Club Management and Challenges
We are so fortunate as a Club to enjoy the dedication of Management, Staff and Committee Members who contribute so much to provide us with an exceptional Golf Club. The Covid-19 restrictions curtailed activity on the course, but the work did not stop to ensure that our Club continued to be well-managed and alert to opportunity to re-establish play.
Initially; Chair of Finance – Ray Panter, and our Club Secretary – David Maskery, took a fine grade tooth-comb to our expenditure and removed all non-essential spending during the closure. The Club took difficult decisions to ‘furlough’ appropriate staff; as Chair of the Personnel Committee it felt brutal, yet necessary. Not nice!
With no prospect of seasonal income from Green Fees, Golf Societies and bar takings, Ray informed The Management Committee that, as a result, we would be missing more than £100,000 in income for the financial year to September 30th 2020.
Successful Membership Drive
Planning and Development, led by Nick Duncan, brought forward plans to boost membership of our Club to offset some lack of income and to deal with stubborn membership numbers that had not increased in recent years despite having a large amount of vacancies. This drive, innovation and enthusiasm has resulted in more than 60 members joining us since lockdown. This would be welcome at any time, but given the closure of the course for nearly two-months this is remarkable, and reaffirms my confidence in our wonderful Golf Club. Mary, our Club Captain, and David have necessarily been going the extra mile to interview and bring on-board our new members. I really hope that each new member settles into their new ‘home of golf’ and feels most welcome.
Club Development and Highly Valued Support
More work in the background continues with the House Committee led by Sue Masser. Unseen, due to the closure of the clubhouse, our inefficient heating and hot water boilers have been replaced by state-of-the-art kit and relocated.
Bob Moore has kept our greenkeeping staff well informed and safe working with Simon; our Course Manager. Trevor Pearce, Chair of Bar & Catering is eagerly planning our return to Clubhouse facilities.
We are indebted to the Sub-committee Chairs for their commitment on an entirely voluntary basis, for the good of our club.
Head Professional Recruitment
The Club’s advertisement for a Head Professional, to replace the irreplaceable, attracted 29 applications which were given in-depth, individual consideration by a Sub-group formed from the Management Committee. Sadly; as part of the recruitment process, we have only taken 11 applicants to stage two of the recruitment process and necessarily had to let down 18 other applicants. There is a very strong field of candidates and we are making selection decisions based only on the needs of the Club. Restrictions willing; we hope to make a final choice towards the start of July so that there may be a smooth transition towards handover at the end of October for Malcolm and Jane after 40 years of wonderful service at the Club.
Getting Back To Golf
My sincere thanks to the vast majority of members for their patience and mutual respect enabling a steady return to golf for us all. We have all faced ‘rationing’ of availability on the course and the need to book tee times. It’s not quite the same without the opportunity to meet-up after golf in the bar or on the terrace, or to join-in for social events. Special thanks to all volunteer starters providing cover for the 1st tee, for 11 hours on every day since the course re-opened. I arrived to do my, planned stint only to find that Pete Dowse had beaten me to it, driving from Southampton to be on the 1st tee at 07:15; that really sums up ‘the spirit’ of Alresford Golf Club.
I certainly think we all value our Club more than ever and hope for a full and safe return to the Clubhouse when Boris permits.
Chairman of the Management Committee
From the Club Captain
On 13 May after 8 weeks (of torture for some) Tichborne Down stopped being a dog walking, bike riding paradise for the local population and returned to that which it has been since 1890.
While the ‘system’ allowing us to play is not the norm, we are back on the course we love, no doubt hitting some good and some not so good shots – no change there!
The situation remains that competitions are cancelled until 1 July.
Thus I have little (make that nothing) to report, however CAPCOM will be meeting shortly to discuss next steps.
No cartoons this month but I hope enjoy the video.
Absolutely one of the best with regards to this lock-down, but don’t do the entire routine in one session, please … … … save some for another day!
Continue to keep safe
All the records are being broken, in my year as Captain, we’ve had the wettest February the warmest April and now we’ve just enjoyed the hottest, driest May … … from floods to talk of a hosepipe ban in as many months!
I’m pleased to see so many of you have been out on the course in pairs, behaving extremely well, despite conditions of ‘self distancing’ and ‘strict times’. There are however still a few Ladies who’ve not yet played, I would love to hear from you 01962 733229 or please drop me a line & let me know how you are & if I can either play or fix you up with a game. Even 9 holes is better than nothing.
