Take your golf club to the next level in 2020

Sports Publications host first Top 100s awards ceremony at Royal Armouries

NCG Top 100s have revealed their first-ever ranking of the best courses in Great Britain and Ireland at a glittering awards ceremony in Leeds.

Over 150 guests gathered at the Royal Armouries in Leeds for an evening hosted by the BBC commentator Andrew Cotter.

Royal County Down were crowned the best golf course in Great Britain and Ireland.

Royal Birkdale was the highest-ranked course in England, Royal Porthcawl the best in Wales and Muirfield the best in Scotland.

Awards were also presented in each of the following categories:

  • Most Playable Course – Kingsbarns
  • Best Conditioned Course – Adare
  • Most Consistent Course – Royal Lytham & St Annes
  • Most Memorable Course – Old Course at St Andrews
  • Best Designed Course – Muirfield
  • Course with the Most Variety – Prestwick
  • Best New Course – Kingsbarns

“Our 1st ever Top 100s Awards is the final piece of our Top 100s franchise also includes a quarterly print magazine, a website, busy social channels and an amateur tour. We now have all the building blocks in place to become the most trusted home of Top 100s to give the best golf courses the oxygen they deserve. To get together 140 people from exclusively Top 100 courses at this event was inspiring and a unique sponsorship and networking opportunity” says Tom Irwin, Commercial Director of Sports Publications

The full list – and many more – can now be enjoyed on the brand new NCG Top 100s section on the National Club Golfer website.

All major lists will be refreshed on a two-year cycle – including GB&I, England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales, Continental Europe, GB&I Resorts and EU Resorts.

“We’re extremely proud to launch our new site with this painstakingly constructed list of the best golf courses in GB&I,” said Dan Murphy, Content Director at of Sports Publications 

“It’s the culmination of three years’ work. We’re not setting out to be controversial – just to create the best lists. We understand, and respect, how much people care about their own clubs. In return, we hope they respect our integrity and professionalism in compiling these lists. 

“Our ambition is for NCG Top 100s to become the home of course rankings – both online and in print,” he said.


  • Learn more about our rankings at nationalclubgolfer.com/ncgtop100s.
  • You can subscribe to NCG Top 100s magazines for £20
  • Follow NCG Top 100s on Twitter (@NCGTop100s) and on Instagram (ncgtop100s)
  • For more information about the NCG Top 100s, please contact Dan Murphy, NCG editor, on 0113 289 3979 or d.murphy@sportspub.co.uk
  • NCG Top 100s is owned by Sports Publications a golf specific publisher who own several golf media titles and create content and websites for a variety of golf and sports businesses. 

Royal Mid Surrey unveils new club video

Out Now: The Lost Art of Playing Golf

New book release: The Lost Art of Playing Golf by Gary Nicol and Karl Morris – with a foreword from Rudy Duran, Tiger Woods’ first coach

This new release from the authors of the Amazon bestseller The Lost Art of Putting explores your relationship with the game and asks: when was the last time that you felt your score accurately reflected your true ability as a golfer?

Why do you play golf? Do you find the game as fulfilling as it used to be? Do you remember a time when you felt truly comfortable on the golf course? Do you remember a time when you felt truly comfortable on the golf course, treating it as a playground to explore? Can you imagine what it feels like to create unique golf shots in your mind and then execute these intentions?

The Lost Art of Playing Golf suggests answers to these profound questions. It will help you to re-connect with the soul of the game.

Learn how to approach the game you love in a profoundly different way – and liberate yourself to derive more pleasure from your precious time playing golf.

The Lost Art of Playing Golf follows on from the Amazon best-selller The Lost Art of Putting. It becomes the second title in the ‘Lost Art’ series.

It is the belief of leading tour coach Gary Nicol and performance coach Karl Morris, who have 60 years’ combined coaching experience, that despite us having access to more information than ever we are not becoming better or happier golfers. If anything, the opposite is true.

The Lost Art of Playing Golf drills down even deeper into your ability as an individual to discover your way of approaching the game rather than being told how to. 

The message they convey is one of golfers reconnecting with their own creativity and the wisdom of their own body.

The ideas and information they share are backed up by the very latest research into how best to utilise the connection between mind and body.

Born in Scotland, Gary Nicol turned professional in 1988. Since then, he has travelled the world coaching golfers of all standards from weekend players to tour pros including Ryder Cup players, Olympians and winners of major championships. Gary is a certified TrackMan Master and Mind Factor coach and is based at the stunning Archerfield Links on Scotland’s Golf Coast.

Karl Morris has been involved in performance coaching for 30 years. In that time, he has worked with multiple major winners in golf – including Darren Clarke and Graeme McDowell – Ashes-winning captains in cricket as well as Premier League and international footballers. His passion has always been to make mental game coaching both practical and applicable.

