Our January 2023 Update
We hope you’ve all had a fantastic start to 2023. Here’s our first newsletter update of the year. We hope you enjoy.
From our General Manager
Our new General Manager Russell Thomas has now joined us, starting his role on February 1st. Russell has left some words to begin this newsletter:
“As this newsletter goes out, I am just starting my first day here at SMGC. To date, I have attended several Board meetings and met a few members so my initial aim is to get to grips with everything as soon as possible. No doubt there are challenges ahead, but I believe that St Mellons, with a great course, clubhouse, staff team and new board structure is well-placed to progress as a Club making it one of the premier clubs in South Wales.
I look forward to meeting you all individually but if there is anything you would like me to address then please email me at email@example.com.”Russell Thomas
From The Board of Directors
In the December Newsletter we mentioned work was ongoing on the Strategic Plan for the Golf Club. The Board are now able to announce that their due diligence is complete and have identified 6 key long term strategic objectives. We believe these will consolidate and drive the Golf Club forward.
- Legal compliance with the Companies Act and relevant legislation
- Strong balance sheet and making a profit year on year
- Safe, resilient and reliable assets
- Maintain and improve the course to a high standard for members and their guests
- Maintain and improve the clubhouse for members and their guests
- Communicate effectively and efficiently to all
You will have noticed from several recent communications that work on delivering elements of these objectives has already started and feedback from members has been very positive.
When we were voted on to the Board on September 22, we were tasked with reviewing the existing Articles to ensure compliance with the Companies Act 2006 and other legislation such as the Equality Act. In carrying out that review, we decided to take the opportunity to simplify the document by removing the election of non-officers of the Company and restoring some powers back to the Captains Committee. During the review we engaged a specialist independent Company Law Lawyer, who guided us through the process and has signed off our proposed revised Articles.
At our AGM in March, the Directors will be proposing a Special Resolution to change the existing Articles of Association. The proposed Articles will be sent out with the AGM pack in due course.
During the due diligence exercise, it became clear that the value of our fixed assets were well below current market value. A revaluation of our lease, building, plant and equipment has been complete and the results will be reflected in our 2022 accounts. We also identified several other commercial contracts that have already or will need renewing during 2023, which have the potential for savings. The first of those was complete this week following last week’s general meeting when the current auditors were voted out and new auditors appointed.
Our four main mowers are on two separate 5 year operating leases that expire in Sept 23 and May 24 The current lead time for replacement mowers is currently 12-24 months. We have placed orders for replacement mowers and expect delivery in mid 24. These mowers represent a key asset for the club, ensuring that we maintain a course of the highest quality. For this reason and for both continuity and certainty of supply, the board have decided to continue with our current supplier. We have also decided to proceed with a finance lease option to ensure we don’t find ourselves in an exposed position at the end of the next lease period.
An asset condition survey of our remaining plant and equipment, used to maintain the course, has been undertaken and most of it is in good condition. There are some pieces of equipment that will need replacing and those items will be built into our future annual budgets.
A five year investment plan to improve the course will be developed that will include condition surveys of all tees, greens and bunkers. The plan will detail the work to be undertaken along with budgets costs and proposed timescales. The irrigation system and practice areas will also form part of that plan.
A five year investment plan to improve the facilities of the clubhouse and changing rooms will be developed, with a key focus on improving members and their guests experience and growing revenues from both golf and non-golf business.
The Directors have been made aware of various grants that are available from Sport Wales and other organisations that will potentially support some of these investments. Discussions are ongoing and we will keep you informed of progress.
We understand good communication with all our members, potential members, visitors and guests is essential and have moved quickly to make improvements in this area. We have a new website and the early indications on the number of hits and pages most viewed is encouraging. We have also launched a monthly newsletter, which judging by the general feedback has been well received. We will be continuing to improve our digital marketing approach to maximise opportunities to grow revenues.
Once all the detail behind the strategic objectives are finalised, we will hold a number of drop in sessions for members to view the plans in more detail.
