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March Couple Triumphant in Charity Tournament

Sandra & Michael Russell

The Victorious Couple receiving their prizes

March Golf club members Sandra and Michael Russell were yesterday triumphant in a regional charity knockout  competition, organised by The Arthur Rank Hospice Charity and sponsored by BMW.  Sixty pairs split into two groups took part in the Fourball better ball knockout competition and on their way to the final Sandra and Mick won against pairs from Gog Magog, and Meridan Golf clubs.

The final played in tough windy conditions at March Golf club against a pair from Tydd St Giles golf club was a very close affair with Sandra sinking a 30 ft putt on the 18th to level the match and force extra holes. The match eventually came to conclusion on the 21st hole where the March couple won the hole against there Tydd counterparts.

Officials from The Arthur Rank Charity and Competition organisers were on hand after the event to present the victorious couple with certificates and prizes. Mick and Sandra said they have supported Arthur Rank for many years so when they got the email about entering there was no hesitation and they also encouraged Lady Captain Emma Norman and her partner Mark Athow to take part. Mick and Sandra thanked the organisers for a great competition, their playing partners, Lady Captain Emma and Club Vice Captain Andy Lilley along with some of their friends who turned up at the club to support them.  They are now looking forward to playing again next year and hope to encourage more to take part.

Lady Captains Day 2020

 

Presentation

Winners from Lady Captains Day

On the 15th September 24 Ladies took part in Lady Captains Day. Despite having to be rearranged from the original date due to the current pandemic the weather couldn’t have been more glorious with bright blue skies, a gentle breeze and temperatures in the high 20°’s

Despite the extremely fast greens prepared by the greens staff, all the ladies played extremely well in this individual Stableford event and the results were as follows:

1st: Shona Kent – 35 points

2nd: Sandra Russell – 33 points

3rd: Emma Smith – 32 points

Nearest the pin 2nd/11th – Carolyn Morton

Nearest the pin 6th /15th – Jo Rowlett

Nearest the line 8th /17th – Pam Wallis

The Past Captains trophy was also won by Shona Kent

Lady Captain Emma Norman was overwhelmed by the support and generosity of the Lady members and almost £400 was raised on the day for the Lady Captains Charity, the Sue Ryder Thopehall Hospice in Peterborough.

Lady Captains Day

Jean Alterton, Shona Kent, Barbara Spilka, Gail Arnold

Victoria Collett, Pam Wallis , Ros Humphrey , Dawn Robinson

Lady Captains Day

Emma Smith , Gail Johnson, Brenda Softley, Jo Rowlett

Lady Captains Day

Fiona Wood, Valerie Cook, Maureen Pope

Lady Captains Day

Sandra Russell, Jean McAuliffe, Michal Simpson

 

July Update from the Lady Captain

 

Close up of green

Close up of green

The ladies have enjoyed their return to competitive golf, our calendar has been revised, thanks to our Competition secretary Jean McAuliffe.

Competitions began with a 9 Hole Stableford on the 5th July, Gail Johnson was the triumphant winner with 20 points and a fantastic birdie on the 5th Emma Smith was 2nd with 18 points beating Ros Humphrey on count back.

The Ladies played the Addie Sole Rosebowl on the 7th July with the morning players having the best of the weather. In 1st place going out with a 53 and back in 56,net 75 was Carole Wood, with Emma Smith net 77 in 2nd and Jo Rowlett net 78 in 3rd.

Well Done to all of those who braved the awful weather on Thursday 9th July to play in the Grannies/Non Grannies Competitions. Valerie Cook was triumphant in the Non Grannies beating Pearl Moss by 3 points with Penny Gilbert taking the honors in the Grannies.

Thank you all of those who have attended the Saturday afternoon roll up group we have played some enjoyable golf with fun team and individual competitions and have so far raised nearly £150 for my charity Sue Ryder Thorpehall Hospice.

Any members who would like to join are welcome, please contact Lady Captain Emma on 07927607784 for more information.

Sue Ryder Logo

Sue Ryder Logo

 

June 2020 Greens Update

5th Hole from Men's Tee

5th Hole

Thanks to Blue and Ian our greens are now as good as, if not better than, any in Cambridgeshire. However, as you can plainly see, the same cannot be said of the fairways.

