Golf Course Architecture - Issue 63, January 2021

77 of 13mm by the time the course is ready for play. “As they mow, it makes the grass creep across the surface and fill in the gaps to produce a smooth surface,” Tarchetti explains. The project was initially planned not to include any redesign work, but during the construction, the team realised that the eighth fairway was lying wet and in danger of f looding after a significant rain event, so they decided to create a waterway across it and raise the green complex slightly to ensure it stayed dry. This work has been well done, and the new stream will have shaved grass banks and be an additional hazard for golfers to avoid when playing the hole. The results of all this work are impressive. Areas of the course that were in an especially bad state, such as the thirteenth, the worst affected by the leatherjacket infestation, and consequently almost devoid of grass, are now an excellent green carpet. Even the sixteenth, the last hole to be sandcapped, because it was used as a storage location for the massive pile of sand, is in good shape. Despite a very wet autumn, including 50mm of rain in three weeks during October, the course has remained firm and bouncy: when members return, they will find a very different golfing experience from the one they have been used to. There is still a lot of work to do. As well as grooming the new surfaces, Lowther and his team must renovate the network of bridges and paths, and also restore the copious bunkering back to its best condition. But the Covid pandemic has had its benefits for Chart Hills. Initially, the project was due for completion, and the course for reopening, in March 2022; because of the speed the team has been able to work during the pandemic, this has been brought forward, and Chart Hills will reopen for play in March of this year. It is a pretty remarkable piece of work, especially for an in-house job, and Ant Tarchetti, Neil Lowther and their team deserve a lot of credit. Chart Hills has a bright future. GCA “ When members return, they will find a very different golfing experience from the one they have been used to.” Photo: GMS Golf The next phase of work will include restoration of the bunkering, including the famous Anaconda hazard on the fifth, said to be Europe’s longest