Plan your 2020 Team Building activities

Taking time out from the daily grind occasionally is a necessity for employee wellbeing. Bringing your team together in a relaxed environment will give people the opportunity to socialise, away from their desks – a proven way to boost productivity.

So why not start the year as you mean to go on and plan in your 2020 team building activities.

Not all businesses can feasibility commit to the time, nor expense, of away days, so another solution is to host an activity within the workplace.

And what better activity to offer than a round of office mini-golf!

Mini golf is perfect for team building activities, it is fun, it is active and requires no prior ability.

Turn your breakout area into a fun crazy golf course

It’s winter, no one wants to venture out in the cold and wet. But getting a break away from the desk is essential for productivity.

Facebook HQ hired our Funsize crazy golf course for that very reason.

Facebook HQ 9 hole Course

The Fun Size Course was perfect for a room of this size. This is our standard 9-hole portable golf course.

The package consists of:
27 x 1msq astro grass tiles
Foam edge bumpers
Assorted obstacle pieces
9 rubber headed putters
9 low bounce balls
Scorecards, clipboards and pencils
Number cones 1-9

Short on space?

Our crazy golf course can be set up within the office. Putterfingers mini golf courses can be set up indoors or outdoors, and the modular nature of the courses means that they can fit around existing furniture and office layouts.

This is exactly what Worldpay did. They hired a 6-hole course to set up within their office space to celebrate the day that the company joined FIS. The organiser planned this activity in secret so it was a surprise for his employees when they arrived at work the next day. He even got to get some practice in the evening before while setting up. Unfair advantage perhaps?!

Worldpay_FIS office mini golf

Team building across the miles

If your company has multiple offices, it can be tricky to bring employees together in a social setting when locations are miles apart.

One easy and cost-effective solution could be to hire a course for each location and compete via a live-feed scoreboard.

Zone Digital found this worked perfectly for connecting their Bristol and London employees.

Zone Digital Live Link Bristol Office Open

As we have multiple courses available to hire at any one time, there is no reason this idea couldn’t be scaled up and ran across several offices. Our golf courses can be delivered anywhere in the UK via courier, store away easily and fit in standard lift shafts – we would be hard-pushed to find a venue that cannot be accessed!

Branded courses

Our mini golf courses can be hired as they are, or branded with company logos and other insignia by prior arrangement with us. All courses are also available for purchase, either to create a more permanent fixture or to store and use when the occasion demands – the equipment is fully portable and easy to set up.
Branding the course to the company helps people to equate the company with fun, which boosts morale. Show employees some love, and they’re more likely to love you back. Some high-profile companies, such as Google and LinkedIn, have minigolf courses in their offices. So be like Google. Make your company one of the best to work for.

Buy a course to use for all your corporate events

Putterfingers mini golf courses are available to buy as well as hire. You could purchase a course to use for employee socials, for family-fun days and entertaining clients.

Orms-Golf-Open-Families-1

One or two holes can also be easily transported and set-up at trade shows – mini golf makes a great addition to exhibition stands as a fun and engaging activity for delegates.

Exhibition_Golf_Reputation_1

Looking for multiple activities?

If you are planning on running a slightly larger team event and what to mix of activities, then talk to us about….

Table Tennis

Table tennis is great fun for corporate events, networking, office parties, conferencing and team building events.

We supply full-size, competition tables and personalised folding table tennis plus everything you need: balls, bats and nets.
You can have your own unique bespoke Compact Tables with the playing surface professionally printed with photos, logos, or any artwork you want to send us. Use block colours. Put a hashtag on them. The possibilities are endless.

table-tennis-union-jack

Footpool

Footpool is a fusion between football and pool. The pockets are goals in this fusion between pool and football, and the added bonus is there is no offside rule! The rules of 8-ball pool apply: your opponent gets an extra shot if you foul and potting the black after potting all your balls wins the game.

Footpool is available to hire from a few hours to a full day and requires a set-up space of 25sqms.

football-pool

Get in touch

If you are planning an event and are looking for activities to hire, or to buy, then get in touch with the Putterfingers team. We can create a bespoke package to meet your objectives.

