Fore Info February 2021
Clubhouse Development Programme – Approval to proceed.
I am delighted to report that the recommendation of the Management Committee to progress with Option 2 of the Clubhouse Development Programme was carried at the Special General Meeting (SGM) of the Club. The Club is most grateful to extensive contributions made by former Captains Graham Marshallsay and Brian Wright at the early stages of concepts, and the most recent contributions of Sue Masser and David Maskery in preparation for the SGM on behalf of the Management Committee. We are also indebted to Nick Duncan, Chair of Planning and Development, for communicating so effectively throughout the planning stages and for delivering on ambitious targets for full members, which provides a stable financial base on which to plan confidently for the future.
The Club held the Special General Meeting (SGM) on Friday, 15th January 2021 to determine matters in relation to Clubhouse Development as required by our rules. 121 full members participated by either providing proxy votes to the SGM or by attending, and voting, at the meeting hosted on Zoom. In compliance with Club rules regarding general meetings of the Club; the meeting was quorate upon the participation of a minimum of 50 full members.
Chair of House, Sue Masser, and the General Manager will progress the following, on behalf of the Management Committee;
- Liaise with the architect to provide final plans and apply for planning permission
- Review schedule and costs associated with the Clubhouse Development
- Invite and review tenders from contractors
- Provide final costs to the Management Committee (assuming planning permission is granted)
Should planning permission be granted the Management Committee will consider costs and schedules, taking into account the agreed caveats in place; set out below.
There are three caveats to be in place, before the build for Option 2 begins;
- An extension to the current lease for the 30 acres leased from the Tichborne Estate is signed and in place.
- The Management Committee’s assumptions on the maximum number of full members are achieved.
- The Management Committee will continue to manage the risks presented by the ongoing Covid pandemic. Whilst it is not possible to specify the exact conditions that need to be in place in relation to Covid in order to commit to the build phase of Option 2, the Management Committee will restrict or approve progress sensibly in relation to the restrictions imposed due to the pandemic.
Club Professional – Mark Wood
You can probably imagine how tough it is for our new Head Professional, Mark Wood and his wife Mandy who both joined us on 1st November 2020.
Due to Covid restrictions they are currently unable to open the shop or provide coaching at this time. However, they are taking bookings for coaching and indeed providing excellent deals on equipment that can be collected in readiness for your return to golf. Golf coaching packages are available at discounted rates which will provide the perfect springboard for you to get back into golf for the season.
The Pro-Shop has been upgraded, to provide a lighter space. Upgrades to Flightscope for coaching provide state of the art coaching support, with video, together with ball and swing path tracking. It’s quite an experience and available through Mark at your Club in the new Golf Studio; so, do book in advance.
Many thanks to the vast majority of members who have paid their 2021 subscriptions already and claimed their £50 credit for paying before the end of January. As a members club, your loyalty is critical to our successful future.
We do appreciate that some members do leave each year, which is why the Club runs a continuous campaign to bring in 40 to 50 new members each year. On 1st February the Management Committee will meet to determine the maximum number of full members for 2021, as we have been experiencing much more members’ golf during the Covid period, and there is an obvious limit to the number of tee times that can be available. There will be no opportunity to pay a ‘pro-rata subscription’ to renew later in the spring; for example, as we are expecting membership to be full at that time.
Any current member who paid before 31st January 2021 is guaranteed membership for the year, however from 1st February the Club will be accepting the applications from new members waiting to join, and we will be limiting the total number of full members to ensure that the course is not too busy. That number is very likely to be slightly less than the total number of members that we had last year.
As recently announced; the Government will be reviewing Covid restrictions in a few weeks’ time, and we expect the course to re-open at that time so we will re-open tee bookings to paid-up members at the earliest opportunity. However, when coming to play, do ensure that you attach your members tag to your golf bag because the Club will be operating a strict ‘no bag-tag…no golf’ policy. We do appreciate that there can be a lag of a few days between making payment and collecting your bag-tag, especially if playing at weekends. I am sure that you will understand that we need to check that only 2021 members are playing the course.
So; if you intend to play at the Club in 2021, and have yet to pay your subscription, you must do so without delay. Otherwise you risk losing out should new membership be closed.
