Last Sunday saw the arrival of the shorter days and the darker nights which can only mean one thing, Winter is on the way.
Work on the Course never stops and we thought it may be helpful to advise you of our plans for Winter 23/24. There is still some finishing work to be completed such as the drainage around the 15th tee complex, the turfing of this area and the removal of a number of tree stumps in various places around the Course.
The Course Development Team met on Wednesday and at this meeting we were delighted to welcome a new member of the team - Martin Lang. The main objective of the meeting was to discuss the priorities for this Winter and they fell into four distinct categories.
- Building seventeen new tees for the Blue Course (there is already a tee on the 1st)
- The removal of overhanging trees around the boundary of the Course and some further tree removal on the Course in particular at the fence on the 9th as they are becoming a potential danger to the houses.
- A number of the paths require urgent attention and our focus will initially be on the 6th, 11th, and 13th.
- Drainage in a number of areas across the Course.
For those of you who have played the Course recently will already have seen some of the drainage work taking place on the 13th, 15th and 16th. This has involved exposing the existing poor and damaged drains and repairing and replacing these, in some instances with chambers sunk into the fairways that will make a huge improvement to the flow of water.
Whilst we all love to see work on Greens and Tees, often, it is the unseen work that makes a massive difference and work that most people hardly ever notice, this is very evident with drainage work.
When Gordon Irvine first attended some 3 years ago, he held a straw poll asking a group of members how many weeks they had played on good greens in the past 12 months? The average answer was 21 weeks. Gordon stated that if his programme was followed in five years that figure would rise to much nearer 40 weeks. Listening to the comments of members, 3 years in, we are already close to that figure.
At his visit on the 12th of October, Gordon was delighted with the progress being made, noting in his report that there is now a much greater percentage of Bent and Fescue grass in the greens. This makes the green much less prone to disease and provides a much more consistent and truer roll of the ball.
He also pointed out that due to the excellent aeration that has taken place the grasses on the fairways are now also of the more natural finer grasses and the density of grass on the greens and the fairways has greatly improved. A huge thanks to Dave and his team for their hard work in following the prescribed programme and improving our playing experience.
On the 13th and 14th of November the course will be closed in order that “deep tinning” can take place. This year Dave has asked that the greens be included in this exercise. This means that between the 13th and (at the earliest) 20th of November “frost greens” will be in place. These will not be prepared until after the deep tinning has been done as they will be adversely affected by the tinning exercise. Frost greens will be marked with an outer white circle and again we will have an inner red circle for “gimmes”.
The UK has had one the wettest Octobers on record and combined with the rain that fell in August and September the Course is naturally very wet. We always have the safety of members at heart and would ask you to consider your footware
and the spikes in your shoes. Trainer style shoes are probably not the best at this time of year.
We hope this update helps you understand what will be going on over the 90 acres that is our Course during the Winter months. The Working Party continue their excellent work and the group have just welcomed two new members in Markham Bullard and Paul Jones (Rafa). Every hour offered makes a difference and as always we welcome new volunteers.
The Course Development Team would like to offer their good wishes to our new Professional James and to our new Steward John and his wife Nicky we are sure all will prove to be a major asset to Bury Golf Club.
We finish this note with a familiar reminder, please, please replace your divots, repair your pitch marks, rake the bunkers after use (not just the little bit you have just used) all of these make a difference to YOUR Course.
Wishing you all, good golf but remember it is Winter and we are trying our best to keep you golfing.
The Course Development Team