Greens Maintenance Plan 2016 – 2019
Summer Season 2016
Reflecting on the summer season just passed, from a Greens Convenor’s / Greens Committee perspective, feedback from Members, Guests and Visitors as regards the Course has been extremely positive. The Greens in particular have received favourable comment from golfers from far and wide. Similarly, feedback from those participating in assorted medals or other competitions over the course of the summer, has been complimentary. All of this is very much to the credit of our Green Keeper, Mr Scott Macfarlane. It is accepted that there are areas on the Course where improvement could and will be made as we move forward. Taking account of the course topography, the great British weather and the challenging financial environment in which the majority of Golf Courses now operate, in short, the Course this summer has been maintained and presented in an extremely positive fashion. Scott, well done!
During the late summer the Greens Convenor / Greens Committee carried out a review of the current working practices that support the maintenance, development and presentation of the Course. A number of recommendations arose from this review, such matters are now being taken forward by the Management Committee.
In conjunction with the recommendations on working practices, walk round inspections of the Course were likewise completed by members of the Greens Committee, Green Keeper and the Greens Convenor. A multitude of suggestions and ideas were forthcoming. Further to such inspections a Programme of Works 2017 / 19 has been developed. At the centre of this ‘Programme’ are the following 4 key drivers, all of which are inextricably linked:
It is the position of the Greens Convenor / Committee that Playability and Enjoyment are specific to Members, Visitor and Guest. The aspiration is that the Course should deliver maximum playability and enjoyment: removal of slow play enhances enjoyment, and consistent with enjoyment, deliver affordability and value for money.
Manageability and Sustainability have been applied to the Course / Club. The Course needs to be maintained, improved and developed within set parameters / financial means and this needs to be sustainable long term. Critical to sustainability is retention of Members and recruitment of new Members.
The Programme of Work seeks to encapsulate the above whilst being mindful that the Course is effectively maintained by one full time employee. As the employer we have to respect and encourage an appropriate work life balance. Members will recall that in recent years the Club has moved from 2 to 1 full time Green Keeper, in this regard expectations of what was maintained / achieved previously now need to be managed accordingly.
As a flavour of the aspirations / intentions contained within the Programme there is a desire where possible to reduce the number and size of tees (reduced maintenance time), making greater use of the assorted tee areas. Members, Visitors, Guests will be at liberty to play from all tees – tees reserved for medals only will be ended.
Fairways will be enlarged on certain holes with a uniformity of “short – semi” cuts adjoining fairways throughout the Course. Areas of “rough” will be increased / decreased as appropriate.
A number of Greens will be enlarged to increase flag / pin placement options. Priority will be given to holes 1 to 4 in year 17/18 by the Green Keeper. In short, the Green Keeper will focus on Tees, Fairways and Greens during the summer season. There is an aspirations that volunteers will support edging, strimming etc. around the Course during the summer months.
The Programme of Works 2017 / 19 will be displayed on the Club’s notice board and added, if appropriate, to the Club’s new Website in near future. The Programme will remain as a “live” document over the coming three years and will provide a focus for the Greens Committee, Greens Convenor and Green Keeper. Members may wish to familiarise themselves with the planned programme, any suggestions / constructive comments are welcomed and should be directed to the Greens Convenor: the Programme can be added to! Similarly, any guidance from those who have previously fulfilled Greens Convenor / Committee roles is welcomed.
As mentioned above, critical to the success of the above agenda will be the assistance of those who have the capacity and capability to support the Club through volunteering. In the near future there will be a request for volunteers to assist with leaf clearance, fence repairs / painting, edging, strimming etc.. Should there be a willingness it is hoped that Volunteers would meet possibly on a Tuesday / Thursday morning for a couple of hours, weather permitting obviously! The Greens Convenor / Green Keeper have a list of ongoing tasks where volunteer support would be welcomed, hence any assistance will be greatly appreciated.