"Fore Info" Monthly Newsletters


Last 10 News Posts

  • Fore Info January 2021 Dec 31, 2020 @ 13:00

    Management Corner

    Clubhouse Development

    You should by now have received notice of the forthcoming Special General Meeting (SGM), finally to reach a decision to proceed with Phase 1 of the planned programme of Clubhouse Development.

    It is hard to believe the length of time that has passed since my last update on the subject, but for reasons we all understand it has not been possible to advance matters any further, until this time.

    The background to the project, and the originally surveyed options, are well understood by the membership, but it is perhaps worth reprising on the outcome of the more recent survey, which concluded this last September.

    This second survey aimed to measure members’ on-going appetite to continue with the Programme, and to quantify potential participation in a voluntary loan scheme. This survey closed on 30th August 2020 and attracted 352 participants; again, something of a record for such initiatives.

    Results, in summary were that:

    · 81.9% of members remained in favour of continuing with the Clubhouse Development Project, with 18.1% against

    · 135 members would consider making voluntary loans to Club totalling a minimum (theoretical) sum of £935,000

    The Management Committee therefore accepted the result of the survey as in favour of continuing with the development programme

    The SGM is being held by Zoom on Friday 15th January, with members receiving in advance a significant amount of supporting information, necessary to take the final decision to proceed.

    Long term vision for our clubhouse

    The information pack included the following:

    • Background to the project – how and why we have got to where we are now
    • Summary perceptions of the existing clubhouse
    • Initial survey conclusions (hierarchy or proposed improvements)
    • Expected benefits from the development (membership, revenue, savings, the intangible gains)
    • 2nd survey findings
    • Questions and Answers, covering in detail:
    • Cash management
    • Profit and loss
    • Planning
    • Project management
    • Security
    • Lease
    • Timing

    The journey to taking a final decision to start this much-needed project has been long and eventful, but at last we have in sight the starter’s gun…..

    In concluding, it is perhaps worth reminding ourselves why this project is so important for us.

    As with all golf clubs we are an ageing membership, with some perhaps tempted to think ‘what’s in it for me’, or maybe ‘it’s really just about the course. I’m only here for the golf’.

    The Clubhouse, and the services it provides, is as much a part of the club as the course itself. The completion of this project will provide a legacy for future generations of members that we – the current membership – can all be proud of.

    Postscript

    PLEASE NOTE that in order to vote at the meeting on the 15th, or by proxy before that, you will need to have paid your subscription and renewed your club membership.

    Nick Duncan
    Chair, Planning and Development Committee

    From the Club Captain

    I do hope you all had a very enjoyable Christmas.  There will have been very few of us who were able to celebrate as plannedThe changes to the rules did create problems and opportunitiesAlthough disappointed to be unable to travel to my mum and sister, I was delighted to take my place in the Boxing Day Captain v Professional Challenge matchWe were blessed with a fine day of weather and over 60 members and guests took part.  Mark’s team was always going to win this yearI’m delighted to report that Mark Tiplady’s team came out on top 18-14!   

    Less than 4 weeks after we were able to re-open the course, tier 4 came and limited us to 2-balls only (apart from players from the same household).  In that short time the match committee arranged a number of competitions and Pro Stablefords filled the gaps. 

    Continue reading →

  • Fore Info December 2020 Dec 1, 2020 @ 0:01

    Management Corner

    AGM

    The Club held a quorate and compliant AGM by Zoom on Friday 27th November, with both live voting and proxy voting ahead of meeting.

    The AGM meeting was expertly arranged by David Maskery having spent a lot of time in research into other Club’s remote AGM’s and having taken advice on compliance with our Club rules. Zoom held up well and the meeting was continuous without any breaks in the online platform.

    The AGM confirmed that Honorary Membership will be conferred on Brian Young who has been central to so much of the Club’s development, from a nine-hole course to the eighteen-hole course we play today. The Club lost a significant amount of land to the Alresford by-pass more than 30 years ago, and Brian was instrumental in securing replacement land ensuring a bright future for us.

    All other motions were passed by a combination of both the live and the proxy voting methods, with more than 120 members taking part.

