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Case Studies

Doncaster Golf Club

Greenstaff at a South Yorkshire golf club have turned bunker building into a fine art using the revetting or turf layering technique.

Led by Head Greenkeeper Kevin Kelsall, the five man team at Doncaster Golf Club began re-building their 56 bunkers in autumn.

Lindum supplied the club with turf specially harvested in strips 290mm wide instead of the usual 600mm, so that Kevin and his team were saved the time consuming task of cutting them lengthwise down the middle.

“With each bunker you do you get better,” says Kevin. “The bunkers were in a bad state of repair and although none of us had done the job before we decided we’d tackle it ourselves. Basically, you build a wall of turf, laying it upside down until you get the height and shape you want. This creates the new bunker face.”

“After they’d re-built the first bunkers they decided that they wanted turf 40mm thick,” remembers Lindum’s Assistant Production Manager Roger Moore who has been working with Kevin for the last three years. “We again, developed our harvesting methods to provide what they wanted. Using the thick turf makes the job quicker and easier.”

Having drawn an exact replica of the new bunker base on the ground, one metre long strips of turf are slit, across the width, every 3 or 4 inches so that the turf can be curved and fitted to shape. The first four layers need to be laid completely level. After that the layers are tapered back one inch per layer, with the back having considerably more layers than the front. Each layer of turf needs to be backfilled with soil to keep the new structure stable.

One of the team’s most impressive achievements to date is the creation of three new bunkers from one large original, bordering the sixth green.

“We built the two side bunkers first, starting with a completely flat base and ensuring that they were at the same level,” Kevin continues. “Both the left and right hand bunkers are the same depth. The middle bunker is 6 inches lower.”

Having back filled each turf layer throughout the building process, the team finished the job by landscaping the area with Festival Landscaping turf to match the fairways.

Roger Moore has nothing but praise. “They know what they want and they like it right,” he says. “I’m pretty amazed.”