Can you believe that this is our last newsletter for the month of July and we are already well into the second half of the year? We have been so focused on the reopening of Clovelly that we barely noticed the days flying by. Despite the challenges that the COVID-19 pandemic and the regulations ensuing have thrown at us, it has been an absolute joy to establish a working golf club and to have our members and staff back at their ‘second home’.
The current COVID-19 statistics in South Africa are alarming and we would like to take a moment to commend our members and staff for respecting the protocols that we have put in place to protect our Clovelly Family. You have all shown respect and consideration and we hope you know how much we, and our more vulnerable members and staff, appreciate your cooperation.
Mr. Ackerman is on the mend!
The reality of COVID-19 became very real to us when a few weeks ago, we learned that our Club President, Mr. Ackerman, and his wife, Mrs. Ackerman, had been tested positive for the coronavirus. Although Mrs. Ackerman recovered quickly, Mr. Ackerman became very ill and for a long time, we were all very worried. Mr. Ackerman is passionate about this golf club and his kindness and dedication have won him many loyal and loving supporters amongst our staff and members. Let’s just say, there were many prayers said, across many races and religions.
After meeting with his son and our Club Chairman, Jonathan Ackerman (pictured below with Mr. Ackerman), this Wednesday past, we are over the moon to announce that Mr. Ackerman is on the road to recovery. He is still not himself and so we ask that you continue to pray and think of him and his family, but it looks like the worst is over and we are expecting many more years under his leadership!
A sad week for Clovelly
Unfortunately, we have some sad news to share too. Last week, we suffered a real blow, losing three of our Clovelly Family; Honorary Life Member, Andrew Mlangeni, and Members Pete de Bruin and Deena Chetty.
Andrew Mlangeni was well known politically as one of the persons sentenced to life imprisonment on Robben Island at the Rivonia Trial. He was awarded the Presidential Order for Meritorious Service: Class 1: Gold from former President Nelson Mandela in 1999. Unfortunately, he did not live in Cape Town and many of us did not have the opportunity to get to know him. Please head over to our Instagram page if you would like to read more about him.
Deena, only 57 years old, passed away after a sudden heart attack last week. He was a dynamic business entrepreneur and attorney, passionate about growing South Africa and making a difference. A member of Clovelly for four years, he made an effort to come into the office to greet our staff every time he played. Although successful in his own right, Deena was humble and kind. We will miss him.
Pete, only 56 years old, passed away last week Thursday after a short battle with cancer. Co-founder of the Noordhoek Foodbarn, Pete had been a member of ours for seven years and he epitomized our use of the term Clovelly “Family”. A regular golfer and a passionate member of ours, he was always available to support our Clovelly Festival with delicious offerings from the Foodbarn and he ensured that the beers were flowing and the people were smiling.
We are holding the families of Andrew, Deena and Pete in our thoughts and we wish them peace during this time. We will miss Deena and Pete especially. RIP, gentlemen. Thank you for the memories and all you did.
From the Desk of the GM
Once again, I must extend our sincerest gratitude on behalf of the Staff, Committees and Governing Body of Clovelly Country Club for your loyal support since our re-opening on the 13th June 2020. It has been an interesting time for us operationally as we were, and are still, functioning within an ever-changing environment. We have continued to listen to our members’ needs, and wherever possible adapt, and address them constructively.
The course has been in splendid condition and the greens have gradually improved since we re-opened. This is remarkable, considering we are operating on 30% of our pre-lockdown course staff compliment. Seeing our two course teams’ motivation and determination to work ‘together’ in order to ensure that every course task is completed has made me proud. We have had minimal issues with our turf grass, and besides some thatch and a minor fungus outbreak on our greens, which is common with the cold and wet season, all has been well. Brian Dlutu, who has been with us for nearly 15 years, has taken on the role of Green Keeper-in-training and has been doing a sterling job overseeing this unique setup. Steven Webber, as a course consultant, is still very committed to Clovelly Country Club and his expertise and knowledge have been fantastic resources! I will be sending out communication regarding our objectives for course maintenance and how we aim to meet them, for the immediate future, and this should answer any questions you may have. On this note, we would like to appeal, once again, to our members to fill their divots, fix their pitch marks and rake the bunkers as best as possible. We will be stocking and selling small handheld rakes at cost to all golfers from next week. Remember, this is not only for the care of the course but also out of respect for the players behind you!