    I was delighted that we were able to hold live discussions under AOB, on; suggestion to maintain some tee time booking post-covid, a suggestion to provide compensation for our members in 2020 due to the course being closed for two periods, and the membership schemes offered in 2020 in response to the emergency created by the Covid pandemic.

    Re-Opening of the Course

    The course will re-open following guidance from regulators and central Government. Tee times need to continue for now which will continue until such time as we are informed that they are no longer needed. It is the default position of the Club to return to golf without pre-booked tee times at the earliest opportunity. If there is sufficient interest in having some pre-booking in the future the Management Committee and Captain’s Committee will lead a full consultation of our members to ensure that all members have an opportunity to contribute their thoughts on the matter.

    Clubhouse Development

    The Management Committee has invited members of the Finance Committee to our next meeting in two-weeks’ time to review plans and finance options for the proposed Clubhouse development. A Special General Meeting (SGM) of the Club will be called should a preferred package of improvements and finance be approved. That SGM will be called with at least two-weeks’ notice with all full members being provided with detailed plans and costings so that informed decisions can be made at that time.

    Head Professional – Mark Wood

    I need your help! Mark first applied to become our Head Professional in March this year; and then after 6-months of interviews and planning he started with us on November 1st and was forced to close within a few days.

    Mark, and his wife Mandy, have invested personal funds and much time in an update of the Pro-Shop and brand-new stock. Mark also has invested many thousands of pounds in ‘Flightscope’ which is a high-tech coaching aid which replicates your swing path, ball flight, angle of attack etc. He will also provide you with a video of your swing and pinpoint improvements and practice drills for you, following a lesson with him.

    Mark has a price match guarantee for shop stock and will provide a full range of standard and custom fitted clubs from Callaway, TaylorMade, and Ping for example.

    So; do check out the updated Pro-Shop on your return to golf at the Club, and do your Christmas shopping safely at your Club.

    Management Committee

    It is a privilege for me to be Chairman of the Management Committee, and act on your behalf; I thank the AGM for their ratification of my post for a further year. If you want to provide me with any feedback about our Club please do so by emailing me; chairman@alresfordgolf.co.uk. But do tell me good things as well as the not-so-good!

    All existing members of the Management Committee were ratified to continue in post for another year, with a new Vice-Captain of the Club joining us for the next 12-months as usual.

    Management Committee members are;

    Chairman – Robert White

    Chair of Finance – Ray Panter

    Chair of Bar & Catering – Trevor Pearce

    Chair of House – Sue Masser

    Chair of Greens – Bob Moore

    Vice-Captain – Simon Freemantle

    Chair of Planning and Development – Nick Duncan

    Membership Numbers

    Our Club rules permit a total of 675 full members. Given the amount of golf each member now plays this is considered to be an outdated limit, but no change has been made in recent decades. The Management Committee will determine a ‘maximum number of Full Members’ policy, to be implemented this year, without a rule change at this time. It is likely that the Club will need to close to new members at some point during the spring of 2021, so that our course does not become over-crowded and that; as members we enjoy the privileges of a Club that really feels like ‘a private members’ club’, reflecting that our Club is owned by its members.

    Any 2020 full member is guaranteed continued membership on payment of their 2021 membership subscription before January 31st 2021. After that date; lapsed members can re-join but it may be that the Club has taken on other members in the subsequent months and that we might have closed to further 2021 subscriptions.

    So the simple message is; if you intend to pay your 2021 subscription, do pay on receipt of the invoice from David Maskery and by the very, very latest by January 31st 2021. If you might have some difficulty in meeting that date, do discuss it with David as he will be keen to help.

    David Maskery – General Manager

    The AGM conferred thanks and congratulations to David for an outstanding years’ work keeping us all safe and well-informed. David’s role has changed from that as a traditional Club Secretary, so I have moved his role, by agreement, to that of ‘General Manager’. On your return to the Club you will notice that the main office has been extended into Malcolm’s old office. This will help David to maintain confidentiality and to be undisturbed by members when he is busy. The new layout of the main office, will also provide a better impression for new customers and new members.

    Robert White

    Chairman of the Management Committee

    From the Club Captain

    Here we go then! 

    We are back on the course, which looks to be in wonderful condition considering the weather.  

    Great work Simon and team!  

    I was able to join Caroline Warne as she acted as starter at 8:00 on Wednesday 2nd. 

