Wednesday, January 20, 2021

Art Deco in Doncaster

We're big fans of Art Deco style, design and architecture and we've been remembering our trip to Doncaster last year and our stay at the superb Earl of Doncaster Hotel in Bennetthorpe.




Roaring twenties in the 2020s.


We couldn't have asked for a better spot - Art Deco magnificence and the hotel was right next door to a park with a Crazy Golf course in it.

Crazy Golf at Elmfield Park in Doncaster
The Crazy Golf course at Elmfield Park

Danum House was another nice Art Deco building in the town centre.

Danum House in Doncaster

We're looking forward to getting back out on our travels, exploring new places and revisiting our favourite spots when it's safe to do so in the future.

Putt18 World Pro League 2021

The 2021 Putt18 World Pro League tees-off today with players from the UK, Australia, New Zealand and the USA competing in rounds using the Putt18 Golf Putting Game Mat between now and April.

Putt18 World Pro League 2021

More information can be found on the Putt18 website and the 2021 Putt18 World Pro League Facebook Group.

From 20 to 1 in 2021

This time last year we'd already visited 20 minigolf courses!


What a difference a year makes. By this time last year we'd visited 20 minigolf courses as our Crazy World of Minigolf Tour got off to a flying start.

As it stands today we've been to one course in 2021. And that was just passing by it during a walk on New Year's Day.

Our travels in the first days of 2020 took us to miniature golf venues in Oxford, Birmingham, Manchester, Northwich, Doncaster and Castleford.

Crazy Golf at Sunnybank Gardens in Hatfield, Doncaster
The last new course we played together before the pandemic was the Crazy Golf course at Sunnybank Gardens in Hatfield, Doncaster on the 19th January 2020

Minigolf in the time of coronavirus

Prior to the coronavirus pandemic we were closing in on visiting the final 40 courses of the original 600 we set out to play in 2006. We were also very close to hitting 1,000 course visits overall.

We were still able to visit a total of 46 courses in 2020, including revisits. 15 of them were new layouts to us. We visited eight courses during the pandemic (March to December), playing two of them.

Gator Adventure Golf at Escape Entertainment in Chorley
The last new course we played was the Gator Adventure Golf at Escape Entertainment in Chorley in August

New minigolf courses in the UK

We've continued to research, monitor and promote the game and know about at least another 90 new courses now open, being built, in development or planned to open in the UK. It'll be nice to swing by them when it's safe to get back out on the road again.

Pop-up Crazy Golf at Coal Drops Yard in King's Cross, London
The last pop-up Crazy Golf course I visited was at Coal Drops Yard in King's Cross, London last February

Related blog posts

Putt18 Battle of the Brits competition

Update from the Putt18 Battle of the Brits putting tournament.


I competed in the Putt18 Battle of the Brits putting tournament yesterday evening and scored a total of 281 over 72-holes - a new personal best four round total.

Putt18 Golf Game Putting Mat

My scores were as follows:
  • Round 1 - 68
  • Round 2 - 73
  • Round 3 - 73
  • Round 4 - 67

My round of 67 was also a personal best.


Eight British players are competing in the event during January.


More information on the Battle of the Brits competition can be found on the Putt18 Facebook Group.

The 2021 Putt18 World Pro League tees-off today with players from the UK, Australia, New Zealand and the USA in action over the coming months.

Putt18 2021 World Pro League

Check out the Putt18 website for more information.



Putt18

Minigolfers, golfers and other players from around the world have been playing the Putt18 golf game mat for fun and in competitions during the pandemic.

The roll out putting mat allows players to compete on an 18-hole course from their own home - and against other people around the world. Players tee-off from one of six tee boxes and aim at each of the three holes in turn, starting with a par-4, followed by a par-5 and ending on a par-3. They then move to the next tee position and take aim at the holes in turn again.

Emily and I competed in the first Putt18 Four Nations Cup in May last year and I played in the inaugural Putt18 World Pro League that was completed in October 2020.

The Putt18 World Pro League was a fun and interesting way to keep on putting and compete during the pandemic. It was also a first in terms of getting players from around the world to compete on the same playing surface in a regular league format.

With no end in sight to the coronavirus pandemic and with Stockport in the highest level of restrictions it looks like we'll be doing a lot more putting at home and socialising via competitive isolation activities for some time to come.

Link:


Related blog posts:

Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Minigolfing in Doncaster a year ago today

This time last year we were playing Crazy Golf at Sunnybank Gardens & The Yorkshire Ice Cream Farm in Hatfield, Doncaster.


Crazy Golf course at Sunnybank Gardens in Hatfield, Doncaster


Crazy Golf course at Sunnybank Gardens in Hatfield, Doncaster

Little did we know then that it would be the last course we'd play together until we managed a round again in August last year!

