How Royal West Norfolk Golf Club maintains its course

By Alistair November 8, 2023 07:34

Frequently ranked among the top 20 courses in England, Royal West Norfolk sets the bar high when it comes to the play and presentation characteristics of links golf. Maintaining the 18-holes for the last 37 years is Gavin Playford, who is supported by a team of five and a fleet of Redexim equipment which, he says, gives them complete control over tasks around the site and throughout the maintenance calendar.

The unique location of Royal West Norfolk Golf Club, along the picturesque Brancaster coastline, means that access to the private members course is off-limits during certain times of the day due to hightide. While this creates a headache for delivery drivers, the biggest challenge for head greenkeeper Gavin and the team is the exposed location and sandy soil profile. “The warm, drought-like conditions over the last few years has driven a big increase in the amount of overseeding we’ve been doing as we undertake recovery work, and attempt to increase fescue populations around the site” explains Gavin.

A pair of Redexim overseeders have been helping with the project – a Double Disc 1430 and a Speedseed 1500. “The DD 1430 we’ve had for roughly five years now and is our go-to for work on the fairways and the greens. We like the weight of this machine and the small spacing between the discs which has been critical to regaining coverage on our fairways and some of the greens following the severe drought of 2018.”

“For smaller, more targeted overseeding we’ll then switch to the Speedseed dimple seeder, which we purchased through Ben Burgess Groundcare last year.” The individual conical ring sections of the Speedseed create pockets in the soil into which seed is accurately delivered. The holes are then closed with a rear roller, safely concealing the seed and creating the optimal conditions for germination. “This machine complements what we’re doing with the disc seeder, allowing us to focus on particularly problematic areas such as perimeters, where we can incorporate finer seed varieties.”

With overseeding work complete, come the Autumn the team will then switch their attention to an intensive aeration programme, delivered by their Redexim Level Spike and trusty Verti-Drain® 7416. “From October, we’ll be conducting frequent slitting and verti-draining on greens, tees and fairways. This will continue until the New Year when preparations are then put into place for renovations.”

“On top of that, we also have a Redexim Turf Tidy which we purchased two years ago, again from Ben Burgess” Gavin adds. “This has been brilliant in helping us to thin out some of our roughs in an attempt to encourage finer grasses.” In its cut and collect set-up, the Turf Tidy features a powerful flail rotor. Alternative rotors for fast, effective leaf collection or scarification are also available.

Gavin concludes, “We like the Redexim kit, we’re familiar with it, the build quality is great and we can trust that it’s going to do the job. We also like the brilliant back up from Ben Burgess, particularly our local area Sales Manager Stuart Edge, whose advice and support is second to none.”


By Alistair November 8, 2023 07:34

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