A wildlife protection programme put in place at Ufford Park Woodbridge Hotel, Golf and Spa in Suffolk has succeeded in attracting two declining species.
Ufford Park is home to 39 species of birds, according to the findings of its first RSPB bird survey of 2019, which also revealed that the number of species spotted at the resort has increased by almost 25% since 2011.
The RSPB, which undertakes two annual surveys of the Ufford Park site each year found, reported finding four mistle thrushes in their latest survey. Once common to much of Europe, they have been much harder to find in South East England because of drier summers in recent years. In 2018, the survey showed hawfinches like to visit Ufford Park. Despite being the UK’s largest finch, sightings of the bird are increasingly rare because their breeding areas are in decline.
Malcom Key, of the RSPB, said: “One of the interesting things about Ufford Park is that it is evolving and maturing as a habitat. This continuing development results in changes to the bird species that like being there which is why the number of bird species has increased so significantly in the last eight years.”
Tarnia Robertson, Ufford Park’s managing director, added: “We are so fortunate to be surrounded by such beautiful countryside. Our 4,000 trees, gorse area and ponds are home to all kinds of wildlife and we work tirelessly to protect the species that have made their home here. Over recent years we have worked hard to expand our wildlife programme.”
She added: “Our greenkeepers do a wonderful job of maintaining the ecology of our grounds to not only preserve the habitats of the existing wildlife, but also to make it attractive to new species. They have introduced a purely sustainable programme of management throughout the whole golf course from green to rough areas. As a result, we have become a destination for birdwatchers and wildlife enthusiasts.”
Golf glove brand ZOOM is bringing some colour to the course this autumn with its Weather Style range which feature the brand’s unique ‘One Size Fits All’ weather glove.
Featuring ZOOM’s unique FLEXX-FIT technology, the Weather Style uses a mix of lycra flex zones that fit the contours of a golfer’s hand and feel like a second skin whatever the player’s usual size. Combined with a honeycomb nylon pattern on the palm for enhanced grip, the ZOOM Weather Style is the perfect solution for golfers that want to play with a touch of Style and have a great connection to their club whatever the weather.
ZOOM Weather Style available in a choice of ten colours – stone, red, white, grey, navy, royal, lime, orange, fuchsia and sand.
The new gloves add a colourful technical solution for winter golf, but as Ian Waddicar, Managing Director of ZOOM UK explains, they are a great solution for the pro shop too. He said: “The beauty of our ‘One Size’ technology for pro shops is that they can virtually half their usual glove order. We have a men’s, ladies and junior option, so ZOOM gloves will be a perfect fit for 99% of a customers. Orders are made in multiples of six, so slow-moving SKU’s like ladies or juniors don’t sit on the shelves for ever.
“We have low minimum orders; Weather, Grip, Aqua Control and Cabretta technology options; and now this incredible new range of solid-colour Style gloves. Where they’ve been trialed so far, they’ve sold incredibly well as golfers look to add a little colour to their game.”
3.06pm 11th September 2019 – Sponsorship – This story was updated on Wednesday, September 11th, 2019
Catriona Matthew believes her all-star backroom team could make a big difference at The Solheim Cup. The European skipper has Dame Laura Davies, Kathryn Imrie and Mel Reid by her side at Gleneagles, meaning there is no shortage of experience as the hosts seek to regain the trophy for the first time since 2013.
Matthew knows the pressure will be ramped up to max this weekend so a carefully planned schedule of quiz nights, motivational videos and team dinners are keeping things relaxed at Gleneagles.
Davies, the leading points scorer in Solheim Cup history, believes Europe couldn’t have a better captain when it comes to keeping cool in the white heat of competition.
“She brings a calmness to the team but she’s a fierce competitor, make no mistake about that,” she said. “She wants to win this more than any of us. She’s put a lot into this the last two years. She never shows anything, she just cruises along.
“It’s very important we win it, but not for any other reason than we want to win and we don’t want the Americans to do their three-peat, which they keep going on about. I think we’re a good bet because I think our squad, as Beany said, is really strong.
“The American team is incredibly good too but on home soil, it evens out a bit. I think we’ve got the right players that can step up and do the job under the most extreme pressure. I think we’ve got a great chance.”
After all the planning and preparation Matthew is finally happy to get playing as she starts to weigh her options for Friday’s opening matches.
She might be keeping those pairings closely guarded but her overall tactic appears to be keeping things simple and trying to play with a smile.
“There’s a great feeling in the squad, we’ve got a great team and a real mix of personalities,” she said. “Maybe I’m oversimplifying this but we’re really just here to keep them happy, keep them loose.
“Our job is really to give the players support, try and help them as much as we can with our experience.
“Once Friday comes it’s stressful enough. You can tell someone who has never been on that first tee what it’s like. But really until you get there and experience it for yourself, you don’t know how you’re going to react.
“They’re all good players and they’ve played in big events. I’m sure they’ll cope with it. If you don’t enjoy this you’re doing the wrong thing.
“Once they’re on the golf course there’s really not much we can do. We are just cheerleaders on the side hoping they hole the putts.”
Matthew and fellow Scot Imrie prepared for the days ahead by getting their nails done together while Reid believes the captain’s decorated career gives her an instant aura in the eyes of her team.
