Last week the eyes of the golf world were on Scotland as The Renaissance Club in East Lothian hosted the first top-level women’s golf event since lockdown at the Aberdeen Standard Investments Ladies Scottish Open.
The world’s best female players travelled to Scotland to compete in a bio-secure bubble following months of careful planning, which not only represented the return of professional women’s sport in Europe but also the return of international events to Scotland.
And while the event, which was won in dramatic style following a four-way playoff by American Stacy Lewis, once again showcased Scotland to a global audience dreaming of visiting the country again soon, it also delivered a host of benefits to the local community and delivered on Scotland’s commitment to equality and accessibility.
A key highlight from the week included a donation of £27,000 raised through tournament sponsors and partners for the East Lothian Foodbank, part of The Trussell Trust, providing a meaningful impact of hosting the event in the region. The event also welcomed the first Nigerian to hold a LET card, Georgia Oboh, into field as a sponsor invite while the country’s NHS Heroes were also recognised through on-course boards and branded pin flags.
A host of incredible content was captured and posted throughout the week on tournament’s content hub.
Everyone connected with the Aberdeen Standard Investments Ladies Scottish Open deserves a huge amount of credit for playing a part in not only returning women’s sport at the top level but in bringing back major international events to Scotland.
It was a hugely significant step and I’m proud of the role VisitScotland and EventScotland played alongside our partners at IMG, Aberdeen Standard Investments and the Scottish Government among many others.
While we were obviously disappointed that no spectators could attend during the week it is a positive first step and has provided a great number of learnings to inform best practice as we plan for the recovery of the events sector.
The attention now turns to the AIG Women’s Open at Royal Troon to complete the two-week run of women’s golf events in Scotland as the country looks forward to welcoming the return of Major Championship golf to Scotland.