Gleneagles Golf Courses And Estate

GEO Certified 10/2013
Auchterarder,
Scotland, United Kingdom
Telephone: +44 (0)1764 694392
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Gleneagles is one of Scotland’s greatest golfing venues. The grandeur of its landscape setting and illustrious history combine to draw visitors from all over the world. The golf courses which are the subject of this report cover a total area of 252 hectares, within a larger estate landholding of 394 hectares. This generous size is a fundamental factor in creating positive relationships between the playing areas and their environment.

The Gleneagles Hotel was opened in 1924 as the centrepiece of one of the world’s first golf resorts, the…

Mike Wood, GEOSA, Accredited Verifier Read verifier report.

GEO Certified Report

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Click below to read about the activities undertaken by this golf facility to operate sustainably.

Facility details

Golf Courses
The Kings Course (18 holes, 6800 yards, year opened 1923)
The PGA Centenary (18 holes, 7300 yards, year opened 1993)
The Queens Course (18 holes, 6200 yards, year opened 1924)
The Wee Course (9 holes, 1800 yards, year opened 1932)
1 Clubhouse(s)
3 Maintenance Facility/Facilities
1 Pro Shop
1 Practice Facility/Facilities
1 Halfway House(s)
1 Other
1 Other
1 Other

Nature

The Gleneagles Estate covers 394ha with the golf courses taking up 252ha, of which 68% is natural or semi-natural habitat: heather, grassland, gorse scrub, woodlands, parkland & veteran trees, numerous lochs, ponds, mires, burns & marsh. The estate was listed in the Scottish Inventory of Gardens & Designed Landscapes in 1987 for outstanding nature conservation value, high architectural interest & its James Braid golf courses.

 In 1984 the White Water basin mire on The King’s was designated a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI). 19 other areas are self-designated Sites of Scientific Interest.

Landscape is key to the Gleneagles experience with all courses fitting hand-in-glove with their topography. Diverse landform & vegetation allow for secluded, intimate scenery, extensive, elevated views, shelter & exposure. The Heuch o’Dule glacial meltwater channel is an impressive feature between the King's & Queen's. Kame, esker & kettlehole geology & topography is prevalent on The King’s; wooded seclusion on The Queen's. The PGA has more open terrain & expansive holes, its generous grasslands overlain with diverse woodlands & wetlands from glinting mire pools to reflective expanses of open water.

Over the years Gleneagles' habitats of greatest interest (wetlands & heathlands) have begun to succumb to natural succession. Great effort has gone into scrub, tree & bracken removal from these areas & will continue as required. Acid grasslands have declined too but still provide a diverse flora including occasional heath spotted orchid & mountain pansy (purple form). Future effort will focus on protecting & enhancing grasslands.

Besides the SSSI plant communities, species of note include tufted loosestrife, locally uncommon petty whin & a rich array of fungi. Key fauna include UK Priority Species red squirrel & otter; also records of up to 1400 toads in Heuch o’Dule 1996. Curlew & oystercatcher nest on the PGA, with good habitat also there for reedbunting & bullfinch.

Consultation & Surveys

This golf facility consults the following organizations regarding landscape heritage conservation:

  • Scottish Natural Heritage
  • Historic Scotland

The following landscape assessments and surveys have been undertaken at this golf facility:

Title Author Date View document
Scottish Inventory of Gardens and Designed Landscapes Historic Scotland 1987/01/01
2010/02/15
2010/02/15

This golf facility consults the following organizations regarding ecosystem protection and enhancement:

  • Perth and Kinross Red Squirrel Group
  • Scottish Natural Heritage
  • Forestry Commission Scotland
  • Scottish Environment Protection Agency

The following ecological surveys have been undertaken at this golf facility:

Title Author Date View document
Gleneagles Estate Conservation Status Assessment Dr Rosalind Smith, Nature Conservancy Council/SNH 1983/12/31
Gleneagles (White Water) Mire SSSI Site Notification (Reviewed 2010.12.10) Nature Conservancy Council 1984/11/29
Botanical Monitoring Projects 1992 – 1997 Bruce Reekie 1997/12/31
Flora and Fauna studies 1992 – 2000 Bruce Reekie, Dr Michael Bell 2000/12/31
Gleneagles Mire (White Water) SSSI Condition Monitoring Report (Favourable maintained) Chris McGregor, Anne Murray and Doug Gilbert, SNH Tayside and Clackmannashire 2003/08/13
2010/02/15
2010/02/15