Email: office@connectedshopping.com

Tel: 01284 848330

Putterfingers’ highlights of 2019!

Crazy golf has become massively popular in the UK, and although we at Putterfingers cannot perhaps take all the credit, we know we have certainly contributed to the trend. It has been another busy and exhilarating year at Putterfingers, and, dear readers, we want to share some of our highlights. So, pour yourself that beverage of choice, and read on!

It would not be 2019, without a preamble from yours truly… Looking back on 2019, we can see the news was dominated with topics Brexit and climate change, and people like US President Donald Trump, Prince Andrew, and even Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. The topics, the people, and the news related to them were not particularly cheery; in fact, I would venture to say they are rather stressful. Luckily, our Putterfingers’ team knows how to deal with stress, check out our blog on stress relief, and it seems the rest of the country is certainly catching on. So, now, seriously, let us review the news and Putterfingers’ highlights and crazy golf news of the past year.

Highlights of living the high life!Good Hotel London rooftop crazy golf

We don’t want to brag – except that we do want to brag: Putterfingers’ fun and fabulous portable mini golf courses were hired on several occasions for events at some fabulously posh venues.

• The Good Hotel, London’s floating hotel, had quite the view and backdrop for one of our mini-golf courses.

• When innovators (and geniuses) at Future Space in Bristol collaborate and envision the future, guess what they see in it? Putterfingers’ mini golf!WeWork_Monument_Eastcheap

• WeWork decided that The Monument in London was a great rooftop space to host a round of crazy golf. I do wonder if perhaps there was a backdrop competition between The Monument and The Good Hotel…

• We usually provide instructions with our portable crazy golf courses, but I suppose if you are an architectural firm like Orms Architects, then you design – or redesign – your own obstacles. We also do always associate the word fun with Putterfingers, and lo and behold, Orms Architects used our mini-golf course for their Family Fun Day (held at Gasholders in Gasholders_London_Orms-Golf-Open-FamiliesLondon). Need we say more?
https://putterfingers.co.uk/blog/2019/putterfingers-visit-top-uk-venues/

Church news

Yes, perhaps this caused (and may still be causing) a wee bit of controversy, but if the Archbishop of Canterbury made the suggestion that people should have fun in a cathedral, who are we to argue? Putterfingers did not actually provide the mini golf course featured in Rochester Cathedral, but we are certainly intrigued – and available.

BBC Rochester Cathedral minigolf
BBC Rochester Cathedral crazy golf

The BBC and Putterfingers!

When the BBC covered the World Crazy Golf Championships, reporter Kevin Peachey got in touch to discuss trends in the crazy golf industry. This interest from the Beeb shows how popular minigolf is becoming in the UK and how interest in it as a significant leisure pursuit and competitive sport is growing. The BBC did feature insight from our logistics manager, Mr. Richard Clarke, Richard’s name is in the article, as is Putterfingers. First the BBC, then the inevitable next step will be tea with Her Majesty, the Queen, and then of course a knighthood….

BBC article_Crazy golf just got serious

Crazy golf industry booming in 2019

Thanks to Mr. Richard Gottfried, champion miniature golfer and the illustrious author of the Ham and Egger Files, we are always kept in the loop about all crazy golf news. Mr. Gottfried has made it his goal to play all the mini/crazy golf courses in the UK, but with new courses opening up so frequently, that goal is never quite attainable. Not that we think Mr. Gottfried seems to mind.

Back in 2006 when Richard and Emily Gottfried embarked on their Crazy World of Minigolf Tour, there were around 600 courses, now in 2019, they estimate there are just over 1,200. It just goes to show, that the competitive socialising industry really is booming in the UK. And the Gottfried’s mission becomes greater, but more enjoyable we’re sure.

Here are some of his recent posts about the booming crazy golf industry.
New Minigolf Courses in the UK
New Course Alerts
Crazy World of Minigolf

New Christmas obstacles from Putterfingers

There is a reason we are renowned, and it is not just because the BBC know who we are. We are mini golf innovators, and to prove it, we have some created our Christmas themed obstacles for this year’s festivities.

