Comments from the Chair

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Chairman's Blog - July


The Trees at the back of the 8th and 13th Greens

We are reliably informed that these trees could be a big problem in the next few months/years if they are not attended to. They have grown very tall and in high winds could become a risk. This type of tree are known to shed limbs easily. We do not want cars or people injured by these trees shedding.

We therefore have some serious course management/financial decisions to make regarding them. We have had a rough estimate of the cost of "tree surgery" and have been astounded at what it will cost to carry out the work to save them and make them safe. We may indeed need to make the more uncomfortable and unfortunate (but very much cheaper) decision to cut them down completely.

Your views, ideas and more importantly (cost effective) solutions are requested.

Stroke Indices

The Board voted to go with Option 1. The front nine will be even SI's and the back will be odd SI's (Off white tees). We will put the new scoresheet on the notice-board for the members to view in due course. The final decision to purchase the new scorecards will be made at the next meeting. (13th August 2012).

The Ladies section have met and they will report their new SI's after consultation with their membership.


Distance Measuring Devices (DMD's)

Whilst players are already using DMD's at Ryton, we felt it correct/important to create a local rule that officially allows DMD's on the course. We shall therefore do this, but we felt it must be in accordance with the England Golf's Guidance on DMD's. Please read the document carefully to ensure you do not infringe competition rules!

Please click on the link below to see the full paper.

Walk Off Area from 18th Green

The Walk off Point from the 18th Green has been moved, the aim is to have a compressed air system in place asap. Nigel Bendelow/Michael Moffitt and Mal Robson will be looking into the specific requirements and sourcing of equipment.

In the mean time the walk off from the 18th has now been moved. All golf traffic will now be directed past the office window towards the locker rooms. There have been concerns over the state of the path from the car park to the clubhouse main entrance.

The Don Jepson memorial bench has also been moved to a more favourable position.


Course flooded prior to the Texas Scramble Open Competition! See photographs of the 8th and 18th Greens. Isn't it always the way when you have the course completely full! As I write this blog the greenstaff are working hard to make the course playable! Incredible staff! Go Team!

Unbelievable weather!

The team were able to open the course for 10.45 so the competition could go ahead. We have amazing staff at Ryton committed and dedicated to our members. We are very lucky! Great effort alround!


We are happy to report the latest statistics relating to Green Fees and Bar Takings.

You can see the Green Fees figures are excellent. In effect in the last 6 months we have taken 3 times our best figures for any 6 months period in the last 5 years! We have earned over £18,000 (£5700 in June alone) In these difficult financial times and with the wettest June in known memory, these are staggering results. All our hard work is paying dividends! We need to keep up the momentum!

The Bar takings too are up. We are £5700 up on last years figures for the same timescale! Taking the weather into consideration we should be proud of any increase. Could i urge you all to visit the bar before, during or after a round to support the club. Each "sarnie" or "diet coke" means more profit which in turn means financial stability!

"Don't be a car park golfer!"

We are still offering a "half way house" service which we would encourage you to use also! 


Rain, Rain and more Rain! As you have all witnessed, June has been a tremendously wet month. However, Ryton GC has weathered the storms and continues to surprise many of us as to how marvellously playable it is! Our course has been closed on very few occasions, far fewer than many others, who are having incredible problems. Some clubs will have to do costly and major reconstruction to their courses due to the damage caused by rain water. Much praise should be heaped on Don Smithson and the board for their decision to lay drainage through the 6th, 8th, 9th and 13th fairways which used to be blighted by flooding, causing holes to be unplayable. I can still remember walking from the 5th green down the path alongside the river and 6th fairway (missing it out) to play the 7th! What great foresight that was! Our fantastic course has only blossomed due to the extra "watering". The greens staff must be praised for doing a magnificent job!

The website was populated by over 2600 unique visitors yet again last month which proves that our shop window is still drawing attention. I will endeavour to keep it fresh, up to date and user friendly.

Its great to see that we are still getting lots of visitors to the course despite the fact that the Groupon deals have finished. I know Michael is working extremely hard to increase revenue whilst ensuring that members get their usual tee slots. It is obvious to everyone that unused tee slots are wasted possible revenue and we are attempting to maximise the potential of the course! It is of course a fine art to accommodate and keep everyone happy. We thank you all for your patience and understanding. We are monitoring closely the level of "usage" v "wear and tear" on the course and we are very pleased to say that the course is standing up superbly. It maybe down in no small part to the ongoing "divotting" initiative that we are doing. thanks to all members for their efforts regarding this! 

I must admit i am enjoying the role of Co-opted Chairman at present. I hope this honeymoon period will last for a while. The club has some interesting times ahead but i feel sure that we are moving in a very positive direction and I will continue to give it my best shot!.

I urge you all to read the article on the website relating to Stroke Indices. We are about to purchase new cards soon and we want to make a change to the present incorrect and problematic SI's. We intend to make some decisions at the Board meeting on 9th July! I have posted a "mock up" of a card with the SI's of option 1 inserted!

The Open competitions are drawing a great deal of attention. We are pleased to see the start sheets full and enjoy welcoming many new guests to Ryton to sample our course. These competitions are very important to the club in so many ways. The Texas scramble on Friday 6th with its large prize purse seems to be almost full. I look forward to seeing the results of that comp! 


Glyde Golf
We would like to thank and welcome our latest sponsor "Glyde Golf". You will no doubt see their logo on the 40,000 cards we are about to purchase for next year!
Please visit them at the links below!
Twitter -!/Glydegolf
Please follow them and retweet
Facebook -
Check out their latest information on facebook!