Crazy Golf course at Sunnybank Gardens in Hatfield, Doncaster

Crazy Golf course at Sunnybank Gardens in Hatfield, Doncaster



Visit Sunnybank Gardens & The Yorkshire Ice Cream Farm on Facebook for more information.


The trip to Doncaster was our last holiday too and while exploring the town we found a Crazy Golf course at Elmfield Park in Bennetthorpe and a layout at Hexthorpe Flatts Park.

Join our Crazy World of Minigolf Tour enewsletter mailing list

Monday, January 18, 2021

Crazy Golf at Vickersway Park in Northwich

A look at the Crazy Golf course at Vickersway Park in Northwich, Cheshire. January 2020.


Crazy Golf at Vickersway Park in Northwich


We've now been to 956 courses since September 2006.

American Golf National Adventure Golf Championship

A look back at the American Golf National Adventure Golf Championship at The Belfry.

The American Golf National Adventure Golf Championship is on YouTube (from 26m 55s).

American Golf Adventure Golf Championships at The Belfry

It was brilliant to compete in the event alongside Peter Jones at The Belfry Hotel & Resort in 2017 and showcase tournament miniature golf to a national TV audience.

American Golf National Adventure Golf Championship at The Belfry
Peter Jones in action in our semi-final match-up

I'm looking forward to playing in minigolf competitions again in the future.

Richard Gottfried playing hole 3 of the Ryder Legends Mini Golf course at The Belfry
Playing hole 3 of the Ryder Legends Mini Golf course at The Belfry

Saturday, January 16, 2021

The nation's 'craziest' putting couple

Check out the new issue of Today's Golfer magazine (March issue, number 409) to see a minigolf feature on us!

North Bay Crazy Golf in Scarborough

In October 2015 Richard was named 'Officially Britain’s Craziest Golfer' by Today's Golfer magazine and we were both named 'Britain's Barmiest Golfers' by the magazine in November 2016.

It's nice to have now been named as 'The nation's 'craziest' putting couple' too!

Friday, January 15, 2021

The retailtainment and minigolf boom

Minigolf is a big part of the retailtainment boom, with courses opening as standalone entertainment activities, or as part of large shoppingtainment leisure offerings in malls, high streets and retail parks.

Retailtainment

Some of these retailtainment activities are permanent, while others are pop-ups catering to a mix of audiences, from children and families, to adults looking for competitive socialising fun.

Miniature Golf has grown in popularity in the last decade and has moved from only being a traditional outdoor seaside summer activity to become a year-round game that can be played indoors, outdoors and at pretty much any time of the day.

A number of high streets, retail parks and shopping malls are now home to minigolf courses, with more new venues planned to open.

Minigolf is also a popular addition to boost footfall, create awareness and attract people to a location. Businesses also use portable and temporary minigolf layouts for product launches and promotions.

New minigolf courses in the UK

In 2020 we found out about a lot of new minigolf courses opening in the UK and already this year we've heard about four new locations in planning and development.

New minigolf courses in the UK

We know of 91 new miniature golf courses opening, in planning or under construction since the pandemic hit the UK.

Check out the new courses page for more information.

Thursday, January 14, 2021

New minigolf courses in the UK

In 2020 we found out about a lot of new minigolf courses opening in the UK and already this year we've heard about four new locations in planning and development.

New minigolf courses in the UK

We know of 91 new miniature golf courses opening, in planning or under construction since the pandemic hit the UK.

Check out the new courses page for more information.

Wednesday, January 13, 2021

A Couple of Putts see in the New Year

Many thanks to our friends Tom & Robin at A Couple of Putts for sending us this ace new miniature golf postcard.

A Couple of Putts Happy Holidays postcard 2020

The minigolfing duo are seeing in the New Year by posting a hole-in-one video from a different course each day throughout January to #Make2021aHoleInOne.

Happy New Year! We’re feeling hopeful about 2021 and we’re kicking it off with some fun. Let’s have an ace of a new year!

Check out the A Couple of Putts website for more information.

The Minigolfer's Guide to Marketing

While there is some down time in lockdown why not check out my minigolf marketing ebook - The Minigolfer's Guide to Marketing.

The Minigolfer's Guide to Marketing

Created after years of playing, promoting and consulting the book gives players, courses, federations, associations and clubs a guide to the world of marketing.

You can buy the ebook from Amazon and Kobo.

Miniature Golf Day 2021

Miniature Golf Day is always on the 21st September. This year that will be a Tuesday.

Miniature Golf Day is always on the 21st September

Tuesday, January 12, 2021

New indoor Crazy Golf opening in London

New Gravity Active Entertainment centre opening in Wandsworth, London.


A new indoor Crazy Golf course will be opening as part of a new Gravity Active Entertainment centre being created in a former Debenhams store in London.