It has been a common trend across the globe that as lockdowns have been lifted, the demand for golf has surged and Clovelly has not been immune to this trend. Incredibly, we have been trading better than we were this time last year and combined with the cost-cutting measures implemented by Management and the Governing Body, we have been able to claw back some of the vast financial ground lost during the lockdown. A huge step in the right direction, if we continue down this path for the remainder of this financial year it will contribute immensely to the sustainability of the Club as a whole and also towards maintaining our current offering to our members!
In amongst it all, we have realised that although it is great to be out on the fairways again, one of the key aspects of an enjoyable round of golf is the after-golf experience. The opportunity to discuss your rounds, confirm the scorecard and perhaps exchange bets. Social connections are key to what makes Clovelly special and it is time we started bringing these back! We have established an effective registration and screening routine and we are happy with our procedures for general operations, so with the easing of government regulations, we are pleased to announce that we will be opening our deck and courtyard areas to our members and guests with a limited, non-alcoholic offering from Monday, 3rd August 2020. Please see the terms of this offering below:
Operating Hours: These areas and offerings will be available from 11h00 – 18h30, with the last rounds served at 18h00, 7 days a week. This is strictly an after-golf offering and members are reminded to still arrive only 30 minutes before their tee-off time.
The service offered will be self-service, meaning members will have to order and collect their own drinks from the Clovelly Counter (Halfway).
ONLY NON-ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES will be sold and, due to the self-service nature, we will not offer any glasses. Any member found to have alcohol on their person will be asked to leave the premises immediately and will be reported to the relevant authorities.
Access to the deck will be from the outside stairwell in front of the Pro Shop and will be for golfers only. Due to our limited capacity, we ask that members limit the time spent in these areas to 45 minutes to allow for other members to enjoy this facility.
Strict social distancing will be enforced through the spacing of tables and seating. Only 4 people per table will be allowed and the joining of tables or adding of chairs is prohibited.
Your masks may only be removed once you have your beverages and are seated at your designated table.
The tables will be cleared and sanitised regularly throughout the day. Bins will be made available in prominent positions and we encourage members to dispose of their empties themselves to avoid unnecessary contact points.
No organised gatherings or prize givings may be held in these areas. Prize-givings will remain virtual for the foreseeable future.
The upper floor of the clubhouse will remain closed and as such, the only bathrooms available will be locker rooms downstairs.
The re-opening of this service will require the full cooperation of our members to remain compliant. Let’s continue to care about the health of those around us.
In addition to this, we will also be increasing the operating hours of the Driving Range and Pro Shop, also starting Monday 3rd July. The Driving Range will be open for golfers and those wanting to practice from 07h15 until 18h00 each day. The last bucket of balls can be purchased in the Proshop at 17h00, which is now their closing time.
Personally, time has flown by since the birth of our daughter on the 26th April 2020. Unbelievably, our little Mackenzie Lee Stoner turned 3 months old this past Sunday. I have always heard how children change your perspective of the world, and most importantly of yourself, and she sure has. It has been a tremendous journey so far and her development astounds us every day. I must take my hat off to my amazing wife, Jessica, who has been at home with her and cared for her every need before, during and after birth. They are an amazing family, and one which I am excited and energised to come home to each and every single day. I hope that in amongst it all each one of you has been afforded the opportunity to find your “Mackenzie”!
Unified. Energised. Sustainable.
Well done to Richard Shone who qualified from Apprentice to full PGA Professional this week! You’re on your way to great things, Richard, and we are so thankful to have you on our team!
Well done to Ferdi de Lange for his Hole-in-One on the 16th Hole this past Wednesday! These tend to come in threes so golfers, get out there. This may be your moment.
Welcome to our new members!
Adding to the positivity, we have had 54 new members join Clovelly Country Club since the end of Lockdown! Please can we give them a warm welcome?
We are so happy to have you join our Clovelly Family and we hope that you have the chance to fall in love with our beautiful golf course and rich history, whilst creating connections with our fantastic members and staff.
Our members will probably remember this, but we’re officially into our endangered leopard toad breeding season, so please look out for them on the roads. Clovelly’s ponds are very popular amongst the toads and we try our best to look out for them. We’ll do another article on them soon. Wishing you all a wonderful week.