Tee and Bunker Golf Course Construction and Alteration
Sherwood Forest Golf Club is located near Mansfield, Nottinghamshire. Surrounded by the pine, silver birch and oak trees of Clipstone Woods it is proud of its reputation as one of the countries finest heathland golf courses.
Over the last 5 years Lakeland Earthworks have returned every year, except 2009, to construct new tees and bunkers and alter existing ones. The redevelopment of the golf course on a yearly basis delivers new challenges for its golfers and ensures existing tees and bunkers remain in the best possible playing condition.
During this time, strong relationships have been established between Lakeland Earthworks director Wayne Freeman, Head Green Keeper Kim Kirkham and Golf Course Architect Ken Moody. This long running partnership means construction and alteration visions are easily transformed into reality and new obstacles and challenges for the clubs members.
Since 2006, 6 tees and approximately 40 bunkers have been newly constructed. There have also been a number of alterations to existing tees and bunkers. The numbers demonstrate the commitment Sherwood Forest Golf Club has to ensure their golf course remains at the highest standard.
Prior to the commencement of the works, Ken Moody surveys the golf course and alongside Head Green Keeper Kim Kirkham they formulate that years plan for redevelopment. During the construction phase, Ken visits the course once per week to ensure Lakeland Earthworks are completing the work in line with his plans. Lakeland Earthworks are booked one year in advance to ensure the course can have the work completed at a time suitable for them.
Tee Construction and Alteration
Tee work is carried out using a 14T Volvo 360 excavator with power tilt attachment and a 9T low ground pressure tyre dumper to cart material. Laser levelling equipment is set up to ensure an accurate fall of 1:100 from tee back to front. This gradient aids water run off after rainfall, a crucial factor in a heavily used area of the golf course. The power tilt attachment is very useful for accurately shaping tee banks.
The initial tee shape is constructed using sub soil. Lateral drainage trenches are dug 250-300mm deep and at 6m centres and joined up with a main drain. 80mm and 100mm perforated drainage pipe is used for the laterals and main drain respectively and backfilled up to base level with washed drainage gravel. Following this, the whole tee base is covered with approximately 150mm of rootzone. A quality rootzone mixture helps with water percolation and will provide a good growing medium for the turf. The rootzone is tracked in with the excavator and laser levelling equipment used to achieve the 1:100 fall previously mentioned. Final ground preparation is done by hand with landscape rakes before pre turf fertiliser application and turfing with large roll sports turf.
Below you can view photos of a golf tee construction.
Bunker Construction and Alteration
Whether the hole requires a new bunker construction or an alteration to an existing bunker the process is largely the same.
The first stage of a construction or alteration is to strip the existing turf using the excavator and to load onto the dumper. During new constructions excavated topsoil from the bunker can be used to shape the banks. During alterations the existing material is usually reused, however in some cases new material must be imported. Lakeland can supply topsoils, rootzones and sands. Ken Moody supply's the architect's drawings which detail the heights and contours of the bunker. Lakeland's laser levelling equipment and most importantly, skill and years of experience in using the 360 excavator make the shaping of these bunkers a quick and accurate procedure. The power tilt attachment is used to full effect to shape bunker contours with the bucket used to compact the soil. In most cases drainage will be put in, the trenches dug with the bucket and filled using 80mm perforated drainage pipe running across the bunker base and backfilled with washed drainage gravel. Once the bunker has been shaped Sherwood's green keepers turf the surrounds using small roll turf, supplied by Lakeland.
Below you can view photos of golf course bunker shaping