I write this article only 24 hours after our 8th Annual AGM and I am pleased to say that I and the fellow Directors still live to tell the tale! On a serious note, it was fantastic to hold this meeting in person and see so many friendly faces instead of holding them on Zoom as we have had to do over the past 18 months.
My reflections of the last few months have been one of great pride, pride in the fact that as a Board of Directors we were sat in a daze just over 18 months ago at the onset of Covid worrying about our health, our club, and our future. Last night at the AGM, we presented a set of accounts and a message that the club is in good health, and I am full of optimism for the future.
To help us maintain our financial stability I would ask that all members please continue to support the golf club by not only playing golf, but by using the wonderful clubhouse facilities. Next time you play, instead of throwing your clubs in the boot and driving home, maybe pop up to the bar and see Rob or Julie and have a sandwich, a coffee, a tea or maybe something stronger. Next time you are feeling peckish or fancy Sunday Lunch with the family, come and have one of Dave the chef’s wonderful carveries or if you have hit one slice too many, drop into the shop and see John or Josh for a lesson. Don’t forget too that we have a clubhouse that is perfect for parties and functions so next time you are planning an event, consider using it.
We have a wonderful club, and we have wonderful members. Let’s make sure we get the most out of our membership and use the facilities available to us and in our own small way, contribute to making Helsby Golf Club even better.
Finally, I would just like to wish you all a Merry Christmas and a wonderful New Year!
Chairman – Helsby Golf Club
Once again, I would like to take the opportunity to thank all the members of Helsby Golf Club for giving me such a warm welcome into my role as Secretary of our fine Golf Club.
Having now been in post for 18 months which has actually flown by I have to say it been my pleasure to help assist and guide the club through some of the most difficult times any business has ever had (well at least in my lifetime)
I would like to welcome Gill back and give a big vote of thanks to Jayne for all the hard work she put in during Gills maternity leave.
It’s been a real learning experience to work with all the fantastic committees, Golf professionals, Greenkeepers, House team and the Board of Directors over the past 18 months and we now as a club find ourselves in a much stronger position in many ways which is all due to the fabulous team work and support of our members.
One of our highlights of the year has to be the new course signage and I would like to give a big vote of thanks to our 15 sponsors most of whom enjoyed our sponsors day with the team from DD Decs coming out victorious and prizes being won by Nick Cunniffe, Mark Ellams and Jonny Maddocks.
We are looking forward to welcoming our new Officers for the 2022/2023 season and wish them a very special year.
Kieran & Gill.
Moving into the 2022 season we are furthering our member's retail experience with new brands coming into the ProShop, we welcome cobra as a hardware option for golfers going forward alongside the already popular Taylormade which has carried over from last year.
Clothing again, having been a popular choice with the members, Oscar Jacobson will be carrying over into this season. The spring/summer stock already arriving and available to golfers. Puma are the new stockist arriving for the 2022 season with a different look sportswear to get you ready for all weather golfing over the coming months (hopefully the warmer kind).
Coaching & Custom Fitting is available using the latest in flightscope technology, see online for further details or visit one of the team in the ProShop.
Junior Development Programme - Last year we boasted 22 juniors all new or relatively new to the game, we are looking to further advance our programme that will be resuming late April, after the success of last year we hope to grow and branch out even further welcoming all age groups to help grow the game.
Tournament Golf - From the 25th of April onwards I will be competing in professional events, mostly local, and some national tournaments. This is something I've done throughout my time working in the golf industry I can't wait to get going representing Helsby Golf Club as Head Professional.
Work is ongoing around the course including the following:
The new Sponsors signs to be erected on the back nine along with the officers parking signs in the car park
Drainage work to be carried out on and around the 13th fairway that will link into the 12th drainage system
Drainage work to be carried out on the 16th fairway nearing the 17th winter tee
Drainage repairs to the 7th fairway
Weather dependency will determine work in all areas, however certain holes will be closed during the 'week' (Monday to Friday) during prolonged wet periods to alleviate stress.
The Members will be notified via email and the notice boards.
Please can we take this opportunity to ask that if you use a trolley, to park it at the orange post and to keep it off fringes and aprons – this will protect our course during the winter weather.
Huge thanks must go to our fantastic greens team, the Artisans and volunteers who all work tirelessly to maintain our course throughout the year. A special thanks also to Jon Jenkins for his bunker crusade!
At the end of 2020 we had seen our Membership rebound somewhat from the COVID crises, partly due to the successful member referral scheme. We are pleased to report that the growth in Membership has continued into 2021 and is reflected in the table.