Christmas crazy golf

We are always looking to innovate new obstacles that can be easily transported with our portable crazy golf course. If you do happen to have any specific requests then do get in touch and our design team are more than happy to discuss!

Saving the best event for last

Near the end of the summer, Putterfingers was on hand to help with the entertainment during the Ipswich Town FC Family Fun Day. What an exciting event this was, and filled with products by Putterfingers, Photo Cutouts, and Fun4Guests. Aside from our miniature crazy golf courses we also provided Football Pool, mega bricks, and a photo cutout board of super tall Ipswich Town goalie Tomáš Holý. We were very thrilled to be able to able to partake in such a fantastic event supporting a local football club.

Crazy Golf at Ipswich Town Fanzone

Many thanks to you dear readers, loyal fans, and new and returning customers for helping to make 2019 such a spectacular year. We wish you all a Merry Christmas and happy holidays, and all the best in 2020!

Get in touch

Email: office@connectedshopping.com
Tel: 01284 848330

 

Fun Christmas Ideas For Golf Lovers

By Guest Blogger, Jordan Fuller

Christmas is a fun time for everybody except for those in the winter trying to get on the course, the days are short and the weather is poor. Here we look at different gifts and other ideas for golfers that need to scratch the itch around Christmas time.

 

Miniature Course, Major FunPortable crazy golf

For golf lovers around the world, it is hard to drive past a miniature golf establishment and not want to go for a quick round. Putter Fingers allows you to buy your own miniature golf set for your home. Yes, you can own your own nine-hole mini-golf course in your living room or backyard.

If purchasing a miniature golf course doesn’t fit into your budget and you are still looking for a fun activity to entertain guests, consider renting a system. Not only will the course be a holiday hit, but you also won’t have to worry about where to put it once your guests leave!

Custom Ropes Course

Instead of getting a course with a huge layout, consider getting the Putter Fingers obstacle rope set. These can be set up in minutes and has endless customization possibilities. You can even set them up for a country club wedding on the practice green for easy fun and entertainment.`

Jokes on the Tee BoxNovelty golf balls

This novelty set of four golf balls will have your group falling over from laughter. With golf balls that explode on impact or make putting impossible, these are sure to delight for golfers not being pranked. An exploding ball is a perfect way to set the tone of fun on the course before the round even starts.

Stay Afloat off the Tee

For the golfer that seems to find water in the desert, these golf balls float on the surface for easy retrieval to “lower” their score and keep them dry. These golf balls are fluorescent yellow and orange are easily seen from the fairway, rough, or tee.

Night Time Golf Roundsflashing_golf_balls

Golf is hard enough, playing at night should be about fun! When the sun goes down, reach into your bag to get these light-up balls to easily find any shot on the course. These make tracking shots during evening rounds easier than ever.

New Pair of Golf Shoes

Golfers are always looking to up their game, new golf shoes help give better traction during wet or dewy rounds. Modern golf shoes are able to be worn as sneakers so they can double as walking shoes for when you want to take your furry friend out for a tour of a local course.

Rubber Headed Golf Clubs

Miniature golf courses come with the iconic rubber headed mallet style putters. Instead of borrowing a club each time, get your own! There are a variety of different sizes and styles for you to personalize and make your own. Don’t worry about borrowing a club anymore!

Who said winter means you can’t enjoy golf? Between miniature golfing sets and joke golf balls, continue to enjoy golf no matter the weather. The indoor miniature golf set is the perfect gift or activity to keep guests busy during holiday parties! Get your significant other or family member back for years of pranks and let everybody get a laugh!

 

Need more ideas? Get in touch with Putterfingers.

Tel: 01284 848330

Email: office@connectedshopping.com

Experience-led event planning

Experience led events

The Christmas party season used to be a time for drinking to excess, embarrassing yourself in front of colleagues, followed by a kebab and falling asleep on the night bus home. It still is for many, and why not, work hard, play hard and all that. However, the trend in socialising has shifted towards experience-led ways to let their hair down. And the leisure industry has listened. New venues are opening up week after week on our high streets, quenching our thirst for competitive socialising with our peers.

