Club Captain's Newsletter - August 2018

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Captain's Newsletter - August 2018

A great deal has happened since my last newsletter including some of the worst and best weather seen for many years. The ‘ Beast from the East ‘ and the long cold spell running into March saw the course underused and the income down. Since then the great summer has increased footfall and the combination of weather, the Open at Carnoustie, and the work done by the Club Manager and Professional has turned things around and we are now ahead of budget. Let us hope for a great autumn to keep things on track.

The last severe rain before the dry spell caused a small problem during Saturday qualifying for the club championship but the flooded greens drained very quickly and play was able to resume. Championship week was very successful with good support on Finals Night. My congratulations to all the winners and also to those who qualified but were eliminated during the week.

The course has been in excellent condition due to the hard work of the greenkeeping team. I am sure it is many years since the climate has changed so rapidly and time saved cutting grass was spent on irrigation and trying to keep bare patches alive. Many of you will have appreciated the changes made to bunkering and noticed the new tees on the Dornock . There are no more changes to the bunkers for this winter but we hope that Charlie’s team will extend the new green tees to include many of the holes on Ferntower to increase the options for all abilities.

Open competitions, especially for Senior Men, have been very well supported and along with the annual Rotary Day, the Perthshire Chamber of Commerce and other corporate events we have shown the best face of the club to visitors and encouraged return visits. This has taxed the catering and bar staff on busy days and it is good to hear reports of excellent service coming in to myself and the Club Manager.

There has been a lot of comments of both opinions on the number of Saturday medals played off the yellow tees. The better players and longer hitters enjoy the white tees while some others prefer to play yellows. The board has seen a decline in Saturday participation off the back tees and decided to try some off the shorter course this year. At the end of the season the numbers playing will be assessed and if this has not increased uptake then there will be a move back towards white. We will also take into consideration the number of Wednesday medals off the longer tees and the uptake of the Sunday monthly sweep.

We have again gone to the market with our Earlybird offer. This is open to new members and lapsed members who have not subscribed for at least one year. It is only available once to any person. Our aim is to then retain these new members in future years and so far we have been mostly successful in this respect. Last year we gained  45 members and this year we have already had a very good response.

Board member Mark Cummings has kept us all on our toes with the Business Plan implementation which was mainly based on the 2016 Members Customer Satisfaction Survey. To update the plan a 2018 survey will be sent to all members for their opinions and we would urge that everyone responds as this feedback is essential for the Board to assess where we are in improving the club for everyone, staff and members, and the future direction of all aspects going forward. The previous survey had an excellent response and we would hope that we have similar this time.

The Board intend to hold a mid-term review on 11th October where the results of the survey will be communicated to the members as well as discussing any items raised.

Club Manager Anna is organising an Open Day at the club on Sunday 9th September. Anyone interested in the sport, whether new or returning, will be able to come along and try hitting, putting or playing a few holes off the green tees. There will be events for children and adults with the aim of removing the mystique of golf and hopefully sparking interest to try in more depth. I would appreciate the assistance of members who can give some time that day so please be in touch with Anna if you can help.



Stuart McLaren
Club Captain