(The following is a copy of the letter sent to members from Rob Humphreys yesterday.)
A Message from the President
I hope you have all kept safe and well in this environment of social distancing that effectively prevents all social gatherings for the foreseeable future. Many of us are much better now in the use of technology, like Skype, Zoom and the social networks. If you are like me, it is better than nothing but not the same as hugs and kisses from the grandchildren, relative and friends. Let’s hope that the “flattening of the curve” succeeds and the restrictions are lifted sooner rather than later.
In January and February this year, the Club members were discussing the pros and cons of the proposed development of the Clubhouse and potential changes to the course. I provided the available details relating to the proposal in a memorandum to members dated January 2020 in preparation for a meeting to be held on 26 April 2020.
The COVID19 virus, however, overwhelmed Australia and the rest of the world with dangerous implications for us all. The precautions mandated by the Federal and State governments have had extraordinary effects on our social behaviour and stopped our development plans in their tracks.
Having said all that, there are some things that we can be grateful for:
- We are able to play golf, subject to the distancing requirements, although we can’t enjoy the camaraderie that we are used to before and after a round. Even so, the fields for both the men’s and women’s competitions are at an all-time high, so much so that I can only get on the waiting list for next Saturday! I am sure that a major factor in the popularity of golf at present is the excellent way in which the course is being presented. Matt Morris and his staff deserve our congratulations and thanks.
- We have a new 9 hole competition playing on Fridays, open to all members. All players use the yellow tees and the scorecard is non gender specific. It attracted a field of 63 men and women on its opening day and it looks as if that will continue. New scorecards have been prepared for all of the other tees also.
- Dick Hiser, our Captain has reported in his Blog that the course works are underway, commencing with the 4th hole refurbishment. In addition, the cart shed extensions have been completed allowing for additional cart storage.
- The Treasurer reports that the cash position is sound but not excessive. In the meantime, the large golf fields provide a welcome cash flow and the members’ support of the weekly take-away meals is an additional contribution. Thanks go to Tim Davis and Regina for their assistance.
- The Club has lodged the appropriate documentation for participation in the “Job-Keeper” subsidy. As a result, 13 out of 15 of our staff have been retained and will form the nucleus for increased operations when the restrictions are lifted. Those staff have continued to be paid and we will receive compensation from the government in May.
- We have attracted 13 new members since the end of March and have had additional enquiries, which underlines the popularity of BGC. As you may have noted from the Club’s website, after much discussion we have included a joining fee of $500 for new Country Members, which may also aid the Club’s cash flow position. I know that when you meet the new members, you will give them a traditional BGC welcome, even if you can’t buy them a drink.
As you will be aware, the directions we received from the regulatory authorities were confused and variable. What was prohibited one day was allowed the next, subject to new restrictions. I thank Kevin Kenny for his unceasing efforts to ensure that BGC was in the best position to continue playing golf. He was ably assisted by Dick Hiser who then kept you up to date through the Blog. I thank each of them on your behalf. I also thank the Directors for their support and advice during this stressful period.
Most of all though, I thank the members for their continued support and I hope that you all enjoy your golf, restricted though it may be. Keep safe and well.
21 April 2020
Most players are aware of the increased number of bookings at present (particularly on Saturday's). It is pleasing to see such great attendance on the course, but it also means that short notice bookings might not be available. The booking sheet is open for several weeks in advance, so players are advised to book ahead to avoid missing out.
Please note the following :
- If you are unable to find a slot for a particular day, contact the pro shop and they may be able to assist by placing your name on a 'wait-list'. If you are booked to play on a Saturday and find that you are going to be unable to attend, please remove your name from the booking AND contact the pro shop immediately so they can contact the first player in line from the wait-list.
- Sunset is slowly reducing the available time for play as we move into winter, and with no gap between the morning and afternoon fields like in the past, it's vitally important for all players to be on time, AND leave the tee after teeing-off and move smartly to their ball for further play. If the morning tee times start to slide this will have a direct flow-on effect to the later tee times, and players will be finishing their game in darkness. Don't 'dilly-dally' after teeing off!!
- A new clock will shortly be positioned in the window of the pro shop to assist in getting play on time. The tee times are separated by just 7 minutes. This means you have to tee-off, get to your ball and have played your second shot within 7 minutes so the following group can play their tee shot on time.
Enjoy the fantastic Autumn weather and the awesome condition of the course.