If you are planning an event and looking to create more of an experience, outside of the binge drinking culture, then here are some fun activities that will be Instagrammable, healthy and competitive.

1. Crazy GolfGood Hotel London_RoofTop_floating hotel

Yes, as mini golf masters, we are biased to big golf’s little brother (or sister). But it is a no-brainer for event planners. The sport is rapidly growing in popularity with crazy golf venues popping up in our towns and cities. It’s great for all ages and abilities so perfect for keeping all guests entertained. If you don’t want to venture out, our portable, modular course can be set up anywhere, providing the ground is flat, so crazy golf can come to you instead.

Footpool Hire_ITFCFanzone_31stAug192. Footpool

Footpool, a wildly popular new fusion of pool and football, is storming the UK! Potting balls with your feet using football skills is an idea anybody can grasp, and there isn’t much of a learning curve which means people of all ages can just jump on and have fun. Footpool is extremely popular at parties, marketing events and product launches, in breakout rooms for employees, at exhibitions and private functions.

Table Tennis Hire

3. Table Tennis

Yup, good old ping pong. First played in Victorian England, it is a true vintage game as well as an Olympic sport. You can have free play on your ping pong table or run a tournament with prizes to keep guests on their toes when they play. It’s especially fun for corporate events, networking, office parties, conferencing and team building events.

Mega Bricks xmas-tree4. Mega Bricks

Challenge party guests to a big build with huge ‘Lego’esque bricks! Guests can go freestyle with the Megabricks or use build a variety of pre-designed objects or turn it into a competition to see who can build something the quickest!

The beauty of experience-led events, is that guests will have fun without feeling like a zombie at work the next day. So give it a try for this year’s Christmas party and see how it is received. With the help of event hire companies there is no shortage of activities to choose from. Many activities are designed for those with little ability and all of which are bound to go down a treat in your social circle.

Get in touch

Interested in hiring one of these activities? Get in touch with Putterfingers and we can discuss your requirements.
Tel: 01284 848330
Email: office@connectedshopping.com

Putterfingers crazy golf hired at top UK venues

Putterfingers have had a busy Summer of crazy golf hires. Our portable courses have been hired in all corners of the UK and here is a selection of some of the fabulous venues hiring crazy golf for events.

1. The Good Hotel, London

Floating boat hotel at Royal Victoria Dock, on the banks of the River Thames. overlooking the Emirates Cable Car. The hotel is close to London ExCel and O2 Arena. Putterfingers modular golf course was set up on the rooftop terrace and the capital provided a stunning backdrop at the event.

Good Hotel London_RoofTop_floating hotel

2. Future Space, Bristol

Located on the UWE Campus in Bristol, Future Space is at the centre of the region’s growing tech and life sciences sectors. The building offers workspace, laboratories and a collaborative community for innovators to grow their ideas. The Future Space community came together in a communal space within the modern building for a team event. Crazy golf was the centrepiece and provided a collaborative team bonding experience on the day.

Future Space_Bristol_innovative workspace

3. WeWork, the Monument, London

Office & co-working space on the edge of the city in Eastcheap. Iconic landmarks such as the Tower of London and The Monument are a stone’s throw away. Co-workers came together on the rooftop to putt away the stress with a round of minigolf.

WeWork_Monument_Eastcheap

 

4. Anstey Hall, Cambridge

Anstey Hall is a former country house built in the 17th century. A Grade I listed building in Trumpington Cambridge. Now a fabulous wedding venue, offering bed and breakfast and a beautiful backdrop for events.

Anstey Hall_Cambridge_wedding venue

5. Gasholders, London for Orms Architects

A refurbished building linking to London’s industrial past. 123 cast iron columns took 2 years to refurbish into canalside apartments and penthouses, build in a circular aspect around an atrium. Orms Architects used the space for a family fun day. They even design their own crazy golf obstacles for the occasion.

