Newton Stewart Golf Club are making a number of changes ahead of the new season to encourage more players to play the course because it is “too difficult”.
The club’s captain Alan White said: “Over the past few years, we have struggled to get people from other clubs to play in our open competitions, feedback appears to suggest the course is too difficult and members have supported yellow tee competitions much more than white tee ones.
“Allied to a wish to free up greenstaff time to concentrate on course preparation, moves were made early in the year to look at potential course changes. After some discussion between the head greenkeeper, greens convener and general and management committee members, the following course changes have been agreed and will be in place for the start of the new season.”
The new changes will be on a number of different holes with tees being move forward on some holes and slight alterations to the course, with the out of bounds between the first and second being changed to a free drop area, and extended penalty areas on the ninth and tenth.
White added: “As a result of these changes, the SSS of the white course will reduce to 68; the SSS of the yellow course will remain unchanged at 67. The Ladies SSS will also be unchanged at 70. The par off each of the tees remains as of now.
“We plan to retain the possibility of using the existing white tees that are getting moved forward a) potentially for major championships like the Wigtownshire Championship and the Dalrymple Cup and b) in case it is decided to reinstate them at a later date.
“It has also been decided that all Gents competitions will be played off the white tees this coming season. The plan is to try these changes for a couple of seasons in order to give us time to gauge opinion from members and visitors alike. The aim is to make the course more attractive and enjoyable to play. We would welcome any feedback.”