    The first group out was Les Widdicombe and Ed Fox. Huge smiles all round!  

    First impressions coming along nicely.

    Good to see the progress made on the winter projects. 

    The new bunker on the first hole looks superb from the tee. 

    The honour of being the first to find it from the tee went to Dudley George who was the 18th to tee off at 8:36.

     

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  • Fore Info November 2020 Nov 1, 2020 @ 0:01

    Management Corner

    Covid Restrictions

    • You will be aware that legal restrictions in relation to the Covid pandemic come into force on Thursday 5th November.
    • Current indications are that golf courses will need to close again, and should this be the case our Club will not be open.
    • We are staying alert for all announcements and changes so that the Club remains compliant and ready to react should things change.
    • We will continue to keep you updated.

    Malcolm and Jane

    The Club held a lovely event on Saturday 31st October to mark Malcolm and Jane’s retirement, and their exceptional contribution to our Club over 40 years. Malcolm was joined by some former Alresford Assistant Professionals, members and guests to play the course in fairly unpleasant conditions. Presentations followed with speeches from Malcolm, Brian Young and John Goodacre reflecting on a remarkable career spanning four decades. Becky added a final speech reflecting on having parents dedicated to both their family and golf business; much credit to her for managing to deliver such an emotional and personal message. It was a highly emotional day all-round!

    Presentations were made of flowers, an inscribed Champagne bucket and a cheque for £5,000 from members contributions which Malcolm and Jane will use to fund a ski holiday to Canada.

    It was further announced, that; once alterations are completed to the 1st tee area this winter, as part of the First Impressions Project, the 1st hole will be renamed ‘Scotts’ in recognition of their many contributions to our Club and course. We will be inviting Malcolm to ‘drive-in’ the new layout as part of a renaming event in the Spring.

    We wish Malcolm and Jane a much deserved and happy retirement, and look forward to seeing them at the Club enjoying life as fellow members.

    Mark Wood

    Our new Head Professional started on November 1st, and of course faces closure almost immediately on the 5th November, which must be awful. Mark and his wife Mandy have been busy making arrangements for the Pro Shop and all other aspects of becoming our new Professional Team which will continue to include Terry Gosden.

    Mark wasted no time in providing the first golf lesson to Polly Chuch at 11-00am on his first day, as Polly was the recipient of a free lesson resultant from Mark’s recent member’s survey.

    We wish Mark and Mandy much success and happy days with us all at Alresford.

    AGM & SGM

    This month’s AGM will go ahead, but in a format that meets with Covid Restrictions. As you know, further lockdown restrictions are to be imposed starting from the 5th November, following announcements on October 31st. We will also need to hold a separate SGM to consider proposals for the Clubhouse Development project. Both the AGM and SGM will be planned to provide opportunities for members to cast their votes as required, in a format that supports our Club rules and is compliant with Covid restrictions.

    It does look as if we are in for a difficult month, but let’s hope that we can get back to golf and our Club before the end of the year.

    Robert White

    Chairman of the Management Committee

    From the Club Captain

    In common with, no doubt, all correspondents this month I must start with reference to the seismic change striking Alresford Golf Club.  As I’m writing this we are rapidly approaching the end of an era and indeed by the time you read this the new era will have started.  On Saturday 31 October we formally said farewell to Malcolm Scott after 40 years as our Club Professional.  Sadly Covid-19 meant we were unable to mark Malcolm’s Retirement as we, the members, and I am sure he would have wished.  However, thanks to Les Thorne and a number of other like-minded souls, we did manage to achieve a ‘pretty memorable’ and socially distanced farewell.  

    Enjoy the next chapter Malcolm.  A mega thank you for everything on behalf of all members and a special personal thank you from me.  It’s all Malcolm’s fault that you have me as Captain as 25 years ago he taught me (or tried to!).    

    The new era has begun in several ways:

    • Firstly, we welcome Mark, our new Professional, and his wife Mandy – who will be ‘front of house’ in the Pro shop.   
    • Secondly, the ‘world’, or at least the golf world, changes on 2 November with the introduction of World Handicapping.  What fun!!  
    • Thirdly, as a knock-on of the covid situation, on Friday 6 November we say farewell to Chris and Kelly Pullinger.    