Gasholders_London_Orms-Golf-Open-Families

Putterfingers offer a portable, modular crazy golf course to hire or buy for events. The course is suitable for indoor and outdoor use and due to the portable nature – we cover all areas of the UK. The craze of crazy golf is growing in popularity for events of all different types and is an excellent inclusive activity to add to your event.

Get in touch with the team if you would like to know more:

office@connectedshopping.com

Tel: 01284 848330

Crazy golf and footpool entertains fans at #ITFC

 

This weekend, Putterfingers kept fans entertained with portable crazy golf and footpool at Ipswich Town FC Family Fun Day #ITFC. The club hosted fans in their Fanzone at Portman Road prior to their League One tie against Shrewsbury Town.

 

Great activity for families

Crazy Golf was the perfect option for a family focussed event. The game can be enjoyed by adults and children alike, no prior ability is needed.

Crazy Golf at Ipswich Town Fanzone
Families enjoying a round of mini golf at Portman Road

Suitable for outdoor use

Our course is suitable for outdoor events. The rain held off on for the pre-match event on Saturday but had we had a downpour the course would dry quickly after a soaking thanks to the in-built drainage.

Mini golf outdoors at ITFC Fanzone
Dry and bright day at Portman Road as fans play golf

Footpool at ITFC Fanzone

Footpool is an exciting mix of football and pool. It’s a challenging and competitive hybrid game, with the rules of pool but pot with your feet – a perfect addition to a football-centric event. Fans at Portman Road were able to release their inner Marcus Stewart and Ronnie O’Sullivan at the same time!

Footpool Hire_ITFCFanzone_31stAug19

 

Footpool - Hybrid game of football and pool

Photo Opportunities

Fans also had the opportunity to meet Town midfielders Teddy Bishop and Tristan Nydam at the event.

If fans missed their chance to get a snap with the players, Photo Cutouts were on hand to give visitors the chance to pose as a player with a full size face-in-the-hole board of goalkeeper Tomas Holy.

Tomas Holy face-in-the-hole board

Fan engagement

Fan Zones are a great way to engage with football fans before and after the match event. Family-focussed activities such as Crazy Golf and Footpool are great for interacting with fans of all ages.

Putterfingers are able to customise our courses with branding on bumpers or custom made course obstacles. Ipswich Town used our Mega Bricks to create a focal point with initials of the club.

Giant bricks create focal point at Portman Road Fanzone

Get in touch

If you would like to hire mini golf or Footpool for your Fanzone then get in touch with our team to discuss your requirements.

Our sister company, Photo Cutouts, can also create a bespoke photo board to interact with fans at the ground, and create a lasting memory.

Contact our team on 01284 848330

Email: office@connectedshopping.com

Minigolf for the masses

The installation of a crazy golf course in Rochester Cathedral has caused quite a stir to say the least. But love it or loathe it, it does highlight the accessibility of the mini-golf as an activity.

Rochester Cathedral crazy golf

BBC Rochester Cathedral minigolf
© BBC Rochester Cathedral crazy golf

The Archbishop of Canterbury recently commented that cathedrals should be a place to have fun. So organisers of the Rochester Cathedral event aimed to do just that. As congregation numbers were in decline, they also wanted to attract a younger crowd.

Why minigolf?

So why did the organisers choose mini-golf to achieve this?Kids playing crazy golf

  • Crazy golf is great for novices – you don’t need any prior ability, you can literally pick up a putter and off you go
  • It is fun – navigating your way through a series of obstacles, whether they be bridges, tunnels, spirals or a laughing clown’s mouth – players are bound to enjoy themselves in their mission to succeed.
  • Brings people together – minigolf is an activity that can be enjoyed by all the family, whether aged 8 or 80, with no fitness levels or prior ability required – it is a sport that everyone can get involved in.
  • Developing social skills – kids will learn sportsmanship and fair play on the minigolf course. It is also a good lesson in self-control and perseverance to get a result.
  • Educational benefits – Hand-eye coordination is required for a good putt. Kids can develop it while having a fun time.