P & D Scaffolding
We of course continue to thank P & D Scaffolding who has kindly donated funds to help out with the new team shirts.
Why not ring them if you need any scaffolding on - 0191-469 9350
Created: 02-Jul-12 20:40

Chairman's Blog - June

Can i firstly say what an honour it is to have become "Paul Whittaker Co-opted Chairman of Ryton Golf Club". I must admit the meteoric rise to this illustrious position has been as much of a surprise to me as it maybe to you. Can i simply say "I will do my best to make this club a friendly and successful club and one which we will all be proud of!"

The main changes that have occurred within the Board is due to the fact that Michael Rutter has been appointed as Secretary/Manager of the club and has therefore relinquished his position as Chair. The work he has done thus far on behalf of the club cannot be overestimated and much praise must be heaped onto him for the time and effort he has given to us. I feel sure he will continue this now in his new and very important role.

I would  like to offer our gratitude and thanks to our former chairman, Don Smithson for all of his hard work on behalf of the club over the last twenty years.  He will continue to help and support the club in his new role as president.  As I have stepped into the Chair, the vacant position on the board left behind has been filled by the very capable and enthusiastic Bev Wears who has already done a great deal for the club. I look forward very much to working with her in the future. 

I would also like to mention that Keith McLeod will be leaving us on 15th June. Our very heartfelt thanks go out to him for the work he has done for the club and we wish him all the very best with his future plans.

All of these changes could make for "unrest" at the club but it would seem that the opposite is happening! There is a buzz and feeling of positivity which is good!  Maybe its because the summer is in full swing, (despite the weather) maybe its because we have many more enthusiastic, smiling and fresh faced guests at the club (full of eagerness and anticipation), could it be the condition of our magnificent course, or perhaps because the club is heading in a tremendously positive direction. Whatever it is long may it continue!

For me, just being on the course, even with a "club foot", is a bonus. The course is wonderful, the sun is shining (occasionally), the air is fresh, and the banter is always cracking , life is good. What better than playing golf with a broad smile on your face?

What other exciting things are happening at the club? Well, if you haven't noticed we have a new greens machine. The greens whilst being superb, as usual, have been a little on the slow side. But seeing Shaun sitting on the new machine on Saturday @ 5pm in the pouring rain cutting the 12th in preparation for Invitation Day was a joy to behold. Given the right weather, I am convinced that what were magnificent greens will become yet again the best in the county by far!

The teams are really producing the goods at present. Both the men and the ladies have won their last few games and there is nothing like success for morale. Please visit the links below to follow their progress and more importantly find out when the next games are in order to come along and support!



The website is getting extremely well populated. We had over 2600 "unique" hits last month alone which is a record for one month. Over a 1000 people viewed our "Green fees" section obviously with the view of visiting the course. I hope you find the changes and updates we are making daily to be useful and interesting. of course if you have any "constructive" thoughts to improve the site i would be very grateful to hear them.

Can i just say a big thank you to you all for your smiles to our many guests. The "May Groupon" has ended now and we move forward with the 1300 email addresses we have gained from the last 5 months work. Many thanks should also go to Lucy Harris for her role in "meeting and greeting" the tremendous number of new visitors,  which was carried out with professionalism and charm, and done on an entirely voluntary basis. I would also like to mention Agnes who has carried out her sometimes difficult  role "above and beyond the call of duty" supported by Rhiannon and Lorraine . This new mailing list obviously means we are able to target our advertising to golfers who have enjoyed playing Ryton before and feel they are accessing a great course for a competitive price, cutting down on the cost of advertising in papers and magazines is a byproduct and bonus.

A big "Well Done!" should go out to the Ladies who helped to decorate the Ladies Changing rooms this week, freshening it up with some paint and a steam clean! Great effort!

No doubt i have missed many things out of this blog. I ask you all to be gentle and bear with me over the next few months, not to be too harsh with comments and , god forbid criticism , and the team will endeavour to make  "Lil ole Royal Ryton"  the wonderful club that it deserves so much to be!

Created: 12-Jun-12 11:49

Chariman's Blog - May

All systems go as we enter the season and the 'good weather'!!!

We are pleased to report an influx of almost 50 new individuals to our membership for the season. However, we have lost our fair share and there are still a fair number yet to subscribe.

With this in mind, although delighted with the influx of new members, we do not want to rest on our laurels so to speak! In order to push forward and to increase our cash flow there will be new initiatives implemented over this next month or two in order to achieve our targets. Please see 'members area' of the website for further details.

On a plus side the visitor numbers are excellent with record turnover being hit in each of the first 5 months of the year. You will notice from visitor testimonials that people are without doubt enjoying our fine course with some very positive comments on the friendly reception they have received from our members!

We would like to thank Peter McRoberts who kindly sponsored the RGC team with some super new shirts being acquired for this season. We are now actively looking for sponsors for some of the tee boxes, with a priority being given to the 1st Tee area. We currently have an Architect who is also a member working on some design options. Any ideas as always will be much appreciated!

Thank you for assistance with fairway divoting, we should start to see the benefits over  the next few weeks. The green-keepers are looking to keep the system moving around the course but require you and I to do our bit in order to speed up the process. So keep up the good work!

On behalf of th Golf Club I would like to take this opportunity to thank Keith McLeod for his hard work over the last two years in his role as Golf Club Manager/Secretary.  Keith will be here until mid June, so plenty time to wish him well for the future.



Created: 15-May-12 10:19
Showing 51 - 53 of 53 Items (Page 11 of 11)

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