Rare, protected and notable species occurring at this golf facility:

Local name Scientific name
Petty whin Genista anglica
Sphagnum cuspidatum
Sphagnum palustre
Sphagnum recurvum
Sphagnum auriculatum
Cross-leaved Heath Erica tetralix
Common Cottongrass Eriophorum angustifolium
Round-leaved Sundew Drosera rotundifolia
White Beak sedge Rhynchospora alba
Bottle sedge Carex rostrata
Water horsetail Equisetum fluviatile
Bog bean Menyanthes trifoliata
Marsh cinquefoil Potentilla palustris
Tufted loosestrife Lysimachia thyrsiflora
Mountain pansy Viola lutea
Heath spotted orchid Dactylorhiza maculata
Red squirrel Sciurus vulgaris
Common toad Bufo bufo
Common lizard Zootoca vivipara
Common frog Rana temporaria
Palmate newt Lissotriton helveticus
Common goldeneye Bucephala clangula
Gadwall Anas strepera
Osprey Pandion haliaetus
Hen harrier Circus cyaneus
Reed bunting Emberiza schoeniclus
Sedge warbler Acrocephalus schoenobaenus
Common crossbill Loxia curvirostra
Spotted flycatcher Muscicapa striata
Bullfinch Pyrrhula pyrrhula
Redstart Phoenicurus phoenicurus
Tree pipit Anthus trivialis
Skylark Alauda arvensis
Green woodpecker Picus viridis
Cuckoo Cuculus canorus
Greenshank Tringa nebularia
Long eared owl Asio otus
Barn owl Tyto alba
Short-eared owl Asio flammeus
Ringlet Aphantopus hyperantus
Small heath Coenonympha pamphilus
Small pearl-bordered fritillary Boloria selene
Painted lady Vanessa cardui
Common blue Polyommatus icarus
Small copper Lycaena phlaeas
Green hairstreak Callophrys rubi
Six spot burnet moth Zygaena filipendulae
Wood tiger moth Parasemia plantaginis
Large red damselfly Pyrrhosoma nymphula
Emerald damselfly Lestes sponsa
Black darter Sympetrum danae

This golf facility regularly monitors the following species as indicators of environmental quality:

Local name Scientific name
The total community of plant species which form the basin fen and Sphagnum lawn in White Water SSSI

Habitats & Designations

This golf facility features the following landscape designations:

Description Designating Authority
Historic Landscapes / Parklands Historic Scotland
Beeches Brig - line of protected veteran trees (approx 230 years old) marking old land boundary Historic Scotland
Camp Wood and Loaninghead Fort: ancient hill fort with rampart and trench defences RCAHMS Archaeological Record: NMRS no. NN90NW
Wester Greenwells, ruined croft - listed building (category unknown) Perth & Kinross Council

Area of habitats / vegetation types, and associated designations at this golf facility:

Title Estimated Area (Hectares) Designation
Rough 'ecological' grassland 113 None
Scrub Vegetation 25 None
Native Woodland 10.5 None
Wetlands 9 None
Open Water Features 4 None
Heather and other dwarf shrub communities 4 None
White Water Basin Mire SSSI 0.71 National Government

Turfgrass

Size and estimated species composition of amenity turfgrass maintained at this golf facility.

Estimated Area (Hectares) Turfgrass Species Sward Composition (%)
Greens 3.85 Hectares Poa annua 70%
Agrostis tenuis / capillaris 30%
Tees 2.8 Hectares Poa annua 50%
Agrostis tenuis / capillaris 50%
Fairways 30.0 Hectares Poa annua 20%
Festuca rubra 80%
Semi Rough 30.0 Hectares Lolium perenne 30%
Festuca rubra 70%

These turfgrasses are optimal for the circumstances at this club because:
Past fertilisation practices have tended to favour Poa annua and flushes of soft growth. Gleneagles have recently adopted a policy of reducing nutrient inputs with the aim of promoting better turf health and deeper rooting and the encouragement of the more dersirable species such as agrostis and festuca.

