Beaconsfield Golf Club

Beaconsfield Golf Club
Seer Green, Beaconsfield
Bucks, HP9 2UR

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01494 676545

February 2024

From the Captain

Thank you to the 270 members who were able to attend the recent Du Pre clubhouse presentations, either in person or remotely, to hear the Board’s proposals for the clubhouse and practice range. 

The next step is for the plans and consolidated Q&A’s to be published on the website along with a member questionnaire which includes a request for member approval for the Board to continue the project, the biggest, most exciting and most expensive capital project in the club’s history.

Please look out for the questionnaire as The Board are eager to hear your views.

It’s now only 30 something days to one of the my favourite days of the year, when the clocks go forward, it’s light until 8pm and the golf season springs into life in earnest….I can’t wait. However, sadly after 20 years of ticking, our clubhouse clock has stopped, we are looking at getting it replaced but for now you will need to rely on your  Timex, Apple Watch, Iphone or sundial (delete as appropriate ).

In the meantime, I think the course in general and the greens in particular have simply never played better during any winter! Congratulations to Stuart and his team for this achievement. I know the greens have just been hollow tined and dressed but they will be playing more smoothly in a week or two, with no more serious maintenance due now until August.

50 Years Membership

Congratulations to Bill Leach who will celebrate his 50th anniversary of joining the club. 

Dianne Regan  

A big thank you to Dianne Regan, who, after 13 years is stepping down as Chair of The Junior Committee. There will be hundreds of current juniors and ex juniors, including my own son and daughter, who are now in their mid to late 20’s who will have a lasting soft spot for Dianne, forever grateful for her care and encouragement in introducing them to the game of golf.  

I’m pleased to announce that Ingrid Creighton has agreed to take on the responsibility for the Chair of the Junior Committee and one of the first jobs of the Committee will be to roll out the new two-tier Junior membership system.

Use them or Lose them!

Don't forget that the discounted green fee vouchers will expire on 31st March. There are no extensions or exceptions to this deadline.

The new vouchers will run from 1st April 24 to 31st March 25 and are available to purchase now. You can buy any denomination between, 6 as a minimum and 12 as a maximum, for £23 each. Please contact the office.

Michael Lawson

Captain's Charity for 2023/2024

From the Ladies Captain

February has passed by in a flash. With two out of four Thursday competitions cancelled due to rain, we have been busier off the course than on.

The ladies gathered on 8th February for a presentation by Beth Sawyer, from our charity for the year, Carers Bucks. She explained the many ways in which the charity helps carers of all kinds, including young carers, which I know many of the ladies found very touching. Unfortunately, the Captain v Secretary match play competition, that was scheduled for later in the morning had to be cancelled due to pouring rain.

On 15th February, Nikki Darrah, Sue Schmidt, Beverley Collins and Nuala Gillmor-Morris strutted their stuff, modelling the Spring/Summer collection of golf wear, from Swing Out Sister, so expect to see some very snazzily dressed ladies on the course this year. This went down so well, that Lucy from Swing Out Sister will be back on 26th September with the Autumn/Winter collection.

Before the main event, the Committee took the opportunity to show off the very smart new navy blue BGC team colours.

A huge thank you to Ros Johnstone and the Committee ladies, Carole Isaac and her helpers and Kay Lubek for all the work they put into making the Charity Bridge Drive such a success on 28th. We had a record 25 tables which raised a fantastic £ 1911 for our charity Carers Bucks.

Hopefully March will bring dryer and warmer days, and we will be able to play more golf.

Sue Goodliffe

Ladies' Captain's Charity for 2023/2024

WHS Changes Coming Into Force From 1st April 

The way your course Handicap is worked out under the World Handicap System is changing from April 2024. Great Britain and Ireland will join many other handicapping associations around the globe by including a ‘ Course Rating minus Par' adjustment.

But what is this new term we’re all going to have to get used to, and how will it affect the number of shots you receive? Let’s take a look…

There are a number of minor changes that can be looked up on the internet here but for simplicity, the main one we have focused on is the key change that affects how you calculate your playing handicap.