With such great benefits to the game, you can see why it would be chosen by event organisers as an activity with mass appeal. Rochester Cathedral has been busy since the course opened, so whether you feel the setting is right, crazy golf has certainly drawn in the crowds and has got people talking.

The increasing popularity of crazy golf

As experts in the portable crazy golf hire industry, we have worked on a wide range of events. The activity is hired to entertain a broad spectrum of guests/visitors from kids at school fetes, family entertainment in town centres to businesspeople at corporate events, trade shows and exhibitions.

Good Hotel London rooftop crazy golf

Within UK towns and cities, leisure facilities are expanding to meet with public demand to be entertained and crazy golf venues are opening up everywhere.

We asked World Crazy Golf Champion, Marc Chapman for his opinion on the UK minigolf craze:
“I think people are increasingly looking for cheaper and nearer family entertainment and experiences. Things that are easily accessible [no barriers or fear factor of playing] and don’t take too long to do [around an hour or so]. If there is food and drink nearby that also is a big pull factor. The rise of the stay-cation due to the current political climate is certainly having an influence too.”

With more crazy golf venues opening every week, it would seem the sport is set to rise. Keep an eye on our social media for information on new courses opening across the UK.

Get in touch

If you would like to hire or purchase a Putterfingers mini golf course for your event then give us a call and we’ll talk through the course size options and different obstacles.
Call us on 01284 848 330
Email: office@connectedshopping.com

 

The Great British Picnic, Part 1

National Picnic Month

Apparently, July is National Picnic Month, though I am a firm believer any month the weather is even somewhat warm is a great time for a picnic. You can picnic close to home; you can picnic further afield; you can picnic with a crowd and play some outdoor games, and you can have a lovely solitary picnic with only a good book as your companion. Yes, a picnic takes a little planning and a bit of effort, but fear not, for, as always, I am here to the rescue with my picnic experience, picnic tips, and a picnic checklist.

Sometimes, with all our everyday responsibilities and today’s hectic pace, we forget to slow down and truly enjoy something simpler – and tech free. I feel like I have almost missed a part of summer by becoming bogged down (and rather overwhelmed) by the various things that we all deal with. So, I pondered, I contemplated, and I ruminated (whilst using my handy thesaurus), and I concluded my list of chores will not vanish, but we as a family should disappear from the everyday and go out for a drive, a ramble, and a picnic. Naturally, my decision was correct: the list of chores patiently waited for me, and our family had a delightful day out picnicking in the great British outdoors.

While picnics of yesteryear were certainly lavish – and oftentimes rather posh – affairs, I will warn you that my approach to picnics is a bit more plebeian, as I do not have servants and/or personal assistants to plan and cook for me. Nevertheless, rest assured that I will still deliver recipes for thoroughly tested tasty treats, though you will have to check in next week for them. In the meantime, I have provided some sage picnicking tips.

Picnic tip # 1:

If you are planning a day trip somewhere, give the children a little project and them google the destination. It seems like no matter how hard we try, we never can quite manage to get the children to unplug from their techie world, so I propose that they might as well put it to some productive use; an added bonus is that they might actually become rather interested and they will look forward to the day out. Here is a website from the trusty National Trust to get them started:
https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/lists/perfect-picnic-spots

Picnic tip # 2:

Picnic crazy golf

If you are planning a picnic somewhere close to home – say in a nearby field or park – you could combine your picnic with playing some outdoor games. We at Putterfingers favour portable mini golf – but our bias should not come as a surprise. And why not picnic on the green, whilst putting on the green? Putterfingers are the mini-golf masters (it says so right on our website!), and if you provide the picnic, we’ll provide the mini-golf. I am also reminding all you mini-golf fanatics that Miniature Golf Day is less than two months away (Sept 21st), so make sure you get plenty of practice in.

Picnic tip # 3:

With websites galore to peruse for picnic ideas, it is sometimes easy to be taken in by all the seemingly perfect images. Real life is not like that, and I would advise making peace with the fact that things aren’t flawless. There is rarely a perfect day, and should things not quite go according to plan, then it is best to have a laugh and look on mishaps as an adventure, and as a good story to tell.