Regarding Tuesdays we have done well booking up the available slots which are earmarked for us. I would like to concentrate your minds & if any one would like to record their Stableford points & email the results by the evening there will be a prize of golf balls every Tuesday for 1st & 2nd. Photo of card or just result. This is a relaxed low key idea to get us back into playing competitively & not compulsory.
On Friday, very early, I sat with the players list on the first tee & found that
quite a few of the men are playing informal scoring with a ‘competitive edge’. All comments noted, they enjoy getting round in 3 hours.
Do look into the Pro’s Shop, if possible, as Jane has some super well priced summer clothes.
Lady Member of the Month
Catherine Carberry ….. Alresford Scrubbers
Catherine has been galvanised during Lockdown initiating an army of members in making a variety of scrubbs, masks, headbands, bags etc. There are now over 60 ladies mostly from the Club (too numerous to name) all of whom have been wonderfully productive. They have delivered the finished articles to the local hospitals, surgeries and care homes & thoroughly enjoyed being employed & useful. Well done Ladies.
A couple of our Junior girls, Rosie & Jasmine have been baking, watch this space!
I’m sure we’ll hear soon that we can play in 3’s and 4’s and the Cloakroom will be open so small steps starting to happen at last.
Match Committee Report
The results of the Men’s Winter Eclectic have been worked out. There was no countback and in a very close contest there was a worthy winner!
- 1st with an ‘outstanding performance’ and a score of 54 was:
Ashley Wright (receiving £55 shop credit)
- 2nd was a 2-way tie on a score of 56:
Steve Drake ; Paul Goodhew (each receiving £40 shop credit)
- 4th was a 2-way tie on a score of 56.5:
Gary Mugford ; Mike Johnson (each receiving £29 shop credit)
- 6th was a 3-way tie on a score of 57.5:
Louis Parker ; Alan Powell ; Lee Feast (each receiving £14 shop credit)
- 9th was a 3-way tie on a score of 58:
Matt Hill ; Chris Stephens ; Nick Duncan (each receiving £10 shop credit)
- 12th was a 4-way tie on a score 58.5:
Jim White ; Stuart Smith ; Pete Whiting ; David Forest (each receiving £5 shop credit)
The complete result is in the Results Section.
It is noticeable that in many bunkers there are large footprints, size 9 and above, and no attempt has been made to smooth them out. As there are currently no rakes in the bunkers it would be a courtesy to other players, if as you exit from the bunker, to smooth the sand over where you have been with your club or your foot.
If you are unfortunate enough that you ball comes to rest in something
like one of these footprints, the R&A and CONGU have allowed the introduction of a temporary Local Rule for you to prefer your lie in the bunker.
Local Rule: Preferred Lies in a Bunker
When a player’s ball lies in a bunker, the player may take free relief once by placing the original ball or another ball and playing it from this relief area:
- Reference Point: Spot of the original ball.
- Size of Relief Area Measured from Reference Point: 6 inches from the reference point, but with these limits:
- Limits on Location of Relief Area:
- Must not be nearer the hole than the reference point, and
- Must be in the bunker.
- The sand in the Relief Area may not be smoothed before the ball is placed.
In proceeding under this Local Rule, the player must choose a spot to place the ball and use the procedures for replacing a ball under Rules 14.2b(2) and 14.2e.
Penalty for breach of this Local Rule: General penalty (2 strokes).
This local rule is approved by the R&A and CONGU and shall apply during the period of Covid-19 restrictions or until it is withdrawn.
Mobile Score Entry
Club Systems are in the processing of developing a Mobile Score Entry feature. This will be an update to HowDidiDo which will allow R&A approved, qualifying score entry and thus allow golfers to continue to socially distance themselves whilst returning qualifying scores for Competitions or Supplementary Scores. Competition sign in (including online charging) and Supplementary registration will also be available. The Club has offered to test the trial version when this is available. At some point the Match Committee will be looking for volunteers to assist with the testing. However, we don’t have a date yet from Club Systems as to when the trial version will be available.
A Look at the Rules
A player finds their ball embedded just inside the thick rough.
They decide to take free relief and drop the ball no nearer the hole about two feet to the side and about 6 inches behind where the ball was embedded.
The ball was now lying on the first cut with a much better lie.
Is this permissible under the rules?
Isn’t it great to be back playing once more? Made even better by the sunshine and on a fantastic course. So a huge thank you to Simon Justice and his team of greenkeepers for maintaining the course in such excellent condition during the lockdown. I didn’t think I would ever say this after the winter we’ve had, but let’s have some rain soon please!
