With its stunning seaside setting and famously challenging championship links course, the Royal Cinque Ports Golf Club at Deal in Kent has a reputation for quality.
Hosting Open Championship qualifiers and a regular programme of tournaments, the club has set its sights on attracting some of the most prestigious competitions in the land – an ambition wholeheartedly supported by Course Manager, James Bledge.“The club has put a lot of money into the greens staff, new equipment and course improvements over the four years since I joined,” says James. We have been able to make significant improvements to playing surfaces and have been working hard at thinning out rough and refining the cut surfaces.
The club has tried a variety of drainage techniques over recent years and has also invested to date in five new greens to USGA spec.
Four of the original push-up greens overly chalk and drain well, meaning that today’s emphasis is on the four push-ups with clay beneath.
“Our two apprentices get involved in pretty much every aspect of the work and each has a detailed education programme in place,” says James.
“Our guys are encouraged to get involved in tournament support, which gives them a chance to experience other courses and to see how major events are managed.
They are not a problem in summer, and stimpmeter readings as high as 13.6 are evidence of the speed that is achieved.