    As ever much golf has been played although the weather has affected some competitions this last month.  Lots of good scores and inevitably

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  • Fore Info October 2020 Sep 30, 2020 @ 21:40

    Management Corner

    Covid-19

    We continue to be alert to the issues relating to the Covid pandemic and are continuing to make adjustments on an agile basis, as and when the Club receives mandates and/or guidance from advisers and regulators. Following the most recent guidance it would appear that we will need to be patient and potentially wait until the New Year before we are able to return to golf as normal.

    Members have been magnificent in their adherence to the necessary precautions, which helped us all to thoroughly enjoy our golf. We continue to be really well served by David Maskery whose timely and knowledgeable interventions have kept us all safe and playing lots of golf.

    Clubhouse Development

    The recent members survey in relation to potential Clubhouse Development revealed more than 80% of members are in support of continued planning to improve our Clubhouse. Sue Masser and David Maskery are working with our appointed architect and surveyors to finalise a potential phased scheme to be put to the members at a SGM, when that is possible. Prior to any SGM, Members will be provided will full information and costs so that we may all make informed decisions when we come to vote on the final, phased scheme. All plans will take account of the impact of the Covid pandemic on both use of the Clubhouse and the Club’s financial performance.

    Chairman’s Cup

    I am pleased that we will be running a new competition that seeks to recognise volunteers at our Club. This year we are indebted to those members who have volunteered to act as ‘starters’ which enables all of us to play a lot of golf. Therefore, everyone who has acted as a volunteer starter will be invited to participate in an 18-hole team and individual stableford competition on the morning of 11th October; shotgun start. More information on this competition can be requested from the office, however, the intention is to make this an annual event as our Club relies on many volunteers. In subsequent years we will be opening the competition to our volunteer committee members, and others, however for this year we really do need to recognise the priceless contribution of our volunteer starters.

    Bar and Catering

    Chair of Bar & Catering; Trevor Pearce, is bringing forward

    recommendations for catering at the Club at the next meeting of the Management Committee on 12th October. We are grateful to Chris and Kelly for their continued commitment to the Club and we wish them continued success in their new roles. Obviously catering at the Club has been hugely affected by the lack of events, matches and societies so; again, we will need to be agile in our planning during these Covid affected times.

    Head Professional

    The next time that I write this monthly update will be Malcolm and Jane’s last day as our professional team. It seems unreal, even after 10-months of knowing, that there will be change of Head Professional at our Club in one month. Our plans to celebrate with Malcolm, Jane and family on 31st October have been amended due to further, recent restrictions due to the pandemic. However, the Club will still be running an all-day event on the 31st October; more news from Les Thorne in the coming days.

    You will begin to see Mandy Wood at the Club towards the end of this week. Mandy is the wife of our new Head Pro, Mark, and will be partnering Mark and Terry in the Pro-Shop from November 1st. Malcolm and Jane have kindly offered to spend time with Mandy to ensure that she is familiar with systems and our Club in advance of the transition on November 1st. Mark and Mandy will have the unenviable task of remembering 580 members’ names; which I guess will take some time.

    AGM

    The Management Committee is considering the format of this year’s AGM in light of the Covid pandemic and restrictions that are in place. It is very unlikely that restrictions will ease in time to hold our usual format of AGM in November. Other Club’s and organisations have run AGM’s on-line or by written reports with proxy voting. Once we have considered the possibilities, the Management Committee will consult our Club rules and then decide how to run this year’s AGM. More news on this during October.

    I hope that your recent enjoyment of the course matches my own experience; we are truly fortunate to have such a well-run Club with committed staff providing such excellent facilities for us to enjoy.

    Robert White

    Chairman of the Management Committee

    From the Club Captain

    What a wonderful month!  

    Very many thanks to everyone involved on Captains Day – players and helpers. 

    The first team set off at 7am and the last at 4.10pm.  Fortunately we were spoiled with fantastic weather the whole day although it meant dusk/darkness descended almost in an instant leaving the last 2 groups to finish by torchlight. 

    I am humbled by your generosity on the day allowing us to add significantly to our contribution to the Winchester Hospice pot.  

