Meet the course manager: Paul Hamilton

By Alistair May 12, 2023 08:58

The course manager at Renfrew Golf Club sits down with Liam Armit of Double A to discuss his course and the Grillo FD 2200TS.

Can you give a brief description of your background and how you came to work at the club?

I’ve been in the greenkeeping industry for over 25 years now. I started off with an apprenticeship at Ralston Golf Club, I served my time there and was promoted through the ranks to deputy course manager, then, eventually, course manager. I was in that role for 12 years. Renfrew then approached me to be course manager here, I was looking for a new challenge and after so long at Ralston, I felt it was time for a change in my career.

What do you enjoy most about your job and what is the biggest challenge you and your team face when maintaining the course?

I’d say that the biggest challenge when maintaining a course of this size is the lack of staff and budget constraints. We are also experiencing an increase in our memberships, which gives us less time that we can work on the course due to an increase in golf being played. The thing I enjoy most about my role is seeing the work that has been done at the end of the week. I take pride going home knowing that my team and I have done the best work we possibly can to keep the course in a good condition for the members.

What projects have you got going on at the moment?

We currently have bunker renovations taking place, along with some tee renovations and tree maintenance. The bunkers on the course are a bit dated now and we are working on bringing them back to life, along with placing them in more suitable positions for the layout of the course. With the amount of trees lining our course, it’s always important to keep on top of our tree maintenance, otherwise the course would be littered with branches and leaves.

Any projects or goals for the future?

As I mentioned, the biggest thing for us right now is keeping on top of general maintenance of the course. Our bunkers, tees and greens all just need keeping on top of.

When looking for a machine, what made you want to purchase the Grillo FD 2200TS?

With the constant falling of leaves on the course, we needed something that could cut and collect with ease, no matter what the weather was. Due to its fan assisted collection system, making it almost work like a big hoover, this was the perfect machine for us. We had a demo of the Grillo and saw how it could very quickly and effectively pick up leaves. Being one of the biggest challenges on the course, this was a no brainer.

How have you found the use of the Grillo, what sort of jobs would it be used for?

We use the Grillo for a variety of jobs. When we have damp grass lying after the first fairway cut of the summer, we send the Grillo out to tidy up all of the remaining clippings. We also use it to cut the rough in the summer due to its great mulching system, it compacts the grass in the hopper and means you can cut a large amount of ground before you have to empty. The quality of cut on it is also very clean.

Would you recommend the purchase of the Grillo FD 2200TS to others?

Without a doubt. My advice to other greenkeepers would be to book a demo, seeing is believing. It’s amazing to see just what it can do. We had a look at similar machines from other companies and the Grillo by far outshone the rest.

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By Alistair May 12, 2023 08:58

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