It’s also timely to thank David, our Secretary, for all his hard work over these last few months, under what can only be described as ‘the most extraordinary circumstances‘, in keeping the Club ticking over and for ensuring all members have been fully informed of developments with respect to our return to play. Thanks David, very much appreciated!
Understandably, our return to golf has involved changes and compromises, compared to what we have all been used to. From my experience, the new protocols are working very well.
I acted as the Starter recently and, apart from some last minute rushes to the tee, the “formal” starting procedure was well organised and much appreciated – many of those I spoke to commented positively on the booking system, and enjoyed playing a round in 3 hours or less! It will be interesting to see how the protocols develop over the next few months and indeed whether there is sufficient support and impetus for a move to a permanent tee booking system.
I have to say I really enjoyed being a Starter. It was great meeting members I had not met before and listening to their likes and dislikes. I would urge you to sign up for at least one session as a Starter if you can – in addition to the clipboard, you get to strut about like you are someone important for a short time!
Somethings for me don’t change though – my putting is still as bad as it was before the layoff!
Finally, you won’t be surprised to hear that there is very little to report on the Vets golfing front at the moment. Hopefully, as restrictions ease over the next few weeks and months, it may be possible to rescue some of the planned Vets events and competitions before the season draws to a close.
…from the Secretary
Welcome A huge welcome to all the following new members who have joined us in May and June. Thank you and we look forward to seeing you all participating in all the golfing events and opportunities we have at the club – whenever they are able to resume. We hope you will all enjoy your time with us for many years to come.
Steve & Kim Johnson, Lyndon Atherton, Ray Chaffey, Steve Christie, Robert & Allena Doley, Norman Ellis, Jill England, Alex Giles, Andy Marshall, Peter Smith, Shaun Watford, Neil & Jean Dalton, Liz Williams, Jackie Sanger, John Morgan, Christian Rooney, Jane Pascoe, Gordon Adams, George Downey and Gregory Geissen, Robin Hancock and Dan Tridini (Academy).
Welcome back to Jane Hendry, Rob Black, Sue Pearce, Paul Miles, Richard Tompkins, Matt Smith, Tony Collins, Tom Warden, Stuart Binfield, Oliver Stuart and Will Holmes.
Return to Golf
The return to golf, despite being very welcome has not been without some difficulties. It is essential therefore that until we return to a ‘nearer to normal’ state, that all members are aware of and abide by the guidelines and booking protocol currently in force at the club. These have been carefully considered and are there to ensure that we comply with the Government and governing body guidelines for a return to golf and demonstrate that we are trying our best to keep you and the staff safe.
These are NOT optional and are applicable to all members. We will open up more facilities when we are able and extend the tee times and numbers similarly. Members will be notified via email of any changes to the booking protocol.
If any members is part of the ‘shielding group’ or prefers to play on their own – please contact the office or tee sheet helper who can make the booking for you and prevent others from joining you .
Tee-sheet Helpers are:
Secretary (Office hours) 01962 733746
Richard Calton 07770 486965
Gill Freemantle 07798 805983
Under the ‘SPOTLIGHT’
Thank you to Rob White for answering the questions…
HOLE IN ONES: Zero
FAVOURITE UK COURSE: Royal Porthcawl
GOLF BALL: Srixon for the first 3 or 4 holes on a good day, and then whatever is left in the bag!
WHAT CLUBS DO YOU PLAY? Ping
BEST GOLF TV COMMENTATOR: Peter Allis
BEST MAJOR: British Open
FIRST DRINK IN THE CLUBHOUSE: Whatever Jim White is buying!
BEST HALFWAY HOUSE: Goodwood, great pics of celebrity golfers
BACON ROLL OR SAUSAGE SANDWICH? Sausage Sandwich; ketchup not brown sauce!
MOST UNDERRATED COURSE: Alresford!
TOUGHEST GOLF COURSE: Royal Porthcawl
FAVOURITE GOLFING DESTINATION Val de Lobo
BEST CLUBHOUSE. The Buckinghamshire
FAVOURITE HOLE AT ALRESFORD: 17
HAVE YOU EVER FOUR PUTTED? Many times, but never on 17!
FAVOURITE GOLFER: Kit Nielsen and Trevor Richardson; legends in our time!
BUCKET LIST COURSE: Augusta
PERFECT FOURBALL: Me, Taz Taylor, Dan Pulling, Dave Buckland-Zero! (I didn’t include Jim White as we probably played 2 times this week already!)
