Winter Newsletter 2022 FINAL for WEB

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WINTER NEWSLETTER <strong>2022</strong>


Captain’s Report<br />

A Happy New Year to all our members and your families. Thank<br />

you all <strong>for</strong> your loyal support since the World has had to deal<br />

with Covid and as we continue to live with this deadly virus.<br />

Royal Dornoch has done remarkably well and I frequently thank<br />

our staff <strong>for</strong> the manner in which they have managed the extra<br />

stress and pressures.<br />

This newsletter updates you since the 2020 and 2021 Annual<br />

General Meetings we held in October with minutes from both<br />

included. It was a relief to confirm the appointments <strong>for</strong> those<br />

working under the “elect” title until you, our members had your say.<br />

When Rob Murray was Captain, and since I assumed the day to<br />

Willie MacKay<br />

day responsibilities in August 2020, we have worked with Neil<br />

to give our managers more responsibility to link with Convenors producing agendas, minutes and<br />

produce reports <strong>for</strong> Council of Management meetings. This is working well.<br />

It has been a busy few months making progress in a number of areas which you will read of in the<br />

Convenors reports. You will be updated about our salary review and setting our <strong>2022</strong> annual subscription<br />

fees. You will read of how well our Retail has fared even with less footfall than normal but with more online<br />

shopping activity. Those that managed to play this year will have first-hand knowledge of the quality<br />

of our golf courses.<br />

Our governance and running of our Golf Club relies on members volunteering. Since the October<br />

AGMs, our Council of Management have co-opted Colin MacKay <strong>for</strong> his fourth spell on Council and<br />

he will lead as Junior Convenor. Also, Robert (Bob) Grant joins Match & Handicap <strong>for</strong> his first term<br />

on Council. Both will serve until our August <strong>2022</strong> AGM when I shall ask you to confirm their<br />

appointments.<br />

Wilma Murray leads our Greens subcommittee with another recent appointment, Ken Mackenzie joining<br />

our Marketing team. Gordon Davies who has started his second term on Council is our House Convenor<br />

where he is joined by Fiona MacDonald and Philip Prince. Our detailed Organisational Chart can be<br />

viewed on our website https://rdgcmembers.freetime-online.co.uk/ftp/rdgcmembers.freetimeonline.co.uk/1169.pdf<br />

Thanks are due to members that have served us well. Derek MacDougall and Eileen MacRae gave their<br />

time to House and Matt McBride served on both House and Finance subcommittees. Ed Hodge, our PR<br />

& Media Consultant moves from working freelance to a new position within the golf industry. Ed has<br />

promoted our brand well and grown our social media well beyond our ambitious target. Thank you all.<br />


Thanks are due to Council member, John<br />

McMurray, <strong>for</strong> leading the small group that<br />

produced a substantial New Members Welcome<br />

Pack. This will add to the friendly welcome new<br />

members receive and support their induction tour.<br />

Across all departments we have recruitment as a<br />

number one priority. <strong>2022</strong> is going to be very busy<br />

with members and visitors. You already know from<br />

Neil’s newsletter that we have instigated a<br />

moratorium on admitting Struie members in <strong>2022</strong><br />

with the last intake approved. Also, to create more<br />

playing time <strong>for</strong> members, we will not accept any<br />

new visitor bookings. If we have tee times cancelled<br />

these will become available <strong>for</strong> members, but<br />

always at the back of our mind must be Covid and<br />

possible travel restrictions.<br />

Since October, our IT & Website subgroup have<br />

worked tirelessly to select our new in<strong>for</strong>mation<br />

management system and our choice is to work with<br />

Northstar Technologies. We are confident that our<br />

choice meets the needs across our different<br />

departments and will provide members with a<br />

modern efficient system <strong>for</strong> booking, payments<br />

and a new members website that highlights Royal<br />

Dornoch’s brand.<br />

The subgroup considering our Intellectual<br />

Property have reviewed draft trademarks and<br />

copyright template agreements with our lawyer<br />

who advises we should now wait until we decide<br />

on which <strong>for</strong>m of incorporation is best suited <strong>for</strong><br />

Royal Dornoch members. A private members club<br />

is not recognised legally <strong>for</strong> Intellectual Property<br />

contracts. More in<strong>for</strong>mation will be issued to<br />

members, but the decision <strong>for</strong> change to our<br />

governance model will be at the <strong>2022</strong> AGM <strong>for</strong><br />

members to vote on.<br />

You will have had the opportunity to complete a<br />

member’s survey and as you read this newsletter<br />

we will have analysed the results ready <strong>for</strong> our<br />

January Council meeting. We will provide you<br />

with feedback.<br />

Our membership spans a massive cross-section of<br />

ages and locations and viewing the demographics<br />

will allow our Council of Management, Convenors<br />

and Managers to best use the in<strong>for</strong>mation. We are<br />


also excited that our new booking system will allow<br />

us to survey visitors and in time departments can<br />

issue specific surveys to not only gather data but<br />

to use follow-up surveys to measure levels of<br />

satisfaction.<br />

Reflecting on the past year we have several<br />

members that are no longer with us and our<br />

thoughts are with their families. Locally we have<br />

lost fine loyal members that gave so much to Royal<br />

Dornoch. I pay tribute to Adrian Bagott, Michael<br />

Carr, Len Seatter and George Carr and give thanks<br />

<strong>for</strong> their contribution over many years to Royal<br />

Dornoch and the Dornoch Community.<br />

The pandemic as we know has delayed the start of<br />

our new clubhouse. We are in a strong position<br />

with an anticipated significant operating surplus<br />

<strong>for</strong> season <strong>2022</strong>-23. Royal Dornoch is a golfing<br />

destination that will remain a bucket-list course.<br />

permissions. Highland Council have begun the<br />

process to build the replacement tennis court at<br />

the Dornoch School Campus.<br />

Throughout this continued period of Covid and<br />

dealing with the uncertainty and the many hours<br />

of extra work required, Neil and Claire have burnt<br />

the midnight oil too often. They are totally<br />

dedicated and my thanks to both and on behalf of<br />

Council and our members.<br />

Let’s look <strong>for</strong>ward to <strong>2022</strong> with fun on our golf<br />

courses and good Highland “craic” in the<br />

clubhouse. I wish you all good health and please<br />

continue to take care.<br />

Willie MacKay<br />

Captain<br />

We shall trigger the planning permission <strong>for</strong> the<br />

Road Access Project early in the season and by also<br />

starting the work <strong>for</strong> the car park area <strong>for</strong> the new<br />

clubhouse this “locks-in” both planning<br />


From The General Manager’s Office<br />

Well who would have thought that we would be<br />

talking about continued restrictions as more<br />

variants of Covid circulate the world. Difficult times<br />

<strong>for</strong> everyone but with vaccination and booster<br />

programmes working well we may be able to look<br />

<strong>for</strong>ward to a year when the word “normal” may<br />

actually be used.<br />

We did taste a little of that from mid August<br />

onwards when international travel opened again<br />

and quite a number of you went through the testing<br />

and paperwork process to get to Dornoch. Everyone<br />

at the club was delighted you made that ef<strong>for</strong>t and<br />

gave us a reminder of what a golfing season should<br />

be filled with.<br />

As you now know the <strong>2022</strong> season is looking to be<br />

a very busy one and so we all have our fingers<br />

crossed that it all happens as planned.<br />

In last year’s winter newsletter I reported on how<br />

the golf courses had benefitted from less play and<br />

were in excellent condition. That has been the case<br />

once again and to such an extent that even our<br />

Course Manager Eoin Riddell was heard to say that<br />

he thought it was “quite good”. If you have ever<br />

been in the company of a greenkeeper, especially<br />

one in charge, then you will know that this is very<br />

high praise indeed!<br />

Apart from a couple of events at the very start of the<br />

year we did manage a full season of club and open<br />

events. Andrew Skinner has reported on some of<br />

the main events in his report and thankfully the new<br />

restrictions didn’t come into place be<strong>for</strong>e we could<br />

have the annual prize giving – something that was<br />

missed from last year. It was great to see all the prize<br />

winners getting presented with their trophies and<br />

enjoying a little moment in the limelight. Special<br />

mention to Chris Mailley on his club championship<br />

success and equalling the record of wins – I know<br />

he will be trying to create a new record this year but<br />

is there anyone to stop him? The same goes <strong>for</strong> Chris<br />

in the Carnegie Shield when he picked up his 6th<br />

title and as he said in his speech he is looking <strong>for</strong><br />

more and I am sure he is eyeing up the great Jimmy<br />

Miller’s record of 10 wins.<br />

Also many congratulations to Caitlin Boa who<br />

defended her ladies club championship title. Are we<br />

seeing a changing of the guard in the ladies?<br />

Whatever happens, it seems that you need to have<br />

a first name starting with a “C” if you really want to<br />

have a chance of winning!<br />

There was one early season event which we did<br />

manage to rearrange and that was our match against<br />

Nairn. This was well worth the ef<strong>for</strong>t as Royal<br />

Dornoch had its biggest win <strong>for</strong> many years – and<br />

we don’t beat them very often!<br />

Talking of rearranging things we were allowed to<br />

have gatherings so did manage to hold the AGM,<br />

although only in October. Such was the excitement<br />

at this prospect we did it twice in the same night so<br />

the 2020 and 2021 meetings were both finally<br />

completed and you can read the minutes at the end<br />

of the newsletter.<br />

What that means is that Willie MacKay is now<br />

confirmed as our club captain and David Bell the<br />

vice. They have been undertaking these duties over<br />

the past year without having the official approval<br />

from the membership so it was good to get that<br />

finalised.<br />

It also means that Rob Murray is now officially out<br />

of the chair and can relax as the immediate past<br />

captain.<br />


The 2020 AGM also approved the appointments of<br />

Adrian Bagott, John Gow and Daniel Holden while<br />

the 2021 AGM saw Gordon Davies, Ken MacKenzie<br />

and Wilma Murray start their 3 year terms on the<br />

Council, Gordon <strong>for</strong> the second time.<br />

As you know very sadly Adrian passed away this year<br />

and once again we pay tribute to the great man that<br />

he was and the wonderful support he gave to the<br />

club. Daniel Holden also took a step back from the<br />

Council due to increased work commitments and<br />

so there were two vacancies to fill. Colin MacKay<br />

and Robert Grant were co-opted by the Council and<br />

will have their names put <strong>for</strong>ward <strong>for</strong> the official<br />

