AN INSPIRING golf coach has won a national award in recognition of his outstanding achievements working with juniors.

Aaron Cox was named Participation and Development Coach of the Year at the England Golf Awards 2022.

He has been hailed as the driving force behind revamping the junior programme at Blackwell Grange Golf Club, in Darlington, after first starting off as assistant professional.

From a handful of juniors joining in lessons in those early days, Aaron now has over 120 kids involved in the club’s academy structure. The presence of so many enthusiastic juniors around the academy has helped energise the whole club and made it one of the most vibrant set-ups in the country.

And with Aaron’s help, a new six-hole academy course was constructed on site, allowing the club to offer ‘on-course’ teaching to those younger players who otherwise would not be able to tackle the championship course.

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The Northern Echo: Golf coach Aaron CoxGolf coach Aaron Cox

The staging of Mini Majors – complete with a mini Masters Green Jacket and pint-sized Claret jug – has proved a huge hit with junior golfers.

The boys and girls who enrol for lessons are taught according to Aaron’s ‘Junior Development Book’ which takes kids through a seven-stage process of learning the game of golf.

The club has also embraced England Golf’s Girls Golf Rocks programme – specifically designed to introduce beginner girls aged 5-18 to the game. And not even the pandemic could halt Aaron from hosting regular coaching sessions via Zoom.

After picking up his award, Aaron explained his approach to getting youngsters into golf.


He said: “It’s a case of getting off the couch and finding kids. I went to primary schools having made calls and sent emails and then went into the receptions so they could put a face to a name.

“I just wanted kids to play golf as we had the facilities at Blackwell Grange.

“It was then up to me to try and retain them and to create a product that the kids and parents would believe in. And also to make sure the kids could see themselves getting better.

“It was lots of work, but it’s not a job to me. I love doing it.” 

The Northern Echo: Blackwell Grange Golf Club, DarlingtonBlackwell Grange Golf Club, Darlington

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