This golf facility assesses mowing patterns every: 6 months

This golf facility consults the following individuals / organizations regarding its grassing plan:

  • Twice yearly visit from the STRI
  • European Tour Agronomy Department

This golf facility is making the following efforts to manage the playing quality expectations of customers:

Activity Description
Establishing clear internal policies for irrigation, fertilization, colour, cutting heights, overseeding etc Policies clearly set out for each category in Environmental Management Plan 2008-13 with "naturalness" as the driver for managing the visual, seasonal, ecological and other impacts of turfgrass operations.
Promoting the playing quality values of more naturalized turf, particularly fairways and semi-rough Information bulletins posted on Members section of Gleneagles website (under agronomy) provide members with information specifically related to the mangement of the golf course i.e.long rough management. This section is updated monthly.
Improving customer understanding around greens maintenance Golf Courses and Estates Manager attends regular meetings with members to explain various aspects of course maintenance and to raise awareness of the implications of undertaking 'out-of-season' maintenance operations.
Demonstrating the direct relationship between environmental best practice and year round high quality playing surfaces Regular solid tining is undertaken throughout the year to reduce the need for hole coring (thereby reducing recyclable material) while still producing high quality surfaces.

Conservation & Enhancement

This golf facility is undertaking the following activities to conserve landscape character:

Activity Description
Allowing seasonal variation of course coloration and texture King's and Queen's fairways are not fertilised or irrigated and discolour naturally during periods of drought and over the winter months.
Appropriately matching mowing lines to contours Reshaping of PGA fairways to contours and carries at tees etc to naturalise appearance.
Reduction in fairway widths on the King's to regain former Braid character (whilst reducing mowing, fuel use and emissions too).
Protection and restoration of historic features Stabilisation work at Wester Greenwells ruined croft by drystone dyker.
Rebuilding of dry stone dyke at PGA 6th bog mire with mortar.
Rebuilding of stone bridges at 11th & 16th on the PGA.
Discreet on-course signage and furniture Tee markers made from recycled logs.
Currently trialling 'mow-over' tee signs. (18th Kings)
Conservation of specimen trees A run of old beech trees marks the line of an old route, even where a formal track no longer exists. It is an old land boundary called ‘Beeches Brig’. The trees are somewhere in the region of 230 years old and are protected by Historic Scotland.
Screening and softening unsightly man-made features PGA compound muted green for reduced landscape impact 1990.
Screen planting along A9 road – Scots pine, oak, birch and poplar.
Gradual conversion of red blaes paths on King's & Queen's with rootzone & turf for a natural look & lower maintenance.
Preservation of the historic landscape integrity of the hotel grounds Re-instated Golden Path to original layout and vegetation. Refurbished triangular bed at centre of Golden Path to reinstate the focal point with seating.
Preservation of the historic landscape integrity of the King's and Queen's Courses Widespread removal of gorse, scrub, trees and bracken to regain the original appearance of heathland / grassland and surrounding topography to retain the James Braid character.
Enhancement of approach to Gleneagles Created sense of arrival along boundary with A823. Planted 40 x 20ft lime trees under-planted with copper beech hedging.
Landscaping of new development areas Phase 5 for Glenmor complex completed extending tree and heathland planting and further construction of new ponds and waterways.
Designed planting to rear of new spa to screen from Braco Road.

This golf facility is undertaking the following activities to improve the landscape ecology of the golf course:

Activity Description
Minimizing the amount of amenity grass Estimated 10 ha of new conservation rough created on the PGA Centenary Course.
Reinstatement of unnecessary mown path at 4th tees to rough
Increasing the size of habitat patches Sandy waste (bunker) at 1st green on PGA Centenary Course infilled & reinstated as damp grassland extension to marshy area.
Connection of internal habitat patches New 10ha of conservation rough improved linkage.
Reinstatement of unnecessary mown path at 4th tees to rough.
Connection of patches with external habitats Acquisition for estate of Crook o'Moss, an extensive complex of lochan, reedbed, marsh and willow carr.
Creation of habitat corridors As the woodlands continue to mature and provide cover, more species will use these areas to travel from one habitat to the other.
Avoidance of habitat fragmentation Golf carts and maintenance machinery are restricted to cart paths where possible thereby reducing the risk of creating short-cuts / pathways through roughs. This policy ensures the retention of large areas of rough for use as habitat corridors.
Improving and diversifying habitat edges Cutting and collecting of previously un-mown roughs in preparation for spectator movement for the 2014 Ryder Cup has commenced. It is envisaged that continuing this process at least yearly will eventually create an area of wispy vegetation.