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  • Fore Info September 2020 Aug 31, 2020 @ 21:30

    Management Corner

    Clubhouse Development Update-Survey Results

    In 2019, the Club surveyed its playing members to ascertain specific preferences in relation to potential improvement and development of our Clubhouse, with 302 playing members responding. Working from those preferences the Management Committee held a selection process in order to appoint a professional architect to provide designs for the Clubhouse which met the aspirations revealed by the original survey.

    In response to the impact of Covid-19; progress on the Clubhouse Development Project was subsequently paused, in line with so many other elements at our Club.

    The Management Committee has stabilised the financial status of the Club, despite the loss of income due to Covid-19, and has been delighted by the significant boost to membership this year, bringing confidence in the budget for the financial year 2020/21. The Club also holds significant cash reserves.

    As part of the Club’s extensive, democratic ethos as a ‘members’ club’ it was decided to re-survey members to quantify the appetite to continue with the Clubhouse Development Project and to quantify potential participation in a voluntary members’ loan scheme. This survey closed on 30th August 2020 having attracted 352 participants.

    • The results show 81.9% in favour of continuing with the Clubhouse Development Project and 18.1% against.
    • The results show that 135 members would consider making voluntary loans to Club totalling a minimum of £935,000

    The Management Committee accepts the result of the survey as; in favour of continuing with the Clubhouse Development.

    Next Steps

    • The Management Committee will now plan for a phased redevelopment of the Clubhouse managing both risks and opportunities.
    • Final plans and costings will be worked-up.
    • A Special General Meeting will be called once we have final plans and costs to enable each individual member to cast an informed vote, for or against, at the Special General Meeting when this is possible bearing in mind current restrictions. 
    • The Finance Committee will consider affordability of any development scheme, but it is unlikely that the Club would seek voluntary loans at the generous level pledged by members due to affordability of repayments over a five-year period.
    • The minimum level of voluntary members’ loans will be reconsidered to enable more members to participate in the spirit of ‘crowd funding’ in support of their Club.

    Thank you to everyone that participated in the both surveys related to the Clubhouse Development project in support of the Club’s democratic processes.

    Bar & Catering

    Chris Pullinger has already issued an ‘all member’ notice informing of his intention to not seek renewal of the catering franchise and to leave the Club on the anticipated termination date as set out in the existing contract. The Club had been in discussion with Chris, through the Chair of Bar and Catering, to agree a new contract and potentially manage the bar as well, however mutual efforts failed to deliver that new contract. We wish Chris, Kelly and their family continued success and happiness in their next venture and assure them of a warm welcome at the Club at all times.

    Chris has very kindly offered to assist the Club in the appointment of the next catering franchisee; however, the Club is considering whether a straight like-for-like replacement would be possible at this time. Therefore, Trevor Pearce – Chair of Bar and Catering will be developing proposals for the Management Committee. More news on this in the coming weeks.

    First Impressions Project

    Bob Moore – Chair of Greens has presented to both the Management Committee and the Finance Committee to gain approval and funding to implement the ‘First Impressions Project’ which enhances the presentation of our Club from leaving the car park to playing the first hole.

    I am delighted that Bob’s hard work has resulted in approval to deliver the project which is also being supported financially by the 100 club.

    Head Pro – Transition

    Mark Wood is working well with Sue, Tip and David in advance of joining the Club on 1st November following Malcolm’s retirement on October 31st. As Stanley has left the Club only Terry will now transfer to the new Head Pro so we will enjoy some continuity.

    It is hoped that Mark’s wife Mandy will also join the new team; which replicates the very successful husband and wife team provided by Malcolm and Jane over so many years. We hope to see Mandy spending some time at the Club in October to aid the smooth transition in November.

    Tee Times and Social Distancing

    The Club continues to operate within the confines of central guidance from Government and golfing regulators. The Club is constantly on alert for any changes that can enable a full return to normal golfing and social conditions. For the time being; tee times have to prevail, but we will remain alert to the opportunities to get back to normal as soon as this is possible.

    Good luck to all those participating in the Club Championships!

     

    Robert White

    Chairman of the Management Committee

    Reminder: New Member Referral Scheme

    We continue to be active attracting new members to the club, though some may be wondering why this should remain a priority given the recent growth in membership already achieved so far this year.

