Well... here we are then. Mid-November and it has probably been the wettest 8 weeks I can remember (certainly since feigning an interest in the weather when I started in the golf industry). So what are the facts?
Since the 22nd September (59 days ago) we’ve had 345.1mm of rain (13.6 inches); for the entire 8 and a half MONTHS before that; 439.5mm (17.3 inches) of rain. So over ¾ of the total rainfall up until September has fallen again since.
Once again it just goes to show how volatile our British weather is; in the same period last year only 6” of rain fell (compared to 13.6” this year) and October was stunning. Teamed with the Ryder Cup; it was a bumper month at the end of a very warm and dry summer. This year, with rain and without a big event to get the occasional golfer on the golf course (despite Tiger winning the ZOZO… number 82 by the way) we are 40% down on green fees for the month of October. I’m sure we are not alone in that fact.
Anyway; enough about the weather! What has been going on at Bramshaw since my last update in late-September? October started off relatively poorly with the theft of one of our Compact Tractors. A real shame as this was our newest piece of equipment in the fleet and one that would have been heavily used over the winter. We always hear of thefts from golf courses but this seemed to fit the bill of a targeted operation; in the space of a very short period 3 other compact tractors were stolen from the local area (2 from private houses) and there have been a few more thefts from other local golf clubs in the area since. I don’t think it’s random but as it is a “victimless” crime, no-one really seems that interested; certainly not worth investigating. Stay vigilant!
Despite all the rain it was fantastic to see the Forest Course holding up so well. Despite being wet, it has remained fully open (for the most part) during the deluge. The Manor Course is doing well, and with every dry day it gets better and better. We'll continue to monitor the situation and have the course playing as close to its full length as possible. As usual in autumn the New Forest does not disappoint; we’ve had a glut of wildlife to be seen (primarily on the Forest… although the fabled “cattle-grid” walking mare is back on the Manor Course) - we also had the envious joy of witnessing all of the very vivid autumnal colours. Worth the trip alone if you haven’t already been, perhaps before the depths of winter finally set in. The early mornings are particularly stunning!
Fast forward through October and the Rugby World Cup was in full swing. Despite losing in the final against South Africa it was great to see so many members turn up in the morning to watch all the matches with a breakfast at the Club. Although England lost, Bramshaw had it’s own winners;
Bramshaw Juniors are English Champions… again!
If you missed the news; for the second time in 3 years the Bramshaw Junior team were crowned Champions of England. Playing in the National Finals at Mannings Heath, the Bramshaw team came away victorious by 4 shots over Windlesham with Joe Buenfeld also shooting a 1-under par 71 (equal best score of the day).
The players (Back, L to R) were Joe Buenfeld (Team Captain), Elliot Thomas, Ciaran Simpkin (2019 Junior Captain), Ryan Archer, Danny Coombs and Jake Barney, along with (Front) Billy Lightfoot.
We now look forward to fundraising and preparing for British finals in Portugal in February! To read the full report, please click HERE.
Before we mention anything else, the Bramshaw Junior's were winners again! In the Parkstone junior open Joe Buenfeld and Danny Coombs (above) produced the best 2 scratch scores form the same home club, and in doing so won the Berkeley's Bowl. Joe also had the joint best gross score with a 69 (-3) with Danny having the joint second lowest nett score of 68 (74 gross). A worthy mention must also go to Elliot Thomas with a nett 70 meaning all 3 Bramshaw boys shot under their handicaps.
We also held our very popular Manor Masters Junior competition in October half term with nearly 90 young golfers representing over 20 Clubs playing in the event, this was the largest field in its history. A full report of the Manor Masters can also be found HERE.
The Club is still on the market and I would personally like to thank all of the members, regular guests and societies for their support over the last year and, like you, we all hope that a suitable purchaser is found in the not too distant future. In the meantime, we will be continuing with our plans over the winter to improve both courses, and as ever we have produced a plan of our winter improvements on the Manor Course. If you have ventured out on the Manor Course over the last few weeks you would have already noticed work has begun on the 17th; this includes new and renewed drainage to the approach of the green and work to convert the bunkers to grassy hollows. This is item 4 on the Course Development Plan. To view the plan, please click HERE.
This has also given me a chance to improve my design and visualisation skills with our bunker renovation plans for the 7th and 18th holes on the Manor. I think some improvement is still needed; perhaps a surface pro would help. Christmas is coming… (Top: 7th hole. Bottom: 18th hole)
Further jobs will be added over the winter as the weather and time allows. Once again, we will endeavour to improve the courses once more, and make them the best they have been, even better than this year!
In others news:
If you have made it this far CONGRATULATIONS! No prize but a bit I’d like to invite you to a special event we are running this weekend: #ClubTalks 6 Hole “Golf Sixes” Competition.
If you are an avid follower of golf social media you may have seen the promotion of the benefits of golf for mental health. Did you know? - Suicide is the biggest killer of men under 45? It's true. So what are we doing? In association with #TheClub, #TheClubTalks and PlayMoreGolf, we are hosting our first event to raise awareness of the amazing mental health benefits the wonderful game of golf can bring to each and everyone one of us. It's an often a hidden problem, but everyone should know it’s OK to talk... especially with friends!
Saturday 23rd November (weather dependent!) - Start Times from 12:30pm
The competition will run for as long light allows so why not play in the morning as usual and come and join us for a bit of fun in the afternoon. You may even win a prize! To sign up please visit www.bramshawgolfclub.co.uk/clubtalks
That’s all from me! We hope to see you soon but in the meantime, stay dry, make the most of the weather and most importantly, enjoy your golf! 😎
If you want to see the last colours of autumn don’t forget to book your next tee time at www.bramshaw.co.uk/visitorbooking/ - we are now on our winter green fee rates so golf at Bramshaw is amazing value. Book your next tee time whilst you can!
All the best,