As a result of lack of attention for a number of years, the drought of 2018 and then one of the wettest winters on record this year, many areas of the fairways are in a sorry state. There are many dead and bare areas that will not come back naturally. Unfortunately, it is not simply a question of over-seeding as grass seed will never germinate in such conditions

Many of you may be asking what we are doing to address the situation, but you can rest assured that a lot of thought has gone into how we can rectify it. Unfortunately, the correct solution is a lengthy and costly process, and as you will all appreciate our finances are stretched to the limit more than ever following the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Blue and Ian have put together a method statement and a cost plan for the restoration work based on them carrying out the work themselves, but even then, there are no guarantees of success as it will be dependent on the weather at the time and successful seed germination. We could employ a specialist subcontractor to do the work, which, whilst coming with guarantees, will also come with far greater cost implications.

The worst affected areas will need to be thoroughly scarified, and then treated with pre-seed fertiliser. They will then need to be dressed with approximately 80 tons of dressing material, seeded and rolled, then roped off as GUR until healthy strong grass growth is established.
Ideally this work should be carried out at around the end of September to mid-October depending on the weather conditions at the time.

Unfortunately, all this comes at a cost we can ill afford at the moment so we are trapped between a “rock and a hard place” as they say.
It is anticipated that the cost of the plant and materials required to complete the work “in house” is approximately £7500.00 so you can understand the dilemma we are facing. Furthermore, once we have completed the restoration work, the ongoing annual maintenance costs for verti-draining and/or shockwave aeration would be in the region of £1500.00.
Blue, Ian and the Greens Committee believe it is only right that all members should be aware of the problems facing us in the immediate future. We are all striving to provide you with the best playing conditions we can, but because of the financial restraints this is not always possible.

Derek Wisbey
Head of Greens

Pro Shop Re opening Wednesday 1st July

Members, visitors and customers! I`m looking forward to returning to normality this coming Wednesday 1st July.

May I ask that you come to the open pro shop door and “give us a shout”. I need to make sure there is just one person in the shop plus myself at any one time, whilst maintaining a two metre safe distance gap between us.

The club has released a “back to work” statement today to all members and there will be notices on the shop front to display our requirements please. This is a new arrangement for all of us, please don`t be offended if I have to point out certain things, don`t take it personally.

Needless to say, my coaching has recommenced many weeks ago and things are slightly different but I`m having some incredible success with more visual demonstrations and verbal instruction. Have your clubs been neglected since last season? How about a new set of grips and a clean up? You will be amazed at how they will scrub up and feel like new with some improved traction.

 

Need balls?

 

I`ve got a full stock of all top brands with a special on Taylormade TP5x at just £30 per dozen. I`ve still got hundreds of quality lake balls left from last years delivery that I can organise into brand and model – please just ask. Titleist, Srixon, Callaway, Taylormade and Nike are all available from £10/doz.

 


As far as the men go – I need to rid a large stock of shirts that have sat here for several months. Therefore Island Green shirts will be £20 each or 3 shirts for £49 until all stock has gone out of the door. Ladies clothing is pretty much all at £10 per item. Please remember returned items need to be left 72 hours which I need to keep track of so retailing is not always going to be straight forward as you see it from your point of view. Please understand.

All golf, including visitors and member`s guests should all be on the v1 booking app. If I am not in the shop and there are fees to pay, please get in touch with me by any means. With technology these days it is so easy – Facebook Messenger, Whats app, Email and Bacs, it can all be done without contact, don`t make me chase you.

 

Taylormade Sim is all in stock, Ping and Lynx – service and business are almost open as usual. I look forward to seeing you. Best wishes Alex

End of Spring

Dear Golfers!
I hope your chipping improved on your back lawn during lockdown and you
are enjoying a return to the game, hopefully on our wonderful course.
A funny old time nevertheless but storms don`t last forever.

Socially Distance Lessons

I write to tell you that from Monday 1st June I will be showing my face at the
golf club more regularly and that “socially distanced” golf lessons are available.
Such a long lay off has made me realise how much I missed coaching and,
coupled with such wonderful weather and eager students the last week or so,
has really reignited my teaching mojo.
So come on, let`s improve you today!!

Point and Shout Service

Government restrictions currently prevent me from opening my shop “as normal” and, for all our safety, I ask that no one comes inside or touches the door frame.
Please note I am not back at work under contract from the club, but simply wishing to provide a reasonable service in the interim until we agree on a resuming date.