    Simply put we cannot put the brakes on now as we know that each year members resign from the club, for many reasons, not least age, health, or simply moving away from the area.  

    So we cannot stand still…

    NEW MEMBER REFERRAL SCHEME

    The scheme we have in place is aimed at benefitting ALL of our current members 

    A 15% DISCOUNT OFF YOUR SUBSRIPTION NEXT YEAR

    CURRENTLY WORTH £150!

    … … and that’s for every referral you make!!!

    The basis of the scheme:

    • Referral – Introduce a new member to the club this year, joining as an ‘INTRODUCTORY MEMBER’, and paying just a (7 day) pro-rata fee for the remainder of the year; but with some limited playing restrictions, notably Tuesday mornings; Wednesday mornings and Saturday mornings. 
    • Benefits to Both – On payment of the full member joining fee in January the introducing Member then receives a 15% discount off their own subscription, and the new member a 5% off their subscription.
    • Scope – Multiple introductions are permitted, though the scheme will be capped at 20 new members joining in January from current membership referral. So early introductions are to be advised. The scheme will be operable to end of December 2020.

    Terms & conditions apply – Please contact the Office for full information

    From the Club Captain

    Golf continues apace both competition and friendly and for much of the month in good golfing weather.  Congratulations to all who have done well and commiserations to those who have not had such a successful time – as I am wont to say “this is why we are amateurs”!

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  • Fore Info August 2020 Aug 1, 2020 @ 0:00

    Management Corner

    The End of Subsidised Golf

    You will all be aware that the furlough scheme and other financial support from Government and Local Authorities is coming to end as the impact from Covid-19 reduces. These support mechanisms have subsidised the Club which has helped to balance-the-books for the financial year ending September 2020. Since the re-opening of the course in May the Club has not been able to entertain golf societies or visitors, other than member’s guests. Members’ subscriptions and joining fees only account for 79% of golfing income at the Club, which was augmented by £140,000 of green fee income for the financial year 2018/19.

    As members, I think we have all enjoyed having the course to ourselves, and many of us have been able to play much more golf than ever. However, as the subsidies are removed and we have no support from the furlough scheme we must get back to attracting normal income streams. We will start by inviting small, loyal golf societies to the Club, and to enjoy the bar and catering facilities as permitted by Covid-19 restrictions. 

    Prior to Covid-19 the Management Committee had discussed access to the course at busy times for visitors, societies and member’s guests. It is appreciated that the Club has a regular pattern of busier times and the committee had established some ‘closed for members only’ slots for trial. These have not been needed due to circumstances. The committee will be re-confirming some restricted times when it will not be possible for green fee golfers to play.

    I hope that you have enjoyed getting back to golf, and having the privilege of ‘Members only golf’, but we now need to balance the books by replacing Covid-19 subsidies with normal income streams. The recent increase in membership goes some way to helping with this equation, so the budget for 2020/21 does take this into account when planning for reduced green fee income over the next financial year.

    Head Professional Recruitment

    Since concluding the interview process for the new Head Professional, the Club entered into contract negotiations with its preferred candidate, Mark Wood. These negotiations were based on a standard contract provided by the PGA which includes provision of the Pro-Shop, exclusive rights to coaching at the Club, and front-of-house services for golfing activities. Both the Club and Mark Wood are grateful for the support of the PGA in

    getting this agreed. Contracts have now been signed and Mark has now resigned his current position, so; we look forward to welcoming him to the Club on the 1st November 2020. Whilst there is obviously plenty of similarity between Malcolm’s current contract and the new contract offered by the Club; the passage of time has brought much change in contemporary relationships and financial rewards for retained Club Professionals, so the Club was delighted to work from PGA recommendations to bring us up-to-date.

    The PGA has also advised that Terry has a statutory right to transfer his employment to the new Head Professional which fits in perfectly with Mark’s plans, so I am pleased to say that you will continue to see Terry at the Club in his current role.

    Vice-Captain; Mark Tiplady, together with Sue Masser and David Maskery will oversee the transition from Malcolm’s team to Mark’s team in the coming months, and I look forward to confirming launch arrangements for the new Head Professional in due course.

