From Gary Walsh, Golf Manager: We look forward to welcoming you all back to the club on December 2nd. Andy and his team have worked very hard to make sure you all come back to the golf course in great condition. The drainage work the team has carried out and the construction of another buggy path on the second hole will be very beneficial and help ensure you continue to enjoy a golf course in great condition as we approach the Winter months.
Although the course is reopening for play, unfortunately, the clubhouse will remain shut. Golf check-in will be situated in the spike bar and we ask Members and visitors to please access the check-in area through the main entrance and exit through the double doors in the spike bar, leading to the terrace.
Communication is really important to us, which is why we want to ask for your help. We have created a very short survey online to find out about what aspects of the club interest you. Would you please fill it in, it takes about 30 seconds, and will help us deliver timely and relevant information to your phone via text.
The Clubhouse refurbishment work will start in the New Year. The re-design incorporates a Players Lounge (see image) that replaces the Pro shop, small lobby and the first part of the current lounge.
It will accommodate 60 people seated, feature multiple TV screens and a bar with easy access through bi-folding doors to an extended patio that will be re-landscaped. It is intended to be an informal bar where members can eat, drink and relax in comfort.
The main lounge and the function area are also being refurbished to enable the Club to host events in a less dated environment. All areas are having new flooring, lighting and will be redecorated with new fixtures and fittings.
The patio around the function area will be increased in size with further landscaping with easy access from a series of bi-folding doors off the lounge and function areas. The function bathrooms will be refitted to provide additional facilities for ladies.
Work is scheduled to start in early January and completion scheduled for the end of March in time for Easter. Needless to say, such a refurbishment after the challenges of Covid is a brave move, so we ask that the Members help spread the work in drumming up custom for when lockdown is a thing of the past.
Unfortunately the clubhouse will remain closed in December but we will be offering a takeaway service for golfers. The grab-and-go menu will include the traditional breakfast fare of tea and coffee and bacon and sausage rolls to fortify you before you tee off. Once you finish your round we hope to tempt you with something more substantial to enjoy with a drink from the bar.
Takeaway food, snacks, drinks and golf products can be purchased from the golf check-in desk and the drinks buggy. Our half-way house will also be in operation, so if you are feeling peckish as you approach the 9th tee check out our menu, give us a call and we will have your order waiting for you.
The WHS was launched in November and, with the transfer of 15 million handicaps, there were always going to be a few teething problems. We have a few of these and are in contact with England Golf support, so please bear with us while we work them out and rest assured all will be in order very soon.
England Golf has released a great new app (click here). It’s well worth downloading and will help you stay up to date with your handicap index.
Members are able to set their privacy preference but please before doing that, within your Member log-in, go to My Golf and then Preferences and verify your email address and tick all the appropriate boxes that allow you to receive communications.
Only then go to My Golf, My Rounds and click on the WHS Privacy Link.
Congratulations Zainab: Mill Green’s Zainab Jeppe has done it again! After an already successful year, finishing second in the Hertfordshire County Championship (pictured) and winning the Ladies Club Championship, Zainab came second in her European Junior Open Qualifier at Lingfield Park Golf Club. She shot 79 on a very difficult day to take the runner-up spot and earn her place in the European Junior Open, which is due to take place at Alcaidesa Links Resort in Southern Spain next February.
We asked Zainab about the experience and her plans for 2021: “I am really proud of this achievement. It was a very tough year and I wanted to make sure I ended it well. Conditions were tough, so I was glad I kept it together until the 18th. A lot of practice needs to be done in preparation for the final, it will be a good field with some quality players, so I need to make sure I am fully prepared and ready for a big week. It’s a great opportunity so need to give it everything I’ve got.”
I am sure you will all join us in wishing Zainab the best of luck for her upcoming trip to Spain.
From Andy Copeland, Course Manager: The golf course has seen many improvements since Get Golfing took over, their philosophy and financial power remains ever strong and clear. Course condition comes first.
Just before we went into lockdown, we installed 400m of open ‘V ditch drainage’ on the golf course. This is to remain permanently open and intercept the flow of water. We have already seen a huge improvement to the 3rd, 7th green surround and 18th. We also cleared the open ditch in front of the 8th green. By doing this we uncovered a main drain line coming off the 8th fairway that had been blocked and covered up from year’s of poor management. It is now consistently running and taking water off the fairway.
We linked up the buggy paths on the 17th and 18th, which are historically wet through the winter months. All traffic from machinery, buggies and golfers will be required to stick to the paths when we reopen to protect the course.
We put together a list of jobs we knew would be disruptive to the golf course but, with no golfers playing on the course, we have had the perfect opportunity to carry the work out.
Firstly, we started by digging out the new buggy path on the 2nd hole. This proved to be extremely time consuming, as ground conditions were extremely tricky to work on. Perseverance won and we backfilled and levelled by the end of November. We have put in over 200 tonnes of path material to all three holes. Ultimately the end game is to have a complete path network around the course to allow all traffic, machinery and buggies all year-round access to the golf course.
We also recognise that drainage needs to be upgraded around certain holes. The 7th fairway has been particularly wet over the last few months. After investigating we found that two drain lines at either end of the fairway just stopped. We added a further 120m of drainline to either end, which will catch the flow of water running off the banks from the 6th and 8th. As good practice, we removed the turf on the approach drainage to uncap the surface and restored it back to ground level with sand and seed.
