Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the course and clubhouse are now closed for the safety of members and staff.
The office team, Keith and Nicola, have relocated to work from their homes. This has caused some disruption whilst I.T. systems were put in place, but everything should now be back to normal. Well almost, we only have a single telephone line, which Keith is manning, and the club systems are operating slower in remote mode. You can contact Keith on the usual number, 01257 255235, but there are no further options to listen to. Please be patient if you can’t get through first time.
Club has had to put Deborah and the bar staff on furlough (paid lay-off) whilst the clubhouse is closed. Dave McMullan’s cleaning contract is on temporary hold, and Dave, Mikey and the other kitchen team are not able to work. The pro-shop is also closed. This is hard on them, and we are aware that many of self-employed members find themselves in similar predicaments. Hopefully the government assistance for self-employed will kick-in soon. Even with this support, we all need to help each other along the way.
On the positive side, in line with England Golf and BIGGA guidelines, the greens staff are, for the moment, able to continue to work. Unencumbered by golfers, they are really getting to grips with the course which is looking better and better every day. Dan, Josh, Mike, and Scott are, of course, working with social distancing, cleaning protocols and other precautions in place. You will see all the same familiar faces when the club reopens.
Some of you will have seen the video made by Steve Norman and posted to the club’s Facebook and Twitter pages. If you haven’t yet viewed it, you can do so by scrolling down to the end of this blog. The course is looking fantastic.
In the background the Directors are working hard with Keith and Nicola to ensure we keep all expenses to minimum, ranging from simple thing like putting Sky TV on hold, to speaking to our bank about securing finance over the shutdown. We are also planning to apply for help with the wage bill for those staff who are laid off. Unfortunately, we have no such help with the staff who have to work. This includes Dan and his team, if they were laid-off to take advantage of the wage support we would rapidly lose the greens and fairways. The damage would take months to rectify. The upkeep of the course comes second only to the safety and welfare of our staff and members.
With the clubhouse now closed members can’t read the noticeboards or speak to the staff and other members, communication via email and social media has become very important.
If the club doesn’t have your email, or has an old email for you, we can’t keep you fully informed.
If you want to stay in touch please ensure we have your current email address. If you know members who don’t have email or access to social media, we ask you to give them a call from time to time to keep them updated. The club will try to ring round members without email addresses, but you can all help us by doing this as well.
As you will understand, we don’t know how long the emergency will last. This means the social and golf calendar will be constantly changing. We will try to reschedule what we can, but invariably we will have to cancel some things. We already know that this year’s Victory Trophy has been postponed until next year.
We may also have to cancel/rearrange some of the Opens and Invitation days, but it will be a challenge to fit everything in.
Things WILL return to normal, Gathurst Golf Club WILL survive and THRIVE again, but we will need your continued support.
Now here’s the video we promised. Thanks go to our very own Steve Norman who is doing a great impression of Sky Sport’s Ken Brown.