Below are the policies, dress & etiquette and local rules of the course. We ask that all are followed correctly.
THE SAFETY OF PLAYERS IS PARAMOUNT
Due to the layout of our course we DO NOT operate a siren system at this club. Therefore, if you feel there is any danger from lightning, please leave the course to seek shelter. Do not use an umbrella and do not shelter under trees. If you cannot get off the course the safest place is to lay down in a bunker.
If you are unable to see the fluorescent marker in the centre of the fairway on the first hole, do not commence play. The Professional staff and Club Manager have the final say if it is safe to play.
Please do not play if there is a risk to yourself or others.
Dress & Etiquette
Generally while playing any clothing or footwear designed for golf is acceptable to wear while on the course. Shorts may be worn but they should be tailored shorts and there are no special requirements for socks. Golf shoes must be worn.
Blue denim, tracksuits, rugby and football shirts should NOT be worn on the course.
In the clubhouse
We seek to achieve a comfortable, relaxed and friendly atmosphere in the club so therefore smart casual dress is allowed. This includes denim jeans and trainers.
Golf shoes can be worn in the casual bar and areas designated with blue carpet but must not be worn in the main lounge and dining area. (designated with red carpet)
Hats are not to be worn in the clubhouse.
Mobiles may be taken on the course for emergency use and also for using course layout/distance apps but we ask that you keep them on silent at all times.
In the Clubhouse
All electronic devices must be on silent at all times.
Mobiles may be used for emailing, texting and internet use in the clubhouse but we ask for calls to be made outside as a courtesy to other members and guests.
On the Course
A good pace of play is an important element in having a good experience on the golf course. Here are some tips for making sure your pace is as brisk as it should be:
Pace of play isn’t about rushing your shots it’s about being ready to play when it is your turn.
Please arrive at the 1st tee 10 minutes before your tee time.
Numerous practice swings, lengthy delays lining up putts and pacing out distances prior to club selection are not sensible practices for the average golfer.
Leave your bags, trollies and buggies to the side of the green in the direction of the next tee.
Please DO NOT take your trollies or buggies onto teeing areas or between the green and greenside bunkers.
Be aware of the golfers both in front and behind you; speed up if you are falling behind the group in front and do not hinder the group behind you.
Should you not be able to keep up please let the quicker players through so everyone can enjoy their game.
During these testing times can we please ask everybody to respect every member’s personal distancing on the course and round the clubhouse.
While there are no bins on the course can we please ask everybody to take any litter home with them.
Local Rules & Guidelines
(revised April 2021)
1. Out of Bounds (Rule 18)
a) Beyond any fence or hedge within or bounding the course.
b) Beyond white posts or white-topped posts bounding the course.
c) In or beyond the river to the left of the 5th hole.
d) On the paved area and footpaths surrounding the clubhouse.
2. Protection of Young Trees
Any staked tree or those protected by tubes or mesh then Rule 16-1a applies.
3. Roads and Paths (Rule 16)
All artificially surfaced paths and the metalled road to the right of the 4th hole are abnormal course conditions. All other roads and paths are integral parts of the course and the ball must be played as it lies or declared unplayable (Rule 19).
4. Artificial Surfaces
All artificial surfaces (excluding paths, see 4 above) are an integral part of the course and the ball must be played as it lies or declared unplayable.
5. Fixed Sprinkler Heads
The specimen Local Rule F-5 in the Rules of Golf 2019 is in effect.
6. The following are all immovable obstructions (Rule 16). Relief from “abnormal course conditions” applies.
- The toilet block and halfway house
- The water fountain to the left of the 12th green
- The viewing steps on the 10th and 13th and 15th tees
- Rain and storm shelters
- 100, 150 or 200 fairway disc yardage markers
- Grass storage bays
- Benches and seating either fixed or movable
- All man-made winter tees
- Public footpath posts
- Temporary green, hole plugs
- Concrete kerbs and steps
- Directional, safety and memorial signs on the course eg. Next tee this way
- The bell and support post on the right-hand side of the 1st
- Ball washers and rubbish bins
- Tee information signs
6 a) Immovable Obstructions Close to Putting Greens (Local Rule F-5)
Relief from interference by an immovable obstruction may be taken under Rule 16.1. The player also has these extra options to take relief when such immovable obstructions are close to the putting green and on the line of play:
Ball in general area. The player may take relief under Rule 16.1b if an immovable obstruction is on the line of play and is within two club-lengths of the putting green, and within two club-lengths of the ball.
