Lyme Regis golfers get back into the swing of things

PUBLISHED: 12:37 15 May 2020 | UPDATED: 12:37 15 May 2020

The 16th hole at Lyme Regis with 'social distancing' being strictly observed now that golfers can return to the course after lockdown restrictions were eased. Picture; LYME REGIS GOLF CLUB

The 16th hole at Lyme Regis with 'social distancing' being strictly observed now that golfers can return to the course after lockdown restrictions were eased. Picture; LYME REGIS GOLF CLUB

Archant

Having spent seven weeks, or so, honing their putting skills on the kitchen or bathroom floor, or even the carpet, many Lyme members took advantage of the golf course opening as the tee times were fully booked, writes Richard Jackman.

There are strict rules in place on social distancing and safe golf and these were well observed and followed by members.

After the incredibly wet Winter, and dry lockdown period, members were returning to a very different golf course.

Lyme Regis has an excellent green-keeping team, but, with three of the team furloughed, it was left to Jamie Hughes and Simon Rattenbury to ‘fly the green flag’ and they have done a magnificent job in getting the course back from Winter conditions and in excellent shape, ready for Summer golf.

Ironically this task was made easier by not having members playing!

The new rules mean that only members can play, but they can only play if a booking has been made. On the opening day, golf was allowed in pairs unless there were three or more members within a family.

Club chairman, John Coley and club captain Arthur Daines shared the marshalling and starting duties and the day went extremely well as many members got round in much less than three hours.

Although the course was fully booked the course did not seem crowded, and many players were just grateful to return to play.

There are some slight differences in that the bunkers have no rakes to avoid any risk of passing on anything and the cups in the hole are inverted to allow easy retrieval of the ball without having to touch the flag.

Of course, there was no 19th hole available and members left as soon as they had finished playing, but the overall feeling was that it was good to be back, giving a real feeling of some normality returning.

Club chairman John Coley said: “We are delighted to have the course back in play and to see so many smiling members. Special thanks to all those who have worked so hard to make it happen.

Sadly, at the moment we are unable to welcome visitors although we are of course more than happy to welcome new members!”


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