approval of the members at the AGM in August of<br />

this year.<br />

This time last year it looked like we would be hosting<br />

the Mens Home Internationals but once again Covid<br />

intervened to take that away from us. However, it was<br />

at that point the R&A decided to rationalise how<br />

they run and manage events and asked us if they<br />

could also use our Struie Course <strong>for</strong> the Senior<br />

Amateur Championship and that way have both the<br />

men and the women compete at the same venue at<br />

the same time. We were delighted with this<br />

recognition of just how good the Struie Course is and<br />

were only too happy to put that into place.<br />

I think this is an opportune time to talk more about<br />

the Struie Course and urge you all to spend a little<br />

more of your time playing it. The challenge of the<br />

course is a contrast to that of the Championship<br />

Course with narrower fairways, smaller greens and<br />

a few less undulations (and bunkers!). The feedback<br />

we have received has been just how well conditioned<br />

it is now and how well the ball rolls, quickly, over<br />

the greens. With the Championship Course being<br />

so busy why not take that as your cue to get to know<br />

“the Struie” a little better.<br />


While the proposed new clubhouse is still a little<br />

in the future we will be proceeding with widening<br />

the access road to the car park. This necessitates the<br />

removal of the tennis court and thus creating a few<br />

more parking spaces. The club will be building a<br />

new multi use games area at the school to make up<br />

<strong>for</strong> the loss of the tennis court.<br />

The only other construction project that we will be<br />

considering is the new tees <strong>for</strong> the 8th hole on the<br />

Championship Course. These were part of the 7th<br />

hole project and were delayed as part of the cost<br />

saving measures implemented by the club. At the<br />

end of this season, under the guidance of Tom<br />

Mackenzie our architect, the exact position <strong>for</strong> the<br />

tees will be defined and once we are confident there<br />

are no safety issues will commence their<br />

construction and the realignment of the fairway.<br />

Once complete it will give a much more panoramic<br />

view from all parts of the hole.<br />

As always I like to conclude by thanking those who<br />

have helped the club in various ways during the year.<br />

The Council of Management are all volunteers who<br />

give of their time to help run the club at the strategic<br />

level. All of them would not have thought that they<br />

would be required to make such tough financial<br />


decisions at the beginning of 2021 and the impact<br />

they would have. Thankfully, it all seems to have<br />

worked out and I thank them all <strong>for</strong> their<br />

contribution in those and the many other<br />

discussions and decisions that we have had this year.<br />

Secondly, and probably most importantly in 2021,<br />

is the team of staff who have remained with us and<br />

shown great commitment and resilience when asked<br />

to do more with less while keeping a smile on their<br />

face. I am delighted that the club has recognised<br />

their contribution and will be putting a little more<br />

in their pockets from now on.<br />

Finally, as always, my thanks to you our members.<br />

Without you we don’t have a reason to be here and<br />

the countless messages of support that you have sent<br />

to us throughout 2021 is hugely appreciated by the<br />

whole team and knowing you are there does make<br />

getting out of bed just that little bit easier. I will try<br />

and thank you in person when I see you at the club<br />

this year.<br />

Neil Hampton<br />

General Manager<br />


Finance Convenor’s Report<br />

When I reported to members in the Annual<br />

Report, issued in July 2021, we remained<br />

uncertain as to how the remainder of the season<br />

would unfold in terms of visitor numbers and<br />

when, or indeed if, we would see any international<br />

visitors in 2021. As we all know this has a major<br />

impact on our income streams and our financial<br />

plan <strong>for</strong> 2021/22 was set up on a cautious basis to<br />

ensure that, in the worst case, the full year<br />

outcome to 31st March <strong>2022</strong> would be close to a<br />

break-even position with our cash reserves<br />

preserved.<br />

I am pleased to report that <strong>for</strong> the six months to<br />

30th September 2021, the “front nine” in our<br />

financial year, we are ahead of budget and the<br />

outlook <strong>for</strong> the full year is looking positive.<br />

Key Points to Note:<br />

Income<br />

• I have previously reported unprecedented<br />

subscription renewal levels in 2021. However,<br />

the anticipated negative impact on Entrance<br />

Fees has been offset by a continuing steady<br />

stream of new member applications <strong>for</strong> the<br />

Struie. Overall, taking Annual Subscriptions<br />

and Entrance Fees together, we will be close to<br />

our budgeted figure.<br />

• Visitor Green Fees – the budgeted visitor<br />

numbers <strong>for</strong> 21/22 was set at 3,700. For those<br />

of you <strong>for</strong>tunate enough to be around the<br />

Club in the late summer you will have noted<br />

a marked increase in visitors from August<br />

onwards with the gradual return of<br />

international travel. It is pleasing to report<br />

that by the end of September we have seen<br />

more than 4,000 visitor rounds played and<br />

have there<strong>for</strong>e already passed our Visitor<br />

Green Fee target <strong>for</strong> the full year. October<br />

continued to be busy.<br />

• Both Bar & Catering and the Pro Shop have<br />

benefited from the increased footfall from<br />

visitors and have traded well ahead of budget<br />

<strong>for</strong> the first half of the year with both areas<br />

generating strong gross margins.<br />

Expenditure<br />

• Costs have been tightly controlled across all<br />

areas of the operation and at the six month<br />

point are broadly in line with budgeted levels.<br />

• One exception to this is on Course<br />

Expenditure where Council of Management<br />

approved during the year additional, un-<br />


udgeted, expenditure of approximately £43k<br />

on “Fertiliser, Turf & Seeds” across both<br />

courses to take on board recommendations<br />

from the R&A that the Club sought ahead of<br />

next year’s Senior Amateur Championships.<br />

• The second half of the year obviously sees<br />

traditionally low levels of income with<br />

expenditure rolling on. We will see some<br />

slippage to budgeted labour costs in the final<br />

quarter, the three months to 31st March 2021,<br />

as we attempt to ensure we have the<br />

appropriate staffing levels in place <strong>for</strong> next<br />

Spring with a view to returning service levels<br />

to those expected by our members and visitors.<br />

• Forward visitor bookings <strong>for</strong> <strong>2022</strong> are very<br />

strong and currently stand at more than<br />

11,000 rounds.<br />

Subscriptions<br />

Council of management has approved an increase<br />

to membership subscriptions <strong>for</strong> <strong>2022</strong>/23 in<br />

accordance with the Club rules and current<br />

inflationary pressures. The increase in the full<br />

subscription will be £40 with other categories<br />

increasing by the same percentage.<br />

Cash Position<br />

• Total bank balances at the end of September<br />

sit at just short of £5.9m which is<br />

approximately £400k up from our last year<br />

end.<br />

• Included in this are approximately £1.2m of<br />

green fee deposits held, up by approximately<br />

£220k from our last year end.<br />

Summary<br />

To sum up, the first half of the year has gone<br />

slightly better than planned financially. Should<br />

things continue to trend as we expect, we are on<br />

target to deliver a surplus <strong>for</strong> the full year.<br />

This does not happen by accident and great credit<br />

is due to our management team, heads of<br />

department and all their teams <strong>for</strong> continuing to<br />

deliver during uncertain times.<br />

John Gow<br />

Finance Convenor<br />


Match & Handicap Report<br />

With Covid still around and having an influence<br />

to some extent it was great that we were still able to<br />

complete our full complement of club<br />

competitions. The most notable win was by Chris<br />

Mailley who won the Club Championship <strong>for</strong> the<br />

7th time equalling Stuart Shaw’s record.<br />

The biggest challenges of the year were<br />

implementing the new world handicapping system<br />

along with our new competition software. As we<br />

had no access to the clubhouse earlier in the season<br />

we had to rely on the Scottish Golf App but<br />

un<strong>for</strong>tunately with very mixed results and can I<br />

thank the members <strong>for</strong> their patience with this.<br />

When the clubhouse re-opened we were able to use<br />

the tablet in the hall which was a bit easier than the<br />

App. For <strong>2022</strong> we will be changing our competition<br />

software from Scottish Golf to Golf Genius and so<br />

fingers crossed that will be a smooth transition.<br />

Also new <strong>for</strong> <strong>2022</strong> will be a new Struie knockout<br />

competition which will be a pairs better ball. You<br />

may choose your own partner or we can pair you<br />

up with someone if not. More in<strong>for</strong>mation about<br />

this will be announced later. As it’s looking like<br />

being a very busy season, and Championship<br />

Course tee times may be difficult to acquire, we<br />

have decided to spread-out the knockout rounds<br />

and give members a longer period of time to<br />

complete matches. The main advice here, as always,<br />

is to arrange your tie as soon as possible.<br />

The new world handicapping system kicked into<br />

full swing with the most frustrating element being<br />

all the golf union systems not able to share<br />

handicap in<strong>for</strong>mation which made setting up and<br />

running competitions a bit of challenge particularly<br />

<strong>for</strong> our open comps.<br />

With regards to our open events these proved once<br />

again very popular with most of them being<br />

oversubscribed. We did however lose the Junior<br />

Open and the Struie Mixed Foursomes due to<br />

restrictions early in the season. Hopefully we will<br />

have a full complement back <strong>for</strong> <strong>2022</strong>. As<br />

restrictions eased it was great to have that buzz back<br />

in the clubhouse during the Carnegie Shield which<br />

was won again by Chris Mailley, his 6th title.<br />


Some of our team matches fell by the wayside but<br />

we were able to reschedule the Nairn match in<br />

October which we won. In <strong>2022</strong> we will welcome<br />

our friends from Raleigh CC and the Country<br />

Club of North Carolina <strong>for</strong> matches.<br />

Well done to our lads <strong>for</strong> winning the Dornoch<br />

Firth League at Invergordon. We were unable to<br />

field a team <strong>for</strong> the Northern Counties cup at<br />

Peterhead which was won by Brora. We host both<br />

these events this year.<br />

Other external events we will host this coming year<br />

is the Paul Lawrie Tartan Pro Tour in April, the<br />

HGL Pro Am and the World Hickory Open, both<br />

in October, and most notably the Men’s & Ladies<br />

Senior Amateur Championships from 5th to 8th<br />

July.<br />

Can I personally thank all the members and staff<br />

<strong>for</strong> all your support last year and I look <strong>for</strong>ward in<br />

seeing you all during <strong>2022</strong>.<br />

Andrew Skinner<br />

Head PGA Professional<br />


Greens Convenor’s Report<br />

This is my first <strong>Winter</strong> <strong>Newsletter</strong> report as Greens<br />

Convenor and I would like to say what an honour<br />

and privilege it is to hold the position at Royal<br />

Dornoch. I am aware that I am following in the<br />

footsteps of extremely efficient and experienced<br />

Convenors and sadly as many of you know our<br />

previous Convenor passed away in October this<br />

year and our love and thoughts go to his wife Mags<br />

along with his family and friends. Adrian was a<br />

larger than life Yorkshireman who was truly<br />

passionate about Royal Dornoch Golf Club and<br />

completed at least 3 stints on Council as Greens<br />

Convenor. Adrian and his expertise will be greatly<br />

missed at Dornoch.<br />

The weather has been really mild lately which<br />

meant the green keepers were still cutting grass<br />

which is unusual in late November. However, as I<br />

write, <strong>Winter</strong> has arrived with a vengeance after a<br />

really mild but wet Autumn and has finally hit the<br />

courses with frost, snow, wind and rain. It hasn’t<br />

been the best week to be working outdoors but as<br />

normal Eoin and the team have persevered to get<br />

things done. The <strong>Winter</strong> programme is well under<br />

way and with hopefully some kind weather we will<br />

see the benefits <strong>for</strong> the start of the season.<br />

On the Championship Course the team have<br />

completed the bunker revetting on the 10th and<br />

started the ones on the top of the hill on the 17th.<br />

The greens have been micro tined which is done to<br />

relieve compaction and help the water percolate<br />

through the surface as quickly as possible so when<br />

the snow melts this should help dry out the surfaces<br />

quicker. Following the tining they were then rolled<br />

to smooth the surfaces <strong>for</strong> play. The team continue<br />

to turf weak or any worn areas on fairways. The<br />

revetting on the bank of the 8th tee is in the process<br />

of being done.<br />

On the Struie Course they continue to aerate the<br />

greens with the Air2G2 air injection machine. This<br />

breaks up the soil profile under the surface giving<br />

the roots of the grass plant room to grow in the air<br />

pockets it makes. The turfing of weak areas on the<br />

greens surrounds also continues.<br />

After a few stormy days the coastal erosion fencing<br />

on the 10th hole of the Struie Course took a<br />

battering so the team has replaced the damaged<br />

sections, built up the bank with sand and planted<br />

Marrum grass to help stabilise it. With the snow<br />

covering the course they also turned their attention to<br />

areas of bushes that needed to be removed or cut back.<br />

They have also started removing all the bushes in the<br />

dunes on the sea side of the course and trimming sides<br />

of pathways.<br />

Work has also been done on the Struie Course <strong>for</strong> the<br />

R&A Senior Amateur Championships in July next<br />

year. The grass has been coming back onto fairways<br />

and tees and now Eoin, Scott and team are hoping <strong>for</strong><br />

a good Spring to help with growth. The enlarging of<br />

the 18th white tee has been finished with our own<br />

team completing the work and installing the irrigation.<br />

All of the Greens Committee completed a course walk<br />

on 6th December which was very beneficial and<br />

enjoyable to see at first hand all the work that is being<br />

done.<br />

We have had confirmation of passing the GEO<br />

certification in June 2021 which confirms that Royal<br />

Dornoch Golf Club has successfully achieved GEO<br />

Certified© status <strong>for</strong> its outstanding work to foster<br />

nature, conserve resources and support the<br />

community. GEO Certified© is the most respected<br />

certification <strong>for</strong> golf, based on a credibly and<br />

transparently developed modern and sustainable<br />

standard of best practice.<br />


Many thanks to Eoin and Scott <strong>for</strong> keeping our<br />

members updated with regular course reports on<br />

the Royal Dornoch Members Facebook page.<br />

Eoin and Scott and our amazing green keeping<br />

team we thank you <strong>for</strong> all the hard work you do,<br />

early in the morning when most of us are still in<br />

bed, working throughout the seasons in sunshine,<br />

rain, wind and snow, preparing two superb courses<br />

<strong>for</strong> us to enjoy. There is no better place to be. We<br />

have so much to be thankful <strong>for</strong> in these uncertain<br />

times.<br />

Enjoy your winter golf and by the time you read this<br />

I hope you have all had an enjoyable Christmas and<br />

New Year.<br />

Wilma Murray<br />

Greens Convenor<br />


House Convenor’s Report<br />

Looking back on the year of 2021 <strong>for</strong> my role has<br />

been depressing.<br />

The Food & Beverage team, supported by the<br />

wider staff team, per<strong>for</strong>med well in these most<br />

difficult of times. Those members who visited the<br />

clubhouse during the year will know we had<br />

severely restricted opening times due to the everchanging<br />

restrictions caused by the Covid<br />

pandemic and its variants. We were unable to<br />

move <strong>for</strong>ward with expanding the services<br />

delivered in the halfway house (HWH) to include<br />

hot food such as soup and warm sausage rolls. Our<br />

staff shrunk when we reduced their hours, and we<br />

lost a considerable number of good staff to other<br />

employers. The overall outcome was a backward<br />

step in what the staff team had achieved in<br />

previous years.<br />

Amazingly in this circumstance we achieved our<br />

best F&B score to date in the 59 Club who provide<br />

a mystery shopper service <strong>for</strong> all departments at<br />

Royal Dornoch. It is also impressive in a time of<br />

trying to reduce costs and waste we hit very high<br />

gross profit margins, helped along with low VAT<br />

rates. In fact, the department has per<strong>for</strong>med<br />

considerably better than budget year to date in<br />

2021/22. Well done Brian and Sue.<br />

Our programme of special social events was<br />

seriously curtailed and those that did happen had<br />

restricted or vastly reduced numbers to about 40%.<br />

Thanks must go to those members who<br />

volunteered to cover a few shifts or two when the<br />

staff members were low in number.<br />


Sadly, earlier this month Sue Robb decided to<br />

resign to spend more time with her family. We<br />

wish her well and appreciate the journey <strong>for</strong>ward<br />

she has helped us to achieve in the F&B at the<br />

club. I would like to take this opportunity to thank<br />

Sue <strong>for</strong> all the ef<strong>for</strong>ts she has made on behalf of<br />