Quick Reminder:  

  • Course Rating  - This is what a Scratch golfer should score, and at BGC is 71.8 for Blacks, 69.9 for Blues, 74.2 for Ladies Gold and so on.
  • SLOPE  Rating   - represents the relative difficulty of a course for a bogey golfer (20 to 24 Handicap Index) compared to a scratch golfer . A course with long carries, narrow fairways, lots of hazards  and thick rough will have a high slope rating because these features are more of a challenge to bogey golfers.  At BGC this is 136 for Blacks, 132 for Blues, 142 for Ladies Gold and so on.

Summary of the change:   

At the moment, all WHS Course Handicaps are used to play against the course Par (not the Course Rating) and do not take account of any difference between the two.

From 1 April 2024, the handicap calculation will change to effectively give a handicap which is driven by the Course Rating  (“CR”) rather than by Par, by making an adjustment for the difference between the two.  The new calculation of Course Handicap (what you play off at the specific course/tees) is:

Course Handicap = (Handicap Index x Slope Rating / 113) + (Course Rating  -  Par).

So the same as before but also adding the ‘Course Rating  -  Par’ adjustment.

The practical implications of this at Beaconsfield for the most used tees are:

  • All  men’s handicaps will be 0.2 shots lower off the black tees, which may have no effect after rounding.
  • All  men’s handicaps will be 2.1 shots lower off the blue tees, meaning that for many members there will be a 3 shot difference in handicap between the black and blue tees with par being 72 for both.
  • All  ladies’ handicaps will be 0.2 shots higher off the gold tees, which may have no effect after rounding.

Example:   Tim’s Handicap index is 14.0.

So at the moment, off the Blacks at BGC his Course Handicap (CH) is 14.0 x 136/113 = 16.84 which rounds to 17

This will change to 14.0 x 136/113 + (CR – Par).  So 16.84 + (71.8-72 = -.2) = 16.64 - which also rounds to 17

But off Blues would be 14.0 x 132/113 + (CR – Par) = 16.35 + (69.9-72= -2.1) so 14.25 which rounds to 14.

(Click on the image to view in full screen)

More information on this and the other WHS changes can be found here.......

Whilst changing the card layout, we are also adding a QR Code that will enable smart phone users to use their camera to link through to a web page showing the handicap conversion table for Beaconsfield.

Ladies' Stroke Indices (SI)

As we are having to make changes to the card and some of the tee stones, we are taking this opportunity to update the ladies' stroke indices.  These were changed during covid to be the same as the men’s but the Golf & Comps committee, including Carole Weir, believe they need to better reflect the relative difficulty of each hole versus par whilst also following the other SI rules ensuring even distribution.

These will be on the new card and effective from 1st April, the tee stones have been ordered and will be replaced as soon as possible. 

(Click on the image to view in full screen)

Happy golfing in 2024.

David Booker

Chairman of the Golf and Competitions Commitee  

Project Du Pré

Firstly, the terrace will be completed this week with the final grouting done and some broken tiles replaced in entrance way to the Clubhouse. The furniture is due for delivery wc. March 4th so, with a fair wind, we should have everything in place and the terrace back in full use by March 9th.  

The Member briefing evenings regarding the Clubhouse and Practice Range developments took place this month and in all we had 170 people present, with a further >100 online so, it was great turnout and thank you to everyone who made the effort.  

The Board have received many questions both on the evenings, in emails and personal questions. Rather than just respond directly to questioner, we have also documented all the answers in the form of FAQ’s which will be made available for all members.  

The next steps are that the Board will be sending out a notice to all members wc. 4th March containing the following information:  

1.       Executive Summary of the presentation

2.       Full copy of the presentation

3.       A recording of one of the presentations

4.       FAQ’s  - all questions raised and the respective answers from the Board

5.       Questionnaire to approve moving forward with the project  

The questionnaire will be seeking approval from the members to move forward with the Project Proposals as presented. There will also be several other questions included which will provide the Board with a little more insight into some of the prevailing thinking and questions among the members.  

