Membership Policies

GOLF COURSE MANAGEMENT POLICY 
INFORMATION ON STAFF & GOLF COURSE

•1. Introduction 
This document sets out the policies for the management of Banchory Golf Course.
Departures from and changes to these policies require the approval of the Management Committee and the Greens Committee. 

•2. Objective 
The objective is to present and maintain a golf course facility in first rate condition, consistent with other quality parkland courses in the north east of Scotland, for the enjoyment of Members and guests of all handicaps.

•3. Roles and Responsibilities 
Management Committee 
The Management Committee is responsible for the overall management of Banchory Golf Club in all its aspects. The Management Committee may, at its discretion, establish and delegate operational matters related to the maintenance and presentation of the golf course to the Greens Committee. The proposed implementation of any delegated matters which require or will result in a departure from the financial budgets agreed annually in advance will require approval and ratification by The Management Committee. 
The purchase of machinery, finance and all related matters of course / machinery expenditure requires the prior approval of the Management Committee. 

GC (Greens Committee)
The GC is expected to meet regularly (normally once per month during the playing season, Apr to Oct) and the meetings will be called by the Greens Convener or his/her nominated deputy. A Course Manager's report will be produced following these meetings and will be presented to the Management Committee.

Greens Convener
The Greens Convener (or his/her deputy) is responsible for arranging, attending and organising an agenda for regular Greens Committee meetings in line with the management structure. The Greens Convener should liaise with the Course Manager and his team before and during these meetings, in ensuring that the objectives contained within this policy are being met. The Greens Convener is not required to conduct staff operations or change work schedules without firstly seeking approval from the Management Committee. All committee members should be aware of any health and safety implications should they need to visit the maintenance facility. The Course Manager or his Deputy should be made aware of all visits prior to arrival. As with all facilities operating machinery and using chemicals, there is risk and danger. 

Course Manager 
The duties of the Course Manager are noted through this document and include:- 

The Course Manager is responsible for the implementation of this policy in all its aspects; planning of maintenance schedules in relation to fixture lists; liaising with the Club Manager on any problem areas; machinery maintenance; planning and long term budgeting; schedules and records; personnel education and training; health and safety; fertilisers and chemicals; environmental issues and the day to day running of the course. 
The Course Manager is responsible for the development and maintenance of a rolling 5-year machinery programme and for ensuring the efficient maintenance of all the machinery fleet. 

The Course Manager will be responsible for ensuring conservation areas are managed with consideration to wildlife and habitat development.
The Course Manager will liaise with the Match & Handicap Convenors of the ladies and gents sections or their nominee regarding the set-up of the course on the day of any major competitions. Set-up in this instance means hole locations and tee markers positioning. This will take into account local weather conditions on the day of play unless pin locations are picked the previous day. 


•4. Resources 
The Club will endeavour to ensure the employment of appropriately qualified staff to facilitate the delivery of the policies set out in this document. The staffing profile may comprise a mix of full and part time employees and be supplemented by temporary casual labour and contractors depending on requirements. It is expected that there will be a minimum of 4 full time course employees comprising:- 
1 Course Manager
1 Deputy Greenkeeper
1 Assistant Greenkeeper
1 Trainee / Assistant Greenkeeper 

Banchory Golf Club is committed to the training of Greenstaff and encourages staff to pursue the attainment of professional qualifications, participate in the Continued professional development programme (CPD) as appropriate for their individual abilities. Greenstaff are encouraged to become members of BIGGA and to attend competitions/seminars and exhibitions organised by the Association. The main two events are BTME & Scottish BIGGA Conference. The Club will facilitate 2 Greenkeepers to attend Harrogate each year (exclusive of annual leave), for which Banchory Golf Club will pay for travel and accommodation. Attendance of other seminars including the Scottish BIGGA Conference, is encouraged if maintenance schedules permit. 
Details of the experience and qualifications of the Course staff will be maintained and be available for inspection by the membership if requested.

•5. The Golf Course
The general principles and standards to be applied to specific aspects of course maintenance are as follows:- 

Greens 
The greens are the most important element of any maintenance programme. The greens at Banchory were designed so that they provide a test for all levels of golfers. Most of the greens are fairly level with the occasional contour to provide a different challenge day to day and allow for different pin positions, creating different challenges. 
The greens were originally sown with a blend of fescue and bent species deemed suitable to thrive in that area. The greens require a significant effort to maintain thatch levels to a minimum. The thatch levels have been controlled using a combination of solid tining, hollow coring and verti-draining, regular verti-cutting and top dressing, which usually has to take place during the active growing season. The timing of such aeration work is subject to the fixture list. 
The greens were constructed using the existing soils. The material was assessed to be suitable to promote deep root growth and drainage. Selection of top dressings will be in conjunction with existing materials and will be used to promote the drainage and soil structures. Generally the greens will be maintained at a cutting height of 3.75mm, unless decided to be varied due to weather conditions through the year. 