    Les Thorne is busy organising a Club event on 31st October to celebrate the many contributions by Malcolm & Jane, their family and their professional teams over so many years. More news to come soon, but the 31st October will be an important day in this year’s golfing calendar at the Club.

    Pre-Booked Tee-Times

    The Club needed to implement tee-times for all golfers to re-open the course following closure due to Covid-19 restrictions. The default position for the Club is to remove pre-booked tee-times once restrictions subside, as they were only put in place to deal with social distancing and risk of infection, aligned to central guidance.

    Tee-times have become a ‘marmite’ subject; some people love them and some people hate them. However, upon implementation of temporary tee-times, reassurance was given that; this would not result in tee-times becoming permanent at the Club.

    I am sure that discussions about pre-booked tee-times will continue beyond the Covid-19 period and it may well be that the Club consults further in the future on this subject, but there is no mandate for continuing with general tee-times once restrictions ease.

    Robert White

    Chairman of the Management Committee

    From the Club Captain

    Over the past month many rounds of golf, both competition and friendly, have been played.  We have also completed several Board competitions and all things ‘remaining equal’ more will be played over the coming months.  

    The ‘In-House’ Competition Schedule for the rest of this year was finalised in mid-July.  This schedule is of course subject to there being no change to the ‘Covid golf rules’.  

    ‘External’ EventsClub Pro-Am, Ladies Pro-Am (for Assistant Pros) and Alresford Cup (inter county Girls event) – will not be held in 2020.

    The Junior Championships were held on Monday 27 July – on possibly the worst weather we had had for weeks (wind and rain all day).  8 hardy souls played a Stableford in the morning and 6 of them went out again in

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  • New 2020 Competition Schedule Published Jul 31, 2020 @ 14:33

    Members have been requesting an easy to view competition list for the remainder of 2020 as the Club Diary and Club Google Calendar are no longer current. This information is available in ClubV1, but not all members are comfortable with using it. A two page list of competitions has just been added to the Member Hub within the Match / Handicap Committee link.

    Continue reading →

  • Fore Info July 2020 Jun 30, 2020 @ 22:00

    Management Corner

    Head Professional – Recruitment

    Captains and the Management Committee, together with the Club Secretary, met with three final candidates for the position of Head Professional at Alresford, who were then interviewed by a Sub-Group who have been responsible for the recruitment process.

    All three candidates are excellent PGA Professionals with impressive backgrounds and knowledge of the game. The Sub-Group will meet again shortly to consider the next steps in appointing a new Head Professional to start at the Club on November 1st.

    Covid Affected Golf

    Recently; the Club enabled tee bookings on consecutive days for members as patterns of play showed capacity to do so. We can now see that there is regular capacity in the afternoons on all days of the week, therefore the Club can start to accept guests introduced by members. This will be restricted to the less-busy times of the day, as proven in the tee booking data, and each member will only be able to bring one pre-booked guest and pay in the Pro shop as usual. Again; this is the start of enabling members to bring a guest to initially test capacity and then review impact.

    Bar and Catering Facilities

    The bar area will re-open on 4th July on a trial basis. This will be a test to see whether it is possible to run the bar and comply with the guidelines for social distancing. We all have to be totally respectful of the well-being of our staff, who may be serving a hundred people each day. There will be explicit rules for use of the bar, which can only be used AFTER you have played your pre-booked round of golf. The bar is not open for casual use and is not available to you before your round of golf.

    Bar staff will have a copy of the starters’ tee sheet, and it is only those people on the tee sheet that will be permitted to use the bar for a limited amount of time.

    This is an initial, first step in re-opening the facilities. In the same manner that the Club re-introduced use of the course; there will be number of well-managed steps to take. We ask that all members understand the

    need for small, manageable steps in the gradual re-opening of bar and catering facilities.

    Finance

    The Club is indebted to Ray Panter, Chair of Finance, for his forensic management of our finances as a result of Covid-19 and during the period that the Club has furloughed staff. Ray presented a forecast to the Management Committee for the rest of the financial year through to end of September 2020. Ray’s actions on costs, coupled with David’s work with suppliers and the local council, helped to arrest any unnecessary spending. To make up for some of our lost income from green fees and golf societies; the Club recruited 93 new members since March this year, taking us back to healthy member numbers not seen since the 2012 as there was a gradual decline through to 2018.