The Lost Art of Playing Golf was edited by experienced golf writer Dan Murphy and published by Sports Publications (sports-publications.com).

With a foreword written by the first coach of Tiger Woods, Rudy Duran, the book is available now at thelostartofgolf.com and costs £19.95.

Note from the editors

  • Learn more about the Lost Art series at thelostartofgolf.com
  • The Lost Art of Playing Golf is available in hardback format at thelostartofgolf.com, priced at £19.95 and £9.99 respectively.
  • The Lost Art of Putting is also available in hardback and Kindle formats at thelostartofgolf.com, priced at £19.95 and £9.99 respectively
  • Buy both books together at thelostartofgolf.com for £30
  • For more information about the book, contact Tom Irwin, Sports Publications’ commercial director, on 0113 289 3979 or t.irwin@sportspub.co.uk
  • Follow The Lost Art on Twitter (@LostArtofGolf) and Facebook (The Lost Art of Golf).
  • Gary Nicol and Karl Morris are available for interview about the book and/or expert comment on any matters relating to The Lost Art of Playing Golf

Take our BIGGA survey and you could win a Precision Golf rangefinder

We would like your feedback on our recent magazine, Your Course.

The Prize

We have teamed up with Precision Golf to offer you the chance to win one of their laser rangefinders.

How to enter

Simply click the link below and follow the on screen instructions to be in with a chance of winning the prize.

Click here to take the survey

Hannah Holden

Sports Publications hire new equipment and instruction editor

NationalClubGolfer.com are proud to welcome scratch-handicapper and county player Hannah Holden to their talented content team.

Hannah, who represents Yorkshire and also manages the White Rose county’s national Under-18 players, will specialise in equipment and instruction.

The Huddersfield Golf Club member brings expertise, having personally worked with many leading coaches and had extensive experience of custom-fitting.

She will be leading NCG’s digital and print coverage in both of these key areas, with video a particular focus.

A graduate in architecture, Hannah joins an experienced and vibrant content team headed by digital editor Alex Perry.

“Hannah’s appointment is very exciting for us,” Alex said. “She is an extremely talented player with an impressive golfing CV for someone of her age. She is taking on what is a very challenging role and I think she will bring a breath of fresh air to our equipment and instruction output.”

Under Alex’s editorship, NationalClubGolfer.com offers the most comprehensive coverage of the game in the UK, with tour, equipment, instruction, club golf and courses all areas of speciality.

National Club Golfer magazine is the highest-circulating golf title in the UK, and is distributed each month to every golf club in the UK.

NCG is the flagship consumer title of Sports Publications, whose content director, Dan Murphy, said: “Hannah will be a great addition to our content team as she brings a complementary skill set to that of our experienced journalists.

“With Mark Townsend leading our tour coverage in his own uniquely entertaining and deeply knowledgeable style, Steve Carroll delivering passionate expertise on all things related to club golf, and Chris Bertram recognised as the authority on golf courses, travel and rankings, Hannah is joining a very strong team.

“We think our digital and print readers alike will benefit from her expertise. In addition, our skilled video team will help Hannah to shape some outstanding video content.”

For more, visit sports-publications.com, nationalclubgolfer.com and lady-golfer.com or email Alex on a.perry@sportspub.co.uk

Best content marketing tips

Seize Control – The best content marketing tips for 2019

It is all happening, isn’t it? A new year is here, and we are all back to 0. In the world of digital content it has never been more important to have a pause, a reset, and reflect on what is and isn’t working, to plan better, and to take control.

We are always ‘on’, there is always something happening, there is always something we should be doing more of online, a new trend, a new fad. What we need is to take a step back and take control. With that in mind here our best content marketing tips for 2019.

Best content marketing tips for 2019

1. In the words of Louis Walsh: “Make it your own”

You have a Facebook page and a Twitter feed. Hell, you might even have an Instagram account. Well done, so does everyone else. It is how you use it that counts.

Your audience is tired of reposts, it is bored of retweets, and it is down right disgusted by the repurposing of others people’s stuff and you calling it your own.

If you are going to profess to being a publisher of content, however small, you need your own content and it needs to be good, it needs to be original, and it needs to be authentic.

2. You need a content plan

The internet does not have a beginning, middle and end like your old members’ magazine used to, or a good book does. It is a never-ending soup of stuff.

You need to give it structure. A calendar has structure. Think about what your audience wants to hear about and when, think about what you want to tell it and when.

Make a calendar of content, tell your audience what is coming when and stick to it. It will increase engagement, loyalty and, perhaps most importantly, it will keep you sane.

3. Do it because the data stays so

You need to get on top of your analytics. All of the tools you need to make data driven decisions on types, times and tone of content are available to you for free.