There will be a two-week period for Members to review the information, if required, and then to submit their completed questionnaire. The Board then will review all the responses and report back on the findings and the next steps of the Project.  

The interest to-date has been strong and given the importance of the next steps, we would hope that as many members as possible will take this opportunity to contribute to the future direction of the Club and will review and complete the questionnaire.  

Richard Cottrell

Chairman of House Committee

News from the Junior and Younger Members

It has been a very quiet time for our juniors during the winter months, but Spring is just around the corner and with it comes the start of our busy golfing season. There has only been one junior competition during the February half-term holiday and the successful winner was Aziz Chaudhary with 38 points! Well done Aziz – and a great start to the year ahead.  

Over the next few weeks, we will be conducting our junior induction programme and the top eleven junior applicants on our waiting list, will be offered membership from 1st April. The junior membership will however be changing, after the Board has recently approved a new proposal to split our Junior Section into two divisions.  

The division will take place before the start of our new subscription year and will give our junior members, who are still beginners, the opportunity to learn to play and enjoy golf, without the pressure of requiring a handicap and playing in competitions. These juniors will become Associate Junior Members, with different rules to the active Junior Members who are keen to play competitively. If any of the Associate Juniors decide they wish to play golf competitively, they will be encouraged to gain a handicap and they can then request a transfer to the main Junior Section. An email will be sent out to all our current junior members, advising their category and explaining the full details and rules of both divisions, with a copy of our revised Junior Charter.

This will sadly be my last article for the monthly Niblick, because I have decided to stand down as Junior Organiser, after thirteen incredibly happy years. It has been a real privilege being the Junior Organiser and an absolute pleasure getting to know all our young members and their families over the years. I am certainly going to miss everyone very much, but I still hope to see them around the club, and I will always follow their golfing progress with great interest. 

It has been wonderful to see so many of our young golfers achieve such high standards of golf and represent Beaconsfield in all the county and regional events. It is also extremely rewarding, that so many are now following their passion for ‘the great game’ and are pursuing careers in golf.

I would like to thank all our fantastic juniors and intermediates, for their commitment and support over the years, and I hope they have had fun and made many new friends since they joined Beaconsfield. They are the future of golf and our wonderful club, and I am immensely proud of them all. I wish them a long and happy membership at the club and all the best for the future.

I also wish to take this opportunity to thank the Junior & Young Members Committee, for their invaluable help and support over the years, so a massive ‘thank you’ to Ian Boardman, Janet Beal, Helen Morris, Tom Evans, and Gareth Davies.

The member who will be taking over from me as Chair of the Junior Committee is Ingrid Creighton and she will be looking after our Junior Section in the future. I know that all our young members will be in safe hands with Ingrid, who is excited to take on this role and will organising the junior competitions from 1st April. I wish Ingrid and her committee the best of luck for the future.

Happy Golfing everyone!!  

Dianne Regan

Course Update & Rainfall 

The greens renovations were completed earlier than scheduled with the team taking advantage of some favourable conditions. The surfaces were deep spiked to encourage drainage and deeper rooting. This was followed up with a hollow core to remove the heavier native soil which was replaced with pure sand-a process known as soil exchange. Next up was a shallow solid tine followed by more sand which maintains healthy levels of organic matter (thatch) within the surface. The levels of organic matter (OM) are measured through a yearly soil sample taken across the course which measures the volume of OM within the surface as a percentage. The most recent samples were excellent with our greens currently averaging around 2.5% which was down from 6-7% 10 years ago. All 3 aeration practices combined with the sanding will continue to promote firmer surfaces. The final part of the renovation saw the greens over seeded with a pure bent grass mixture which will be repeated throughout the summer.

Renovations will be carried out on the tees, approaches and fairways when the weather allows. General tidying and preparations for the spring are well underway with jobs such as painting, path topping, cleaning and the replacing of signs all included.

