Following a successful application process, the project received £22,230 funding from the Ryder Cup Wales Legacy Fund.

The project aims to encourage new players as well as supporting a pathway for beginners who wish to develop further before playing on a full size course. The development sees the existing practice area turned into 9-hole short course with holes ranging in size from 58 to 108 yards.

Rob Holt, Chief Executive of Ryder Cup Wales, who was present at the official facility opening, said: “It is vital that we invest in making the game easier to play for those encouraged into the game by Golf Development Wales and without them having the expense of joining a club, whilst they are still learning. The Ryder Cup Wales Legacy Fund is committed to creating more publicly accessible and low cost facilities throughout Wales which represent a tangible and permanent benefit for future generations.

“The 2010 Ryder Cup will inspire a new generation of Welsh golfers and this £2m Legacy Fund, provided by the Welsh Assembly Government, will make it easier for people across Wales of all ages and backgrounds to enjoy sport, allowing future generations to benefit from this lasting legacy.”

Local school children were present at the official opening and keen to try out their skills on the new course. Royal St David’s professional Alex James was also on hand to pass on some tips to the juniors as he showed off a range of short game skills.

Andrew Vaughan, President of Machynlleth Golf Club, said: “We are delighted to be able to officially launch the new course in conjunction with Ryder Cup Wales who have been fully supportive of this project. The new development will ensure that first time players from Mid Wales and beyond will experience, and benefit from, playing what is effectively a beginners course.

“Facilities such as these at Machynlleth are providing more opportunities for people across Wales to take part in golf and allow us to introduce hundreds of young children every year to the sport in a fun and safe way. This is an ideal stepping stone in the development of new players to the game, particularly youngsters.

The Legacy Fund forms part of the winning 2010 Ryder Cup bid and is supported by the golfing organisations behind the Ryder Cup in Europe – the European Tour and the Professional Golfers Association, as well as the men’s and women’s Welsh golfing unions.

PICTURE CAPTION

L to R (front row): Rob Holt – Ryder Cup Wales’ Chief Executive, Andrew Vaughan – President of Machynlleth Golf Club and Dilwyn Griffiths – Golf Development Wales Officer.