering the membership to people who live more than 50 miles from the club and anyone from overseas for £3,000.

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“There are tough times ahead, hence this lifetime membership offer,” said club secretary Mike MacDonald. “We all have to look at generating additional income where possible during these troubled times.

“As one of the most unique courses in the world in addition to being a championship venue and the 15th oldest recorded club in the world (1793), we feel that we are offering a fantastic deal.

“My projections from early February 2020 showed we were looking at an increase in visitor income of at least 30 per cent as a comparison to 2019.

“But that has obviously gone now with much of my time spent over the last few weeks either rescheduling for 2021 or 2022, refunding or having to cancel reservations during these unprecedented times.

“Visitor income for 2020 is effectively a write off for this year, which is a massive concern as we rely on this so much for the business we run and to provide a great golfing experience for individuals and groups of golfers visiting the Highlands.”

The offer comes after MacDonald, one of the most pro-active secretaries in Scotland, had already attracted bookings from overseas groups on the back of offering an overseas membership from June at the cost of just £175.

“Once people are allowed back to work, there are obviously going to be a lot of restrictions in place, so my role is to look after all staff members (85 per cent are currently furloughed) to ensure they have a job to come back to when things do improve,” he added.

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