Formby golf club has undertaken a major investment programme on its golf course with a commitment to one, three and ten-year strategic plans, highlighting the club’s commitment to further enhancing the direct playing area to optimum condition, developing the surrounding fauna and wildlife on our SSSI site, and embarking on a positive woodland management programme.
This programme started in Spring 2017 and has moved on at a pace into the winter of 2018/19.
Formby Golf Club has invested in this extensive golf course programme to further enhance the renowned green surfaces all year round, embarking on a similar programme to that carried out by Royal Troon in the run up to the 2016 Open Championship.
This has been supplemented by bunker revetting work and an extensive sapling removal programme in 2018, removing non-native species of young tree and shrub.
A focus on attention to detail to all of the estate also included an enhancement to our divoting programme which has shown excellent results to the condition of our fairways year round.
This initial investment on the course was some £150K over the first 18 months and this is being supplemented by further expenditure in 2018/19.
The purchase of a Wiedenmann Terra Spike deep aeration machine has revolutionised our ability to support the firmer greens and surrounds initiative which was a key part of the £120,000 capital machinery investment programme of 2018/19, once again confirming our commitment to long term development and advancement of the course.
Up to a further £100k has already been earmarked for additional machinery investment in 2019.
A further 16 bunkers have also been revetted over the Winter of 2018/19 meaning that all bunkers on the course have now had this work undertaken in the last three years. This adds an additional £50K in invested time and materials and the revetting programme will continue as bunker condition and appearance demands.
As part of the Sefton Woodland Management Plan and under licence from the Forestry Commission an extensive forest management programme has now been completed. The removal of trees through thinning activities has been followed by the re-planting of 2000 new trees across the entire estate both bordering and beyond the golf course. This work has already enhanced the panorama of the course and provided stunning visuals, some of which our members have never experienced before.
Five new tees have been built this winter showing a strong commitment to upgrading the course whenever possible and in line with the strategic plan. Upcoming projects include plans to replace as many of the remaining shale paths as possible with grass (300 yards total), further improvements to the practice ground, and a new patio area.
Infrastructure improvements include a sand mining license, recently awarded, allowing Formby Golf club to mine its own sand, which will be used for top dressing fairways under the same programme as the Open Championship venues. This operation will promote greater firmness throughout, especially in winter months.
The renowned architect, Martin Ebert of Ebert and McKenzie will shortly be delivering a report which will encompass a complete review of all 18 holes. Martin and his partner Tom Mackenzie have over 50 years of experience in the field of golf architecture and over the past two years have advised on 7 of the top ten Open Championship venues as well as more than 50 of the Top 100 courses as compiled by Golf World in 2017/18.
To ensure Formby Golf Club continues as one of the world’s greatest links courses we look forward with great expectation to the recommendations put forward by Martin.
Overall that is a major investment of some £400K since mid-2017 in both course improvement work and capital equipment purchase. With further investment to come as the 10-year plan will dictate, Formby Golf Club is showing a full commitment to delivering its course to the highest possible standard.
The full investment plan will be outlined during 2019 where we will show the implementation programme in full. This programme has been designed to present and solidify Formby Golf Club as one of the leading links courses in the World and deliver a course management programme in line with the expectations of both members and visitors alike.