A regular aeration programme is essential to the overall health and playability of the turf. Details on frequency and timing of these programmes will be visible in the yearly members fixture book.

Tees 
The tees will be cut between 8mm - 12mm throughout the season. The tees were constructed with a pitch of 1 - 2% in one direction to accommodate the surface runoff of any excess water. Tees will be aerated, scarified and fertilised on a regular basis in line with the overall maintenance programme. Tees will be patched with sand and suitable seed on a regular basis during the cutting season to ensure recovery. Tee markers will be moved at least twice a week during the growing season or in conjunction with the competition calendar. 

The full season teeing areas will not be used during the winter months between November and March to protect them during times of poor growth and recovery.

Ball washers and bins will be provided on most tees.

Approaches 
The approaches or surrounds will serve as an extension of the greens due to the small nature. The surface will maintain a height of cut in between the greens and fairways, usually between 8mm and 12mm and will provide a defined surface to play onto the green. They will be aerated, scarified and top-dressed in accordance with the tee maintenance programme.

Fairways 
The fairways will be cut at a height between 12mm dependant on ground and weather conditions. The fairways will be shaped and defined to create a challenging landing area, whilst considering strategic aspects like length and the difficulty of each hole. Fairways should provide a fair test to all categories of players. 

The mowing patterns will be altered regularly to eliminate "wash boarding" and maintain a uniform surface. As the soils at Banchory are prone to compaction to the volume of play, they will be aerated on a regular basis during the autumn and winter months to avoid compaction.

Semi-rough / Rough 
The semi rough will include two passes around the fairways and greens where possible. The semi-rough will generally be maintained at a height of 380mm (1½ inch) depending on weather conditions. 
The maintained rough (mown area), will provide an area to challenge a wayward shot, but will be cut to a length so that a golf ball is visible and easily located. The maintained rough areas will be cut at a height of 635mm (2½ inches). It is the intention that clippings will be cut and mulched with a rotary mower, to minimise unsightly clumps and visible clippings during heavy growth and wet weather.

The area of maintained rough (mown areas) on each hole, will be strategically determined by the degree of difficulty, with reference to health and safety and environmental recommendations. 
The unmaintained rough (non-mown areas), will provide a difficult challenge for very wayward shots. The amount of un-mown rough should consider environmental recommendations from organisations like STRI and SEPA and the membership profile and wishes of members.

Bunkers 
The bunkers are designed to create a challenge to all standard of golfers, whilst being fair and consistent. They are all contour design bunkers and are strategically positioned to compliment the initial design of each hole. 
The bunkers will be maintained everyday during the main season to maintain consistency and avoid compaction. They will be edged on a regular basis to maintain the design characteristics and de-stoned and weeded as required. 

At least one rake will be provided in each bunker for maintenance and golfers are expected to tidy footprints and marks after each shot. 
Bunkers will get minimal maintenance during the winter season.

Trees 
The trees on the golf course will be maintained in line with health and safety recommendations. All branches will be removed over and above the operating height of the ROPS (roll-over protection system) on all machinery. 
The trees will be maintained by the greens staff. This will include pruning, thinning, the removal of protective tubes and stakes if necessary and weedkilling around the base. 

Winter Greens 
The winter greens are created each autumn to provide playability of the course when damaging conditions prevail out with the main season calendar. Typically these greens will be only used during the winter season unless there are maintenance issues which require the use of these greens. 

They will be designed to provide a fair putting surface when the main greens are deemed unplayable for reasons including a thawing frost, saturation and maintenance procedures.
The Course Manager is responsible for deciding the use of winter greens on a daily basis. In his absence a nominated deputy, typically the Deputy Head or a qualified member of the greenstaff will be responsible for this decision.

During days Monday - Friday the decision to utilize winter greens can change depending on weather conditions. On Saturday and Sunday, the decision made before 9.00am will stand for the remainder of that day regardless of influencing factors. 

A winter procedure document can be referred to for further clarification on course closures.

Course closures 
The Course Manager or in his absence a nominated deputy, has the authority to close the course, when unusual weather conditions have occurred and damage to the course would occur if play were permitted. Such conditions would exist if water logging, flooding and during severe frost, ice or snow. 

