From Matt Basey, General Manager, and Dave Taylor, Course Manager: Welcome to the September newsletter. We hope you are all well and enjoying your golf!
Members will be pleased to learn that on Wednesday, August 26th, nearly 200 friends and family gathered to celebrate the life of one of our most beloved members, Gary Spackman. His wife Sarah and the rest of the family would like to thank you all for your kind support and generous donations, which have now been passed on to Bristol Haematology and Oncology Centre.
We have had a busy month with some changes that you may have all noticed. The new club cards have arrived and all your bar and pro shop levy has merged into one. If you haven’t done so already, you can collect your card behind the bar.
On the golf course, it has been nice to welcome back our Head Marshal Lance, who has provided great support and a watchful eye on the course. He has also been driving our drinks buggy, which has proven popular with Members and guests and we are pleased to say this will continue.
On the subject of buggies, we are introducing a new fleet of vehicles and will have up to 12 buggies soon. As a result, we are now able to offer a buggy membership for just £40 per month with unlimited use.
While we have all experienced a rise in the numbers playing golf since the partial lifting of the lockdown in May, the majority of The Bristol’s historical trading has come from food and drink sales, as well as the events and functions side of the business, so overall trading has remained challenging to say the least. Get Golfing, however, sees The Bristol as a key site and will be investing in it significantly over the coming years. That said, any support Members can give to the staff and Club in the meantime would be greatly appreciated. For example, it would be a great help if Members could make sure they regularly use the kitchen and bar offerings and could introduce their golfing friends to membership of The Bristol as well. If you use the Member referral programme, you will receive 10% of the new Member’s first-year subscription as a credit on your bar card.
Future development plans
Since Get Golfing took over The Bristol, work has been going on behind the scenes regarding areas for investment and establishing budgets and timings. A planning application will be submitted before the end of the year for a new maintenance building located closer to the range. As and when plans have been firmed up, more information will be provided. Get Golfing has also had interior designers on site reviewing the layout of the Clubhouse. We all recognise that it requires investment and more information should be available in next month’s newsletter. It is proposed that the work to the clubhouse will take place during the first quarter of 2021.
Food and drink news
Our current seasonal menu offers a variety of delicious dishes with the choice of inside or patio seating. This menu will run until late September and then an autumn menu will be introduced. As and when clubhouses are allowed to open further, the menu at The Bristol will be further expanded by our Head Chef Przemek Hammer with daily specials and other dishes unique to the Club.
Members can now switch from their current Crown membership contract to a new Get Golfing contract, which means you can receive the additional benefits that Get Golfing offers. Please click here to review your options or contact Matt via email ([email protected]).
We recently had our Captains’ Charity day which was a great success. Our Captains Tony Crook and Olwen Simpson did an amazing job and the Members helped raise £750 on the day. It was great to have 101 players enter and congratulations to all those that collected prizes.
Currently we are in the process of moving over to Intelligent Golf where you will be able to view and enter competitions through your membership account, to view the remaining club competitions please click here.
If you would like help entering these competitions or get more information on how to obtain your handicap then please get in contact with us and we would be happy to assist.
From Dave Taylor, Course Manager: This month we have been fortunate enough for the first time this year to have a full complement of staff in the green keeping department. We are now up to six members of staff, which will really help us progress the course in the right direction. Get Golfing’s focus on course conditioning and its financial support in terms of staffing, new machinery and the overall course budget is a breath of fresh air and will enable us to deliver a much better experience for all our golfers.
As part of this, we took delivery of our new fairway mower at the start of the month, which has instantly changed the appearance and playability of the fairways. We are starting the process of putting the diamond cut pattern back into the fairways. This will take a few weeks to really start popping, as we were cutting 50/50 for an extensive period, which has caused the grass to nap over in the two directions of cut. Thankfully, with the recent upsurge in growth levels, the grass will stand more erect, making this cutting on the fairways easier.
The new Tru-Turf roller has already been out multiple occasions and is really showing its worth. Smoother surfaces, extra length on the ball roll and predictability on the greens has come on leaps and bounds.
In the early part of the month we carried out our autumn renovations on the greens. This consisted of a -5mm double verti-cut, double cut, 10 tons of sand dressings, 5’’ depth pencil tine aeration, brush in, a further 10 tons of sand dressings, 1’’ depth pencil tine aeration, medium overseed, brush and, finally, a double roll to get the greens back in play.
This all took place over three days, two of which were at 35 degrees, so a massive thank you and well done to the whole team here who went above and beyond to carry out the work. Especially to the members of the team that stayed till 7pm on Wednesday night to get everything finished before the storm and rain came in. Well done chaps.
We were able to get the bunker on the 2nd put back into play after being GUR for more than five months. This was due to the horrific winter we had, which caused the bunker drainage to block. The team spent a whole day digging the bunker back out, incorporating new drainage lines, refilling the sand levels, compacting them to a playable level and by the end of the day the bunker was back into play. Shame the next day there was a big rabbit-sized hole where he must have thought it was a nice place to set up home again. He was soon dealt with.
We will soon begin our winter project works on the course. The large amount of this work will consist of digging out the existing ditches, implementing new ones on holes 6 and 9, and then trenching out the drainage line into those ditches to drastically improve the water movement on holes 3, 4, 5, 8 and 9. This is something I have wanted to carry out since the day I started and I am very pleased to have been given the go ahead from Get Golfing.
Now with any work there will be disruption on the course but the long term gains far outweigh the negatives. Ultimately we want to make the course genuinely more playable through the whole year.
From Daryl Kelley, PGA Professional: I have been coaching golf for more than 20 years and coach all levels from beginner to advanced, juniors to ladies and gents. I try to keep the lessons relaxed so that we can get the most out our time together. Lessons are available in all areas of the game from putting, bunker play, short game through to driving. I also offer on-course lessons and course management. I make sure I tailor my lessons to suit the individual but also offer block bookings.
Contact me on 01454 620000 or 07739 410 010
Online pro shop
With the closure of the pro shop, we are temporarily offering balls, gloves, hats etc at the check-in desk. Towards the end of the year, we will have our own online golf shop, which will enable members to buy their golf merchandise direct using their club cards and receive the relevant discounts that go with their membership category. Merchandise (including Club logo apparel) will be delivered to their home or on a click-and-collect basis at the Club. Get Golfing is confident that this will mean that members at The Bristol will receive outstanding value on their purchases and, if we may borrow a term, “never be knowingly undersold”. More information will become available in due course.