the club and I <strong>for</strong> one will miss her professional<br />

contribution.<br />

As I stated in my previous year’s report that it<br />

would be my last, I stepped down from the role at<br />

the end of October 2021. Gordon Davies has<br />

picked up the baton and I wish him well and<br />

promise my full support. I look <strong>for</strong>ward under his<br />

leadership to see the reductions of Covid<br />

restrictions, return of being able to eat out at the<br />

club in the evenings, as well as during the day with<br />

a full and varied menu at the 4 Star standard we<br />

provided previously. I know he and the Council of<br />

Management are determined through a<br />

recruitment drive to reinstate the necessary staffing<br />

level of the department to achieve these standards<br />

<strong>for</strong> the members and visitors within Royal<br />

Dornoch. It is hoped to have new staff appointed<br />

in January <strong>2022</strong> to ensure they are settled in <strong>for</strong><br />

the new season.<br />

For those who know me well, I especially look<br />

<strong>for</strong>ward to eating my first hot sausage roll at the<br />

HWH in preparation <strong>for</strong> scoring 35 in the inward<br />

9 holes. I hope the hot sausage roll will be the<br />

driving <strong>for</strong>ce to achieving 35 on the back 9,<br />

because it hasn’t happened yet, however it may<br />

take some time to ensure all is in place to achieve<br />

this.<br />

Thanks <strong>for</strong> your support.<br />

John McMurray<br />

House Convenor 2018 - 2021<br />


Junior Report<br />

Our junior numbers have been consistent <strong>for</strong> several<br />

years with 75 attending regularly split as 39 girls and<br />

36 boys. The Minis/Advanced Minis have 18 with<br />

25 attending our Wildcat Section. There are 14 in<br />

B Section with 18 spread across B+ and A Section.<br />

Mini’s/Advanced Mini’s is <strong>for</strong> children from four<br />

to eight years of age after which they progress to the<br />

Wildcats where the age range can vary from six until<br />

eleven but most progress to B Section be<strong>for</strong>e<br />

finishing Primary School.<br />


B Section caters <strong>for</strong> juniors from nine to fourteen,<br />

but the majority move into A Section quickly where<br />

their aim is to become a Junior Championship<br />

member.<br />

Since Easter, our Mini’s had weekly sessions with<br />

Professional, Ally McNaughton, supported by<br />

Caitlin Boa, our Ladies <strong>2022</strong> Club Champion, and<br />

David Diracles who is also our B Section<br />

Coordinator.<br />

Play and enjoyment is the focus <strong>for</strong> these younger<br />

juniors and with non-golf related games including<br />

tag, dodgeball etc. they have great fun. Ally sets fun<br />

challenges after they practised the basics skills and<br />

they also enjoyed a summer camp in July.<br />

Many joined in adult/junior fun events to<br />

experience competition.<br />

The Minis have focussed on chipping, putting and<br />

full swing throughout their basic skill sessions, with<br />

a focus on making sure they get into a good set-up<br />

position to give them the best chance of consistent<br />

contact.<br />

There has been a great uptake <strong>for</strong> the winter<br />

coaching sessions which runs until Easter when the<br />

summer programme starts. On bad weather days the<br />

clubhouse is used with tennis balls hit into velcro<br />

targets with team challenges and variety the theme.<br />

Twenty two Wildcats had weekly sessions with<br />

coaching shared between our Head Teaching Pro,<br />

Gary Dingwall, and Ally. They played the Academy<br />

Holes regularly in different <strong>for</strong>mats which included<br />

strokeplay, matchplay, texas scramble and one club<br />

challenges.<br />


The Wildcats had three camps during the season<br />

where they mixed with B Section. This motivated<br />

them and the coaches gauge their readiness <strong>for</strong><br />

stepping up a group. This isn’t just about reaching<br />

target scores. Maturity and pace of play are<br />

amongst a variety of things that help the coaches<br />

decide when they are ready.<br />

The juniors in B and B+ had a great season of golf.<br />

David Diracles organises the sessions ably support<br />

by several parents who supervise and act as scorers.<br />

Thursdays start with the juniors devouring the<br />

healthy snacks that David suggested we provide as<br />

the children are hungry when they arrive straight<br />

from school.<br />

They love their golf and strong friendships<br />

develop. Club competitions had good entry<br />

numbers but a lesson <strong>for</strong> <strong>2022</strong> is to space the<br />

weekend trophy competitions across the whole<br />

season. The planned trips to Junior Opens were<br />

enjoyed by those that choose to attend. We<br />

consider playing different courses as a vital part in<br />

their development.<br />

The highlight of our junior season is our Caddies<br />

Cup Day in September. With juniors playing from<br />

age four to eighteen years with the Academy holes,<br />

Struie and Championship Course all in use it is a<br />

big day with the juniors excited and ready to play,<br />

no matter the weather.<br />

The atmosphere in the clubhouse afterwards,<br />

when they enjoy their food and during the Prize<br />

Giving, is electric. The warmth the juniors have <strong>for</strong><br />

their friends that win and <strong>for</strong> runners-up is<br />

Celebrating our long serving staff<br />

Eoin Riddell 35 years at Royal Dornoch<br />


wonderful to experience. It was a big day <strong>for</strong> Angus<br />

McFall, who was appointed Junior Captain.<br />

No longer do our junior sessions stop after<br />

Caddies Day. The Thursday and Friday sessions<br />

continue until we run out of daylight when we<br />

then move to weekend sessions. By November we<br />

have evening sessions at our Indoor Swing Room.<br />

The juniors enjoy using Trackman and our indoor<br />

facility has been improved with the gift of an<br />

artificial putting green from the University of the<br />

Highlands who have a new purpose built facility at<br />

their Burghfield Campus.<br />

Each of the swing studio sessions are individually<br />

tailored, allowing each player to advance at their<br />

own pace. A vital element <strong>for</strong> improvement is<br />

benchmarking to monitor the gains from coaching<br />

sessions. The transfer from winter coaching into<br />

on course play has seen handicaps tumble. They<br />

also have weekend sessions throughout the winter,<br />

weather permitting.<br />

Our older juniors are fine role models <strong>for</strong> the<br />

younger sections. Some played in regional and<br />

national competitions with Rhianna Mackay<br />

having a well-travelled and successful season.<br />

Our A Section Coordinator, Mark McFall, works<br />

tirelessly to produce weekly draws and instil good<br />

golfing behaviours. A Section had their Friday<br />

competitions and matchplay competitions entered<br />

into the Scottish Golf App so they became familiar<br />

with the new Scottish Golf system.<br />

I am pleased to see Colin Mackay return to our<br />

Council of Management in December and Colin<br />

will take over as Junior Convenor linking with our<br />

Junior Team under the guidance of Gary Dingwall<br />

in conjunction with Ally McNaughton, David<br />

Diracles and Mark McFall our frontline coaching<br />

team.<br />

Our juniors have a pathway from beginner to<br />

playing in national competitions and I am very<br />

grateful <strong>for</strong> the way that Gary, Ally, David and Mark<br />

have worked as a team and produced a full season<br />

of weekly events, trophy competitions, adult/<br />

junior weekend competitions with all the Covid<br />

restrictions we have to live with<br />

Colin, you are inheriting a slick programme which<br />

I know you will enjoy and support with the<br />

enthusiasm you have <strong>for</strong> golf and Royal Dornoch.<br />

Donna Sutherland 25 years at Royal Dornoch<br />

21<br />

Willie MacKay<br />


Marketing Report<br />

The marketing team can reflect on a successful year<br />

in 2021. Looking back to the start of the year, Covid<br />

remained a challenge with various restrictions and<br />

guidelines in place. With overseas travel again not<br />

possible <strong>for</strong> visiting golfers, the focus of the team was<br />

once more on promoting Royal Dornoch to primarily<br />

a UK market and advertising exclusive added<br />

value offers. The Scottish Golf Club Member Rate<br />

proved particularly popular. We also placed greater<br />

emphasis on promoting the Struie Course to encourage<br />

more play, especially among families.<br />

To communicate with visitors more directly to the<br />

club’s growing database, a particular highlight of the<br />

year saw the creation of ‘Dornoch Days’ – a stylish,<br />

modern e-newsletter <strong>for</strong> the visitor market. Using our<br />

collection of wonderful imagery and storytelling, the<br />

vibrant newsletter has been well received after two issues<br />

were distributed in 2021. Neil’s own newsletter<br />

to members every Friday has also been improved in<br />

terms of design and is also proving popular among<br />

the membership.<br />

A focus on striking imagery and strong news stories<br />

has been a theme of the marketing team’s work<br />

throughout 2021 and that has translated to further<br />

success on the Club’s social media channels. We<br />

were delighted to end the year with over 40,000 social<br />

media followers across the eight Club accounts<br />

– a growth of over 5,000 in 2021. Royal Dornoch’s<br />

overall social media numbers are among the best <strong>for</strong><br />

any golf club within Great Britain & Ireland.<br />

On 15th December, we also achieved the milestone<br />

success of reaching 10,000 followers on Instagram<br />

and ran a competition to celebrate the landmark.<br />

The main Twitter account now has 17,400 followers,<br />

while the Facebook account has over 7,000. The Pro<br />

Shop are also making good use of social media, with<br />

2,250 people following the Instagram page.<br />

To assist local golfers over the winter months with<br />

updates on whether the courses are open or closed,<br />

a Course Status account is also proving effective on<br />

Twitter. Primarily run by the greenkeeping team, it’s<br />

a much better way to communicate with local people<br />

on social media, given a significant number of people<br />

who follow the Club’s main Twitter account are<br />

based in the USA.<br />

The year generated various positive news stories,<br />

which were developed and shared by the marketing<br />

team. The team, who meet regularly on Zoom to discuss<br />

monthly plans, were particularly thrilled to see<br />

the Club’s NHS offer be well received and generate<br />

significant media coverage. In total, NHS and care<br />


staff enjoyed 360 rounds at Royal Dornoch during<br />

the summer thanks to our kind offer of free golf on<br />

both courses <strong>for</strong> their sterling ef<strong>for</strong>ts during the<br />

