Since the last Member’s Update, we have seen many member's competitions, team matches and external events take place here at the club.
This year’s Fairhaven Trophies was played from the 29th April to the 1st May. Entries for this year’s tournament were exceptionally strong and the ballot fell at a record low of -1.3. Those members who had the opportunity to watch the rising stars of the game, all commented on the exceptional talent on display and this was evidenced by the Champions, Ben Brown and Katie Poots, both of whom broke par over the four rounds.
During the course of the championship, Josh Berry also broke the Blue Course record with a fabulous round of 65.
More recently, we saw golfers from across the world participate in Regional Open Qualifying, with competitors from as far as New Zealand starting their quest to participate in the 150th Open Championship at St Andrew's. The course was presented magnificently and the clubhouse operation was equal.
Tuesday 14th June saw the return of the club's annual charity golf day. Since its inception, the club has raised over £115,000 and this year saw a donation to Brian House of £20,000.00. Our thanks must go out to all those members who participated and supported this years event. We were fortunate to receive support from a wide range of clubs and businesses, without whom the event simply would not be the success that it is.
Our collective thanks must go to all the members who volunteered their time to make all these fantastic events a huge success.
As the summer progresses, we have a lot of fantastic events for members to enjoy. To keep up to date with the latest member events, please visit our ‘What’s On’ Page which can be accessed by clicking here or by selecting the page at the top of the member's homepage.
FOOD AND BEVERAGE
Since taking our positions, Paul Pendergest (Director of Food and Beverage) and I have battled with numerous challenges mainly brought about by the pandemic. The impact of this has seen a significant battle in the recruitment of staff and this does continue. I regret to advise that after careful consideration, our Head Chef, Mel Morris, has decided to accept a position elsewhere. During her time at the club Mel has worked tirelessly and I cannot thank her enough for her dedication and professionalism during this period, which has seen some excellent foundations created.
In addition to Mel, I can also advise to members that Emma Hill will be leaving her position as Clubhouse Operations Manager. Having started with the club in September 2017, Emma has been a valuable member of the team and we will be sorry to see her depart. Having only had the opportunity to work with Emma over a short period, she was always very professional and went about her job diligently. Again, I must thank Emma for her tireless efforts during her time at the club.
As you will appreciate, the above creates further significant change within an already disrupted department. Our focus must now turn to how we move forward, creating stability in these unsettling times to ensure the member experience is not affected.
To ensure this, we look to one of our former stalwarts of the kitchen, Ian Barclay. Over the past 8-months, Ian has proved his worth, creating excellent support to our previous Head Chefs, although the turnover in this position remains too high to deliver a consistent quality of food. Moving forward, Ian will lead the kitchen team, allowing us to lean on his experience whilst we navigate this challenging period. We continue to work hard in recruitment to ensure future disruption is minimised.
The role of Clubhouse Operations Manager is one that again needed to be carefully considered in order to bring stability to the club. Whilst the day-to-day operations of a Food and Beverage department are similar to other non-golf venues, golf clubs are unique in their structure and functioning and with this in mind we felt it was an important factor to consider.
Over the past 12-months, Todd Russell has done an exemplary job, steering the ship through some turbulent water. I simply cannot thank Todd enough for everything he has and continues to put into the position, both in terms of dedication and enthusiasm. Many conversations about progressing forward are being held in order to create a stable foundation. With this in mind, it has been agreed that the operation will be reviewed in order to try and create such stability and further updates will be provided when available.
The Golf Course
I am sure that many will agree with me when I say the course currently looks terrific, with the tall fescues and newly formed run off areas creating additional definition around the course.
The greens remain in fantastic condition, with the team recently combating the challenges presented by the annual meadow grass (POA) which often flowers at prolific rates at this time of year, this is signalled by the white seed heads which become visible on the greens. Despite a small disruption to the trueness of the putting surface a couple of weeks back, the teams proactive management of the POA was able to prevent the disruption often experienced during its strong period of growth.
Weather conditions of late have been excellent for growth (wet and warm). This has resulted in the rough really flourishing and with this in mind it is important that we reiterate the information which was published last year in terms of the rough management programme.
In order to regularly combat the thick, lush and dense grass species found at the bottom of our areas of rough, we must continue to allow the tall fescue grass to grow increasing self-population. This accompanied with more proactive raking and scarifying the rough will remove natural nourishment, preventing it from settling in the sub-surface. This will help to create a leaner soil profile which favours the finer Fescue, as the rank thicker grasses are more nutrient hungry.
In the meantime, please can I ask all members to ensure pace of play is at the forefront of our mind. If there is any doubt about whether you will be able to find your ball (within 3-minutes), a provisional ball should be played.
