25 Mar Membership Renewal – Coronavirus / Covid 19 Update
We would like to update you on the current thinking of your directors.
On Monday this week the UK Government announced that all golf clubs should now close to help slow down the spread of Covid 19. We know this shutdown will last for a minimum of 3 weeks and at this stage we don’t know whether this will be further extended or relaxed.
As you’re aware we’re in the midst of annual membership renewal, our major source of income and because of the current situation we now have no income from the bar and catering and no income from visitor green fees. As a club we do not generate a significant profit and we do not have significant cash reserves.
As you would expect we’re exploring all avenues with the government, our local authority, our bank, Chloe Walker (our landlord), our insurers and other parties to better understand what support, if any, we are able to access. It’s too early yet for us to have all the answers to the above but rest assured we’re all working tirelessly to get this information.
In the meantime we need to maintain the course to ensure that it will be in great condition whenever we are allowed to return to play. To this end we’re in discussions with Stuart Thompson and Rob Walker to decide if we can do this with a reduced green keeping staff, which might sadly mean that we have to ask some of our staff to stay at home.
In this circumstance we anticipate that the Club would receive 80% of the wages for the furloughed members of staff from the government’s business support scheme and the Club would top up the balance, but this has yet to be confirmed. In the meantime the Club has committed to retain all four greenkeepers until the end of April i.e. until the situation re furloughing is better understood.
As you can see from the above, we are in unchartered waters and as your directors, we want to ensure that we all have a quality golf club and course to come back to.
We feel at this stage we cannot give any guarantees as to what we will do regarding your 2020-2021 membership fees. All we can ask is that, with the very future of the Club in mind, you look to renew your membership with us either by setting up a monthly standing order or by making your payment in full.
Hopefully once we know the financial position of the club when Covid 19 is behind us we’ll be in a position to credit your membership for the following 2021-22 season for the number of weeks or months you have no access to the course this year. However at this stage we cannot give any guarantees as we do not know what the financial position of the club will be.
As you would expect we are keeping the situation under constant review and will continue to communicate with you on a regular basis.
Stay safe and we thank you for your continuing support through these difficult times.
Peter Knowles Club Secretary on behalf of your directors