Covid-19 pandemic.<br />

The honorary membership awarded to <strong>for</strong>mer Open<br />

champion Paul Lawrie, as well as the Life Membership<br />

awarded to renowned journalist Lorne Rubenstein,<br />

were also strong PR stories that enjoyed media<br />

exposure. The Club also celebrated the 200th anniversary<br />

of the birth of Old Tom Morris in June,<br />

while the announcement that the R&A Women’s<br />

and Men’s Senior Amateur championships are coming<br />

to Dornoch in July <strong>2022</strong> was also well publicised.<br />

Working with partners is also a key part of the marketing<br />

team’s ef<strong>for</strong>ts. This year we continued to work<br />

closely with the likes of Links House, Arnold Clark<br />

(BMW-MINI), North Highland College UHI and<br />

other local golf clubs to help keep Royal Dornoch in<br />

the public eye among different audiences. We also<br />

maintained our support <strong>for</strong> one of Scotland’s most<br />

endangered species, the wildcat, after raising a further<br />

£2,840 through the help of members. Back in<br />

2019, we launched a new clothing range <strong>for</strong> members,<br />

which is an emblem based on the wildcat element<br />

of the full club crest, and we continued that<br />

support in 2021.<br />

The Club also became one of the first golf clubs to<br />

sign up to a new digital tourism organisation – Scotland,<br />

Where Golf Began. This dynamic digital plat<strong>for</strong>m<br />

is inspiring golfers near and far to plan an<br />

exciting golf break and make the most of Scotland<br />

on and off the course. It is an industry-led initiative<br />

designed to be the No. 1 resource <strong>for</strong> golfers looking<br />

to enjoy stay-and-play trips here.<br />

We welcomed some notable visitors ourselves in<br />

November, working with Links House to host two<br />

journalists visits. Steve Carroll from National Club<br />

Golfer magazine came to the Highlands to write<br />

some features on all-year round golf, playing the<br />

Championship course and also teeing up at Brora<br />

and Nairn Dunbar. Gordon Bannerman, a freelancer<br />

based in Perthshire, also visited. Look out <strong>for</strong><br />

their feature pieces in the new year.<br />

Lastly, we also enjoyed an incredibly special visitor in<br />

2021… none other than Gary Player, who came to<br />

our links <strong>for</strong> the first time in July. The legendary<br />

South African did a nice video message regarding his<br />

visit, set up by Neil, which we shared on our social<br />

media plat<strong>for</strong>ms. It generated over 78,000 video<br />

views!<br />

Marketing Subcommittee<br />


Retail Report<br />

After a predictably slow start to the season in the<br />

Pro Shop activity gathered pace during the summer<br />

to finish strongly as we were very happy to welcome<br />

back many non-resident members along with some<br />

international visitors.<br />

Despite the lack of new clothing lines (<strong>for</strong> obvious<br />

reasons) Brad and the team are delighted with the<br />

way the year developed and are particularly grateful<br />

<strong>for</strong> the continued strong support from all our<br />

members, both in store and online – which is a<br />

steadily growing part of our operation.<br />

With no new stock to excite customers, the team<br />

focussed on creative promotions to generate interest<br />

and boost sales. This has played a big part in<br />

our retail targets <strong>for</strong> 2021 being surpassed.<br />

Towards the end of the year we were able to offer<br />

members a pre-order opportunity to purchase a selected<br />

range of Kjus and Glenmuir garments featuring<br />

our unique Wildcat crest which is exclusive<br />

to Royal Dornoch members. This has gone well<br />

and will be something we look to repeat in <strong>2022</strong>.<br />

We have significantly reduced our stock levels during<br />

2021 and this has freed up the space to allow<br />

us to plan positively <strong>for</strong> the spring/summer season<br />

<strong>2022</strong>. Brad has exciting plans so look out <strong>for</strong> fresh<br />

designs, colourways and even some alternative<br />

brands arriving <strong>for</strong> next year.<br />

That said the cupboards aren’t entirely bare and<br />

we still have a wide choice in our fantastic bespoke<br />

tartan range. There is good size availability and<br />

Brad and the team are on hand to help you find<br />

that special timeless piece all very competitively<br />

priced. Drop in, call or email to discuss your requirements.<br />

Retail Subcommittee<br />


President’s Report<br />

On reading my Report of last year, I feel I may have<br />

been a little optimistic in hoping that life would<br />

return to normal during 2021. There have been<br />

some aspects which felt more normal but there has<br />

always been the underlying feeling of unease that<br />

Covid was going to be with us <strong>for</strong> much longer<br />

than previously predicted.<br />

Dornoch has again been very busy <strong>for</strong> most of the<br />

year with many staycationers choosing to visit the<br />

Highlands. The NC500 route passing close to<br />

Dornoch has contributed to the huge influx of<br />

visitors to the town. The courses have also seen a<br />

large number of bookings beyond our earlier<br />

cautious <strong>for</strong>ecasts.<br />

Despite some variable weather conditions both<br />

courses have been presented in splendid condition<br />

and our green keeping staff are to be congratulated<br />

on all their ef<strong>for</strong>ts to maintain them so well. One<br />

only has to visit other courses to appreciate the<br />

high standard and attention to detail we are able<br />

to enjoy here.<br />

All the Club’s employees have managed to carry<br />

on regardless of conditions and restrictions<br />

imposed on them so that members and visitors<br />

alike have been able to enjoy their experience of<br />

Royal Dornoch. Their hard work should be very<br />

much appreciated by us all.<br />

We have been able to hold our main Club<br />

competitions this year although some events have<br />

had to be changed. The Men’s Home Internationals<br />

was moved by the R & A and played elsewhere but<br />

they are holding their Men’s and Women’s Senior<br />

Amateur Championships here in <strong>2022</strong> using both<br />

courses. We also have the Men’s Scottish Amateur<br />

Championship to look <strong>for</strong>ward to in 2023.<br />

On a personal note I decided to hang up my Rule<br />

Book and retire from competition refereeing with<br />

Scottish Golf. I have been very <strong>for</strong>tunate in being<br />

given the opportunity to be involved in many<br />

events and to dispense rulings to players some of<br />

whom have become household names on the<br />

European Tour. They have not always been too<br />

enamoured with the rulings given. I think I got<br />

most of them right but like most referees there are<br />

one or two which I might like to be able to revisit!<br />

We were able at last to hold our AGM <strong>for</strong> 2020<br />

postponed from last year and at the same time<br />

catch up by holding the AGM <strong>for</strong> 2021. It’s not<br />

often that Members will be able to enjoy such a<br />

bargain…2 AGMs <strong>for</strong> the price of one! I was very<br />

pleased to be re-elected as President. I know it has<br />

been said be<strong>for</strong>e but it is a great honour and<br />

privilege to be President of this Club.<br />

I am grateful <strong>for</strong> the support and assistance of the<br />

Vice Presidents Hamish Macrae, Jim Campbell<br />

and Alan Ramsey here in Dornoch and Woody<br />

Morcott in America. We are happy to continue in<br />

our Roles and to support the Captain and Council<br />

of Management and represent the Club as and<br />

when required.<br />

My New Year’s Resolution, from a golfing perspective,<br />

is to work on and improve my game. However like<br />

many such resolutions it seems destined <strong>for</strong> failure. I<br />

am never enthusiastic about practising. After all why<br />

waste good shots on the practice ground when you<br />

might need them out on the course?<br />

On that note I will wish you all a happy and<br />

healthy <strong>2022</strong> and trust that your golf will live up<br />

to your hopes and expectations.<br />

Gordon Lawson<br />

President<br />


Ladies Section<br />

After the last eighteen months, I am delighted to<br />

be able to write telling you of the full and varied<br />

programme of events enjoyed by the ladies section<br />

in 2021. As well as a full programme of<br />

competitive golf on both courses we also had a<br />

number of social games when all the ladies could<br />

play together and cement the bonds of friendship<br />

on the course.<br />

We held a combined 2020 and 2021 AGM in<br />

October when we said farewell to Trish Weekes,<br />

Moira Rennie and Fiona Macdonald from<br />

committee and welcomed two new and one<br />

returning committee members in Deborah<br />

Thomassen, Seonaid Gow and Rosemary<br />

Muschamp. Thank you ladies <strong>for</strong> giving up your<br />

time <strong>for</strong> the Ladies Section.<br />

What golfing conditions we had in 2021! The<br />

weather was absolutely outstanding, warm and dry<br />

<strong>for</strong> long stretches with rain arriving just in time to<br />

keep the courses in top links condition, and I can’t<br />

remember a season in Dornoch with less wind. In<br />

fact, the only downside to this summer’s<br />

conditions is that they provided no excuse <strong>for</strong> poor<br />

scoring!<br />


With the fixture list back to normal we continued<br />

with the new shortened <strong>for</strong>mat <strong>for</strong> the Club<br />

Championship which was won <strong>for</strong> the second year<br />

running by Caitlin Boa who beat Cara Thompson<br />

in a wonderful, high quality final. There was<br />

further evidence of the strength of our juniors<br />

coming through in the Handicap Club<br />

Championship which was won this year by<br />

Rhianna Mackay, beating Norma Fleming in the<br />

final. We moved the Strokeplay Championship to<br />

nearer the end of the season to give it greater<br />

prominence and I won the Scratch element while<br />

Zara Macdonald, another of our juniors, won the<br />

Handicap section. We are so <strong>for</strong>tunate to have<br />

these talented junior golfers coming through –<br />

long may it continue.<br />

In the Knock-Out Competitions, I won the Sykes<br />

Cup, Lisa Dickenson won the Sutherland Cup,<br />

and Patricia Blair won our new Struie singles<br />

knock out. Fiona Hampton and Irene Hart won<br />

the Barrow Cup and will go <strong>for</strong>ward to represent<br />

us in next year’s Daily Mail Foursomes. This year<br />

we were really well represented by Fiona<br />

Macdonald and Theresa Campbell who won<br />

several rounds of this national competition be<strong>for</strong>e<br />


eing beaten by Inverurie, who went on to the<br />

National Finals, so well done to them. At the<br />

North of Scotland Championships in Blairgowrie<br />

Norma Fleming came through a large field to be<br />

crowned Handicap Champion, a fantastic<br />

achievement, really well done.<br />

Throughout the year we have enjoyed some<br />

fabulous fun events on both the Struie and the<br />

Championship courses, playing a variety of<br />

<strong>for</strong>mats, and participation levels have been great.<br />

The Pink Day in particular was a-ma-zing and we<br />

raised a fabulous total of over £2,000 <strong>for</strong> Breast<br />

Cancer Now while having great fun. Thank you<br />

to everyone who was involved in making that such<br />

a successful event. My Captain’s charity <strong>for</strong> the<br />

year was Cerebral Palsy Scotland and I am<br />

delighted that we raised £1,900 over the year. Next<br />

year we will be fundraising <strong>for</strong> Maggie’s Highland.<br />

Thank you to all members from across the club<br />

who help us support these good causes throughout<br />

the year.<br />

Turning to our Open events, Royal Dornoch ladies<br />

did well again, although perhaps the new<br />

handicapping system allowed more non-home<br />

players to feature in the prizes. The Three Lady<br />

Team was won by a team from Boat of Garten and<br />

Abernethy, but the Royal Dornoch team of Fiona<br />

MacDonald, Theresa Campbell and Patsy Mackay<br />

were runners up. In the next day’s Struie Open, I<br />

was runner-up to our winner from Royal<br />

Musselburgh. In the Ladies Open in June the<br />

winner of the scratch event was Eleanor Tunn<br />

from Reay and I was runner up while in the<br />

handicap trophy youth came to the <strong>for</strong>e with<br />

Hannah Riddell the winner and Zara Macdonald<br />

runner up. In the Senior Open in September<br />

there was a three-way tie at the top of the leader<br />

board but the winner on countback was Jo<br />

Macdonald of Nairn, runner up Judith McCaffery<br />

of Aboyne and third, our own Bel Shepherd.<br />

The Ross Sutherland competition was played at<br />

Brora where our scratch team won the scratch<br />


trophy. We didn’t do quite so well at Reay in the<br />

Caithness Sutherland where, despite some<br />

individually brilliant scores neither of our teams<br />

were in the prizes. However, on both occasions it<br />

was good to meet up with friends from the<br />

competing clubs and to play at different courses.<br />

It was notable that the scratch team from Reay GC<br />

won the scratch trophy over their home course,<br />

and Eleanor Tunn broke her own course record<br />

on the day.<br />

We also enjoyed a full programme of ladies friendly<br />

matches with neighbouring clubs with mixed<br />

results, but of more importance is the fellowship<br />

and fun that these matches provide. I would<br />

encourage all ladies to consider putting themselves<br />

<strong>for</strong>ward <strong>for</strong> friendly matches in <strong>2022</strong>.<br />