Convenience and Care
This includes a donation to the Captain’s Charity
(Also, note ‘Bunker Play’ in Match Committee Report)
Watch out for ‘ticks’ again
Lyme disease (also known as Lyme borreliosis) is a potentially serious bacterial infection transmitted via tick bites. It does occur in the UK, particularly in certain rural areas. There are around 900 reported cases of Lyme disease in the UK each year, although estimates suggest there may actually be 2000–3000 cases.Ticks that may cause Lyme disease are found all over the UK, but high-risk areas include grassy and wooded areas in southern England and the Scottish Highlands
If you want to continue wearing shorts in the summer and don’t wear long socks then get ready with your supplies of insect repelent. Apparently all the following are effective: Autan Protection Plus (20%), Autan Family Care (10%), Mosi-guard Natural (30%), Mosi-guard Plus (40%), Jungle Formula Natural, Boots Repel Natural, Boots Repel Tropical and Once, Jungle Formula Maximum.
Have you downloaded the Club V1 App onto your smartphone?
To download the app please visit the App Store (Apple) or Play Store (Android) and search for ClubV1 Members Hub. The app is completely free. If you wish to download the Club app to your laptop or home computer use the web link below, creating a HDIDO registration as above and saving onto your desktop.
One of the key benefits of the app is that it will provide a secure access to members contact information. However, members must edit / confirm their details and privacy settings to enable other members to be able to access their contact details.
Within the Members area you will also be able to view:
- Course Status
- Live Competition Leaderboard
- Club News
- Competition Results
- Bar Balance and Receipts
- Members List
- Edit your personal details and privacy settings (You must ‘opt in’ for other members to be able to view your contact details)
- Club Diary
Please inform the club if you wish your name to be not visible to other members.
We fully expect changes and guidelines to playing access. It is therefore important that members are able to keep up to date with course availability and any notifications. The App is an easy way for us to send out information.
Make sure you ‘like’ our Facebook page and you will link to it and get the regular pictures and updates on what’s happening ! Share with your friends to help us boost our online and social media profiles
Follow us at https://www.instagram.com/alresford_golf_club/
Welcome back to the course!
During lockdown it was a surreal experience for our staff to be working with not a golfer in sight. Hopefully you have played and possibly been puzzled why the Bug Hotel has moved from the 12th to 11th green. My apologies, my brain must have been a little addled at the time of writing!
I remain obsessed with the weather. Whilst it’s glorious for us it’s becoming a real cause for concern at the complete lack of rainfall. We have now used 55% of our borehole quota so after that we switch to mains water which is 40 times more expensive!
Two years ago our fairways survived the long drought when many clubs lost the grass completely. We don’t have fairway watering so if this dry spell continues you will see the fairways browning off even more I’m afraid. The irrigation system comes on at night so the Greens, Tees and Aprons are defended but we are currently losing 3-5 mm of water a day off the greens through evapotranspiration. They have had wetting agents applied which is why they are sometimes hand watered during the day in an attempt to reduce the water lost.
You will see the hose reel on the back of the tractor in use to help with hand watering as we attempt to protect the newly planted saplings and the grass that has germinated. It’s already too dry for additional seed to be sown unless we see a window of wet weather to get it on it’s way.
On a more positive note we are adding another hole to the Academy Course.
The tee will be at the end of the carpark and the green will be just before the Academy 6th green.
The pictures illustrate the views and we hope this will take shape through the summer.
The course benches are in for sanding and painting with the out of bounds; bell posts and driving markers already accomplished.
Our new “surrounds and banks” Toro mowers have arrived and are performing very well.
During lockdown there was quite an issue with chafer bugs under the greens. They like to munch away on the grass roots before emerging as a chafer beetle whilst continuing to eat grass roots. So you might notice a few traps around the course. They have a lure and if we catch one female that could avoid 300-400 eggs being laid!
In terms of our Covid 19 restrictions we are simply following the guidelines issued by the authorities.
The disc in the hole is not set at a specific height it merely rests on the top of the cup below.
The white tee markers have been put alongside the yellow ones purely to achieve a consistent speed of play. David and Mancom are accomplishing a continual review and will separate the tee markers when it’s is felt that doing so won’t create bottlenecks of golfers.
Please take your rubbish home with you.
Have you noticed the wild flowers between the 16th tee and the 12th green. This gap allows morning sunshine onto the 12th green which is really important in winter.