Ready golf is encouraged, further guidance from the R&A can be viewed below:
It is fantastic to see members utilising the practice ground, especially after the extensive work which was carried out due to the storm damage this winter. The usage is certainly up and with this additional problems are created, namely an increase in the loss of golf balls from the facility. With this in mind, I would ask members to be courteous when using the facility, refraining from hitting clubs which can go over the back fence.
Additionally, it would be a suitable time to remind members that practice on the course is not permitted, and careful consideration should be given to this whilst using the chipping area. Defining the boundary of the course in this area are two white stakes. Members should take caution, especially prior to participating in a competition, to ensure that they do not practice beyond this point as this will be viewed as practice on the course.
Sadly, in recent weeks we have seen an increase in the number of trespassers on the course who appear to be entering via the crematorium grounds. Joe and I are in direct contact with the management to ensure we put a stop to this when we can, however should any members be golfing in the evening and encounter such individuals, a polite reminder that the golf course is private property and they should not be entering for their own safety. I would fully understand if any member did not feel comfortable in making such statements to trespassers.
In each member's update we have communicated the importance of sharing the collective responsibility of maintaining the course to the very highest standards, and this update will be no different. We are still seeing basic golfing etiquette overlooked, with pitch marks evident and bunkers unrepaired. Please can I again ask members to assist us with maintaining the golf course to the very highest standard.
Joe Barnes recently published his latest members blog which is available to read by clicking here.
CLUBHOUSE AND ESTATES
Our newly appointed Director of Maintenance and Estates, Chris Hibbert and I felt it would be beneficial to provide members with an update on maintenance and estates.
Around the club there are several areas in need of either completion, development or remedial works. Within the greens compound there are several areas in need of work for statutory compliance regulations. We have recently had to install a temporary facility for chemical storage to ensure that the risks associated with previous practices were mitigated. In addition, there are several issues relating to the welfare facilities in the compound, and as shown below we are beginning to see structural challenges within the area.
Whilst in the infancy, these are all areas which need full investigation in order to provide future foundations for the operation.
The borehole remains a priority for redevelopment works and is considered a key investment for the club, both in terms of future financial benefit but also for environmental reasons, removing our need to draw water from the mains.
Around the clubhouse there are several areas under review at present, ranging from the disruption to the snooker facility, to upstairs toilets through to adaptable office and meeting space. Again, discussions are in their infancy but we will be looking to bring quotations in for such future developments.
There are several items being monitored at present, but initially, I would ask members to ensure all external doors are closed behind them, especially those leading out of the locker rooms, when exiting the clubhouse.
Our team of dedicated volunteers who look after the gardening around the clubhouse continue to do an excellent job. Should any member wish to join them in their weekly activity, please let either Lindzi or myself know.
I would like to take this opportunity to remind members that recognised golf attire is required on the golf course and when using the practice facilities. This ensures style, comfort and safety. Therefore:
- Denim wear is unacceptable, as are tracksuits, t-shirts, tops designed for other sports.
- Please wear shirts/tops inside the waistband, with the exception for ladies where the top is designed otherwise.
- Full-length trousers should not be tucked into socks unless under waterproof trousers.
- Approved golfing footwear with hard or soft spikes must be worn.
- Shorts and skirts must be tailored or designed for golf, and not designed for other sports. “Tailored” is defined as being made of chino style material with a conventional waistband, including belt loops, and conventional hip pockets (no cargo or patch pockets, unless designed by a golf manufacturer).
- Socks, when worn with shorts/skirts, must be either white or match your outfit or shoe colour. In all cases they must be sports socks.
- Adverts and slogans should not be worn, but discreet manufacturer’s logos are acceptable.
Club staff have been advised to decline access to anyone not wearing appropriate attire when accessing the course and/or practice facilities.
Passport Scheme Update
We are pleased to advise that we have recently agreed to welcome Trentham Golf Club onto the passport scheme. The club is easily accessible, located close to the M6 (Junction 15) and major roads (A34, A50, A500), and with a rich history dating back to the late 1800's, although the Club was only formally founded in 1937.
We are delighted with the addition to the scheme and look forward to hearing about great golfing memories made at a wonderful club.
In the past month, there has been a spike in the number of positive cases in the region. Week ending the 10th June there had been a 94% increase in the number of positive cases in Fylde.
With this in mind, we would like to remind members to continue following the guidelines, which for the avoidance of doubt state:
“If you have COVID-19, you can pass on the virus to other people for up to 10 days from when your infection starts. Many people will no longer be infectious to others after 5 days.
- try to stay at home and avoid contact with other people for 5 days
- avoiding meeting people at higher risk from COVID-19 for 10 days, especially if their immune system means they’re at higher risk of serious illness from COVID-19, even if they’ve had a COVID-19 vaccine
This starts from the day after you did the test.”
We ask for your help and assistance in retaining the safe environment we have here at the club by following the government guidance.
Mark Duncalf | General Manager | July 2022