The Ladies Annual Dinner in November celebrated<br />

70 years of the Ladies Section at Royal Dornoch<br />

Golf Club and thanks go to Eileen Macrae and<br />

Christine Callingham, the club’s archivists, <strong>for</strong><br />

putting together a fascinating presentation on the<br />

history of Ladies golf over our Links.<br />

In conclusion, I think it is safe to say that the ladies<br />

section at Royal Dornoch continues to flourish<br />

with new members joining the Struie and several<br />

ladies moving up to Full Championship Course<br />

membership. Participation numbers in all our<br />

events was really high all year and I would<br />

encourage everyone to keep that up next year. If<br />

any visiting members would like to join us in social<br />

or competitive golf when they are in Dornoch in<br />

<strong>2022</strong> please let the office know and we will make<br />

sure you are warmly welcomed. The restrictions<br />

imposed in so many areas of life in 2021 made us<br />

appreciate all the more how lucky we are to enjoy<br />

this wonderful, if frustrating, game and in<br />

particular to play at Royal Dornoch and enjoy the<br />

companionship and friendship of fellow members<br />

and visitors. Long may that continue.<br />

Alison Bartlett<br />

Lady Captain<br />

We have successfully coped with the transition to<br />

the World Handicap System, and honourable<br />

mention must go to Andrew Skinner who was<br />

instrumental in helping ladies get the Scottish Golf<br />

App working, demonstrating seemingly endless<br />

patience with some of our less technologically<br />

gifted lady members!<br />

There are so many staff members we have to thank<br />

<strong>for</strong> all they have done <strong>for</strong> us through what has been<br />

a difficult year. To Neil and Claire and the office<br />

staff, to Eoin and the greens staff and to Sue and<br />

Brian and all those in the Clubhouse – thank you<br />

<strong>for</strong> all you do <strong>for</strong> us as members so that we can just<br />

come and enjoy our golf.<br />


Senior Section<br />

Sadly, in October, the Senior Section lost its<br />

Captain, Adrian Bagott. Adrian was a very<br />

enthusiastic supporter of the section. He was in<br />

his second term as Captain, a role he took most<br />

seriously, particularly in making visiting teams feel<br />

welcome at Royal Dornoch. On a personal level,<br />

he was most helpful, especially during my first year<br />

as secretary, always willing to offer sound advice. I<br />

can only add that he will be much missed by<br />

everyone.<br />

Thankfully, the effects of Covid on our golf were<br />

much reduced in 2021. At the start of the year our<br />

Tuesday roll-ups were well supported with<br />

members enjoying a variety of <strong>for</strong>mats. We had to<br />

cancel our first three inter-club matches. However,<br />

these were replaced by internal matches featuring<br />

a Captain’s v Vice-Captain’s, Alphabetical Team<br />

selections and an “International”, Scotland v The<br />

Rest of the World. These were enjoyed by<br />

everyone and may well be repeated. (For those<br />

interested Scotland used local knowledge to win<br />

com<strong>for</strong>tably!)<br />

We managed to play nine inter-club matches,<br />

winning four, drawing one and losing four.<br />

Included in these matches was our inaugural<br />

Senior Invitation Match. This involved a single<br />

home and away fixture over two years against a club<br />

we do not usually play, in this case Blairgowrie. A<br />

total of <strong>for</strong>ty members represented the Seniors this<br />

year and it is most pleasing to welcome the new<br />

players to our matches.<br />

In addition to our regular competitions, this year<br />

we introduced a new competition, a Summer<br />

Eclectic <strong>for</strong> the Dr. John Trophy, named in honour<br />

of Dr. John Macleod who founded the Senior<br />

Section.<br />

The winners of our competitions are:<br />

W E Skinner Trophy (Scratch) – Stuart Sim<br />

W R MacDonald (Handicap) – Vincent Doyle<br />

Bartlett Cup (Scratch Knockout) –<br />

Derek MacDougall<br />

Paterson Shield (Spring Stable<strong>for</strong>d) –<br />

Alan Latham-Sumner<br />

Barry Watson Quaich (Handicap Knockout –<br />

Hamish Macrae<br />

Dr. John Trophy (Summer Eclectic) –<br />

Alan Latham-Sumner<br />

Senior Summer Trophy – Alan Latham-Sumner<br />


Another innovation was the Senior Captain’s<br />

Charity Stable<strong>for</strong>d which was held in June.<br />

Thanks to the generosity of members, visitors and<br />

those who donated prizes <strong>for</strong> the raffle we were<br />

able to raise £900 <strong>for</strong> our nominated charity,<br />

Oversteps. Our thanks go to Derek MacDougall<br />

<strong>for</strong> his work organising the raffle.<br />

Finally, as I approach the end of my three-year term<br />

as Secretary, I would like to offer my successor,<br />

David Offin, the best of luck. I am sure everyone<br />

will support him in the way they have me.<br />

Roger Boyce<br />

Secretary<br />

Despite the problems faced during the year the<br />

Senior Section has flourished, having a<br />

membership of 64, a significant number of whom<br />

have joined us this year. It is through their<br />

involvement that the Section is able to thrive and<br />

I would like to thank them <strong>for</strong> their support. I<br />

would also like to thank Andrew Skinner and the<br />

staff in the Pro Shop <strong>for</strong> all their assistance; also<br />

the office staff.<br />


Wednesday Seniors (The Geriatrics)<br />

The main event of the year was that we were<br />

allowed back into the bar which is as important to<br />

the Geriatrics as the golf. This was closely followed<br />

by re-instating the Annual Lunch and prize giving.<br />

We are continuing to have a draw <strong>for</strong> tee times and<br />

<strong>for</strong> most members paying our match fees by BACS.<br />

A new competition was introduced, the Autumn<br />

Mixed Foursomes, which replaced the annual<br />

match against the ladies. This was a match<br />

between the Lady Captain's team and the<br />

Geriatrics President's team which the Lady<br />

Captain's team won 5 – 3. President John Logan<br />

said that when he took over the group the men<br />

lost their match against the ladies and so his team<br />

have now lost the first playing of this <strong>for</strong>mat!<br />

Congratulations to Alison.<br />

Whilst we are enjoying ourselves our donations<br />

(which is the weekly entry fee) have been<br />

accumulating. This year we again raised £1250 <strong>for</strong><br />

charity - £500 each to the Dornoch Medical<br />

Practice and the Highland Hospice, and £250 to<br />

the Heritage Society.<br />

Our Annual Luncheon and Competition took<br />

place on Wednesday 29th September and was well<br />

attended as usual. Many thanks to the Chef &<br />

Catering Staff as we were once again well fed and<br />

watered. I also thank the front of house staff <strong>for</strong><br />

looking after us throughout the season. Our guests<br />

were: President Gordon Lawson, Captain Willie<br />

MacKay, Lady Captain Alison Bartlett, Assistant<br />

Manager, Claire Riddell, and Head Pro Andrew<br />

Skinner. Alison graciously presented the prizes &<br />

trophies. As usual we all retired mellow and happy.<br />

John S Logan<br />


Prize winners <strong>for</strong> the season:<br />

Competition Winner Runner-up<br />

Dave MacKenzie Cup<br />

Not Played<br />

J T Robertson Cup David MacLean Keith Henry<br />

Jim Seatter Rosebowl Sinclair Mckay Gordon Lawson<br />

Macleod Thomson Targes Willie Skinner Graham Davey<br />

Alan Woodstock Keith Stalker<br />

Niall Curry Trophy Jonathon Al<strong>for</strong>d Frank Dewar<br />

Patterson Salver Foursomes Graham Davey Alastair Fleming<br />

Frank Dewar Mike Hemming<br />

Heritage 5 Club Raymond Bremner Keith Henry<br />

John Green Quaich Graham Davey Keith Henry<br />

Peter Monk Trophy Steve Webb Alan Rhind<br />

J N Patterson Quaich Alan Rhind Steve Webb<br />

K W Milne Whisky Jonathon Al<strong>for</strong>d Alan Rhind<br />

Greensomes Ian Irwin Ian Morrison<br />

Archie Forbes Trophy Steve Webb Gordon Lawson<br />

Martin Steeves Trophy Steve Webb Eric Johnston<br />

Autumn Mixed Foursomes<br />

Lady Captain's Team<br />

Qualifying Appearances – 15 For trophies below<br />

Hugh Steele Trophy Vincent Doyle Phil Prince<br />

Overall Winner<br />

Anniversary Trophy 81 & Over A Frank Gerstenberg Sanders MacDonald<br />

Florence Patterson Trophy 76 & Over B John Chambers John Calder<br />

Trowbridge Trophy 70 & Over C Steve Webb Keith Stalker<br />

Bill Smith Trophy 65 & Over D Graham Davey Mark Blair<br />

Twomey Trophy Under 65 E Vincent Doyle Phil Prince<br />

President’s Shield (Non-Qualified) F Alex Robertson Graeme Miller<br />

Dingwall Trophy (Most Appearances) Iain Innes Keith Henry<br />

W E Skinner Quaich Highest Average Sinclair McKay 26.58 Steve Webb 26.56<br />

J N Patterson Eclectic Trophy Eclectic Steve Webb 140 Sinclair McKay 138<br />

E H McDonald Painting – Winner of Frank Gerstenberg John Chambers<br />

‘Thanks <strong>for</strong> the Memory’ A&B Groups<br />


Minutes of the Annual General Meeting 2020<br />

Minutes of the 2020 Annual General<br />

Meeting of Royal Dornoch Golf Club<br />

Held in Dornoch Academy on Friday<br />

15th October at 7.30pm<br />

Captain Rob Murray in the Chair<br />

Present: 73 Ordinary Members, 7 Struie/Social<br />

Members<br />

Good evening everyone and welcome to the Royal<br />

Dornoch Golf Club AGM 2020. Tonight, thanks to<br />

Covid, we are going to have to go back in time and<br />

hold our long overdue 2020 AGM then move<br />

<strong>for</strong>ward and hold the 2021 AGM. So a bit of Star<br />

Trek and Back to the Future <strong>for</strong> us all, strangely very<br />

apt Star Trek was in the news headlines this week!<br />

Be<strong>for</strong>e we begin proceedings may I remind<br />

everyone face masks should be worn and please<br />

switch off mobile phones. No fire alarms are<br />

scheduled so should an alarm go off please exit the<br />

building in a calm and orderly fashion.<br />

1. Postponement of the Annual General<br />

Meeting<br />

Due to Covid restrictions beyond the Club’s<br />

control, it was not possible to hold the Annual<br />

General Meeting within the time frame stipulated<br />

in the Club Rules. The Council there<strong>for</strong>e decided<br />

to postpone the Meeting until a later date and now<br />

seeks the retrospective approval of Ordinary<br />

Members of the decision to postpone the Meeting.<br />

Passed unanimously by a show of hands.<br />

2. Meeting Overview<br />

As you know the Annual Report pertinent to this<br />

meeting <strong>for</strong> the year 2019/20 was published and<br />

sent to members. We received no queries or<br />

comments on these or any items in the agenda so<br />

I will go through the agenda in the order published<br />

and will there<strong>for</strong>e proceed fairly quickly to the<br />

2021 AGM.<br />

There will be an Open Forum on conclusion of<br />

the 2021 Agenda.<br />

3. Apologies <strong>for</strong> Absence<br />

43 received prior to the meeting and 6 received at<br />

the meeting.<br />

4. Approval of Minutes<br />

Minutes of Annual General Meeting held on<br />

Friday 16th August 2019 (previously circulated).<br />

Proposed: Tim Lohmann; Seconded: Gary<br />

Bethune<br />

5. Matters Arising from these Minutes<br />

All matters arising have all been attended to, one<br />

of which resulted in a resolution which will be<br />

address under Item 16.<br />

Resolution<br />

To approve retrospectively the decision of the<br />

Council to postpone the Annual General Meeting<br />

of the Club.<br />

6. Captain’s Report<br />

It seems so long ago since my last report in the <strong>Winter</strong><br />

<strong>Newsletter</strong> 2020. I had to refer back to my Captain’s<br />

Monthly reports to recall what actually happened,<br />

apart from Covid. One notable event was an<br />


enjoyable Evening with Ronan Rafferty – probably<br />

the last time we all had some social fun in the<br />

clubhouse. Covid hit us and we all had to learn some<br />

new vocabulary such as Furlough and Zoom meetings<br />

were commonplace. We had operational shutdown<br />

of the clubhouse and golf courses. The office had<br />

visitors calling to cancel bookings and asking could<br />

they re-schedule them or get refunds. That meant a<br />

quick decision on policy issues. The office dealt with<br />

an awful lot over a short period of time but did so<br />

admirably. We had to quickly look at the club<br />

finances as we were refunding more cash than was<br />

coming in. Fortunately we had the 3 financial<br />

Musketeers in Tony Bartlett, Matt McBride and<br />

Martin Lynch who crunched numbers to provide us<br />

with a worst case scenario. I’m pleased to report that<br />

reality was to be much better than we initially feared.<br />

Thanks to Tony, Matt and Martin <strong>for</strong> their ef<strong>for</strong>ts.<br />