    Despite having lost £135,000 of budgeted income this year, as a result of Covid-19, Ray has been able to forecast a near ‘break-even’ year; which is a remarkable outcome for the Club. I hope that this will give all members confidence in the Club’s excellent financial health and competency of the Management Committee as a whole in bringing agile decisions to safeguard and improve our wonderful golf club.

    Volunteers

    We continue to be blessed with a very large number of volunteer starters who are managing golfers at the first tee for nearly 12 hours every day, seven days each week. How lucky we are to have so many committed members motivated to help the rest of us play some golf? Without the volunteer starters we would have great difficulty in keeping the course open. If you have a few hours; do volunteer yourself by contacting the Club Secretary, or even swap one of your intended golfing sessions to join the amazing rank of volunteers. My thanks and respect go out to all volunteers helping the rest of us to get some golf in.

    Enjoy the course, and ‘play nicely’ in the bar when it opens, so that we can expand facilities when possible.

    Robert White

    Chairman of the Management Committee

    From the Club Captain

    A month on, we are still playing and have moved on from just friendly golf.  Several Medals & Stablefords have been run albeit with an amended signing in and score entry system.  From all accounts, while many have found the ‘entry and exit’ experience simple and straightforward, some have found it a challenge.  No doubt it will become second nature under our new ‘normal’.

    Golf has patently not been too much of a struggle for some this past month as I am aware of several Holes in One.  Congratulations to Bob Moore (16th), Barry Young (10th), Nigel Pascoe (6th) and Nick Duncan (also 6th).  If I’ve missed anyone else off this roll of honour please let me know via the club office.

    CAPCOM met in early June and agreed that club matches, summer

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  • Fore Info June 2020 May 31, 2020 @ 19:00

    Management Corner

    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.

    Robert White

    Chairman of the Management Committee

    From the Club Captain

    At last!  

    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.

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  • Fore Info May 2020 Apr 30, 2020 @ 18:00

    Management Corner

    Furlough and Essential Staff

    The Personnel Committee has met twice recently to consider the staffing implications from closure of the Club due to Covid-19 restrictions. The Personnel Committee considered options to furlough some staff, and retain others essential to maintaining the course and our Club. The Management Committee supported the recommendations from the Personnel Committee which are under review on a fortnightly basis.

    Re-Opening of the Course

    The opportunity to re-open the course is out of our hands and we await information from Government to guide us. There is no telling when this might be, of course, or what restrictions might be in place. We are however planning in the background on some basic assumptions, central to which is prioritising loyal members. If Nikki and I have found the closure of the Club tough, I imagine it is the same for all members. So; for the initial period of re-opening it is envisaged that only members of the Club will be able to play the course or use the practice facilities. The Management Committee will meet urgently when we become aware of the potential to re-open to ensure that all members and all sections of the Club can get back to golf as soon as possible.

    Recruitment of the Head Professional

    Our advert for a new Head Professional closes on 30th April and we will therefore cease to accept further applications. There has been much interest in the position with in excess of 20 applications received so far from PGA Professionals currently employed locally, nationally and internationally. A sub-group of The Management Committee has been formed to consider all applications and to narrow-down candidates to a short-list of an unspecified number. Given the quality of the applications received, this is going to be a very tough job indeed. Ultimately, those candidates short-listed will be interviewed by The Management Committee with all current Captains invited to attend. So; we will ultimately appoint through a fully democratic and transparent process, and hope to offer the role in the summer to enable a smooth transition through to November 1st. I have spoken briefly to Malcolm about celebrations to mark the immense contribution to our Club by both himself and Jane; more to come on this nearer the time from the relevant committees.

    So, I hope that we can all get back to playing our course in the near future, and thank you for your continued support and loyalty to our unique Members Club.

    Robert White

    Chairman of the Management Committee

    From the Club Captain

    Isn’t it marvellous – we have just had one of the wettest winters, yet the weather didn’t stop us. Now we are into ‘wall to wall sunshine’, and all we can do is look at the course (in my case from afar via the webcam).

    “When we will be allowed back on the course?” is the $64K question!

    Wont we enjoy it when we can play … … and to heck with bad shots!

    In the meantime the following may amuse – they came to me from my sister ‘across the pond’.

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