1st Impressions Project
In our absence, Simon and the greens team have made outstanding progress on the 1st Tee and 1st Impressions project. There is a noticeable improvement already in the layout of the 1st Tee providing for a safer environment and greatly enhanced ‘first impression’. As announced on Malcolm’s retirement; the 1st hole will be re-named; ‘Scotts’, in appreciation of the many contributions to our Club and course by Malcolm, Jane and family. I look forward to not only returning to golf, but also to some ceremony and celebration upon formal drive-in of the new 1st hole. No pressure, Malcolm, just a nice easy draw over the new bunker. I am sure, at that time, there will be a lot for the Club to celebrate in near-normal golfing conditions; hopefully!
I am expecting that next month’s Fore Info will be written having returned to golf at the Club. Times like these really do remind us how important our golf, community and friends are to us. Not long now; hopefully!
Chair of the Management Committee
From the Club Captain
I write this looking out on a wonderful snow-covered vista. No golf today! During this period of golfing inactivity our committees and members generally are still working on our behalf. George and his match committee are putting plans together for competitive golf when we restart. The Captain’s committee are also working on golfing matters. Simon and the match organisers are trying to work out friendly and match fixtures. All in the hope that we do have some normalcy later this year. Early casualties include the Gales Hockley competition which is cancelled for this year and the highly prestigious pre-season friendly against the Hampshire County Team. Last year would have been the 50th anniversary and it now looks like it will be next year before we can mark this occasion.
Our charity work continues. Former member Kevin Peel kindly made 12 rounds at Remedy Oak available to me, proceeds to 2021 captains Charity. This raised £731 including gift aid and Ocado added £500.
Di’s appeal to provide craft bags for the Carroll Centre has brought in about £855 so far. The first 50 bags were delivered last week, and Di is now putting similar kit together for Winchester Young Carers.
£2000 so far in total and still no Captains Drive-in!! Thank you for your support.
With vaccine rollout progressing, I am still optimistic that the Captain’s Trip to Nottinghamshire (3rd – 7th May), will be able to go ahead. We do have space for 2 more members. Please contact me if you would like to join in this fantastic trip.
I do hope that we are back on course sometime this month. If so, please be careful like Paul Wager and me and keep your distance!
Onwards and upwards.
Editors PS. Although so far we missed out on learning more about Tip at a ‘Drive In’, the photo below gives you an idea of his Nottingham ‘Smart Casual’. Ideal for a Captains Committee on Zoom. Be careful those boots look mean…
I do hope everyone is keeping fit, healthy, enjoying fresh air and exercise despite being unable to play our course. I personally have taken pleasure in walking around the boundary of AGC accompanied by Mal Hope-Mason and our two dogs, who by now believe that they own the place. On one of our meanderings Mal dropped her car keys but on retracing our steps we luckily came across them in the trees on the right half way up the 4th. We spied The Greens’ Staff busily working on the First Tee joined by Bob Moore and Grahame Marshallsay whilst Mark Wood, our new Pro was making one of his excellent teaching videos in his studio.
On New Years day quite a few members turned up despite the freezing conditions many partaking of shots of sloe gin, whisky, or ginger wine, accompanied by biscuits and chocolates. Sadly only twenty participated in the competition won by Dan Pulling, followed by Tony Hutt and Martin Pratt, Tony kindly donating his winnings to The Captain’s Charity.
It is with great sadness that I heard that Ian Mackintosh died peacefully at home on Saturday evening. Such a brave and charming man, who, despite health problems would still try to carry on with the activities he loved. Our thoughts are with Vicky and family.
I can’t begin to thank fellow Members for their generous contributions towards the Craft bags, fifty of which have already been delivered to The Carroll Centre for distribution to disadvantaged children. We are now in the process of assembling 60 similar bags to be given to the Winchester Young Carers as part of their Wellbeing packs. We still have enough funds to be able to assemble more packs for February, which is a wonderful achievement thanks to your donations.
Let us all hope it won’t be too long before we can greet each other across a tee, fairway or green.
Match Committee Report
Obviously, there’s been no change in the situation with the Winter Knockouts since last month as the lockdown prevents us from playing any golf. As I said previously, when golf is allowed again and we can play in 4 person groups, we will review the situation to determine if it is practical to continue with these competitions.