We are pleased to have gained new Members from a wide range of clubs, across a range of Handicaps (from a sample of 64 new members 13% had 0-8 handicap, 55% were 11-20, 22% greater than 20, and only 7% with no handicap on joining). Looking to the future, we have more work to do on recruiting female golfers, so the successful pilot coaching session held by John in the Autumn will be followed up by further sessions next Spring. Thanks to John and Josh, the Junior Academy got off to a terrific start in the summer with 20 Juniors joining the program, we look forward to many of them joining our Junior ranks in future.
In addition to Membership activities, the team have:
* re-aligned our Visitor Fees and removed the low cost golf offer to reflect the quality and status of our course
* Developed our new Website which is ready to launch to bring a more modern feel, with upgraded club images and which is easier to manage and provides our own visitor booking and payment platform
* Held our first Sponsors Day in October, having benefited from a significant investment in upgraded signage during through the year
* Promoted the club through various articles and publications both on line and in the press
* Secured new and exciting reciprocal agreements for the benefit of our Members
* Many thanks to Kieran, John, Kathryn and Simon for their hard work and support during the year.
Firstly, I would like to thank all the members, the House Committee and the Board of Directors for their continued support throughout the past 2 years which, due to covid19, have been very difficult.
During December I will be continuing with the snack offering and will also be putting more specials on in the form of snacks and more substantial meals – watch this space!
I also have a couple of festive Christmas menus on offer – either a 2 or 3 course set menu or a 2 or 3 course choice menu. The details are below, and I appreciate the support of those members groups who have already booked functions in. These menus are available to members and non-members, so please feel free to share with your family and friends.
If anyone would like to book or enquire about the festive menus or any other functions, please contact me – email@example.com
In January, I plan to offer Sunday lunches and I am currently looking into a pizza oven so I can do a fresh pizza menu. I will also be revamping the current snack offering.
I would like to personally thank Kieran and Gill in the office for all of their help and suport!
Many thanks and I wish everyone a merry Christmas and a happy New Year.
Dave The Chef
Please contact Dave Brinkley for bookings/enquiries – firstname.lastname@example.org
Obviously after a very difficult eighteen months, we are happily now realising the full potential of the Club once more. We have, in fact, held some very successful social events since July, including President’s Night, Captain’s Night and Lady Captain’s Night. Additionally, there have been Grill and Steak Nights – all well supported, especially the Grill Night in conjunction with the Art Exhibition when it was so good to see new faces in the Clubhouse.
We must thank Dave and Julie for all they do for us. Take a bow. Particularly, when the Clubhouse was closed, they kept us going with snacks at the half-way house and it gave us all the opportunity to catch up with friends we had not seen for months, outside in a safe environment.
Dave also provided take-away Sunday lunches – another hit. He is hoping to start serving Sunday lunches in the New Year but has held the odd one recently.
We are an enthusiastic House Committee and I’m pleased to report that Roddy Snedden is now on board as House Director. We are always looking for suggestions for different types of social events and improve facilities in the Clubhouse – please let us know if you have any ideas. We would particularly like to see new members at our social events so again, any suggestions will be welcome and please contact me.
Carolyn Clothier is re-introducing the popular Film Nights, the first one taking place on 2nd December – the details will be posted on the social board.
We also have the following planned – so please make a note in your diary –
* Christmas Party on Saturday, 11th December – an occasion to dress up! We are hopeful of good support as it promises to be a fantastic night, with great entertainment and great food - certainly an event not to be missed!
* 9 hole Competition on Wednesday, 29th December - starting at 10.00 am followed by a festive sandwich lunch, glass of vino and Christmas quiz. House will be organising this and the notice will be displayed shortly.
* Burns’ Night on Saturday 22nd January
* Tribute Night planned for Saturday 12th February
* Drive-in Saturday 26th March
* Annual Ball Saturday 23rd April
We are mindful that some of the kitchen equipment needs replacing urgently.
It was agreed at the Annual Meeting on 18th November that finance is available to replace ovens and the dishwasher. This should certainly make things easier for both Dave and Julie.
Also, the wheels have been set in motion to refurbish the toilets and shower areas in the Ladies’ locker room as these badly need updating. Quotes are being obtained and hopefully work can commence sooner rather than later.
We are all well aware that we need visiting societies and outside functions to generate income from the bar. We welcome these but, at the same time, the needs of our members should take priority.
Before I close, I should like to say a big thank you to Rob for so efficiently running the bar. We are grateful for all his help. Thanks, also, to Carolyn, Margaret and Pauline, our stalwarts on House Committee. Since the last Newsletter we have a new Secretary and we thank Kieran for all his help and support.
Well, it is goodbye from me and all members of House.
Very best wishes to you all for Christmas and the New Year.
Barbara Leigh – House Committee