10th January 2017
Happy New Year to all our visitors, friends and members.
Since the last update on the 4th December, 2016, progress has been limited by the weather and the closure of the EA construction site for over 2 weeks. However, we have continued to make progress towards our goal of significantly improving Skipton Golf Course for the benefit of our valued visitors and members.
Our contractors anticipate a March start to work on the new 17th green and surround and will shape the approach to it to tie in with the existing 17th fairway. The current 17th green will continue to be used until the new 17th green is fit for play, hopefully by spring 2018. At the same time work will be undertaken to construct the new 18th ‘competition’ tee.
We are currently investigating the possibility of widening the 18th fairway by some 15 metres into the area currently occupied by the EA compound to extend the landing area from the new 18th tee.
The 4 new bridges have now been constructed and the old bridges removed. Following negotiations with the EA and contractors to ensure that the bridges look more in keeping with a golf course than a public highway, these will now have a 600mm high wooden post and hand rail fitted to a the top of the concrete up stand, giving a total height of 900mm above the bridge deck
When this work is nearing completion, we will lay some of the recently acquired Astroturf on the concrete bridge deck and trial it for safety, suitability and aesthetic appearance.
The disturbed ground around the bridges and from the pond on the 15th to the bridge near Brackenley Lane will initially be smoothed over, before being top-soiled and reseeded by the contractors as soon as practicably possible,(probably March), depending on the weather.
The EA will reinstate the area to the left edge of the 15th fairway with a stone track, which will then be suitable for buggies and provide a wooden fence in the two areas where they gained access from Brackenley Lane.
In response to member questions, we anticipate the newly re-laid 15th green may be useable in mid-summer, depending on grass growth and weather. Until then, the temporary green, in front of the beck will be used. Long standing members will recall this was the original green to that hole and with some spring renovation work we anticipate bringing it up to a good standard, until we are able to use the new green.
The feedback on the removal of the part of bank to the right of our signature par 3,16th and the use of this to construct a new 8th tee has been overwhelmingly positive. In addition to this enhancement of the view of the green, we hope to eventually raise the levels of the 16th green and tee.
The new 9th tee has ‘greened up’ well and we anticipate bringing this into play in time for the new season, which is good news as it means we will be able to restore the par five, temporarily lost, when the current 17th was shortened.
Work on the two completely new holes is anticipated to start as soon as possible in spring. As this is all off the existing course, in the fields behind the halfway house, no additional disruption is anticipated.
We have recently been asked to clarify the new playing order for the course when works are completed.
Play will start on the current 13th and proceed from there in the following order…. 13,7, 8, 9 (extended to par 5), 10, new hole(par 4), new hole(par 4), 12, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 14, 15, 16, 17(new green, par4), 18. NB the current par 3, interim 11th will be a practice area as will the 1st in due course. The current 7th will be shortened to a par 3.
Finally, I’m sure you would like to join us in our appreciation of the efforts of Ian Brown and the members of his committed green staff team in doing their best to provide us with as much golf as possible over the winter, whilst also working hard on the course improvements described above.
Please give due consideration for the safety of green keeping staff, when they are working on the course for our benefit.