Summer Knockouts (Men & Mixed)
Our plan and hope is that the Summer Knockouts will all take place. The big question at the moment is when they can start. Normally this is in March, but this is uncertain so it could be April or May or later. The other factor for the Foursomes competitions would be when 4 person groups would be allowed.
However, the Committee has set up the competitions and will open them up for sign-in as soon as we have an indication when they can start. If the competitions can’t start until April or May, it is probable that we will have to set the maximum time for each round to 4 weeks or less depending on the number of entries. At this point, there is no plan nor intent to restrict entry to these competitions based on either handicap or numbers.
Entry for all the Summer Knockouts will be available on the Members App and HowDidIDo.
|Ross (Over 50’s) Trophy||Singles|
|Mixed||Rotherham Foursomes||Foursomes; drawn teams of 1 man & 1 lady|
|Company Cup||Singles. Restricted entry – see Club Diary.|
Note, for the Cooper, you have to enter as a team, but the teams in the Rotherham are drawn so you enter as an individual. Like all our other competitions, to be eligible to enter you must have played in 6 qualifying competitions (Supplementary and Casual Play Scores don’t count) in the 12 months prior to the closing date of the competition. A full list of all those eligible to enter the Company Cup will be posted in Match Committee section of the Members’ Area of the Club website.
Terms of Competition
It is a year since we first published our Terms of Competition. This has undergone a major revision with the introduction of WHS and now includes much more detail on competition eligibility, handicap allowances, sign-in and score entry requirements. It is in the final stages of review and will soon be posted on the Club website.
A Look at the Rules
A players ball comes to rest on a path. When taking free relief, the player drops a ball from ankle height instead of knee height as required by the rules. The ball comes to rest in the relief area. What penalty does the player get if he/she does not correct the error by redropping?
I hope this month’s edition of Fore finds you all in good health. The Vets Committee held its first zoom meeting in January for which, I am glad to report, everyone managed to navigate the software. As it will be some time before we see the return of the Wednesday Roll Up possible alternatives that could work within the current tee booking system were high on the agenda. Bob Archer has done some work on this and it certainly looks positive that once we are allowed back on the course we can implement a suitable alternative. We have put together a group email of all paid up members of the Section which will allow us to contact everyone with more information when play resumes.
Playing in a match against Royal Winchester in a conversation with one of our opponents I was asked if I knew George Hand. Yes I know George I replied, how do you know him? I bought some bees from him was the reply. Digging a bit deeper I learn that George is a bee keeper of some note and is very well respected amongst fellow apiarists. George kindly told me a little about his hobby. Having retired from a career in banking in 1991 he took a bee keeping course at Sparsholt. Students were not allowed to wear gloves so he quickly learnt how painful bee stings can be. Within 5 years he had 10 colonies spread across a number of locations. In the summer a colony consists of 1 Queen and about 70,000 female workers and 200 male Drones.
Workers only live for about 6 weeks but can fly up to 5km to collect the pollen and nectar. After about 500km of flying their wings drop off! The Queen lives until she stops laying eggs and her ‘subjects’ decide she is of no more use. They will then kill her and arrange for several more Queens to be produced. The first of these to hatch will find the other queen cells and kill them with her sting. The Queen then leaves the hive on a mating flight to the Drone Assembly Area where a number of expectant drones are waiting.
Unbeknown to the drone the act of mating with the Queen results in their death as the act kills them by pulling their insides out. Is there a lesson to be learnt there? Honey is produced from late April through to September. Here in Alresford the first flow is in May largely from the oil seed rape being grown in surrounding fields. Later in the year the flowers on lime trees, of which there are many in Alresford, provide a second flow in late June/mid July. George makes his own blend up from these two distinctive tasting honeys. During the summer there is a lot of work involved tending to the hives on a weekly basis which has to be fitted in around playing golf and other household and gardening duties which is why George now only has 3 hives. George is a member of AGC and a member of the Vets Section.
As we look forward to the end of this current lockdown and a return to the golf course let us keep optimistic with a date in our diaries for the Vets Capt. v Vice Capt. fixture currently scheduled for the 10th March. This is a very popular fixture and the traditional curtain raiser to the new season.