Picnic tip # 4:wasps plague picnic

This probably will not be the most popular tip, but here goes: don’t be annoyed with wasps if they show up at your picnic. I do not jest. Wasps are actually beneficial insects as they are also pollinators (though not necessarily to the extent bees are), and they are natural pest controllers in your garden and in the wild. In case you do not believe me, I have included a couple of rather reliable links below. If wasps do decide to join your picnic, I find what helps is giving them their own little portion of fruit (and/or protein as well apparently) to feast on.
https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-48302414

https://www.nhm.ac.uk/discover/what-do-wasps-do.html

I hope I have piqued your interest in a great British picnic. Make sure to tune in next week for some truly easy picnic recipes, and my handy picnic checklist.

 

https://putterfingers.co.uk/
Email: office@connectedshopping.com
Tel: 08450 570 321

 

 

The crazy world of UK minigolf

Guest Blog by Richard Gottfried.

Crazy Golf is booming and every week news comes in of a new minigolf course opening up somewhere in the UK.

Whereas Crazy Golf was – and to a large extent still is – a traditional seaside and summer holiday game, new minigolf venues are tapping into the public’s demand for new ways to be entertained. And Crazy Golf is a game that most people can easily pick up and play.

Splash Point Mini Golf by Emily Gottfried
Splash Point Mini Golf by Emily Gottfried

The game has changed massively since we first started playing and blogging about it in 2006. Back then there were two indoor courses, in Felixstowe and Great Yarmouth. Now, there are nearly 100 indoor places to play!

Recent new courses include Ghetto Golf in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Championship Mini Golf course at Clarkes Golf Centre in St Helens, Galaxy Quest Adventure Golf in Sunderland and the Mini Golf course at the Palace Fun Centre in Rhyl. There’s also a new indoor Mr Mulligans Adventure Golf centre opening in Basildon this month.

Minigolf is growing as a way to attract people, grab attention and have fun, with pop-up and portable courses increasingly found at exhibitions, fetes, weddings and promotional events.

England’s first-ever Crazy Golf course opened in Skegness in 1926 and the seaside resort now boasts ten miniature golf courses on the seafront, including the Atlantis Adventure Golf course which opened this year.

Minigolf has been played in Worthing’s Denton Gardens since July 1924 when two grass Putting courses were created. 95 years later and people are still enjoying the game there, with the 18-hole Splash Point Mini Golf course celebrating ten years of fun with its tricky course full of twists, turns, windmills, loop-di-loops and other obstacles to tackle.

Major inland towns and cities around the UK are finding themselves home to multiple venues, with London, Manchester, Birmingham and Newcastle growing as hotbeds of Crazy Golf courses. Places such as Leicester, Derby, Glasgow, Belfast, Nottingham, Cardiff, Edinburgh and Leeds are also getting in on the action with multiple new places to play opening up this year.

The good news for minigolf fans is there are plenty of places to have some putting fun in the UK.

Glo-Golf at the Riverside Bowl, Andover
Glo-Golf at the Riverside Bowl, Andover by Emily Gottfried

Last month Emily and I made the landmark 900th course visit on our Crazy World of Minigolf Tour when we had a round at the North Bay Mini Golf course in Scarborough, North Yorkshire.

When our travels began back in September 2006 there were around 600 courses in the UK. We’ve now been to 862 courses in the British Isles and 39 overseas. The North Bay Crazy Golf course was the 520th we’ve played in the last 13 years as a number of courses we’ve visited have been closed, derelict, flooded or abandoned.

There are now more than 1,000 courses in the UK and as detailed here, an almost never-ending procession of new ones opening their doors. We’ve still got a few traditional Crazy Golf courses to visit, as well as a number of the new Adventure Golf courses and indoor minigolf bars to play.

It’s always really nice to find unique courses and the North Bay Crazy Golf course in Scarborough is that. There are some very good hole-in-one opportunities and a few tricky second putts on the colourful course. What was great to see was that the borders had felt on them that allowed skilful shots to be rewarded.

