On Thursday 15th June, individuals and businesses came together to take part in a charity golf tournament at Woodbury Park Golf Club to support, raise awareness and raise funds for the England and Wales Blind Golf Association. Since 1989, the charity has aimed to provide visually impaired individuals with the opportunity to play golf. Thanks to all of the teams who contributed, an amazing £1,500 was raised for the charity.
One of the teams to take to the green was Shire Leasing, a leading provider of asset finance in the UK, with members including John Flounders (Head of Agricultural Sales), Charlie Craddock (Account Manager) and business contact Steve Bird. The team also consisted of Shire’s corporate sponsee, who was also the only blind golfer playing in the tournament, Steve Cunningham. Keynote and motivational speaker Steve (who runs his own registered charity, Blindvision), lost his eyesight at 12 years old. He has since gone on to push boundaries, winning numerous awards, representing England in various blind sports tournaments and breaking records on land and sea. The current challenge he has set is blind golf, which he has been practising since 2022.
As well as helping to raise funds for the England and Wales Blind Golf Association, the four went on to secure a remarkable 2nd place position, demonstrating the benefit and impact that the charity has delivered for blind golfers and the importance of inclusion in sports. Teams also partook in a blindfolded golf challenge where one member from each team had to do a blindfolded tee shot off the course’s infamous 18th tee. Out of 15 players, only 2 managed to clear the water and get close to the pin. This was a great team-building exercise for all of the teams who were working together (scroll to the bottom of the page to watch John’s challenge attempt).
Commenting on the event, John Flounders said, “The event helped raise funds for the England and Wales Blind Golf Association, which will go a long way in providing visually impaired individuals with the opportunity to play golf. Shire Leasing’s continued support for Steve Cunningham and his pursuit to break barriers is an inspiration to others to step out of their comfort zones. We all had a great time on the green today and coming second; that just goes to show how diverse and inclusive teams can thrive as long as members work together as a team”.
To find out more about England and Wales Blind Golf Association and how you can help, visit their website: Welcome – England & Wales Blind Golf (ewblindgolf.co.uk)