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Every few weeks, our Course Manager, Joe Walsh, will publish a short note explaining the work being done to maintain our wonderful course.
It’s great to have started work at Chesterfield Golf Club and I’m very grateful for the warm welcome which members and colleagues have given me.It’s a privilege to be your Course Manager and you can rest assured that myself and the team will be doing our utmost to present a course which we can all be proud of.The first week has been a whirlwind familiarising myself with the golf course, settling into Greenview and finding the essentials in the area.But the graft has already begun. The team are hard-working, keen to learn and its clear there’s a pride in what they do and what they want to achieve. I can’t wait to harness that and enjoy the results.Our first priority is to get the necessary work into the greens so that they’re of the standard members expect when we reach the playing season.We’ve ironed them this week to flatten them out after tining and the plan is now not to cut for a while to allow a healthy surface to flourish.We’ll be applying fungicide to all greens during the week ahead to kill the disease which is present on many of them. Unfortunately, this will leave some scarring marks, but these will soon recover once we get conditions for decent growth.It was pleasing to be able to get out earlier this week and cut fairways, to give shape and definition, following a reasonably warm and dry spell. Long may this continue!Regenerating the vandalised eighth green is another priority and a robust programme of action will begin on Monday when we’ll be scarifying and hollow tining to remove dead matter from the surface. We’ll then top dress and seed the green, before adding a strong fertilizer to aid the germination process.If temperatures remain as they are, this should be sufficient to kick start the growth process. If not, we’ll look at covering the area with growth sheets to aid the process.Wain and Darren have a lot of accumulated knowledge of the course which is great to tap into. Wain is also working hard in his mechanic’s role to make sure all of our kit is in the best possible condition to produce a quality golf course.I’ve worked under and alongside some extremely knowledgeable people during 18 years in the greenkeeping profession at places including Moor Allerton, Oak Hill Country Club in the USA, Wentworth, Wetherby, and latterly as Deputy Course Manager at Princes Golf Club in Kent.Chesterfield Golf Club is a great opportunity for me to put this knowledge and experience to good use in my first Course Manager’s position. I know it is a strong members' golf club, traditionally built on a solid reputation for the quality of its greens.We’ll be making sure we get back to that and enhancing it further.Obviously, results won’t happen overnight, but with a little patience I will commit every available hour of my time to make it happen.If you see me on the course or around the clubhouse please say hello. I’m passionate about what I do and always happy to listen to suggestions and chat things through.Enjoy your weekend.Joe Walsh, Course Manager
Drainage work remains on-going, but with underfoot conditions improving, we’re now in a position where we can reopen holes 16 and 17 on a phased basis. Both holes will be open for play this weekend. The area to the left of the 16th fairway is still being worked on – this will be roped off and should be treated as GUR. The holes will be closed again throughout next week and will reopen the following weekend for play. We’re not now far from being able to permanently reopen them and will do so as soon as possible. Members of the greens team have worked extremely hard in challenging conditions to carry out work to locate and repair drains, clear our overgrown ditches, and to dig out a ditch to the side of the 17th summer tee to aid drainage of the area. Water is now flowing much more freely through watercourses in the area and we’ll assess the impact of the improvements made before determining if further work is necessary.
From 16th November we’ve been operating a ‘lift, rake and place’ policy from all course bunkers. Meaning, should you wish, you can lift your ball when lying in the bunker, rake the surface and replace the ball on the same area of the freshly-raked surface. Of course, should the bunkers be declared GUR this will take precedence.
(effective from Monday 28th October 2019)
A ball lying on a closely mown surface in the general area may be lifted without penalty and cleaned. Before lifting the ball, the player must mark its position.
The player then has two options as to how to proceed, he or she may: Place the ball on a ‘fairway mat’ within six inches of and not nearer the hole than where it originally lay, that is not in a penalty area and not on a putting green, or move the ball at 90 degrees beyond the edge of the fairway and place the ball in the semi-rough not nearer the hole than where it originally lay. The use of a ‘fairway mat’ is compulsory on the tees of all Par 3 holes when playing from other than an artificial surface, regardless of the club used. Note: ‘Closely-mown area’ means any area of the course, including paths through the rough, cut to fairway height or less.
Through the Green, a ball that is embedded in its own pitch-mark in the ground may be lifted, without penalty, cleaned and dropped as near as possible to where it lay but not nearer the hole. The ball when dropped must first strike a part of the course through the green. Exception: A player may not take relief under this Local Rule if it is clearly unreasonable for him to make a stroke because of interference by anything other than the condition covered by this Local Rule.
Match play - loss of hole. Stroke play – Two strokes.
S Boyle Secretary/Manager 27 October 2019
The correct way to repair a pitchmark:
Insert your pitch repair tool just outside the back of the pitchmark. Pull the turf towards the centre of the hole. Repeat this same motion on all sides of the hole.
Gently tap the repaired area with the base of your putter.
This action stretches undamaged turf over the ball mark providing instant recovery.