During a competition, the course may be closed by the Course Manager in consultation with the Director of Golf, or any authorised member of the committee supervising the competition if he/she considers that the greens have become unsuitable for play. 

•6. Greenstaff and Members 
The Greenstaff have priority on the course before 8am during weekdays in order to prepare the course without interruption. Whilst being vigilant, Greenstaff will be instructed to continue preparing the course before 8am without interruption from play. If a member tees off before 8am, they will have no priority for the entire round. 

The same rule applies during weekend play except Greenstaff have priority before 7.30am. This rule may change occasionally if the Management Committee allows an earlier start to play. 

Any complaint about the conduct of any staff member or the state of the course should be made in writing to the MC who will investigate the matter together with the Course Manager. Members and visitors should not direct complaints to individual members of staff or otherwise interrupt them in the performance of their duties.

•7. Machinery 
Machinery, replacements, additions, repairs and renewals maintained by the Course Manager will be subject to periodic review and approval, normally annually, by the GC. The GC will report their consideration of the programme, including recommendations for amendment / approval to the Management Committee for incorporation into the Club's financial plan. 

•8. Environmental 
The club has a responsibility to consider the environment when maintaining the golf course. Chemical, fertiliser and irrigation use will be monitored and kept to the minimum without jeopardising the functional and physical aspects of the golf course. 
Greenstaff will wash and store equipment and be responsible for ensuring all waste material is disposed of, whilst adhering to relevant environmental regulations. 

The Course Manager will be responsible for ensuring conservation areas are managed with consideration to wildlife and habitat development. 

•9. Financial Control 
In November of each year the Course Manager will produce a budget for the next financial year for any course expenditure and recommendations for change included. The budget will be submitted to the Greens Committee for approval and then the management committee for final approval. 
The Course Manager will be responsible for controlling and managing his approved budget throughout that financial year, as required under the Delegation of Authority set down by the Management Committee. Any additional expenditure recommendations will be discussed with the Greens Committee and submitted to the Management Committee for consideration.

•10. Timing and Implementation of Work Programmes 
The Course Manager will liaise with the Greens Committee in providing them with the necessary planning programme and financial information regarding work programmes.

A summer maintenance plan, which will impact on the playability of the golf course, will be submitted to the Greens Committee during the planned meetings for consideration. Any major disruption like hollow-coring will be considered during the annual fixture meeting and, so far as is practical, will attempt to minimise the impact on club competitions and outings. 
A winter maintenance plan should be submitted to the Greens Committee during September to allow time to consider the work highlighted. The Course Manager will be responsible for submitting a recommendation for improvement (Winter Programme) and the costs involved. Once the programme has been discussed and agreed by the Greens Committee, it will be submitted to the Management Committee for approval. 
The Course Manager will be responsible for the implementation of the approved programmes, the cost control and the staff requirements of all work programmes, whilst liaising with the GC.



THUNDER AND LIGHTNING - PROCEDURE TO BE FOLLOWED


Under R&A Rules of Golf 6-8 a, a player may discontinue play if he / she believes there is a danger from lightning.

The Klaxon will be sounded from the clubhouse to notify players that due to lightning, they have to leave the course immediately. This means you must pick up your ball and go back to the clubhouse, or take shelter. The competition will be cancelled, but for those who have completed their round, under CONGU Rule 18.7, the round will become Reduction only, with the CSS equal to the SSS. If there is lightning in the area, and for some reason the klaxon has not been sounded, it is up to individual players to decide for themselves if they want to abandon play. Some players might make a different judgement and continue to play and return a completed score.However, if the Klaxon has not been sounded and there is lightning around, players continuing to play, do so at their own risk.

Therefore:

If you decide that you must discontinue play for your own safety, lift (or abandon) your ball and immediately walk in to the club-house. 

Wednesday Competition Policy 
Local Policy: Entry into Wednesday walk on and Wednesday Medal / Stableford Competitions.

Gentlemen members who wish to participate in the Wednesday walk on competition or in Wednesday Medal / Stableford competitions outwith the designated online booking times, ie during the periods from 08:00 to 10:00, 12:00 to 13:00 and 17:00 to 18:00 are permitted to do so but must comply with the following conditions:-

1. A minimum of two persons must be playing in the walk on / Medal / Stableford competition

2. Competition cards must be marked by competition players.

In addition, fourball groups are permitted when playing in the competition from the white tees, but only while playing without the designated online competition booking times.

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