The club will be releasing soon some guidelines about the pro shop but in the
meantime, rest assured, infection control measures are in place. I can operate a
“Click and collect” service (it has been amusingly referred to as “Point and shout”)
for everyone. So far, many of you have been messaging or ringing, telling me what
you require and the items have been waiting for you. Pop 07890 021575 in your
phone (you can always try the shop 01354 657255), befriend me on facebook or
messenger, whats app or email me with anything your require. I want to help you!

The various equipment companies I deal with are nearly all back in operation, albeit
with skeleton staff, so orders are possible but it is not next day Amazon Prime delivery.
There have been several pluses over the last couple of weeks – a bit more golf and
prior to that the ability to get on top of all those jobs that I never have the time to do.

Unlimited Golf in June, Just £3.33 a day!

 

march golf club

 

 

Lastly, can I bring your attention to our unlimited golf offer for June. With so many
people still furloughed, a great opportunity is possible for 30 days golf with great
weather on our brilliant course – just £3.33 per day for as many holes as you can!

If you know any of your friends or family who may be interested, ask them to get
in touch and the process will be made very easy for them by yours truly.

 

Hope to see many of you very soon, best wishes, Alex

May 2020 Greens Update

We are two weeks back into golf and I would like to think you can all now appreciate the wisdom of keeping Blue and Ian working on the course during “lockdown”. Alan Jones, immediate Past Captain and a member at March Golf Club for forty-one years said to me this week “in all the time I have been a member here I have never seen the course looking better. A big thank you is due to our brilliant green keeping pair, the Seniors for their generosity, and the numerous volunteers, who have all helped to make this possible”.

The greens are superb thanks not only to the acquisition of the new aerator and the turf iron, but also the expertise of Blue and Ian. We have had one small hiccup as the crows, rooks and magpies have taken a liking to the leatherjackets beneath the turf and have caused quite a bit of damage to some of the greens, particularly the eighth. The leatherjacket is the larval stage of the crane fly and in April they move up to the root zone of the grass, where, during May, they grow and change into pupae – tasty morsels for the aforementioned pests.

The fairways were also looking a picture a few weeks ago, but following the wettest February on record we have seen hardly any rain at all since then. Rainfall in April was well below average and we are heading for the driest ever May. The grass is already scorched and the familiar cracking is beginning to appear. We can but hope we don’t get another summer like that of two years ago when drought conditions caused untold damage to both greens and fairways. We can but pray for rain.

You will have noticed that the bunker to the left of the third green has disappeared and may have questioned why?

Evidently some years ago the third green was considerably larger and much further to the left. At that time the bunker in question was a greenside bunker. As the large tree in front of the bunker got bigger it obstructed the approach shot to the green so the green was moved to the right and over time became much smaller (as did many of the other greens).
If you pull your approach shot to the left of the green you invariably hit the tree. Rarely did you get through the tree and finish in the bunker so the main penalty was the tree and not the bunker, making it somewhat superfluous.

Another problem was, that with the bunker subsequently in the rough and with steep sides, it was impossible to cut with the “rough cutter”, and our Greenkeepers were obliged to use the strimmer – a considerable waste of valuable time that could be better spent on other parts of the course.

You will have already noted a vast improvement to the shaping of the bunkers, thanks almost entirely to the sterling work of Tom Sharpe. We now have a large group of volunteers who have offered to maintain the bunkers, trimming the grass around the edges and raking periodically, but please do not expect miracles. Without the rakes in situ, at times they will inevitably leave a lot to be desired unless you are playing just after they have been raked.

Those of you with buggies will have noticed that at last the matting in front of the sheds has been laid. The installation was carried out by four volunteers, two from the Greens Sub–committee and two members, Paul Goddard and Jed Vawser. Hopefully when winter is upon us ingress & egress to the sheds will be greatly improved

As a result of the Covid-19 virus and the severe impact it has had on our finances we are being forced to work with a severely reduced Green staff.

Normally at this time of the year we would have a head Greenkeeper plus two permanent assistants but we are having to survive with just Blue and Ian. Their time is stretched to the limit, therefore throughout what remains of the year we will have to survive with the aid of volunteers.
We have many volunteers who go unnoticed in the Club and my thanks go out to all of you for helping to make our course what it is. You will be needed even more during this vital period of financial hardship.

I don’t think I have anything further to add other than to say that I hope you have the most enjoyable, albeit somewhat curtailed, year on our fantastic nine – hole course.

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