What a year it’s been for Matthew Gillingham.
Less than 12 months after being appointed Wilmslow Golf Club’s pro, the 30-year-old has been PGA Professional of the Year at Pro-Shop Europe’s recent inaugural golf trade awards ceremony – for which Golfmagic were invited to judge.
Matthew, who is only the Cheshire club’s fourth pro in its 121-year history, was understandably delighted when the host for the evening, former Ryder Cup winner Paul Way, handed him his Tipperary Crystal trophy in Wentworth’s glamorous ballroom.
“The past 12 months have been an amazing journey for me,” said Matthew. “Moving from Gleneagles in Scotland was not a move I took lightly, but I am delighted that I did.
“My team and I have worked very hard throughout the year to develop the products and services available at Wilmslow and developed good relationships with the members, visiting societies along with local businesses and schools.
“The work we have put in has certainly paid off with record numbers of members taking lessons and a large percentage of them going on to win competitions and tournaments.
“The junior section has really flourished with the Junior Team winning the Derbyshire and Cheshire League for the first time in the clubs history. Under my tutorage two of the squad have subsequently gone on to receive scholarships with the English Golf Union at Myerscough College in Preston.”
Tom Denby of the John Letters Academy was voted Junior Coach of the Year, while Steven Wilford of Oakmere Park Golf Club and Laura Harvey of Darlington Golf Club were jointly awarded PGA Assistant Professional of the Year.
On the equipment front, Motocaddy’s S1 Digital beat off stiff competition TaylorMade’s R11 and Titleist’s ProV1 to win Product of the Year.
Sales director Neil Parker said. “Our thanks go to Pro Shop Europe for staging such a great event and hopefully it will become a regular fixture in the golf industry calendar.”
Elsewhere, Cobra Puma Golf pipped Galvin Green and Mizuno to Manufacturer of the Year.
The full list of winners...
PGA Professional of the Year
Matthew Gillingham (Wilmslow GC)
PGA Assistant Professional of the Year
Laura Harvey (Darlington Golf Club) & Steven Wilford (Oakmere Park Golf Club)
Junior Coach of the Year
Tom Denby (John Letters Academy)
Pro Shop of the Year
Steve Pockneall (Dudsbury Golf Club)
Product of the Year
Motocaddy S1 Digital
Manufacturer of the Year
Cobra Puma Golf
Sales Agent of the Year
Dave Westwood (Cleveland / Srixon)
PR Team of the Year
Professional Sports Group