A new Gravity Active Entertainment centre with Crazy Golf is opening in Wandsworth, London
The new Gravity Active Entertainment centre is planned to open in Summer 2021

The new Gravity Active Entertainment centre in Wandsworth will also be home to a bar & restaurant, pool, darts, high ropes, go-karting and more.

There are a number of Gravity Active Entertainment centres in the UK. The venue at Sol Central in Northampton opened last year and is home to a New York-themed minigolf course. The Maidstone venue has an Urban Street Mini Golf layout.

The retailtainment and minigolf boom

Minigolf is a big part of the retailtainment boom, with courses opening as standalone entertainment activities, or as part of large shoppingtainment leisure offerings in malls, high streets and retail parks.

Some of these retailtainment activities are permanent, while others are pop-ups catering to a mix of audiences, from children and families, to adults looking for competitive socialising fun.

Miniature Golf has grown in popularity in the last decade and has moved from only being a traditional outdoor seaside summer activity to become a year-round game that can be played indoors, outdoors and at pretty much any time of the day.

A number of high streets, retail parks and shopping malls are now home to minigolf courses, with more new venues planned to open.

Minigolf is also a popular addition to boost footfall, create awareness and attract people to a location. Businesses also use portable and temporary minigolf layouts for product launches and promotions.

Link:


Related blog posts:

Monday, January 11, 2021

New Boom: Battle Bar in Glasgow

A new Boom: Battle Bar with crazy golf and other indoor games is proposed to open in Glasgow.

A new Boom: Battle Bar with crazy golf and other indoor games is proposed to open in Glasgow.

Boom: Battle Bar Glasgow will be the fifth venue from the brand.

As well as an indoor crazy golf course - known as 'Crazier Golf' - Boom: Battle Bar at the St Enoch Centre in Glasgow will no doubt be home to other competitive socialising sports and games such as axe throwing, darts and shuffleboard.

My friend and crazy golf rival Simon Brown played the Boom: Battle Bar 'Crazier Golf' course at the Brewery Quarter venue in Cardiff last November.

The first Boom: Battle Bar opened at the Castle Quarter shopping and entertainment centre in Norwich in July 2020.

There are also plans for Boom: Battle Bars to open in Liverpool and Oxford in 2021.

Visit the Boom: Battle Bar website for more information.

Boom: Battle Bars are a relatively new entrant to the world of competitive socialising and retailtainment. A number of shopping malls, town centres and retail parks are adding minigolf, crazy golf, adventure golf and other experiential entertainment and activity leisure offerings to their sites to attract and retain customers.

New Minigolf Putting Course to open in Chester

A new artificial grass Putting Course is planned to open at Westminster Park in Chester, Cheshire.


A new artificial grass Putting Course is planned to open at Westminster Park in Chester, Cheshire

The layout will be on the site of a former grass Putting Green.

Westminster Park is also home to a Pitch & Putt course.

We're looking forward to playing both the Pitch & Putt and the new Minigolf Putting Course on our Crazy World of Minigolf Tour in the future.

The course is being designed and built by Creative Golf Design. You can see a computer animation of the layout in the video below.

Sunday, January 10, 2021

Crazy World of Minigolf Tour enewsletter

Sign-up to our minigolf newsletter.


Crazy Golf at The Imperial Hotel in Torquay, Devon


The Arnold Palmer Putting course in Skegness, Lincolnshire

Check out the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour enewsletter archive to see news and updates from our adventures.

Congo Rapids Adventure Golf at Ufford Park Hotel in Suffolk

Wednesday, January 06, 2021

National Miniature Golf Day 2021

National Miniature Golf Day takes place on the second Saturday in May. In 2021 that is Saturday, 8th May.

National Miniature Golf Day takes place on the second Saturday in May

Tuesday, January 05, 2021

Bruntwood Park Pitch & Putt in Cheadle

Our first miniature golf course visit of the year.


Bruntwood Park Pitch & Putt in Cheadle

We had a walk round Bruntwood Park in Cheadle on New Year's Day and while there took a look at the Pitch & Putt course.

Bruntwood Park Pitch & Putt in Cheadle

Bruntwood Park Pitch & Putt in Cheadle
Rules for the time of Covid

Bruntwood Park Pitch & Putt in Cheadle
A view to the 7th tee

Bruntwood Park Pitch & Putt in Cheadle
A frosty bunker

Bruntwood Park Pitch & Putt in Cheadle
An icy green

Bruntwood Park Pitch & Putt in Cheadle

The layout was the second miniature golf course we visited, and 695th overall on our Crazy World of Minigolf Tour, when we moved to Cheadle Hulme back in 2016.

Visit the Bruntwood Park Pitch & Putt website for more information.

Social distancing minigolf

The Bruntwood Park Pitch & Putt course was the first place saw social distancing measures in place in person. That was in May last year.

A look back at 2020

The last course we swung by in 2020 was the grass Putting course at Park Square in Cheadle Heath on the 29th December.