We completed the design process <strong>for</strong> the<br />

clubhouse <strong>for</strong> which I would like to <strong>for</strong>mally record<br />

my thanks to The Projects Team and Mike Ross<br />

and Gordon Davies, in particular, <strong>for</strong> all their hard<br />

work and professional expertise over the past few<br />

years. More on that subject later.<br />

We renegotiated the Common Good Land Lease<br />

with Highland Council and The Dornoch Area<br />

Community Council so a second Public Consultation<br />

could get underway. More on this later too.<br />

In cutting costs on Marketing and parting company<br />

with our existing external source we brought in Ed<br />

Hodge with an expertise in Social Media marketing,<br />

a cost effective way of keeping Royal Dornoch in<br />

the minds of future travelling golfers. Ed together<br />

with brilliant photography from Matthew Harris,<br />

who also has social media expertise, raised our<br />

worldwide image. Thanks to Cara Thompson our<br />

Marketing Convenor <strong>for</strong> overseeing the work.<br />

With the Pro Shop closed I was particularly keen<br />

to help the Retail Operation sales get moving and<br />

online. This involved a great deal of time from<br />

Brad and Calum developing the site and<br />

uploading stock onto it. They did a great job so<br />

thanks to them and to all the members who<br />

supported the Club by buying online.<br />

It was a difficult time <strong>for</strong> staff who were working<br />

under pressure dealing with new challenges but it<br />

was also difficult <strong>for</strong> those who were furloughed<br />

and wanted to be working at the club. Thanks to<br />

all in very trying times.<br />

7. Election of President<br />

Mr G K Lawson is eligible <strong>for</strong> re-election, is willing<br />

to serve and is unanimously nominated by the<br />

Council of Management. Seconded by Hamish<br />

Macrae.<br />

8. Election of Vice President<br />

Mr J M Campbell is eligible <strong>for</strong> re-election, is willing to<br />

serve and is unanimously nominated by the Council<br />

of Management. Seconded by Gordon Lawson.<br />

9. Election of Vice President<br />

Mr S J Morcott is eligible <strong>for</strong> re-election, is willing<br />

to serve and is unanimously nominated by the<br />

Council of Management. Seconded by Kevin<br />

Matheson.<br />

10. Election of Vice President<br />

Mrs C Murray is eligible <strong>for</strong> re-election but has<br />

decided not to stand, Alan Ramsey is willing to<br />

serve and is unanimously nominated by the<br />

Council of Management. Seconded by Jim Seatter.<br />


11. Election of Ordinary Members of Council<br />

The retiring Members are: Mr A M A Bagott, Mr A<br />

D Bartlett and Mr M M B Ross. Mr I P Madeley<br />

resigned <strong>for</strong> personal reasons be<strong>for</strong>e the end of his 3<br />

year term.<br />

Consequently there were a total of 4 vacancies on<br />

the Council.The three due to stand down agreed to<br />

continue on an interim basis with the hope of<br />

holding an AGM in the near future.<br />

In accordance with the Club’s Rules 3 members will<br />

be elected <strong>for</strong> 3 years and 1 member <strong>for</strong> 2 years. The<br />

places are to be allocated in order of the votes cast.<br />

As this could not take place and we had four<br />

nominations <strong>for</strong> four places the Council agreed to<br />

appoint Mr A M A Bagott, Mr D Holden, Mr J F<br />

Gow and Mr G M Bethune at the Council of<br />

Management meeting on 2nd November 2020. Mr<br />

G M Bethune is to serve a two year period.<br />

Resolution:<br />

To approve retrospectively the decision of Council<br />

to appoint Mr A M A Bagott, Mr D Holden, Mr J F<br />

Gow and Mr G M Bethune as Members of Council.<br />

Approved by a show of hands.<br />

12. Statement and Adoption of Accounts <strong>for</strong><br />

the Year 2019/2020<br />

The Annual Accounts were issued and we received<br />

no questions. It is proposed that the Accounts are<br />

adopted.<br />

Adopted by a show of hands.<br />

13. Election of Auditors<br />

The Council of Management continued to work<br />

with the firm of Mackenzie Kerr and Co, as Club<br />

Auditors.<br />

Approved by a show of hands.<br />

14. Greens Convenor Report<br />

As many of you know Adrian Bagott passed away<br />

earlier this week and our love and thoughts go out<br />

to Margaret (Mags as Adrian fondly referred to<br />

her), his family and friends.<br />

Adrian was a larger than life character and loved<br />

Dornoch and not least Royal Dornoch Golf Club. His<br />

father loved Dornoch too and as you know Adrian<br />

followed suit. Adrian was passionate about the club<br />

and was always willing to do his bit on Council and<br />

particularly his real love as Greens Convenor.<br />


When Adrian spoke we all listened. He was<br />

basically a quiet Dornoch lad with a Yorkshire<br />

accent!<br />

We will miss your dulcet tones in the clubhouse…<br />

rest in peace our friend, you will be missed.<br />

The Greens Report was issued and we received no<br />

questions. It is proposed that the Greens Report<br />

is adopted.<br />

Adopted by a show of hands.<br />

15. Rule 1 – Update to how juniors progress<br />

through to being a Championship Course<br />

member.<br />

To help clarify the process and provide a stepping<br />

stone process so that juniors gain the relevant<br />

knowledge and ability to cope with the<br />

Championship Course an extra step has been<br />

added to give access to the Championship Course<br />

<strong>for</strong> Junior Struie members at certain times of the<br />

year at the direction of the Junior Committee.<br />

The Council of Management would then alter<br />

Regulation 5 to provide the detail of the how this<br />

would be administered.<br />

Resolution<br />

In Rule 1 (c)<br />

Delete – A Junior Section Member when they<br />

attain a CoNGU handicap will become a Junior<br />

Struie Member. Depending on further<br />

improvements the Council may at a later date<br />

approve the individual be upgraded to Junior<br />

Championship Membership.<br />

Insert – A Junior Section Member when they<br />

attain a WHS Index will become a Junior Struie<br />

Member. Depending on further improvements the<br />

Council may at a later date approve the individual<br />

be upgraded to Junior Struie Member with<br />

Championship Playing Rights. With further<br />

improvements they will be considered <strong>for</strong> Junior<br />

Championship Membership.<br />

Approved by a show of hands.<br />

16. At the 2019 AGM a view was expressed that<br />

the Rules of the Club did not adequately provide<br />

<strong>for</strong> the approval by Members of large value capital<br />

expenditure and borrowings in excess of £500,000<br />

and £250,000 respectively or the subsequent<br />

further approval by Members in the event that<br />

actual values of expenditure or borrowings<br />

exceeded the amounts already approved. There<strong>for</strong>e<br />

in order to address these issues the following<br />

amendments to Rules 16(f)and 16(g) are proposed:<br />

Resolution<br />

To amend Rule 16 (f) as follows:<br />

In line 7 be<strong>for</strong>e “value“ insert “specified“ and after<br />

“value“ insert “or estimated maximum value“. As<br />

shown in RED below.<br />

(f) The Council shall have the power to invest<br />

funds of the Club, up to £500,000 in any one<br />

financial year, in commissioning the building of,<br />

or the purchase or leasing of, any asset, or group<br />

of assets, including heritable or leasehold property,<br />

or after taking appropriate professional advice in<br />

or upon the bonds, debentures or guaranteed,<br />

preferred, ordinary, deferred or common stock or<br />

share of any company, corporation or other body<br />

whatsoever whether registered or incorporated in<br />

the United Kingdom or elsewhere. Where the<br />

Council decides to invest in the <strong>for</strong>egoing to a<br />

specified value or estimated maximum value that<br />


exceeds £500,000 in any one financial year, the<br />

power shall not be exercised until approval has<br />

been sanctioned by a majority of not less than twothirds<br />

of the Ordinary Members of the Club<br />

present and entitled to vote and voting thereon at<br />

a General Meeting.<br />

At end of Rule add:<br />

“In the event that the actual value of any particular<br />

contract or project exceeds or is anticipated to<br />

exceed by more than 10% of the value approved by<br />

Ordinary Members, then the Council will be<br />

required to obtain the further approval of a<br />

majority of not less than two thirds of the<br />

Ordinary Members present and entitled to vote<br />

and voting thereon at a General Meeting”.<br />

until approval has been sanctioned by a majority<br />

of not less than two-thirds of the Ordinary<br />

Members of the Club present and entitled to vote<br />

and voting thereon at a General Meeting.<br />

At end of Rule add: “In the event that the actual<br />

amount of borrowing, leasing or financing <strong>for</strong> any<br />

particular contract or project exceeds or is<br />

anticipated to exceed by more than 10% the<br />

amount approved by Ordinary Members, then the<br />

Council will be required to obtain the further<br />

approval of a majority of not less than two thirds<br />

of the Ordinary Members present and entitled to<br />

vote and voting thereon at a General Meeting“.<br />

Approved by a show of hands.<br />

Resolution<br />

To amend Rule 16 (g) as follows:<br />

In line 8 after “financing” insert “of a specified<br />

amount or estimated maximum amount”. As<br />

shown in RED below.<br />

(g) The whole management and control of all<br />

funds and expenditure of the Club shall be vested<br />

in the Council, who may delegate responsibility <strong>for</strong><br />

the day to day transactions to the General<br />

Manager. The Council shall designate by name or<br />

office individuals authorised to sign contracts or<br />

other documents on behalf of the Club (other<br />

than deeds required to be executed by all members<br />

of the Council) or to sign cheques on, or give<br />

instructions relating to, any bank accounts of the<br />

Club. The Council shall have the power to borrow,<br />

lease or obtain other financing to the value of<br />

£250,000 in any one financial year. Where the<br />

Council decides to borrow, lease or obtain other<br />

financing of a specified amount or estimated<br />

maximum amount in excess of £250,000 in any<br />

one financial year the power shall not be exercised<br />

17. Clubhouse Project<br />

As you are all aware Covid 19 has delayed our<br />

plans <strong>for</strong> the new clubhouse however on a positive<br />

note we have a design and budget approved by the<br />

members which is ready <strong>for</strong> tender when club<br />

funds permit. The planning permission was<br />

granted in 2019 and in the eyes of The Highland<br />

Council the project is considered to have started<br />

once we break ground in the car park area when<br />

work commences in September <strong>2022</strong> on the road<br />

access, movement of the bowling green and the<br />

current tennis court area disappears. A new tennis<br />

court will be built adjacent to the Dornoch<br />

Academy and this project is in hand with the<br />

Highland Council and Dornoch Area Community<br />

Council.<br />

The Common Good Land Lease was renegotiated,<br />

the Public Consultation went favourably and was<br />

sanctioned at the Sheriff Court last month. The<br />

new lease is currently with the legal representatives<br />

to draw up the final terms ready <strong>for</strong> signing. Once<br />


visitor levels, club finances and general economic<br />

conditions are stabilized we can then revisit the<br />

project and move <strong>for</strong>ward with more certainty on<br />

timescales.<br />

18. Election of Captain<br />

Be<strong>for</strong>e we move on to this I would just like to say<br />

what an honour and privilege it has been to be<br />

Captain of this great club. Thank you Mr Ramsey,<br />

and others, <strong>for</strong> giving me the opportunity.<br />

A few of the Past Captain’s warned me the time<br />

would pass quickly and I commend them on their<br />

use of understatement. My first year as Captain was<br />

close to the norm but with the added bonus of the<br />

clubhouse project and the common good land<br />

lease. My second year, and again Past Captain’s had<br />

said “the second years a breeze you’ve done it all in<br />

year one so just enjoy the second year it’s easy”…<br />

well, Covid put paid to that!<br />

Seriously though year 2 brought different<br />

challenges and the whole world was adjusting to a<br />

very different life. I was <strong>for</strong>tunate to have a team<br />

of good people around me who gave me<br />

tremendous support. The management structure<br />

we have as a club ensures we have fantastic<br />

expertise in many areas of business. The Sub<br />

committees, Projects Team, Council of<br />

Management provide support and direction <strong>for</strong><br />

our Management Team and their staff. I owe a<br />

great deal of gratitude to all these people. The<br />

President, Vice Presidents, Past Captain’s and<br />

members have all been very supportive too.<br />

I can’t mention everyone by name but I will just<br />

say a few words about some in the front line.<br />

Neil and Claire, as always, are there to help,<br />

support and have a wealth of experience to draw<br />

upon. Eoin and Scotty have a fantastic way with<br />

their team and their ef<strong>for</strong>ts speak <strong>for</strong> themselves.<br />

Sue, Brian and their teams have one of the hardest<br />


jobs, pleasing us all! Brad, Andrew, Gary and<br />

Calum have to put up with our moans and groans<br />

after a poor round… and look interested! Thank<br />

you all <strong>for</strong> your tremendous support.<br />

Neil we spent a lot of time together at a fair<br />

number of meetings, outings and seminars… in<br />

fact we probably spent more time in each other’s<br />

company than with our wives over the 2 years, I<br />

believe we have achieved a lot and I thank you <strong>for</strong><br />

all your help… which leads on nicely to thank my<br />

wife Wilma <strong>for</strong> putting up with me <strong>for</strong> two years<br />

when my mind was never far from Royal Dornoch.<br />

Now to the next era and be<strong>for</strong>e the <strong>for</strong>mal<br />

proceedings and one person I haven’t mentioned<br />

is our Captain Elect, Willie MacKay or as some<br />

people say who … oh you mean Willie Hook.<br />

Willie as Vice Captain you have been a rock always<br />

there to support and always willing to help no matter<br />

what. My sincere thanks <strong>for</strong> being there <strong>for</strong> me.<br />

