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13 Sep 2012 England Tour star backs drive to get more women into golf Melissa Reid, one of England’s brightest young golf stars, is backing the drive to encourage more women to take up the sport. Melissa is in action at this week’s Ricoh Women’s British Open at Royal Liverpool Golf Club on the Wirral.The 25 year-old is a four-time winner on the Ladies European Tour and travelled to Hoylake hoping to follow in the footsteps of former British champions such as Laura Davies, Karen Stupples and Catriona Matthew. As part of the nationwide Get into golf campaign, the Cheshire County Golf Partnership has organised a variety of initiatives around the Ricoh Women’s British Open designed to make it as easy as possible for women and girls to give golf a go. These range from golf in schools, taster sessions and discounted coaching for women and girls at clubs across Cheshire and Get into golf promotions at events like the Paralympics flame visit to Winsford and the Ricoh Women’s British Open at Hoylake itself. Other opportunities for women are available across the country as part of the Get into golf campaign. It’s run by the England Golf Partnership through its network of County Golf Partnerships, which work to grow the game, and it aims to inspire new golfers and returners. Get into golf opportunities include free or low-cost beginner courses with PGA professionals. They are a fun and sociable way to start golf – and a great way to make new friends. Melissa, a member of the winning Great Britain and Ireland Solheim Cup team, welcomed the moves to help women and girls into golf. She said: “The Ricoh Women’s British Open is a great chance to enjoy a first-hand view of the world’s best players – and show that golf isn’t just a sport for the boys,” she said. “The Road to Hoylake campaign means there are plenty of opportunities for any women and girls who have been inspired by what they have seen to give the game a go for themselves. “Free coaching and the loan of equipment means ladies of all ages and abilities can get into golf at their local club, driving range or through one of the schemes in the local schools. “So why not take the chance to see the great players at Royal Liverpool and then try the sport for yourself. Go to www.getintogolf.org today.” The world’s best women golfers are making their first visit to Royal Liverpool Golf Club from September 13-16 to battle it out for the prestigious title. Craig Thomas, county development office for the Cheshire CGP, said: “There has never been a better time for women and girls to get into golf. “So whether it be trying golf for the first time or returning to the sport, the clubs have the right schemes in place to help you. “Golf is not all about power but is a game that can be played by all ages and abilities, while becoming a member of your local club not only offers the chance to take up a healthy pastime, but also to enjoy an active social life.” Visit www.getintogolf.org and look at the activity map to find out more about Get into golf opportunities or call 0800 118 2766