The Roehampton Club, one of the most prestigious sporting clubs in London, began the new golfing season on a much-improved course following a major refurbishment and engineering project, coordinated by Chief Executive Marc Newey.
EIGCA Past President, Ken Moodie of Creative Golf Design was appointed as the golf course architect for the project along with CGD consultant and professional golfer, Ken Brown, in January 2009. Following an extensive course review and bunker audit, the course improvements were implemented by contractors, M J Abbott, in two phases over a 12-week period between June and September 2010, whilst keeping 9 holes in play throughout the period of the work.
The main focus of the course improvement project was bunker renovation since the old bunkers had lost their original shapes, provided variable playing conditions and generally drained poorly. The bunkers were drained to a new main drainage system and lined with turf in order to protect against stone-ingress into the sand. In addition, CGD proposed that many of the fairway bunkers, and some of the green and approach bunkers, were re-sited to provide a more relevant strategic challenge for the better golfer and to improve safety on the course boundary.
The par 3, 17th green, was also redesigned to create a better range of pin positions and a more exciting penultimate hole, and some new tees built on the 5th, 7th and 18th holes to develop better playing surfaces and improved angles of play. A new 18th green was also built to allow storm-water mounding to be constructed to protect the clubhouse and sports buildings from floog, and this provided the opportunity to design an elevated two-tier green which provides a more challenging finish to the round on this relatively short par 4.
The new greens, tees and bunkers were all brought back into play in time for the Captain's drive-in in October. Commenting on the course improvements the Chief Executive, Marc Newey, said: "The new playing strategy for the course combined with the excellent bunker renovation works by Abbotts has made the course three shots more difficult for the better player. All our golfing members and the ever increasing number of guests love the changes made by Ken and his team".