Willie is the original Peter Pan, he has the energy,<br />

drive, passion and enthusiasm of a 20 year old, he<br />

just never stops, incredible <strong>for</strong> a 50 year old… well<br />

that’s what he told me!<br />

Willie was un<strong>for</strong>tunate to take over the day to day<br />

duties of the Captaincy without the <strong>for</strong>malities of<br />

an AGM. Due to Covid he missed out on a lot of<br />

the fun part of being Captain, no prize giving’s,<br />

social events or matches. He only had the<br />

difficulties Covid has thrown at us all. A clubhouse<br />

without people goes against a naturally social<br />

person. He never complained and got on with it<br />

as only he would. So I hope the next 10 months<br />

or so allows us to return to more normality and he<br />

can let his hair down.<br />

Willie eats, sleeps and breaths Royal Dornoch. You<br />

have done a brilliant job so far and I know you will<br />

do so in the months to come, the club is in good<br />

hands.<br />

In accordance with the Club Rules the Council of<br />

Management unanimously proposes Mr Willie D<br />

M MacKay. Passed unanimously by a show of<br />

hands.<br />

The Captain’s badge of office was pinned on Mr<br />

MacKay’s lapel by Mr Murray.<br />

Thank you members <strong>for</strong> approving my nomination<br />

as Captain.<br />

It is an honour and very privileged position in our<br />

Golf Club.<br />

In 2019 I would have spoken in anticipation of the<br />

two years ahead.<br />

We are now 14 months into the two years term so<br />

I can reflect instead of anticipating.<br />

But there is time <strong>for</strong> this in our second AGM.<br />

Rob, you have served Royal Dornoch as Greens<br />

Convenor and Finance Convenor, two very<br />

important responsibilities that every golf club has<br />

to manage. But delivering a quality golf course to<br />

members and building a very healthy bank balance<br />

is only part of what members enjoy from your<br />

excellent service.<br />

Rob, your father Ken became Club Secretary in<br />

1975 and played a significant role in the<br />

development of Royal Dornoch <strong>for</strong> many years.<br />

Your Grandfather Alex bravely left Scotland <strong>for</strong> a<br />

new life in the USA in 1925 as a golf professional.<br />


Your time as Vice-Captain and Captain, and<br />

establishing the Project Team <strong>for</strong> our new<br />

clubhouse, will leave a legacy that we shall all enjoy.<br />

Your negotiating skills are the reason why we have<br />

a new lease.<br />

Your “strapline” has always been – it’s a team<br />

ef<strong>for</strong>t. The Team had and still has a good leader.<br />

Your skill in letting meetings flow during<br />

discussions is an inbuilt quality. Your care <strong>for</strong> our<br />

staff was tremendous and your focus on our<br />

members equally excellent. At the heart of every<br />

issue was, “will this be good <strong>for</strong> Royal Dornoch?”<br />

Because of Covid you missed many club<br />

competitions and functions but when you did,<br />

both here and abroad, your time was dedicated to<br />

Royal Dornoch and you grew relationships in so<br />

many ways and places.<br />

Balancing work, the golf club and family needed<br />

resolve and endless commitment. But this was not<br />

a “one person” task. The role that Wilma played<br />

was not just <strong>for</strong> two years but <strong>for</strong> many years.<br />

In the Covid pandemic, your positive attitude has<br />

been an example <strong>for</strong> staff and members to follow.<br />

Members please join me in the traditional manner<br />

to acknowledge Rob Murray’s time as Captain.<br />

Rob has done a tremendous job.<br />

The Past Captain’s badge was pinned on Mr<br />

Murray’s lapel by Mr MacKay.<br />

19. Election of Vice Captain<br />

David Bell has been a member of Royal Dornoch<br />

since a very young junior. His passion <strong>for</strong> golf is<br />

only surpassed by his passion <strong>for</strong> Royal Dornoch<br />

and the Dornoch community. David is a wellrecognised<br />

Economist in the UK, Europe and<br />

many other parts of the World and still travels to<br />

lecture.<br />

David has served on Council previously under<br />

Hugh Laughland and Roly Bluck’s captaincies.<br />

For several years I have consulted with David<br />

during my work with Scottish Golf about Golf<br />

Tourism economy and other national trends.<br />

His University research into the demographics of<br />

Scotland and his work with the UK Government<br />

and the Scottish Government as well as links with<br />

economists across the World are evidence of how<br />

highly regarded David is held in his field. His<br />

exposure on radio and TV contributes to how he<br />

promotes Royal Dornoch.<br />

David has returned to live in Dornoch. David<br />

knows the importance of Royal Dornoch to the<br />

community.<br />

David’s focus will always be what is best <strong>for</strong> Royal<br />

Dornoch. As Vice-Captain Elect David has been<br />

immediately involved in our Finance<br />

subcommittee, and reviewing our Governance and<br />

Intellectual Property status as well as preparing a<br />

member’s survey to be issued after this golf season.<br />

In accordance with the Club Rules the Council of<br />

Management unanimously proposes Professor<br />

David N F Bell CBE. Passed unanimously by a<br />

show of hands.<br />

Thanks to everyone and the Past Captain’s <strong>for</strong><br />

inviting me. The last time I was on this stage was<br />

when I was appearing in Mid Summer Nights<br />


Dream as one of the 1st year pupils on the new<br />

stage as it was then. It was my first exposure to<br />

public per<strong>for</strong>mance and I have had many more<br />

since which brings back a lot of memories.<br />

I have played golf in Dornoch <strong>for</strong> around 65 years<br />

and I view the golf course as the Royal Burgh’s<br />

major treasure in sporting, cultural and economic<br />

terms. I view our course as being a members course<br />

and that means all members whether they be<br />

Championship Members or Struie Members and<br />

it is important that we understand the views of the<br />

membership. That is why, as Willie has said, we are<br />

hoping to conduct surveys by the end of the year<br />

to gain some views on how the members want to<br />

take the club <strong>for</strong>ward.<br />

I believe however, that there are an immutable set of<br />

values connected with Royal Dornoch and that is the<br />

openness and friendliness of the Club values that I<br />

have found are rarely shared that in some of the<br />

other world renowned courses just as Dornoch is.<br />

work on that issue. John McMurray has done a<br />

huge amount of work on the House which is not<br />

an easy area to deal with so I have to say that I have<br />

been hugely impressed by the ef<strong>for</strong>t the Council of<br />

Management have put into the Club really<br />

showing their dedication to the Club and of course<br />

a lot of that is facilitated by Neil, Claire and all the<br />

other staff.<br />

So thank you <strong>for</strong> your willingness to see me as the<br />

Vice Captain and I look <strong>for</strong>ward to our<br />

conversations and meetings around the future of<br />

Royal Dornoch.<br />

20. The 2019-20 Annual General Meeting is<br />

<strong>for</strong>mally closed and we will now hold the 2020-<br />

21 Annual General meeting.<br />

Closed at 8.06pm<br />

However, we must be prepared to move with the<br />

times and Willie has already mentioned a couple<br />

of areas that have already caught my attention.<br />

One is software and the need to upgrade ours to<br />

the same quality as the courses and we are moving<br />

ahead on that front. Another area is sustainability<br />

and we have been in discussion with the R&A<br />

about cooperation with them on that issue.<br />

Finally, as Willie has said I have already been<br />

working with the Council of Management <strong>for</strong><br />

many months and I have been really impressed<br />

with the amount of work that has gone into some<br />

of the various pockets that Willie has mentioned.<br />

Intellectual Property doesn’t seem like a real head<br />

turner but it is very, very important. Ian Irwin,<br />

John Gow and Willie have done a great deal of<br />


Minutes of the Annual General Meeting 2021<br />

Minutes of the 2021 Annual General Meeting<br />

of Royal Dornoch Golf Club<br />

Held in Dornoch Academy on Friday 15th<br />

October at 8.06pm<br />

Captain Willie MacKay in the Chair<br />

Present: 73 Ordinary Members, 7 Struie/Social<br />

Members<br />

1. Meeting Overview<br />

The Agenda will follow in sequence as set out but<br />

note the error of numerically agenda items<br />

jumping from 5 to 10.<br />

2. Apologies <strong>for</strong> Absence<br />

43 received prior to the meeting and 6 received at<br />

the meeting.<br />

3. Approval of Minutes<br />

Minutes of 2020 Annual General Meeting will be<br />

issued along with the minutes of the 2021 Annual<br />

General Meeting <strong>for</strong> approval at the <strong>2022</strong> AGM.<br />

4. Matters Arising from these Minutes<br />

As there are no minutes then there are no matters<br />

arising.<br />

5. Captain’s Report<br />

My brief update starts with the welcomed return<br />

of Overseas members and visitors. As our Finance<br />

Convenor will tell us <strong>2022</strong> is looking very positive<br />

and very busy.<br />

The biggest project has been choosing a new IT<br />

system that will handle our booking management<br />

system and replace Freetime as well as provide us<br />

with a system where members will have one card<br />

<strong>for</strong> all transactions <strong>for</strong> House, Retail and<br />

Competitions. This has been very thorough and<br />

we are close to decision time once we get the final<br />

feedback on timescale and costs.<br />

Our review of Governance is progressing and we<br />

are <strong>for</strong>tunate to have useful contacts with other<br />

Scottish Golf Clubs that have decided to become<br />

an incorporated body and have worked with<br />

Scottish lawyers. Members will be kept in<strong>for</strong>med<br />

and it will be an AGM proposal if there is a change<br />

to be considered.<br />

Considerable research and development has been<br />

completed looking at our Intellectual Property. We<br />

need to protect Royal Dornoch and this will near<br />

a conclusion when a decision on governance is<br />

ready to share but work is already underway<br />

checking contracts and liabilities.<br />

We are progressing the content <strong>for</strong> our Members<br />

Survey which will be issued after the golf season<br />

finishes. Results from the feedback will be shared<br />

with members and considered by our<br />

subcommittees and Council of Management to<br />

steer our decision making.<br />

2021 has been a difficult season with considerable<br />

extra work due to Covid and reduced staffing levels.<br />

There is no disguising the fact that at times we have<br />

struggled but we have survived and in much better<br />

shape than many other Golf Clubs of our size.<br />

It is disappointing that the new clubhouse is not<br />

yet started but be absolutely certain that it is just<br />

delayed and will be built.<br />


I am very grateful <strong>for</strong> the members that gave of<br />

their time to assist with Starting and other duties,<br />

including competitions. Our staff have been<br />

magnificent. Thank you to the members who<br />

joined Council members on our subcommittees.<br />

Since our first lockdown in March 2020, it has<br />

been non stop <strong>for</strong> Neil and Claire. Working far too<br />

many hours and too many weekends. The<br />

members owe you both tremendous thanks.<br />

The item numbering has been compromised and<br />

items 6 to 9 have been lost but they had no content.<br />

10. Election of Ordinary Members of Council<br />

On behalf of all members I thank retiring Council<br />

members, Cara Thompson, Kevin Matheson and<br />

Gordon Davies <strong>for</strong> their three years’ service in<br />

attending subcommittee meetings and monthly<br />

Council of Management meetings and their<br />

thoughtful input to the decision making.<br />

The resumes and skill set of the three candidates<br />

have been circulated <strong>for</strong> you to read.<br />

I am pleased that Gordon Davies is willing to<br />

continue on Council as I have greatly valued his<br />

opinions in discussions. Gordon’s contribution to<br />

our new clubhouse project has been immense but<br />

as I have said his input to decision making at<br />

Council has been equally welcomed and important.<br />

Wilma Murray has been on the Greens<br />

subcommittee and has contributed well to the very<br />

important role of maintaining our quality golf<br />

courses. Wilma has many years of experience<br />

serving on Golf Club Committees as you will have<br />


ead. I have greatly enjoyed working with Wilma<br />

and pleased to have proposed her nomination.<br />

Kenneth MacKenzie I have got to know this year<br />

and I see great enthusiasm to support Royal<br />

Dornoch using his significant experience and<br />

knowledge from both his career and his passion <strong>for</strong><br />

golf. Our meetings and golfing time have revealed<br />

a person that listens and then asks and bases<br />

decisions on evidence <strong>for</strong> the correct outcome.<br />

Council well. I encourage you to vote.<br />

Sandy Fraser has volunteered to oversee the<br />

counting of the votes.<br />

The meeting continued as the votes were counted<br />

and the results announced once this was<br />

completed.<br />

All three nominees received the approval of the<br />

members who voted.<br />

Our Club Rules state that members will be elected<br />

to serve on the Council only on the basis that the<br />

number of members voting in favour of their<br />

appointment exceed those voting against.<br />

You have ballot papers to complete and I propose<br />

to you all that we have three very suitable<br />

candidates with the qualities and skillset to serve<br />

11. Statement and Adoption of Accounts <strong>for</strong><br />

the Year 2020/2021<br />

With us just passing the halfway point in the<br />

financial year to 31st March <strong>2022</strong> I wanted to<br />

provide members with a brief update on how the<br />

Club’s finances are progressing.<br />


Income<br />

• Previously reported unprecedented<br />

subscription renewal levels. However, the<br />

anticipated negative impact on Entrance Fees<br />

has been offset by a continuing steady stream<br />

of new member applications <strong>for</strong> the Struie.<br />

Overall, taking Subs and Entrance Fees<br />

together we will be close to our budgeted<br />

figure.<br />

• Visitor Green Fees – the budgeted visitor<br />

numbers <strong>for</strong> 21/22 was set at 3,700 (FSC<br />

finger in the air!). You will have noted a<br />

marked increase in visitors from August<br />

onwards with the gradual return of<br />

international travel. Pleased to report that by<br />

the end of September we have seen more than<br />

4,000 visitor rounds played and have there<strong>for</strong>e<br />

passed our £ cash target <strong>for</strong> the full year.<br />

October continues to be busy.<br />

• Both Bar & Catering and the Pro Shop have<br />

traded well ahead of budget <strong>for</strong> the first half<br />

of the year with both areas generating strong<br />

gross margins.<br />

Expenditure<br />

• Costs have been tightly controlled across all<br />

areas of the operation and at the six month<br />

point are broadly in line with budgeted levels.<br />

• Exception to this is on Course Expenditure<br />

where Council approved during the year<br />

additional, un-budgeted, expenditure of<br />

approximately £43k on “Fertiliser, Turf &<br />

Seeds” across both courses to take on board<br />

recommendations from the R&A that the<br />

Club sought ahead of next year’s Seniors<br />

Amateur.<br />

• The second half of the year obviously sees<br />

traditionally low levels of income with<br />

expenditure rolling on. We may see some<br />

slippage to budgeted labour costs towards the<br />

end of the final quarter as we make sure we<br />

have the appropriate resource levels in place<br />

<strong>for</strong> next Spring.<br />

• Forward bookings <strong>for</strong> <strong>2022</strong> currently stand at<br />