This golf facility is undertaking the following activities to improve the quality of habitats on the golf course:

Activity Description
Creation of botanically rich rough grassland Attempted to introduce wildflowers into bank landscaping at PGA compound – however, soil too rich and grasses out-competed wildflower species.
Ecologically informed management of scrub vegetation Heathland and grassland management - gorse, broom, bracken and invasive tree removal to reverse natural succession.
Coppicing of alder trees at 11th tees of PGA Centenary to create pocket of scrub woodland.
Promoting species and structurally diverse woodlands Natural regeneration of Scots pine woodland plus further planting of native trees - 2000 birch whips and 200 Scots pine - to expand the red squirrel habitat away from the Braco Road.
Establishment of littoral shelves and marginal vegetation in wetland areas Extension of the pond on the 9th hole of the PGA Centenary Course allowed for the creation of additional shelves which were left to revegetate naturally.
Maintenance of an appropriate balance of open water and aquatic vegetation Removal of invasive scrub, rhododendron and trees from SSSI and other mosses and wetlands. Phosphate filtering. Algae control. Canadian pondweed control. Water level management. Pollution interception.
Naturalization of linear habitats Grass, moss and lichen species are allowed to grow from stone dykes which, in turn, provides some protection from frost damage. Holes in dykes are not repaired which creates potential nesting sites.

This golf facility is undertaking the following activities to conserve and enhance biodiversity on the golf course:

Activity Description
Provision of nesting and nectar for pollinators Gleneagles have commenced a program to reduce the woodiness of areas of heather. Heather areas are trimmed when not in flower to maximise available areas for pollinators.
Installation of nest boxes Installation of hole fronted and open fronted bird boxes in hotel gardens and Glenmor Wood. Installation of 7 bat boxes in Glenmor Wood.
Installation of 48 hole fronted bird boxes throughout PGA Centenary Course
Provision of feeding tables Feeding station for red squirrels and birds with willow viewing screen. Installation of further two squirrel feeders in northern shelter belt of Norway spruce where red squirrel drey was found.
Control / management of alien species Regular removal of Canadian pondweed from Laigh Loch.
Regular removal of Ragwort from roughs
Provision of hibernation areas The erection of bird boxes has provided bats with potential sites for winter shelter.
Creation of micro-habitats (eg log and stone piles) Creation of log piles in woodlands near equestrian area. Planting of buddleia and berry-bearing plants in 90 Corridor Garden.
Creation of log piles in woodlands throughout PGA Centenary Course.
Supporting Local Biodiversity Action Plan Existing Red Squirrel habitats will be protected and enhanced where possible with the aim of extending these areas and linking them via wildlife corridors with neighbouring areas next to Auchterarder Golf Club.

Water

The Gleneagles Estate sits near the top of the local catchment area & uses mains & groundwater. Although much is metered, the scale & complexity of the resort hydrology, supply infrastructure & overlap of different departmental operations & metering, means ideal tracking of different components is sometimes constrained. Plans are in hand to improve on this.

Groundwater from lochs topped up from boreholes is used for golf course irrigation & summer machinery washing. Waterbodies are topped up for visual benefit if required. Total abstraction is not metered at present but irrigation (the greatest use) is quantified for the different golf courses. Impoundment & Abstraction Licenses are obtained annually from SEPA.

The two greenkeeping Compounds use mains water for winter machinery washing, spraying, toilets, showers & kitchen use by greenstaff. Gardens Compound & Hotel Grounds irrigation also use mains water. The Central Compound, which serves the King’s, Queen's & Wee Courses, is on the same mains supply as & inseparable from the Dormy Clubhouse usage which is primarily for catering, locker rooms & cleaning.

Outflow from the natural wetland system discharges off-site via the Green Burn. Course drainage is recycled back into the wetland system. As much storm water as possible is detained in lochs and ponds within the estate, with surplus to designated exit ponds.

Washbay water from the PGA & Gardens Compounds is disposed of through SEPA licenced soakaways following cleaning through oil/petrol & grass filters. At Central Compound it is recycled through a biological Hydroscape unit.