While the excavator was on site, we removed the old stumps between the 7th and 8th and left hand side of the 14th fairway. The 7th and 8th will remain under a new managed long rough area during the spring and summer. The left hand side of the 14th will be managed over the coming months and set up for play.
We also had an extremely wet driving range, which needed drainage improvements. We excavated more than 250 yards of drainage to increase the speed of water coming off the range. This work was linked up with the 18th and directed away from the golf course.
The biggest assets at Mill Green are our greens, tees and approaches. We had a perfect opportunity to apply a large amount of agronomics during lockdown. This consists of spiking, sanding and seeding. We applied a total of 90 tonnes of sand to all surfaces over the last four weeks, which will help retain firm, true surfaces.
We are all over the moon to welcome you back and have you on the course again to see the improvements.
We are very excited to host our first annual Christmas Swing Open on Saturday, December 12th. The Christmas Swing is an 18-hole singles Stableford competition and it is open to both Members and visitors.
We will be serving takeaway breakfast, lunch and hot drinks out on the course. Great prizes are on offer and the best Christmas jumper will win £50 behind the bar! Following 28 days without golf, and with the course in excellent condition, we hope you will join us for what promises to be a fun day.
We have a limited number of slots available, so book now to avoid disappointment, please follow the link below.
Prior to lockdown, we welcomed a new member to the Golf Operations team. Jack Grogan is a PGA Professional and started his golfing journey as a junior member at Mill Green 17 years ago. Jack has previously worked at Chesfield Downs as Retail Manager and, most recently, at John O’Gaunt Golf Club where he held the position of Assistant PGA Professional. Jack is looking forward to building relationships with our Members and continuing to progress his career at Mill Green.
From Mark Day, PGA Professional: Congratulations to our Masters sweepstake winners
- Winner highest place American: Oliver Brunt – (1 hour lesson)
- Winner highest place European: Trevor Knaggs – (2 hour lesson bundle)
- Winner highest place Rest of the World: Aly Nedza – (2 hour lesson bundle)
- Winner highest place Amateur: Stu Williams – (1 hour lesson)
Are you ready to get back to playing your best?
Whether you’re a serious golf addict or a just a monthly-with-friends golfer, we all enjoy the game more when we play better golf. So that being said, what’s your game plan for when you get back to golf? Here’s three top tips to get back and buzzing:
Plan your round before you play
With your new handicap index identify how many shots you get to play 18 holes and then proportion and allocate strokes to each hole. For example, if you get 86 strokes for 18, you might want to use six at the first, five at the second and five at the third, etc.
The benefit of doing this is twofold. Firstly, it might start to reframe the hole for you. Instead of seeing the hole as a really challenging par 4 that you try too hard on and often make six, you might start to see the hole as an easier par 5 that you may make more fours on?
Now you have a plan, why not measure it?
Keep a record of how many greens you hit in relation to your plan. Always allocate two putts per hole and then use the remaining shots to get to the green.
For example, if you allocated six shots at the first, you have four shots to get to the green. If you allocated five shots to play the second hole, you have three shots to get to the green, etc, etc.
The benefit to this is twofold: You may start to reframe a bad shot. Yes, it might not be the perfect strike or outcome you were hoping for, but, in relation to your plan, the outcome of the shot may have still maintained your chances of hitting the green in regulation or even improved your chances; secondly, you have options. For example, after a bad drive, instead of trying to make up for the previous mishit by trying to hit the ball further with your second shot, you can simply consider your options. If you have two more shots to cover 200 yards to the green then you could hit two x 100 shots; or 150 + 50; or 75 + 125 (if you’re in the rough). You have lots of options, depending on your lie and your favourite club on the day!
If you want to improve, follow Newton’s first law of motion
Think of the motion momentum your golf game is going in and consider what force you can apply to change its direction and nudge back in a direction you want. Newton’s second law is a good one to use as well: The greater the mass, the greater the force needed to change direction!
Think of action as force and consider some low-hanging fruit you can pick that won’t take too much action to shift enjoyment and performance. This could be some putting you can do at home or on the green before you go out to play. Or, for the more serious golfer, it could be a weekly visit to the driving range with a focus on developing skill not just technique.
One of those actions could be to give me a call for a free catch up, so I can help shape conversation and thinking for you. I can help with your plan and how you can measure performance, as well as help you find the easy wins that will make you feel happier with your game and less frustrated on the course!
My number is 07958 003 756 and you can text or call anytime. If I can’t take the call, I’ll get back to you as soon as I can.
Christmas Gift Vouchers
- Try a taster lesson and Save £10 on a 30 minute lesson
- Upgrade your skills and Save £20 on 2 x 30 minute lessons
- Level up your game and Save £30 on 3 x 30 minute lessons
- Lower you scores in 2021 and Save £40 on 4 x 30 minute lessons
This is a gift that guarantees improvement and comes full of joyful energy and a boost in confidence that will last well into 2021.
As ever, please follow the latest government guidelines regarding Coronavirus as they apply to your area. We would appreciate everyone taking personal responsibility for maintaining the correct physical distance while they are at the club. Wear your mask when it is required and wash your hands whenever you can.