(Click on the image to view in full screen)

Stuart Langhorn

Course Director

A Note from the Treasurer

We have completed a review of our  visitor society  activity. The review identified that the volume of society activity has increased in recent years, which effectively subsidises our annual membership fees to the tune of approximately 10%. We benchmarked what we charge for societies against our usual set of comparable golf clubs and our rates looked low. We have decided therefore to increase our standard society rate by nearly 25%. The desired outcome is that the increase in pricing is broadly matched by a decrease in the number of society visitors. The net financial contribution to the club is therefore maintained, whilst freeing up more time on the golf course to our members. A win-win you might call that. A number of nuances contributed to this decision but it is worth noting that by only allowing societies on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, we are already much more restrictive than the vast majority of comparable clubs. Even at our current levels, an average maximum of the available teeing off time of 25% is taken up by societies. Extrapolated across the full week, less than 10% of our golfing capacity is given over to visiting societies and with the changes we are introducing that will reduce further. 

Separately, just a reminder that we will stop taking cash behind the bar from 1 April. 

Pete Muir



We are now moving from winter to spring.

It has been a wet winter but the course has held up remarkably well.

This is no doubt down to the good work by Stuart, Lee and all the Greens staff.

Continued hard work to identify wet areas and seeking solutions such as new drainage and soak-aways has led to firmer footing throughout the course.  

The other major positive impact has been the amount of members that have carried when possible throughout the winter.

Well done to everyone.  A big effort has been made.

It is very noticeable, on any given day throughout the winter, how many people carried their golf bags.

It has meant the course could be kept open as much as possible and trolleys bans were minimised.

The result has been markedly less wheel damage throughout the course which should lead to a much quicker recovery from winter golf conditions.

Mark Conway

Chairman of Green Committee

Social Events

Bingo night – Friday 2 February 2024 – 66 members thoroughly enjoyed an evening of traditional and musical Bingo along with a selection of bar snacks and a meat & cheese board.

Our 60s, 70s & 80s Dinner Dance on Friday 16 February 2024 was a huge success with members enjoying a delicious 3 course meal followed by an evening of dancing to the tunes of the Barry Owen Band. 

Events currently open for entry are:

The 2024 Quiz Night – Saturday 9 March 2024 – entry is nearly full for the Quiz Night so please sign up asap if you would like to book or join a table.

Future events scheduled for your diary are:

Saturday 13 July 2024 - Summer Sizzler –- We’re planning a hog roast and steel band to follow for all the family to join in the festivities so even if you aren’t planning on playing, please consider joining us afterwards.

25 October 2024 - A gourmet 5-7 course dinner and wine tasting evening.

16 November 2024 - Night Golf

30 November 2024 – Turkey Trot

The Social Committee

Golf Etiquette And Safety

A quick reminder to us all about safety on the course.

If you, as a player, feel that someone on the course may be in danger of being hit by your ball, please wait until they have moved away from the danger area.  

Of course there are times when a wayward shot can unexpectedly cause concern, so please shout Fore.

If you lose sight of your ball, either over trees or in the sunlight, again please shout Fore if there is any possibility of an accident.

It is better be safe than sorry.

Mark Conway

Chairman of Green Committee

Chris' Corner

I hope you are well and managing to play some good golf!  

We have the last few days of the sale happening before all the new gear comes in! Grab yourself a bargain, whether it be clubs or clothes!  

We still have spaces on the Taylormade Fitting day on the 19th of March! Get yourself some fresh equipment to start your season off on the front foot! Contact the Pro shop to book yourself in!  

Follow the journey of your next set of Taylormade Clubs.  

I have recently visited the Taylormade HQ in Basingstoke for the launch of the NEW Qi10 Clubs and got a tour around their fantastic facility, see below for the steps they take to make all the TM clubs.

All components in the warehouse ready to be picked and given a Q code to track them throughout their Once the clubs are picked, the shafts are cut  to the desired length, to suit the customer's needs. The heads are then glued onto the shafts, and ...... placed onto the carousel in the picture below to dry. The grips are then put on using a laser sight to ensure they are aligned correctly for you. The lofts and lies are then checked using their The clubs swing weights are then checked, and finally........ they get boxed up and sent out for you to play your best golf with!!!

