Lockers spell a change for the better at Bawburgh
A 1990s golf destination is reaping the rewards of bolstering its under-equipped locker rooms with a bespoke fitout by furniture manufacturer and installer Crown Sports Lockers.
18 hole masterpiece
Bawburgh Golf Club was founded by local resident Alan Barnard in 1979, when a 9-hole course with driving range was created, augmented 12 years when Alan and wife Kate added a further nine holes to make today’s 18-hole course.
Still family owned, Bawburgh offers a thriving sport and leisure venue in a quiet corner of Norfolk. A new clubhouse was constructed, forming the Glen Lodge venue, which opened in 1995 – the club spearheading the expansion of golf in that decade, as courses sprang up around the country.
The undulating 18-hole, 6720-yd, par 72 course offers stunning views over the River Yare valley – its rolling landscape providing a golfing challenge for a vibrant 800 membership that includes more than 100 ladies and some 60 juniors.
Complementing the championship course is the 9-hole, 3,050-yd par 36 course with its wide variety of holes, to satisfy growing demand for shorter-time play.
“We run a host of charity events at Bawburgh Golf Club,” states Operations Manager Jamie Goose, “as well as corporate and society days in what is a full calendar with our bustling membership.”
The club hosts golf tournaments throughout the year, including the William Hunt Trilby Tour Championship of Norfolk in 2017, an increasingly popular event.
Aired by Sky Sports, the national event is billed as the largest amateur golf television series in the UK and Europe. “The tournament presents a great opportunity for the club and members to view the course on television,” says Jamie.
Explains Golf Manger Danny Chapman: “Jamie and I spend five months preparing for the tournament – creating packages for local companies to sponsor the event. On the day, 140 players and caddies battled the course, starting at 6.45am first tee until 2pm, with some 400 spectators tracking their chosen group.”
The managers’ duties are many and varied, he adds: “Overflow car parking, shuttle buggies and outside bars are all extra tasks we needed to co-ordinate, while members also helped the day run smoothly by volunteering for jobs such as holding on-course leaderboards and ball-spotting. All the hard work really paid off and feedback from the event and Sky Sports was superb.”
Investing in the future generation
Opposite the 9-hole course stands the Norwich Family Golf Centre, opened six years ago, which caters for all playing standards and aims to attract all ages and develop younger golfers.
The 24-bay floodlit heated and covered driving range features Powertees and targets, two private teaching bays, fitting bay and six qualified teaching professionals, a large Peter Field Golf Shop with fitting bay, bar, cafeteria and conference room.
Open year-round is the Congo Rapids 18-hole jungle-themed adventure golf course to introduce younger players to the game in a fun and exciting format.
Bawburgh reaches far beyond its position as a bustling proprietary destination. Encouraging a new generation of golfers is a key priority and the club boasts several who are rising through the ranks.
Amy Taylor, 16, is attending college in the US this year to experience the golfing environment there, while up-and-coming 13-year-old Jamie Fox is cutting his teeth on the Regional European Junior Tour here.
At the clubhouse, two practice putting greens, practice net and chipping area help golfers warm up their swing before venturing out on course.
Closed to members for up to three weeks a year for corporate events, Bawburgh knows quality provision throughout is vital to project the club in a welcoming light that will keep customers coming back. That’s true too for maintaining its status as a strong regional wedding venue that attracts an event every week on average.