Exception: there is no relief under this Local Rule if the player chooses a line of play that is clearly unreasonable. The penalty for breach of a Local Rule is the General Penalty under Rule 14.7a
7. Movable Obstructions (Rule 15-2)
• Stakes and ropes directing players around the greens and other areas of the course
• Blue 150 yard marker posts at the side of the fairway
• Black and white sighting posts in the fairway
Penalty for breach of local rules:
Match Play – loss of hole
Stroke Play – 2 strokes
Additional Local Rules During Covid-19
Preferred lies may be taken in bunkers and the ball may be placed within 6” not the nearer the whole, the ground must not be smoothed before placing the ball.
Flags must NOT be handled and therefore not removed however if they are not vertical you may ask a playing partner to hold the flag in a vertical position using their putter.
Ropes, posts and fog marker post on 1st hole
The ropes and posts around the course and the fog marker post in the middle of the 1st fairway are all classed as “Abnormal Ground Conditions” (immovable obstructions) and players should take relief from them if they interfere with their swing or stance in accordance with Rule 16.
Scoring in stroke play (Rule 3.3b)
In view of concerns around handling and exchanging scorecards players may enter their own hole scores on the scorecard (it is not necessary for a marker to do it).
It is not necessary to have a marker physically certify the player’s hole scores, but some form of verbal certification should take place.
It is not necessary to physically return a scorecard to the Committee but it should be retained for a month after submission in case reference is needed to it at a later date.
First Aid Policy
Stowmarket Golf Club has trained first aiders amongst the clubhouse staff and the greenkeepers. Staff and members are covered by our insurers with appropriate group indemnity insurance to deliver first aid. The Club has a Duty of Care to provide first aid to its members and to the general public who use our facilities or public footpaths.
Stowmarket Golf Club has undertaken a review of its First Aid and Medical Emergency Response procedures. This is the Club’s advice to members about what action should be taken on the golf course. Sections marked with an * are also appropriate for in and around the clubhouse.
The club has a defibrillator which is positioned by the entrance door to the clubhouse.
Firstly, the Club encourages all members to carry their mobile phone with them in silent mode. We urge members to store the club’s phone number in their phones (01449 736473 Option 1 for the office, option 3 for the Pro Shop). It is also useful to have a location tracker app on your phone to be able to give a precise location to emergency medical responders.
- The club’s postcode is IP14 3DA.
- If you have a location app on your phone, such as “what3words” which will pinpoint your location to within 2 metres this will give more precise information on your exact location. You should also advise the 999 operator on accessibility for emergency vehicles (ambulances and if necessary the Air Ambulance) depending on where you are on the course (Finborough School or the Club car park are options for ambulances).
First Aid/Emergency Medical Assistance – what to do
An adult is unconscious and not breathing – call 999 first
- If an adult isn’t breathing normally, shout for help, call 999 and start CPR (Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation) straight away. Use hands-only CPR if you aren’t trained to perform rescue breaths. Place one hand on top of the other in the centre of the chest with straight arms and locked elbows, lean forward and use your weight to compress the chest (about 100 times a minute).
- The songs Staying Alive and Nellie the Elephant are both helpful to maintain the best rhythm) and CPR does not now have to involve mouth to mouth. Well-delivered CPR does not cause any harm to someone who has not had a cardiac arrest and the defibrillator will not allow a collapsed patient to be shocked if not medically indicated.
An adult is unconscious and breathing
- If the person is unconscious and breathing and has no other injuries that would prevent them being moved, they should be put in the Recovery Position and made comfortable. Please familiarise yourself with this fundamental manoeuvre which involves lying the patient on their side and extending the chin to give a clear airway. Keep them under observation until help arrives to ensure they continue to breathe normally.
- Call 999 or 112 for an ambulance if necessary and when it is safe to do so.
Contact the club
- Only after you have contacted the emergency services should you call the Clubhouse 01449 736473 (Option 1 for the office or option 3 for the pro shop). If you are in or around the clubhouse, please go to the office or the Pro shop. At this time Club staff trained in first aid will respond as quickly as possible – with the Defibrillator if appropriate.
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