Before the first national lockdown hit and our out-of-home putting was paused we'd visited 948 courses since September 2006.

We had a very strong start to the year and visited 20 courses in the first 20 days of 2020.

We were still able to visit a total of 46 courses in 2020, including revisits. 15 of them were new layouts to us. We've been able to visit eight courses during the pandemic (March to December 2020), playing two of them.

We've now been to a total of 956 courses on our Crazy World of Minigolf Tour.

Leisure Orienteering at Bruntwood Park in Cheadle

While having a walk round Bruntwood Park in Cheadle on New Year's Day we spotted this nice old sign for Leisure Orienteering at the park.

Sign for Leisure Orienteering at Bruntwood Park in Cheadle
The sign is at the Pitch & Putt kiosk in the park

It's one of the few remaining signs in the borough that carries the old council logo. We've seen others near the Stockport Pyramid, at Woodford Recreation Ground and on Adswood Road.

The logo for Stockport Leisure Services
The logo for Stockport Leisure Services

I REMEMBER LITTLE CHEF

Do you remember Little Chef?


Many thanks to Megan Clark-Bagnall for sending me this brilliant badge from her mission to visit all of the remaining Little Chef diners in 2017 - a total of 41.

Every Little Chef badge
A very nice addition to my collection

What a quest. Find out more on Megan's Little Chef website.


While the brand was an ever present through my lifetime, I don't remember stopping at Little Chef's, or even Happy Eaters, when my family were on the road for day trips and holidays. Perhaps there weren't any on the routes from Abingdon to Barry Island or Minehead. I do however remember going to the Little Chef in Berinsfield, Oxfordshire for a meal in the late 80's or early 90's.

We also used to regularly pass by the Little Chef in Flimwell while en route to Hastings for minigolf tournaments.

The last Little Chef closed its doors in 2018. Interestingly the Little Chef website is still online.

Monday, January 04, 2021

Putt18 - Battle of the Brits

A new tournament for Putt18 players in the UK.

Minigolfers, golfers and other players from around the world have been playing the Putt18 golf game mat for fun and in competitions during the pandemic.

As well as official events players with the Putt18 game mat have been having friendly matches with the games shown online.

Putt18 Golf Game Putting Mat

The next tournament is a Battle of the Brits taking place across the UK later this month.

Check out the Putt18 website for more information.

Putting at Home

Emily and I competed in the first Putt18 Four Nations Cup in May last year and I played in the inaugural Putt18 World Pro League that was completed in October 2020.

The Putt18 World Pro League was a fun and interesting way to keep on putting and compete during the pandemic. It was also a first in terms of getting players from around the world to compete on the same playing surface in a regular league format.

With no end in sight to the coronavirus pandemic and with Stockport in the highest level of restrictions it looks like we'll be doing a lot more putting at home and socialising via competitive isolation activities for some time to come.

Related blog posts:

- Putt18

- Putting at Home

- Competitive Isolation

New Boom: Battle Bar opening in Oxford

A new Boom: Battle Bar with crazy golf and other indoor games is planned to open in Oxford this year.


A new Boom: Battle Bar with minigolf and more is planned to open in Oxford this year

Boom: Battle Bar Oxford will be the fourth venue from the brand.

As well as a minigolf course - known as 'Crazier Golf' - Boom: Battle Bar in Oxford will no doubt be home to other competitive socialising sports and games such as axe throwing, darts and shuffleboard.

My friend and minigolf rival Simon Brown played the Boom: Battle Bar 'Crazier Golf' course at the Brewery Quarter venue in Cardiff in November last year.

The first Boom: Battle Bar opened at the Castle Quarter shopping and entertainment centre in Norwich in July 2020.

There are also plans for a Boom: Battle Bar to open in Liverpool in 2021.

Visit the Boom: Battle Bar website and Boom: Battle Bar Oxford Facebook Page for more information.

Boom: Battle Bars are a relatively new entrant to the world of competitive socialising and retailtainment. A number of shopping malls, town centres and retail parks are adding minigolf, crazy golf, adventure golf and other experiential entertainment and activity leisure offerings to their sites to attract and retain customers.

Friday, January 01, 2021

What a year of blogging

Blimey, that was quite a year of blogging here on the Ham & Egger Files!

The Ham & Egger Files Blog

Thank you for reading.

Many thanks to everyone who has contributed photos, info and guest posts too.

It's all much appreciated.

All the very best for 2021.

Here's to 2021 - dates for your diary

Now that 2020 is behind us, here's to 2021.


2021

National Miniature Golf Day 2021

  • National Miniature Golf Day takes place on the second Saturday in May. In 2021 that is Saturday, 8th May.

Miniature Golf Day 2021

  • Miniature Golf Day is always on the 21st September. This year that will be a Tuesday.

We wish you all the very best for the year ahead.