Updates will follow by email and also on the Notice Board once the Club House reopens.
…from the General Manager
Now the 2021 renewal period has come to a close, we are now accepting new applications for membership. -YOU – our members are our best salespeople. We need new members and have vacancies in all categories? If you know any friends or acquaintances who are thinking of joining a club or changing clubs or have new neighbours who have recently moved to the area, please do your best to sell them the benefits of Alresford Golf Club.
Looking for a way to ease the burden of subscription renewal each year?
Why not join the ADVANCE SUBSCRIPTIONS SCHEME in 2021? Choose any amount to pay over 10 months towards your subscription bill in 2022. Build up a credit on your account which is offset against your renewal bill due 1st January 2022. Pay as much or as little as you wish. Speak to the Office for more details and to receive an ADVANCE SUBS mandate form.
CLUB DIARY 2021
Now available for collection from the Office (if essential travel !)
FACEBOOK – check out our Facebook page
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/
WALKING THE COURSE DURING LOCKDOWN ?
If possible please wear a hi-vis jacket – this gives an element of permission / authority and is see by other walkers.
If you must bring your dog – please set a good example and keep on a lead and away from the sheep.
NEWS FROM THE SOCIAL COMMITTEE
SOCIAL COMMITTEE PUB QUIZ
Saturday 6th March
Zoom Quiz at 7:15pm – 8:45pm
You must register in advance via the office
Saturday 4TH SEPTEMBER 2021
Watch out for ticket information & details
Whilst the course might be closed for play there is a positive frenzy of activity taking place! We are consciously “ambitious” with the development projects planned for each winter and this is no exception. Don’t worry though the course hasn’t been abandoned it’s just relatively dormant and not needing to move pin positions and tee markers has enabled our staff to achieve wonders.
We had a Zoom Meeting of the Greens Committee on the 10th (Minutes on the website) and appreciated we could move the old Starters Hut which then meant the path in that area could be completed. You will see from the photographs that the half for the ball dispenser/washer was saved but the other half was all the wrong size for the range buggy to go in.
A new lean to at the far end of the Range Hut will be constructed for the range buggy on 13th February. My thanks to the members that have helped so far whilst looking forward to some future challenges!
The outline for the new Log Cabin is in position and the money saved on the old hut will be invested in a concrete base for the new one. The power cable is in position and we are expecting the Log Cabin to arrive (flat packed of course!) before the end of February. It will be assembled by a team of volunteers with the floor and ceiling insulated and the wood being preserved before the electrics go in.
The concrete base for the old nets was broken up and the new base created by our staff near the Range before Huxley came in to assemble the frame and nets. I’m sure you will love the new nets but if you don’t have a word with Grant and Will who assembled them!!
The work involved in creating the new paths is considerable. The outline is created by removing the top soil and levelling/edging before then compacting Type 1. Then “limestone to dust” is put on top to provide the finishing touch and raked/levelled once again. You will notice the gap between the yellow and white tees on the 1st has now gone as the path is re-routed. We are thinking of some feature planting in this area but need to be mindful of any ongoing maintenance costs. Perhaps a small shrubbery and box hedging, maybe some colour with annuals. If any of our keen gardeners fancy a challenge do get in touch! Likewise if somebody feels moved to sponsor a neat AGC box hedge or other feature that helps create a good 1st Impression. The sides of the new Tees will be turfed when the weather conditions allow.
The practice swale was retaining water so a soak away was dug and it now appears to be fine. It was also discovered why some of the bunkers were holding water. The sand had compacted and blocked the layer of Aquadyne over the soak away. They have all been cleaned out and will be checked more frequently in future. The new fairway bunker on the 1st has settled in nicely and will be in play when the course re-opens. We had planned to improve the drainage of the 7th fairway just before the green this winter but might well defer that to next winter. Partly we seem to have less of a problem and partly to allow the other works to continue and complete.
Can we ask that members do not drive up to the log pile on the right hand side of the range please. This is partly because it’s very muddy at the pinch point beyond the range hut but also because it’s not a “help yourself” system. If you would like some logs please get in touch with Simon.
