After an extremely wet October, November has been no different. In recent years we are seeming to have prolonged wet periods or prolonged dry periods, there doesn’t appear to be anything in between.
Whatever we get though is out of our control, so we just deal with it the best we can. Being prepared is vital and so far this has allowed us to maintain progress on our winter program without interruption.
Despite all the rain the course has remained open for the most part, with only the extreme levels rendering the course unfit for play.
Drainage work has become more of a priority and there have been one or two issues highlighted by the volume of water flowing through the system.
A blockage on a large main drain caused by tree roots has required significant attention.
Poplar trees that surrounded the pond on Wetlands have completely blocked an old drain causing water to break out onto the surface.
A temporary ditch has been excavated in order to divert the water where it can at least get away, however further work will be required to find a permanent solution.
Drainage work is often difficult and frustrating, but once successfully overcome can also be very rewarding.
One thing though is once completed, the evidence of the hard work is rarely visible, unlike most project work undertaken.
One area of work that is certainly visible is on Snaith’s.
The existing bunkers have been altered to the revetted style that all other green side bunkers on the course have been.
A new bunker has also been added to the approach, which now gives extra protection to the hole when attempting to go for the green in 1 shot.
Contouring on the green surrounds has also taken place and will now allow turf to be mown closely and bring the undulations more into play for the running game that the course promotes.
Visually the change is huge and we look forward to the hole returning to play next season.
One area of the course that we have yet to really address in the previous years of course development has been the tees.
The reason that they have been so far down the list of priorities is that it’s the one area of the course that you can choose where to play from and tee the ball up.
That said, some have required attention and in November two of the most uneven have been levelled up.
Snaith’s white tee and Brownies Bough yellow tee were both lifted, levelled and are now ready for returfing.
These will be ready for play again come the start of next season and much improved as a result.
Finally, some tree clearance has taken place when other work wasn’t possible and also we have made a start to winter machinery servicing.
These jobs will continue in the new year as planned and despite the difficulties with the weather, our program of work should still reach completion in almost all areas.
December will start with a delivery of 1000 square metres of turf to complete work carried out so far as well as on a few worn or poor quality areas around the course.
Once all of these projects are completed we intend to spend some time on the playing surfaces before the end of the year, with some mowing and aeration planned.