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Course Report – 17.01.2019

Happy new year to all our members, firstly Nigel, Steve and myself would like to wish you all the best for the upcoming year of golf at Todmorden Golf Club. After lots of hard work by staff and our committee over the past 4 years in my tenure as greens chairman, I believe we have continued to progress our superb golf course to provide a quality, challenging but fair golf course.

All the major works that have taken place wouldn’t have been possible without this hard work of the staff, volunteers and also kind donations from our members. Without this projects such as the new Paul Snook’s, ‘Snookys’ bridge and hazard on the 1st, an extension of the 5th green, remodelling of course bunkers & detailed changes such as remarking all hazards wouldn’t have been possible. We have worked hard on the visual shaping of course via manicuring of grass lengths from fairway, semi rough to rough which I believe shows great attention to detail at Rive Rocks.

Moving forward with the new website we would like to maintain a constant dialogue with our members following the launch of new interactive and updated platforms. This will enable all members to access information on planned works on the course, maintenance schedule and also any current course updates such as temporary greens or course closures.

We are aiming to link as much information as we can via our social media on Facebook and also twitter so please follow the clubs on these platforms to stay up to date.

2019 has started with an amazing kind donation by one of our members to enable us to carry out some new work on the course. We have wanted to develop a new 16th tee to the left of the current competition tee that has a prominent position on Rive Rocks. This viewpoint will enable extended scope for teeing space for competition and also casual golf. The current competition tee has been struggling to cope with the demands of use and been subject severe wear & tear that has affected its quality. The new tee will provide us with a superb new teeing area that runs parallel to our current tee with an extra impressive edge to it positioned on the rock.

To enable to carry out the works with the donation made and utilise the machinery needed for the works we are using the turf from the 4th winter tee for the new 16th tee bed keeping costs down without the need for new turf. As a result, we have planned a new winter tee in front of the existing 4th tee which shall be installed following the works. Areas to the immediate for the front of the existing 4th winter tee shall be straightened out & the winter tee flattened to allow a gradual climb from existing tee up to the rocks ahead. As a grounds team and committee, we feel this will make for an impressive visual from the tee and also more playable for the membership with the lack of steep 4th winter tee banking.

We are also utilising turf lifting equipment with these same projects to develop the 9th winter tee which has lost shape and levels especially on the lower aspect of the tee. We plan to extend the front of the upper portion of the 9th winter tee towards the pond providing us with a flat expansive tee bed. This will provide options for winter, yellow tees and potential white tees in some competition for a variety of teeing angle options. I’m sure you’ll agree the tee shot is one of the more picturesque we have and have sadly never utilised it due to the quality of the tee bed. This will help us for the first time provide us more options than we have ever had on the hole.

To date this winter we have continued to carry out mowing, raking of bunkers and also play off fairways as much as possible due to the mild conditions up until mid-January. We plan to do the same until we see fit weather dependant which enables the best playing standards possible for a winter set up especially in West Yorkshire. Continue maintenance of the course in the means of tree management, pruning of areas especially in front of the 1st tee have given good visual improvements to the course.

Many of you may have notified the vast improvement to the areas surrounding the clubhouse which wouldn’t be possible without the additional help of new assistant Greenkeeper Steven Hughes. With his help and superb attitude to go above and beyond his agreed terms with the club, it has allowed Nigel and me to get the best grips on the course than ever before which we are lucky to have a couple of professional staff members who take complete care & attention to detail.

The past year has seen us again save on previous years budgets as we always strive to prioritise year in year out to enable we maintain standards but cut cloth accordingly. We hope the healthy state of the course moving forwards and also tweaks to its set up can pull in more players, members and users of our clubs facilities as we possibly can.

Many thanks for your continued support and I look forward to seeing you in the forthcoming month or so.

Michael Murray – Ground officer

*Next planned grounds report: March 2019*