 Course-900-North-Bay-Crazy-Golf-in-Scarborough-by-RE-Gottfried
Course 900 – North Bay Crazy Golf, Scarborough

Our travels have taken us all over the UK and we love visiting new places, experiencing new things and meeting new people. It’s also interesting when we return to a place some years apart, as was the case with Scarborough. Apart from a brief visit to the North Bay and the one course that was there in 2009 we’d not explored the area.

It was brilliant chatting to the course owners. They’ve got a real passion for the game and have created a fun and challenging layout. They told us that the course record was a 20, but not many players get close to that. I was pleased to hear that as I’d had a round of 24. If the weather hadn’t gotten worse and if the day was longer I would’ve had another round or two to try and beat the record.

Since our 900th course visit our Crazy World of Minigolf Tour has continued to roll and we’re currently at 911 course visits.

Richard Gottfried blogs about minigolf at The Ham and Egger Files. He’s also the Curator of the Crazy Golf Museum and author of The Minigolfer’s Guide to Marketing.

Putterfingers appear in BBC feature on minigolf

Putterfingers were delighted to be interviewed recently by a top BBC reporter for a feature article about crazy golf which sat on the front page of the BBC News website for over a week. This interest from the Beeb shows how popular minigolf is becoming in the UK and how interest in it as a significant leisure pursuit and competitive sport is growing.Crazy golf_mini golf hire

When the phone rang one day at Putterfingers Towers, our logistics manager Richard Clarke answered it in the usual way: “Good morning, Putterfingers, Richard speaking. How may we surprise and delight you and your guests with an expertly-crafted and professionally delivered bespoke crazy golf solution today?”

Or he might have just said, “Hello, Putterfingers.”

When the voice on the other end announced that it belonged to Kevin Peachey, Personal Finance and Consumer Affairs Reporter at the BBC, and that it wanted to talk to us about the crazy golf business for a feature article, Richard said, “Of course. I am a gold mine of statistics and information on all aspects of the manufacture, hire, sale and installation of miniature golf, crazy golf and other putting-based games in the UK. Please ask me anything you like.”

Or he might have just said, “Um, okay?”

The ensuing twenty minutes saw Mr Peachey draw facts out of Richard’s head via the time-honoured method of asking him questions and listening to the answers. Finally the golden soundbite Mr Peachey was looking for fell from Richard’s lips: “The business of crazy golf has a fair bit of growth left in it.”

This gem of industry insight made it into the final draft of the feature article Crazy Golf just got (a bit) serious, which resides on the national BBC news website.

BBC article_Crazy golf just got seriousIt’s a good read, with profiles of some top British minigolf players, some info about the tournament circuit, equipment used in matches, a few of the rules of competition, a bit of minigolf history, some current leisure trends and mini golf’s place in the leisure market.

We were particularly chuffed that the top BBC journo read through our blog posts as part of his research, and used some of what he found there, particularly the history of mini golf (this and this).
“Anyone tempted to train for potential Olympic glory may want a course at home”, writes Peachey. “A self-assembly “supersize” nine-hole crazy golf course, with assorted obstacles, 18 putters, 18 balls and 1,000 scorecards certainly sounds like the ultimate kidult gift.

funsize-minigolf-course

But it does not come at pocket money prices. It is yours for £3,000.

More affordable, perhaps, is hiring a four-hole course for just over £200.

Selling and renting these courses is Putter Fingers, a business based in Thetford in Norfolk, which bizarrely is an off-shoot of a software company which started selling courses mainly to show off its ability to make websites.

“The business of crazy golf has a fair bit of growth left in it,” says logistics manager Richard Clarke, explaining that putters are the biggest seller.

“Schools, corporate event organisers, couples looking to entertain their guests at a wedding, and birthday entertainers are all regular customers.”

Our business continues to grow along with national interest in minigolf, and we’re really happy to play a part in it.

If you are interested in hiring or buying one of our courses for your event or venue, then please get in touch on 01284 848330 or email office@connectedshopping.com