Chris, Adam and Tom

Tom's Top Tips

Clubhouse News

I am pleased to report that Andrew has now finally had his operation and is on the road to recovery. I am sure you all want to join me in sending our very best wishes and we look forward to seeing him back at the club when he is fit and well again.  

Moving on to the review of the Catering operation, it reaches its conclusion in March with the roll-out of the new Spring menu over the Easter week. The design of the menu is now complete and will offer a good range of our traditional classics with some new interesting dishes and innovations which we are confident Members will enjoy.  

Before we finalise the menu, however, the chefs are running four separate Tasting Panels, where over the four days, they will cook and present all the dishes on the menu for small groups of members. These members will help the chefs by providing feedback which will be used to complete the specification for each dish and that will become the ‘standard’ which will be recorded in the new system thus, helping us build more consistency and quality over time.  

This may sound a small detail but when the chefs first took over there were no recipes, list of ingredients etc for any of the dishes so they have had to build everything from scratch, and this will be a major step forward.  

In addition, the observant members will notice that the Hospitality teams will be wearing new modified uniforms from the Spring as well.

Richard Cottrell

Chairman of the House Committee

In The Golf Bag..... Around The Green

This month I thought I would remind you about what you can and cannot do on and around the putting green.

Ball on Putting Green

There are a number of special rules that apply when your ball is on the putting green.

  • You are allowed to mark, lift, clean and replace the ball.
  •   You get relief from abnormal course conditions (ACC) on your Line of Play, for example temporary water on your line, or in the winter the second hole on the green.
  • When you take relief for an ACC on the putting green, you PLACE a ball at the nearest point of complete relief, remember that this may NOT be on the putting green.
  • If you accidentally move your ball or ball marker on the putting green there is NO penalty, but you must replace the ball.
  • In strokeplay, if you play from the putting green and hit another ball at rest on the putting green, then YOU get a 2 shot penalty.  The other ball is replaced, but you carry on from where your ball ended up.  There is NO PENALTY in matchplay.

Wrong Putting Green

If you end up with your ball, stance or area of intended swing on a putting green for another hole or on the main green when a temporary green is in play, then you MUST take relief as follows:

  • Find the nearest point of complete relief in the general area and drop within 1 club length, not nearer the hole (the hole you are playing) and with complete relief from the wrong green.

Sand and Soil

You are allowed to move sand and soil that is lying on the putting green, but NOT when it is anywhere else on the course, so if you are on the fringe and there is a patch of sand in your line across the fringe and the green, you can only move the sand that is actually on the green.

There is one exception, if your ball is already at rest on the fringe with no sand around, and one of your playing partners plays out of a bunker and dumps sand around your ball, then you are allowed to move the sand to restore the lie you had when your ball landed.


You are allowed repair damage on the putting green, such as pitchmarks, spikemarks and scrapes caused by equipment.  This is irrespective of where your ball lies.

However, please remember that you CANNOT mend a pitchmark that is NOT on the putting green and is on your line of play.  This is deemed to be improving the conditions affecting the stroke and is subject to a 2 shot penalty.  This applies even when it was your ball that made the pitchmark but ended up behind the pitchmark.  If preferred lies are in force than at least you can move the ball sideways so the pitchmark is no longer on line.  Please PLAY first and then mend the pitchmark.

Finally, a plea for everyone to repair pitchmarks.  With the wet weather the course is quite soft so it is very easy to leave a pitchmark.  We have all seen the damage that unrepaired pitchmarks leave, so please get into the habit of checking for pitchmarks when you walk onto the green, especially when the flag is at the back of the green, please check the front of the green for pitchmarks.  Even if you can’t find your own pitchmark I’m sure you can find some that other groups have left.

Janet Beal

Trophy Roll Of Honour

Click here to see all the Winners for the Trophy Competitions

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