11,000 visitors.<br />

Cash Position<br />

• Total bank balances at the end of September<br />

sit at just short of £5.9m which is<br />

approximately £400k up from our last year<br />

end.<br />

• Included in this are approximately £1.2m of<br />

green fee deposits held, up by approximately<br />

£220k from our last year end.<br />

Summary<br />

To sum up, the first half of the year has gone<br />

slightly better than planned financially. Should<br />

things continue to trend as we expect, we are on<br />

target to deliver the approved full year budget,<br />

which was slightly worse than break-even, or<br />

perhaps even a little better.<br />

The Annual Accounts were issued and we received no<br />

questions. It is proposed that the Accounts are adopted.<br />

Adopted by a show of hands.<br />

12. Election of Auditors<br />

The Council of Management unanimously<br />

proposes that the firm of Mackenzie Kerr and Co.<br />

be re-appointed as Club Auditors. Approved by a<br />

show of hands.<br />


13. Greens Convenor Report<br />

Members while this official and important item is<br />

included in our AGM we are all aware that we have<br />

lost a member in Adrian Bagott whose heart and<br />

soul went into his work as Greens Convenor and<br />

in all other aspects of Royal Dornoch. Adrian<br />

would not leave a stone unturned to seek out<br />

reasons and put <strong>for</strong>ward solutions and most<br />

certainly ask questions and demand answers and<br />

action.<br />

Our thoughts are with Margaret, Heather, Pru and<br />

Penny and I am certain that the Funeral Service<br />

on Wednesday at 1pm in Dornoch Cathedral will<br />

be a celebration of Adrian Bagott’s life and help<br />

the Family as they grieve and try and come to terms<br />

with their loss.<br />

The Greens Report was issued and we received no<br />

questions. It is proposed that the Greens Report<br />

is adopted.<br />

Adopted by a show of hands.<br />

14. Disciplinary Procedure<br />

Council of Management reviewed the Disciplinary<br />

Procedures.<br />

In Rule 21 (a), line 8, after “purpose” insert:<br />

“At their discretion the Council may invite up to<br />

two additional Ordinary Members to join this<br />

meeting if considered appropriate in order to<br />

achieve a suitable composition of those in<br />

attendance“.<br />

Delete the last sentence in Rule 21 (a), “Six<br />

members of the Council shall <strong>for</strong>m a quorum <strong>for</strong><br />

the purpose of this meeting.”<br />

and insert:<br />

“A quorum <strong>for</strong> the purpose of this meeting shall<br />

be six, comprising either members of the Council<br />

or a combination of members of the Council and<br />

any additional Ordinary Members invited“.<br />

Approved by a show of hands.<br />

Criteria <strong>for</strong> Royal Dornoch Life and Honorary<br />

Membership agreed by Council of Management.<br />

Recommendation to Council:<br />

To be appointed a Honorary Member of Royal<br />

Dornoch Golf Club, an individual would have to<br />

have made outstanding contributions to the game<br />

of golf (playing, developing, administering, writing<br />

or commentating) at World level and to show<br />

ongoing commitment to the aims and objectives<br />

of Royal Dornoch Golf Club and to furthering its<br />

international reputation.<br />

The criteria <strong>for</strong> the Life Member wording only<br />

differs in one aspect and that is we look <strong>for</strong> an<br />

excellent contribution.<br />

To be appointed a Life Member of Royal Dornoch<br />

Golf Club, an individual would have to have made<br />

excellent contributions to the game of golf<br />

(playing, developing, administering, writing or<br />

commentating) at world level and to show ongoing<br />

commitment to the aims and objectives of Royal<br />

Dornoch Golf Club and to furthering its<br />

international reputation.<br />

15. Honorary Membership<br />

Born in Aberdeen Paul turned professional in<br />

1986 and joined the European Tour in 1992 with<br />

his first win in 1996 – the Catalan Open.<br />


Lawrie’s career was trans<strong>for</strong>med in 1999 when he<br />

won the Open Championship at Carnoustie.<br />

He has had 3 Top 10 finishes in the European<br />

Order of Merit<br />

Twice a Member of Ryder Cup Team in 1999 and<br />

2012<br />

8 European Wins<br />

Teams:<br />

Represented Scotland 4 times in the World Cup<br />

3 times in the Seve Trophy Royal Trophy 2010<br />

In 1990 Lawrie won the Denis Lovell, Assistants<br />

Championship at Royal Dornoch and 29 years<br />

later won Scottish Seniors Open in 2019.<br />

His other recognition within golf:<br />

1999 Honorary Membership of European Tour<br />

2000 Awarded MBE in New Year’s Honours List<br />

2013 Awarded OBE in Birthday Honours List <strong>for</strong><br />

contribution to the development of junior golf<br />

2016 Vice-Captain Ryder Cup Team at Hazeltine<br />

2020 Captain Junior Ryder Cup Team<br />

Contribution to Golf Development in Scotland<br />

2001 the Paul Lawrie Foundation was created.<br />

Initially supported and developed interest in the<br />

game of golf <strong>for</strong> under 18’s. Paul Lawrie Flag Days<br />

became popular and supported with clubs<br />

receiving equipment to spread the competitions<br />

across the North East Area. This Foundation soon<br />

moved to include Stable<strong>for</strong>d, Match Play, Stroke<br />

Play events and more recently the Paul Lawrie Jug<br />

Event which we have staged.<br />


The Foundation expanded its reach to support<br />

hockey and football development. Further support<br />

<strong>for</strong> golf saw support <strong>for</strong> amateurs making the<br />

transition into a career on the Professional circuit.<br />

Ritchie Ramsey, David Law and several others<br />

benefited from financial support from the<br />

Foundation as well as advice from Lawrie and<br />

more recently Hannah McCook when she joined<br />

the Ladies European Tour.<br />

In 2018 the Foundation expanded to support golf<br />

development in Highland as well as Grampian.<br />

Service/support to Royal Dornoch.<br />

In 2013, Paul helped launch the PhD <strong>for</strong> Wade<br />

Cormack which was sponsored by the Club to<br />

research golf and sporting activities in the<br />

Highland area in the 1600 – 1800’s.<br />

In 2016 Paul Lawrie played with Sandy Lyle along<br />

with our juniors as we celebrated 400 Years of Golf<br />

at Dornoch.<br />

In February 2019 Paul gave freely of his time to<br />

entertain us with a Q&A session in the clubhouse.<br />

In 2020, Lawrie officially opened the new 7th hole<br />

on the Championship Course which gave us<br />

valuable video footage to use on social media as<br />

well as material <strong>for</strong> golf publications.<br />

Paul Lawrie loves coming to Dornoch and<br />

promotes our golf course and Golf Club. He will<br />

be a reliable ambassador <strong>for</strong> Royal Dornoch and I<br />

ask <strong>for</strong> your support <strong>for</strong> the Council of<br />

Management’s proposal. Council of Management<br />

proposes Honorary Membership <strong>for</strong> Mr Paul<br />

Lawrie MBE OBE.<br />

Unanimously approved by a show of hands.<br />

16. Life Membership<br />

Lorne Rubenstein has been a golf journalist <strong>for</strong><br />

over 35 years. His writings have appeared in golf<br />

magazines, newspapers and on websites around the<br />

world. He has written or co-written 14 books,<br />

working with such notable golfers as Tiger Woods,<br />

Nick Price, and Moe Norman.<br />

In 2018 his career was recognized and honoured<br />

as the recipient of the USPGA Lifetime<br />

Achievement Award in Journalism. The press<br />

release <strong>for</strong> that award includes the following:<br />

• Lorne Rubenstein is a four-time award-winner<br />

<strong>for</strong> the Golf Writers Association of America;<br />

• He won the 1985 Canada National Magazine<br />

Award;.<br />

• He was inducted into the Ontario Golf Hall<br />

of Fame in 2006 and the Canadian Golf Hall<br />

of Fame in 2007<br />

• Lorne received the PGA of Canada’s<br />

Distinguished Service Award (2013)<br />

He has been a tireless supporter of the Royal<br />

Dornoch since becoming a member. His book, A<br />

Season in Dornoch, did as much to promote and<br />

raise the visibility of our golf course and golf club<br />

as Herbert Warren Wind’s writings did over 50<br />

years ago.<br />

A Season in Dornoch was the catalyst that brought<br />

so many golfers to Dornoch and from this our<br />

World Rankings improved as more overseas<br />

visitors spread the word about our unique<br />

traditional links Championship Course.<br />

Council of Management proposes Life<br />

Membership <strong>for</strong> Mr Lorne Rubenstein<br />

Unanimously approved by a show of hands.<br />


The meeting closed at 20.29 and the Open Forum<br />

was opened <strong>for</strong> question from the floor <strong>for</strong> the<br />

Council of Management to consider.<br />

Denis Albutt – Quite a number of clubs now allow<br />

professionals to play in club competitions. Some<br />

have restrictions on which competitions. Why is<br />

the Council of Management against professionals,<br />

who are members with WHS handicaps, playing<br />

in any club competitions?<br />

Christine Callingham – Given the recent events<br />

will the Club be putting together a catastrophic<br />

events policy? Does the annual subscription<br />

revenue cover the running costs of the Club?<br />

Rusty Adamson – It is already extremely difficult<br />

to get members tee times in <strong>2022</strong> so will there be<br />

increased provision made?<br />

Carol MacKay – Concerns over the quality of<br />

service in the clubhouse as it does not compare to<br />

the quality of the course and how this is going to<br />

be addressed in the future if we are going to have<br />

a new facility.<br />

Transparency on the complaints that people make<br />

and the surveys that will be undertaken on how<br />

the in<strong>for</strong>mation and results that are gathered will<br />

be relayed to members.<br />

Concerned greatly that there is no capacity within<br />

the management or employees of the club <strong>for</strong> the<br />

running of the junior section, there is no<br />

communication or vision and there is a scrambled<br />

and panicked approach to providing lessons.<br />

Phil Prince – When I was an employee in the Pro<br />

Shop, I participated in a team training where we<br />

were urged to do our bit to make the<br />

guest/member’s daily experience a memorable/<br />

great one.<br />

• not if the half way house is shut during open<br />

and medal competition play<br />

• not if you can’t support social activity beyond<br />

8 pm in the clubhouse<br />

The club restaurant should be front of mind when<br />

any member and/or guest is looking to dine out<br />

locally. It isn’t if it’s not open and the quality<br />

experience is not good enough today (my opinion)<br />

when it is open.<br />

All above things in my opinion should be<br />

addressed be<strong>for</strong>e restarting the major new<br />

clubhouse project.<br />

Tim Lohmann – Should the Duke of York remain<br />

as an Honorary Member?<br />

Carol MacKay – Why did the Northern Counties<br />

Cup team not receive funding this year?<br />

The meeting closed at 8.45pm<br />

Best wishes to all members as we look <strong>for</strong>ward to<br />

the <strong>2022</strong> golf season.<br />

Royal Dornoch Staff and<br />

Council of Management.<br />

Mark Grant – The resolution of the AGM in 2019<br />

that was passed to build the clubhouse, do we need<br />

to go back to members to cancel that resolution?<br />



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