Stick to what this tells you, make more of the good stuff, ditch the duds, and don’t get swept along in all of the latest trends. If you have tried a podcast and it works, do more. If you have experimented with a viral video and it flops, ditch it.

You will read a million blogs this January saying you simply “must try this new shiny online tool”, or you must get your brand on this incredible new social media channel. You really don’t, you just need some fit for purpose content and a plan.

Tom Irwin, Commercial Director at Sports Publications

Alwoodley Video Brief Completed

The Lost Art of Putting – Sports Publications’ latest release

The Lost Art of Putting

Transform your approach to putting

Does the stroke create the putt or does the putt create the stroke?

This is a fundamental question examined in the brand new book on putting written by Karl Morris and Gary Nicol

Titled ‘ The Lost Art of Putting’ Karl and Gary explore what could be getting in the way of you being so much better on the greens.

  • Have you spent a great deal of time trying to ‘perfect’ your stroke? Yet you seem to hole nothing.
  • Are you obsessed with start lines?
  • Do you have a house full of putting ‘gadgets’. Yet never seem to get many putts falling into the cup.
  • Has your putting got progressively worse over the years?

Then this is the book for you!!

With over 60 years combined coaching experience at the very highest level, Karl and Gary bring a refreshingly new perspective to the putting arena.

Having coached numerous Major winning and Ryder Cup golfers the ‘putting performance principles’ in this book have been tested at every level of the game

Full of practical and applicable advice ‘The Lost Art of Putting’ contains ideas to transform your putting from the very next time you play.

This book will help you become more child-like on the greens and less childish. The game of golf is not about finding ‘the’ way to do it but more a case of discovering, or perhaps more importantly uncovering, ‘your’ way to do it. The perspective and concepts they share with you in this book have the potential to liberate you so that you can experience what you are truly capable of on the greens.

Click here to buy The Lost Art of Putting on amazon.co.uk

Sports Publications homecoming for travel expert Chris Bertram

Golf World Top 100 Courses expert joins National Club Golfer

Sports Publications, the publishers of National Club Golfer, have appointed Chris Bertram – who has compiled Golf World’s Top 100 Courses rankings since 2010 – as their new Courses & Travel Editor.
Bertram is widely regarded as Europe’s leading journalistic authority on courses and resorts across the continent.
In his new role he will be responsible for: the company’s specialist quarterly travel title, Go Golfing; the new Courses section on nationalclubgolfer.com; a monthly Courses section in NCG; and spearheading what will be a comprehensive Top 100 Course and Resort rankings series.
“This is an exciting appointment for us as we believe Chris is the best in the business,” said Dan Murphy, Sports Publications’ editorial director.
“We are gaining someone with a unique and, as far as I’m aware, unrivalled breadth of experience of courses and resorts in Europe. That translates into instant credibility for our Top 100 rankings and our Courses section.
“I personally know Chris well, and have done for over 15 years. He brings a wealth of tradecraft and knowledge – in magazine terms especially.
“I’m sure our readers, both online and in print, will enjoy reading his work, whether that be a course ranking project, an interview with a leading architect or a historical essay on a great course.”
Bertram has overseen a comprehensive overhaul of Golf World’s Top 100 rankings over the past eight years. He has played all 100 courses in the magazine’s GB&I Top 100 and 88 of their Continental Europe list while also compiled their inaugural Resorts Top 100s in GB&I and Continental Europe.
His extensive writing on courses has led to him being invited to address the European Institute of Golf Course Architects at their annual conference.
“This was not an easily made decision, because it has been a privilege to edit Golf World’s Courses section and compile the magazine’s Top 100 series,” said Bertram. “I retain huge affection for Golf World, and am proud to have shaped its various Top 100 lists for the past eight years.
“However, Sports Publications have ambitious plans for the Courses side of the business and it was obvious to me that this is an exciting project to be a part of.
“Making this happen was the easy bit though; the challenge is to establish National Club Golfer as the leading European authority on courses generally and Top 100 rankings in particular.”
Having edited NCG magazine from 2002 to 2005, when he appointed Murphy as his successor and moved upstairs to the role of publisher, he knows the company extremely well.
Bertram starts the role in late April.
In the meantime, courses and travel queries can be addressed to Dan. Email d.murphy@sportspub.co.uk or call ‪0113 289 3979‬‬.

About Sports Publications

Sports Publications are the publishers of National Club Golfer, Lady Golfer, Go Golfing, Society Guide, Pro Trade +, The Golf Club Manager, Great Golf in England, BIGGA’s Your Course as well as nationalclubgolfer.com, lady-golfer.comand several other external titles.
A 2017 SMS report concluded that a massive 602,041 core golfers read NCG magazine, the UK’s highest circulating print golf title for the last five years, on at least an occasional basis. An impressive 69,893 golfers say that they never miss an issue of NCG.
Learn more at sports-publications.com