The Oundle Golf Club is a member’s owned club which has been part of the community since 1893. During the Second World War, the course remained open and was maintained by voluntary labour. In 2020, the Coronavirus pandemic forced the club to shut its course for the first time.
The closure came at a particularly bad time for the club’s operation, because the club relies on annual membership renewals in April. It also had a big impact on its older members who are reliant on getting outside for four hours exercise and social exchange on a regular basis.
The club management aimed to keep its membership connected and engaged. “To keep members’ spirits up we had to change the way we delivered our product. We immediately sent out golfing activities that you could do at home, and we have been assured no pets were injured in the putting competitions in the garden, as well as quizzes, treasure hunts, and food recipes provided by our restaurant’s chef.”
In line with the new regulations, the club was able to reopen on 13 May. To comply with the law, the club has implemented measures to ensure that players can adhere to social distance restrictions and have made the course safe by a variety of methods.
Players must play alone or within a household group or in two balls with one person from outside your household.
Bookings can only be made online, group bookings are no longer available, and tee times are staggered. Flags and other equipment that are handled by players have been removed from the course, and traditional celebrations and commiserations on the 18th hole now prohibited, along with any other social gatherings.
Their golf coach was able to resume one-to-one coaching from 19 May.
The clubhouse remains closed and Slimming World and Probus groups have cancelled all events and the club’s regular social events are cancelled or postponed until restrictions are lifted.
The club management said “Our members are fully involved in the club and we are grateful for the support they have given us during this time.”