Dominic Say is our ‘Greenkeeper of the Month’.
Dom is training through Sparsholt College and gaining knowledge and experience daily working at the club. After being furloughed Dom has been back with us since opening and has now mastered the greens iron, had a go on the surrounds mower and cut the greens with the ride on mower all in a couple of weeks so training is going really well. In his spare time enjoys cycling and gaming on his play station.
Chair of Greens Committee
A Look at the Rules
See rule 16.3b
Free relief is allowed for a ball embedded in the General area.
The reference point for relief is immediately behind the ball. The ball must be dropped within one club length, no nearer the hole and must also be in the General area.
The fact that the lie was improved is immaterial.
The winners of the 100 Club prize draw for June were:
£100 Sandra Hooker
£50 Richard Calton
£32 Ron Marwick
£32 Tineke Ribbink
£32 Andrew Frearson
£32 Tony Marshall
David has run our draw remotely again this month so a big thank you to him.
Congratulations to all our winners who will hopefully be able to enjoy spending their prize money in due course. This is Sandra’s first success in the draw so great news to scoop the top prize. Tineke however is on a winning streak with this being her third consecutive month of being lucky in the draw.
If anyone is interested in knowing a little about the origins of the 100 Club then check out this section in the June 2019 FORE Info on the members section of the club website. Alternatively contact me – details below.
100 Club Snippets
Here is another from the archives – from the original centenary book of the history of Alresford Golf Club 1890-1990 and the current History of Alresford Golf Club.
In 1987 the year the 100 Club was started:-
- The Club Captain was Capt. Peter Bentley.
- The Ladies Captain was Mrs Jan Robinson whose husband Steve Robinson went on to became Club Captain during 1990 the year of the Centenary.
- The course was 18 holes but played over 9 greens.
- The Clubhouse was in two parts with the Pro Shop and main clubhouse building being separated by a narrow passageway.
- Malcolm was the Club Professional
- The A31 Alresford Bypass had only just opened.
How many current members can remember the Club and course at that time?
Last month we heard about James (Jim) Little and it was believed he was now a Chelsea Pensioner. Full marks to anyone who saw James featured on the VE Day Special edition of the Antiques Roadshow where he was heard recounting his memories of VE Day – and was indeed shown dressed in his Chelsea Pensioner uniform.
For those who have made a diary note regarding the annual 100 Club Salver Stableford Competition and Evening Meal on Friday 24 July please note that this is now cancelled. As with many of our other events the Covid 19 restrictions have left us unlikely to be able to run this at that time – so we shall just have to wait until next year.
Keep fit and well everyone.
For more information on the 100 Club contact Pat Wallis on 01420 564417 or [email protected]
|2019-20||Winter Eclectic Scores - Final|
|Position||Entry No||Name ||Gross Score||Handicap||Net Score||Rounds||Prize Money|
The Social Committee is very much looking forward to when we can all safely enjoy being together again.
Chair Social Committee
Team Golf 2020 – The 9-Hole Evening Summer League
Circumstances have now overtaken us leaving insufficient time to organize anything ready for a mid June start, plus there seems little chance of being able to play ‘fourball’ games in two weeks time anyway.
Sadly, therefore, the TG League is finally cancelled for this year, which is probably no surprise to most of you. So, on behalf of the Social Committee I wish to thank all our loyal supporters for your commitment, and particularly the Team Captains for your time and work organising your teams over the last few years.
We look forward to seeing you all next year, so enjoy your golf now we are back on the course.
Team Golf Manager
Special VE Day TV appearance of former AGC Captain
Members may have seen a Chelsea Pensioner recounting his memories of VE Day during the VE Day television coverage. The gentleman in question was our own James Little, a former Captain of Alresford Golf Club (1994), who moved from Ropley to the Royal Hospital Chelsea in February 2017. (Also, see brief reference to James’ appearance in the 100 Club Section above).
He is now well involved with Chelsea events and acts as a tour guide. One such tour, prior to ‘lockdown’, included 3 of our own former captains of the club. A picture was taken in the state apartments to record the event. Here is James, who likes to be called ‘James’ and not ‘Jim’, with the 3 captains, still active playing members of AGC, David Nightingale, Keith Monkhouse and Ken Coburn.
Those on the tour were lucky to be able to view a significant part of this marvellous establishment which was established by Charles II in 1682 and which has been providing a home for Army Veterans ever since.
Editor: Trevor Hodgkinson
The Editorial Team take no responsibility for incorrect information received from Contributors.