“Every single player in their respects Beany, not just for what she’s done in her career but what she’s done in Solheim Cups,” she said. “We all want to win but Catriona really wants to win.
“I just think it’s a great dynamic on the team all around from a support staff, from the helpers, everything. The dynamic in the team room is a little bit different this year. You’ve got to give credit to Catriona for that, and she’s doing a really, really good job.”
Solheim Cup www.solheimcup.com
4.24pm 10th September 2019 – Courses – This story was updated on Tuesday, September 10th, 2019
Gleneagles will hold a unique position in golfing history when the biggest event in women’s golf concludes this weekend, by becoming the first venue in Europe to have hosted both the Solheim Cup and the Ryder Cup.
As the Gleneagles and volunteer greenkeeping teams led by golf courses manager Craig Haldane, together with director of agronomy and estates Scott Fenwick, put the finishing touches to the Jack Nicklaus-designed PGA Centenary Course, John Deere and local dealer Double A are equally busy behind the scenes.
The greenkeeping team at Gleneagles has risen to 100 people, with tournament standard conditioning also extending to the King’s Course, which is hosting the Junior Solheim Cup, and the Queen’s Course, which remains open for member and VIP visitor play during the week.
John Deere is the official golf course and turf maintenance machinery event partner to Gleneagles for this 16th biennial edition of the Solheim Cup. The company has a long association with professional golf, having been a title sponsor on the PGA Tour, official supplier to the PGA Tour for over 25 years, official supplier to the Ladies European Tour and a partner at numerous Solheim Cup events.
In addition, John Deere is partnering Gleneagles by exclusively providing golf course maintenance machinery and ancillary equipment for use across all three championship courses.
“We are very grateful for the support from our local dealer Double A as we’ve been gearing up the John Deere fleet ahead of the tournament,” said Craig Haldane. “Typically we aim to maintain all three courses at a very high level all year round, but we’ve upped the ante for the Solheim Cup. Closing the course three weeks prior to the event has allowed it to recover from any stress and provided additional time to prepare and introduce a higher frequency of cut. By fine tuning our existing practices we’ve been able go up another level in terms of a quality cut and finish for the tournament.
“We’re also very fortunate to benefit from the extra resources and experience provided by the volunteer greenkeepers supporting our team this week. Eight of the 52 volunteers are women, who have joined our own Laura Campbell and BIGGA’s head of membership services Tracey Maddison to help with the course preparations, so it’s fitting that we can showcase the equal role women play in our industry, especially during the Solheim Cup.”
Carlos Aragones, John Deere European turf sales & marketing manager, added: “The Solheim Cup is one of the biggest events on the 2019 sporting calendar and we are delighted to be a part of it. We are also proud of our collaboration with Gleneagles in helping to prepare the course for such a prestigious tournament.”
In 2019, John Deere and its dealers are supporting more than ten major tournaments in the UK and Ireland, every month from the Betfred British Masters at Hillside Golf Club in May to the Solheim Cup at Gleneagles and the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth in September. This involves providing specialist support staff and more than 150 machines, including walk-behind and ride-on greens mowers, tees and surrounds, fairway and rough mowers, compact tractors and Gator utility vehicles.
“Traditionally we work closely with the individual club’s course managers and greenkeeping teams to help keep all the machines in the fleet serviced and ready for work each day, and ensure all cutting units can achieve the highest possible quality of cut,” said John Deere Limited turf division manager Chris Meacock. “This partnership approach helps everyone to achieve the best possible results where they matter, out on the course, and keep things running as smoothly as possible throughout the event.”
Iain McInally has been appointed General Manager at the IMG managed Raevo Golf & Country Club in Moscow. McInally brings a proven international background of developing and operating high quality golf clubs and resorts and will oversee all aspects of the club’s ongoing development, working alongside both IMG and the club’s Board of Directors.
Formerly Head of European Tour Properties, Iain was responsible for the evolution and delivery of all strategic, operational and marketing support to the network of venues. Prior to this he has held senior management positions at several leading properties around the world, including the Monte Rei Resort in Portugal where he was responsible for developing the brand and ensuring the quality of the operations and membership programmes.
Russell Hannah, Senior Director, IMG Golf, said; “We are delighted to have Iain join the team in Moscow. Raevo is a very special project and as such demanded a candidate with a number of key attributes. With his experience in developing leading golf properties from the ground-up, and ability to implement and deliver high quality membership programmes, Iain is ideally suited for the role and without doubt will play a major part in its ongoing success”
McInally commented; “It is a privilege to have the opportunity to be part of what will undoubtedly be recognised as one of the World’s finest Membership Clubs. To support the vision of the Board with IMG in providing a truly outstanding experience with the most exacting focus on quality throughout will be the overriding objective – which is a challenge I am looking forward to tremendously.”
Currently in the final stages of pre-opening, Raevo is situated in the outskirts of Moscow and features a stunning Jack Nicklaus signature golf course that winds itself through ancient woodland and meandering streams. The luxurious Georgian style Clubhouse offers a range of both social and leisure amenities and the Club is set to become Moscow’s most exclusive, family-orientated retreat.
IMG Golf Course Services www.imgprestige.com