Season Update: April 2020
To all members,
We, the committee hope you are all staying safe during these uncertain times. We also hope that you are all managing to stay sane without your golf. It has definitely been a difficult period for everyone, but we are looking forward to coming out the other side of the Coronavirus pandemic, stronger and wiser, as a club, a community and as people.
The committee have been conducting regular meetings and conversations via WhatsApp and other online platforms, with a view to keeping updated with what’s happening in the world, and how we can get the club back to as normal state as possible when we resume.
With this in mind we would like all members to remain updated and involved with our discussions and any decisions we plan to make. Over the past few weeks, we have been discussing all the major points that have and will affect the club and our members. These points are listed below.
Fees will only be due when we have a green light on the season being able to be started again. When the season does commence, we will look at a way of Pro Rata’ing member fees, also ensuring that we can pay any outgoings without leaving the club in a negative financial state. As you are all aware it was voted at the club’s AGM that fees would be increased to £50. The Pro Rata amount will be based on a reduction of this fee.
As the lock down progresses, we will have a clearer idea of when it may be reasonably possible to start the season. As it stands there have been no solid dates that we can go by. There have been a few options put forward by the members of the committee as to what happens with the season schedule. Until we have a better idea of when it will be safe to start the season these options will possibly change.
One option is to start the season from the date we are allowed to do so, meaning that any medals or competitions that we have missed simply don’t get played. Whether the season starts in May, June, July or even further past those months.
Another suggestion is that when we can start the season we have a medal comp every Saturday (as normal) and every Wednesday, in order to play as many competitions that we can. We do understand that playing a medal every Wednesday is not possible for some members and we appreciate that the turn out for these comps may not be as high as usual. We are prepared for that. This option would influence membership fees as we would probably have more trophies to purchase come the end of the season.
Ranfurly Castle Outing May 2020:
This outing has been cancelled until it’s possible to rearrange in the future. Ranfurly Castle have been informed, as well as the Coach company we were using to travel to the course. Any members who have already paid will be fully refunded as soon as possible.
Club Championship & Knockout Competitions:
As all members are aware, we have to play qualifying rounds in order to see who qualifies for the Club Championship, Alan Munro and Thompson Trophy. There are usually 5 qualifying rounds played before this can be determined. This is based on a “Normal” season.
We know that we may not have time to play 5 qualifiers, so again there have been some suggestions as to how these competitions can be implemented and concluded. We have discussed the best and worst case scenarios at great length, and will continue to work on solutions.
Best Case Scenario:
We play 3 qualifiers on consecutive Saturdays when the season resumes. We also limit the amount of time between each round to play ties. This could bring a satisfactory conclusion to the competition.
Worst Case Scenario:
We cannot possibly conclude the competitions and the Club Championship winner from last year (Andy MacDonald 2019) still gets the opportunity to represent the club in the Ayrshire Champion of Champions competition in 2021. This would also apply to the winners of the Club Doubles Championship (Wullie Bark and Scott Turner 2019) who would also be given the chance to represent the club in the Ayrshire 4-Ball Competition in 2021. This also depends on how Scottish and Ayrshire Golf Associations handle the situation with the applicable competitions moving forward.
We are also aware that this may leave little time to play the Club Singles and Doubles Championship. Again this will be looked at, as we may have to forego playing these competitions this year.
No decision has been set in stone yet as we have no idea how much time we will have to implement and complete competitions, but as soon as we have a better idea we will inform all members.
Scottish Golf Union (SGU)
The message from Scottish golf is that all competition play has been suspended. This decision then filters down through the regional golf bodies regarding the “What happens when we do get back to normal” situation of competitions and member fees.
As of April 26th 2020 – Scottish golf have announced that it will rebate 25% of the annual fee back to all member clubs. further discussion and opinion on this rebate amount can be found across various media outlets and social channels. This proposed rebate has clearly not went down too well with the majority of golfers.
Ayrshire Golf Association (AGA)
We have received communication from Ayrshire Golf to inform us that all Ayrshire Golf Comps have been suspended. This includes the Champion of Champions, Ayrshire 4-Ball, Ayrshire Handicap League, Presidents Putter. We await further communication from them regarding when and if these competitions will go ahead this year. Again, this all depends on when it is safe to get back on golf courses and what time there is left to conclude these competitions.
The club secretary and treasurer have been in communication with SGU, AGA, Handicap Master and Master Scoreboard regarding member fees and any rebates due. When we have clarity on the situation this will be communicated to all members in due course.
As of April 28th 2020 – we have recieved a full refund from The Ayrshire Golf Association.
We hope that all members can appreciate that as a committee we are in regular contact with each other with regards to the club, our members and how we can best prepare the club for the eventuality that we can get back to doing what we all love, and that’s playing golf. Our hope is that the small sacrifices everyone is making in the coming weeks and months gets us back to our normal daily routines as quickly and safely as possible.
Stay Safe, Stay Indoors.
Other Lockdown News:
During lockdown it’s still possible to practice your golf game (or not)
Its also possible that you have other things around the house or garden you can do to make the sometimes difficult self-isolation seem a bit more bearable. Here’s what the committee have been up to
Bryan has nearly smashed his neighbours window with a golf ball twice!! (over enthusiastic as usual, or not as good as he thinks he is!!)
Andy MacDonald has transformed his daughters ball pit into a target pitching area (probably still knifing 60 degree wedges, but he will learn)
Andrew McNaught has painted his garden shed (haven’t seen it, but I’m guessing it’s a nice shade of pink, like his beloved 88 Tee-Shirt)
Stevie Hay has turned into a grocery Ninja. Silent assassin on and off the course!!
Allan Gaffney has been busy working on the front line driving for the NHS (The only noble one amongst us it would seem)
Stevie Sinclair has been hanging out in his man cave drinking whiskey and playing dominoes (absolutely nothing to do with golf, he’s not as committed as the rest of us)
John Cooper…”Bored owt me naaaaat saaaaan”