Awareness Raising and Communications
Communication and raising awareness of a club’s environmental programme is vital so that staff, members and visitors have an understanding of what it is the club are trying to achieve, the principles, proposals, reasoning and timing of operations, encouraging full participation and reducing the scope for conflict and misunderstandings.
The setting up of a dedicated Environment Team / Committee is a key stage in producing an environmental management plan. It is important that greenstaff are part of the decision making team within the club and that the club environment committee have consulted properly about how the club should progress. There is a great deal of environmental and course management knowledge and projects which would be beneficial and interesting to members and visitors and good communication will keep golfers aware of where, when and why certain course management operations are occurring.
Good relations outwith the club with local communities and neighbouring landowners will encourage social inclusion, integrating the club within the local area, perhaps encouraging new members. It is important that the club also liaises with outside technical experts and seeks professional advice relating to the issues facing them.
Many of Scotland’s golf courses contain archaeological sites, ruins, monuments and other heritage features that need to be preserved, enhanced and appreciated for the variety and character they give to each course. These range from ridge and furrow farmland, prehistoric settlements and henge, to Iron Age forts and medieval castles, to listed buildings and WWII anti-aircraft batteries.
Archaeological sites and buildings can be designated (registered and protected) and undesignated (known about and should be protected where possible). For advice on management of designated sites and buildings golf club managers should seek advice from Historic Scotland. For matters relating to undesignated sites the first port of call should be the local authority planning department and/or archaeologist.
In addition clubs can get further advice from Scottish Natural Heritage and specialist consultants and institutes linked here to find out more about their share of the nation’s heritage.
Environmental Education & Training
Having well trained, motivated, professional staff, respected for their knowledge and skilled for the jobs they do should be the aim of all golf facilities. From general manager, course manager and club professional, across greenstaff and catering staff, every person within the golf facility has a role to play in furthering the facility’s environmental programme and performance while improving staff relations and job satisfaction. It is essential that golf facilities invest in the continuing professional development (CPD) and baseline education of staff.
For more information please go to the Environmental Training section of this website.