50% of the Ash between the 3rd and 7th fairways has now been removed due diseased, we will see how the remainder recovers before reviewing next winter. We have more Ash to come out between the 14th and 15th fairways and also behind the 13th White Tee. You might have noticed the excess debris on the ground from the diseased ash trees after we have experienced high winds. Colin Luff is due in on 17th February and Stumpbusters on 1st March. We have an issue with lack of light and air to the 11th green in particular so will ask Colin to look at some large trees on the right hand side that are well out of play but causing the shading issue for most of the day.
The crowns have been raised beyond the 12th green with the plan being to extend the wild flowers and also allow more light and air to the green. The new tree saplings are on order and should arrive in early February with most of them going around the edge of the Academy Course.
We now have a long term plan for the Academy Course and hope to make incremental changes basically at no cost such that ultimately it will be 9 holes with some of the holes being increased in length.
A wildlife tail camera was set near the 5th green to clarify if the turf damage was Corvids (Crow Family) or Badgers. The foot prints in the snow favour Corvids with the trail camera mainly recording walkers and their dogs! The sheep have escaped four times now which we put down to walkers and their dogs being too close. Having explained the issue to members and walkers things appear to have improved. The picture above shows our resident “Sheep Whisperer” Dan settling them down again!
You might have noticed in your 2021 Diaries that Course Maintenance is 22-26 Feb! This is linked to the seasons not lockdowns and course reopening dates. Needless to say we have no idea when the course will be reopened and would not want to be spoiling your enjoyment when it does. So lets just see how this pans out.
Agreement has been reached across a number of committees to trial forward/blue tees. We will put these out in March on all 18 holes for the summer season and see how popular they are. If well utilised by Juniors and Seniors then we can in theory produce another card.
Chair of Greens Committee
A Look at the Rules
The Player gets a one stroke penalty. Note; If the player had placed the ball instead of dropping it, he/she would get a two stroke penalty.
See Rule No. 14.3b
Why not find out more about the rules? The R&A Rules of Golf app, available on the app store, has thousands of quizzes in 3 difficulty levels. Great for a cold, cloudy lockdown day!
The winners of the 100 Club prize draw for February 2021 were:
£100 Mary Rook
£50 Carole Young
£32 Keith Turner
£32 Kathryn Fielden
£32 Claire Sly
£32 Jan White
Once again our draw took place remotely so thank you to David. Well done to our winners and specially to Jan White who has been lucky in the draw for the very first time. Next month’s draw will take place during week beginning 22 February so look out for the results on the Secretary’s board in the entrance hall.
If you would like to be part of the 100 Club and actively contribute towards future enhancements to our facilities, and have the chance of winning a cash prize each month, then why not join us.
The monthly draw is for six cash prizes: £100, £50 and four at £32.
Each share cost £1 per month paid for by monthly standing order and there is no limit to the number you can purchase. Members generally have between 1 and 10 shares with 5 being the most common holding.
For further information about the 100 Club and its history please refer to this section in previous editions of FORE Info. Application forms can be obtained from the Secretary’s office or from me – Pat Wallis phone 01420 564417 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Funny Endings: Joke of the Month
In these difficult COVID times we want to bring a smile to everyones face with a joke. We are looking for golf related, clean, seriously funny humour suitable for all members. Send your joke to the Editor at email@example.com
If we use your joke I will buy you a drink in the bar when it reopens.
The ante natal clinic at St Mary’s Hospital was full of pregnant women accompanied by their partners and the class was in full swing. Mrs Sally Mackintosh, Midwife, was teaching the women how to breathe properly and was telling the men how to give the necessary assurance to their partners at this stage of the pregnancy. She lectured, ‘Ladies, remember that exercise is good for you. Walking is especially beneficial. It strengthens the pelvic muscles and will make delivery that much easier.’ Sally gazed around slowly and studied the men in the room, ‘And gentlemen, remember; you’re in this together, it wouldn’t hurt you to go walking with her.’ The room became very quiet as the men absorbed this information. Then Graham, a prospective Dad, at the back of the room, slowly and nervously raised his hand. ‘Yes?’ enquired Sally. ‘I was just wondering,’ stumbled Graham, ‘ Would it be all right if she carries a golf bag while we walk?’
Editor: David Marshall
The Editorial Team take no responsibility for incorrect information received from Contributors.