Member Bulletin Re: COVID19 / Club Services
We are aware that this is an unsettling situation for all members, and you will have many questions about what may or may not happen in the coming weeks and months. This communication is to help answer some of those questions and offer reassurance where possible.
From the outset, what we would say is that everything is pointing to the fact that whilst we may be in for a long haul in terms of this virus being around, the more severe restrictions that may occur, look to be on a more temporary basis. We need to manage things through the short-term difficulties of the next few months but being aware that we will hopefully be fully up and running at some stage in the summer. We must therefore be mindful of keeping the long-term future of the club on track. In the short term, I am sure that you are aware that the situation is very much one that is beyond our control.
We will continue to follow government restrictions but will remain open for as long as we are able to do so. The time is now appropriate for the clubhouse, bar, kitchen and Professional Shop to close, we will still try and keep the golf course open, because keeping members out playing golf in a socially responsible manner will help everyone.
Being realistic however, restrictions are coming and a full lockdown is highly likely, during which time, it is almost certain that the golf course will be closed. Clearly, we hope this period of time is limited and it is as yet unclear as to whether or not staff will be permitted to come to work during that time. This will have big implications on your ability to utilise your membership and has also led to multiple visiting groups being cancelled as well as dozens of events/functions. All this on top of possibly the wettest 6 months on record!
Short–Term - Clearly the club has significant fixed costs, the largest being staff followed by course equipment & materials. We will obviously do everything we can to manage all of these costs during any period of disruption, in order to ensure that whatever may be saved is saved. We do also however, need to be mindful that the golf course still needs maintaining and that the people who do this and who operate the club on a daily basis, will be needed to take care of the course and grounds. Therefore, this is not a tap that can be simply turned on and off. We will also be looking at our insurance cover to see whether any business interruption cover will be applicable, although we are expecting this to be more than difficult.
Long Term - We very much hope that members will take a long-term view on this and can help see us through the short-term disruption, in order to ensure the club’s long-term future. Currently, discretionary capital expenditure plans are on temporary hold, and our plans will be reviewed as the summer goes on. However, once the dust has settled, we will review how this outbreak has affected us and then get our long-term plans back on track as swiftly as possible, our focus being totally geared towards recovery. Support we receive from members in terms of renewing their subscriptions later in the summer will greatly help us keep the long-term investment and recovery plans going ahead.
Once this situation has passed and we have a clear understanding of the financial impact, we will look into fair and practical measures to ensure the long-term stability of the club.
Club services update as of close of business 23.03.2020:
• Professionals’ Shop will close for safety and welfare reasons until further notice - Members will need to book tee times via the online booking software
• Catering / kitchen will close for safety and welfare reasons until further notice
• Office staff other than myself will be sent home for safety and welfare seasons
• Changing rooms will be locked down as of Thursday 26th March 2020 at 5pm - Members with clubs or equipment stored in lockers will need to ensure these items are removed from site by this time
• The golf course and driving range will remain open for the time being, PLEASE NOTE : A cashless system will be in operation, payment for driving range cards ( new cards or top ups ) and members guest green fees will be payable to the office over the phone – call 01273 419738 and select the office option
• Internal golf competitions have been suspended until further notice.
Thank you in advance for your ongoing support for West Hove Golf Club.