The AFT Trenchers 45 and AFT Wizz Wheel are set to install a full drainage scheme in the 96-year-old greens at The Worcestershire Golf Club, as well as playing a vital part in the installation of a new irrigation system.
It is the primary task of Steven Lloyd, who took over his current role as course manager in October last year, to address the issue of drainage and find a solution to flooding which had closed five greens for four months the previous winter. His experience dealing with drainage issues at his former club will stand him in good stead.
Mindful of the tradition and history of the club, Steve is determined to protect the integrity of the course during any major works. So Steve knew straight away the AFT machines were the ideal choice for the task as they had been used by a contractor on his previous course and had impressed him then.
He said: “It’s the versatility of the machines that I like. We will use both attachments so we can do five inch wide trenches or 50mm slits with it, so it covers everything that we want.
“In the long term we are planning to install a new irrigation system so we will use it for all the pipe work as well.
“Other trenchers we considered are too big for what we want but the AFT 45 with the Wizz wheel are the perfect size for accessibility and maneuverability – which is key for us. The machine isn’t too big or heavy so we can get out on the course even when the ground is a bit soft.
“In comparison to the other machines available it was definitely the one for us.”
The machines were supplied through TH White – who Steven has been dealing with for the last ten years – with their follow up support and highly commended service.
The work is planned to start at the beginning of October once the golf season has passed with minimum disruption expected whilst the work on the greens takes place.
This will be an historic moment,” explains Steven “These will be the first drains installed in three of the greens since they were built in 1920.
“All of our greens are clay push up Mackenzie greens so they’ve got big contours and no assisted drainage in them at all,” he said.
“The initial plan for this autumn is to lift the turf and dig the trenches to put 100mm drainage pipes in. This way we will have effective drainage in place on all our greens before the winter.
“We also have the longer-term plan of installing new irrigation around the course and these machines will be a vital part of that process.”
AFT Trenchers www.trenchers.co.uk
The Worcestershire Golf Club www.theworcestershiregolfclub.co.uk