Updates From The Pro Shop
2023 New Stock
We now have the latest fitting carts from the leading 4 brands in golf, Taylormade, Titleist, Ping and Callaway.
On 10th February 2023 we will have a fully stocked Taylormade range with their ‘Fargiving’ Stealth 2 products, new P770 irons and a range of TP and Spider GT putters. We will be fully stocked on the groundbreaking Callaway Paradym range from 24th February 2023. Come and check out the beautiful marble effect driver that Jon Rahm has already used to win a PGA Tour event last month!
These additions add to the powerful Titleist TSR where we will now be stocking the all new TSR Hybrid and the all new ‘Spinsistancy’ Ping G430 range of metal woods and irons.
With a huge range of modern, colourful and traditional shoe options which come in wide and medium widths, come down to the shop and see the latest 2023 FootJoy shoes. We have everything you’ll need for the upcoming season in both spiked and spikeless options, starting from just £79 up to the premium Premier Series range.
Pop in store to view our fully stocked shop.
Custom fitting is available NOW for all Ping, Taylormade, Callaway, Titleist and Odyssey 2023 ranges!
Both our PGA professionals have a passion for custom fitting and helping players improve their golf game. Whether your goal is getting your handicap down, getting into a certain team or just beating your mates on the course, the equipment you use is vitally important to your improvement.
Our custom fitting sessions are completely FREE if you buy the product from us so why not see how we can help you.
With the terrible winter we’ve had our golf simulator has been a God send for our members and clients we coach. We have had members use this frequently when the course has been closed or on temporary greens. We are offering 2 types of membership this year:
Unlimited simulator usage from now until March 31st for £100 or unlimited usage throughout 2023 for £200.
We have already seen members grinding this winter to get their game in shape for the start of the season. If you would like to book the simulator or are interested in one of our memberships, please get in touch with the professional shop on 01633 680408 option 4.
Course Update From The Head Green Keeper
The start of 2023 was very testing for the golf course. Extraordinary amounts of rainfall were recorded at the start of January with a total of 185mm of rain falling in the first 2 weeks on already saturated ground. This volume of rain caused multiple course closures and caused some areas of the course to become heavily flooded.
Despite the poor weather and very little access of machinery to the course the greenstaff have still completed an array of tasks this month on and off the course. The vast majority of the winter mats have now been replaced with our new Astro turf and new frames have been built on the 7th, 13th and 18th holes. Large amounts of the greenstaffs time has been taken up raking and blowing debris caused by the strong winds and rain we suffered and keeping our drainage ditches running to ensure the course drains as quickly as possible. The greenstaff have also carried out a considerable amount of housekeeping to the greenkeeper sheds and yard.
The greens have held up well during this extremely wet period and are currently in very good health. Due to the volume of rain and us being unable to spray or aerate, the greens did lose a large amount of nutrition along with a drop in oxygen levels in the soil. To combat this the greens have received a light granular feed with iron to bring nutritional levels back up and harden the turf against disease. The greens have now been hand cut and aeration has been carried out with the Toro procore and Air2G2 air injection machine to elevate oxygen levels in the soil profile and increase percolation.
Over the coming weeks the greenstaff will turn their attention to pathway maintenance, further tree canopy raising and scrub clearance throughout the course. Our tractor mounted flail will also be used to cut back vegetation and get all hedges to a manageable level. Other tasks we have planned include the painting of hazard markers, gates and timber fences throughout the course in preparation for the 2023 season.
Update From The Kitchen
Below is the latest news from our clubhouse kitchen and bar staff.
Jazz Music & Live Performance
On Sunday 12th February 2023 (2pm & 6pm)
Tapas Menu in Afternoon & Chef’s Tasting Platter in Evening
Tickets available at Member’s Bar
Update From The Club
We’ve been working hard behind the scenes to prepare our sponsorship package for 2023. We’ve got some exciting sponsorship opportunities available. Find out more by downloading our sponsorship brochure below.
That’s all for this month’s update. Thank you to everyone who has contributed and thank you to all who have left feedback. If you wish to leave feedback, then you can do so using the form below.