Domestic sewage from compound bothies, offices, course toilets & Dormy Clubhouse is disposed of through Gleneagles’ private sewage treatment plant, run by an outside agency & strictly regulated & licensed by SEPA. The plant aims to become self-sufficient for power by installing wind turbines & for cleaning water by harvesting rainwater which will be stored in an unused sewage tank.

Sources & Consumption

The following water audits have been undertaken at this golf facility:

Title Author Date View document
Water Efficiency Audit & Report 2008 (for hotel) Envirowise 2008/05/25

The water used at this golf facility is drawn from the following sources:

2012 Source(s) % of supply Total Consumption
Clubhouse(s) Public / Potable 100% 177,766,000 Litres
Golf Course Groundwater 100% 3,375,700 Litres
2011 Source(s) % of supply Total Consumption
Clubhouse(s) Public / Potable 100% 259,548,992 Litres
Golf Course Groundwater 100% 4,146,000 Litres
2010 Source(s) % of supply Total Consumption
Clubhouse(s) Public / Potable 100% 203,672,000 Litres
Golf Course Groundwater 100% 20,174,000 Litres

Irrigation & Efficiency

The following areas receive irrigation at this golf facility:

Greens Weekly
Tees Weekly
Fairways Weekly
Semi-Rough Never
Rough Never
Other Weekly
Other Daily

The irrigation system at this golf facility is:
Fully computer controlled

The irrigation system at this golf facility is:

Serviced every 6 months

Upgraded every 30 years

Re-calibrated and checked for efficient application every 6 months

This golf facility is undertaking the following activities to maximize irrigation efficiency:

Activity Description
Selection of grass species A Bent/Fescue mix is used for divot repairs and any returfing works are completed using Bent/Fescue turf purchased from local suppliers. This is the most suitable drought tolerant mix matching the existing sward of the King's and Queen's fairways
Soil decompaction and thatch management Aeration and thatch reduction to improve soil moisture penetration and retention.
Timing and dose of water application Overnight irrigation programme. Manual watering done late evening or early morning. Avoid irrigating when wind speeds are up.











Analysis of soil moisture Sensors have recently been installed as part of the Sub-Air system. Information collected from these sensors will be used to determine the duration of the irrigation programs.
Incorporation of evapotranspiration rates and weather data Historical data and information from weather forecasting websites is used to determine irrigation frequency and timing.
Use of wetting agents Applications of wetting agents (via boom for large areas or by handheld applicator for small areas) is undertaken to improve the absorption rates and aid water retention on greens and newly turfed areas
Targeting of sprinkler heads To minimise irrigated area. Upgraded all sprinkler heads on PGA Centenary greens in 2007. Upgraded all sprinkler heads on PGA Centenary tees, fairways and approaches in 2011.
Optimizing system pressure Appropriate sizing of pipes was calculated when extending irrigation on 9th hole and during reinstallation of 18th hole.
Recently installed gemini control system selects the most efficient hydraulic water usage thus maximising system pressure.
Adoption of cutting edge nozzle technology Low drift nozzles are used on all spraying equipment.
Ongoing monitoring of consumption Water use from both mains and boreholes is monitored and recorded monthly to provide good husbandry data and alert to unusual patterns of consumption.
Use of modern technology An automatic computer controlled system has been installed to enable precise application rates to be undertaken.

This golf facility is undertaking the following activities to conserve / reduce / minimize water consumption:

Activity Description
Repairing leaks Regular inspections of the irrigation system are completed to ensure system is free of leaks. Repairs are undertaken as necessary.
Smart Metering of mains supply Being considered via Scottish Water Business Stream
Recycling grey water Hydroscape biological water recycling system installed at Central Compound for washbay water
Avoid wastage of abstracted water Maximise detention of water within natural wetland system

Energy

With energy becoming an ever more crucial issue & energy costs expected to rise substantially, energy management & carbon awareness have become resort-wide matters of increasing urgency.

Steps are being taken towards positive energy management & being alert to the full range of activities & operations which involve energy usage. While greenkeeping operations inevitably involve significant fuel use, the adoption of a 3-5 year machinery replacement programme & highest standards of servicing & maintenance helps significantly with fuel efficiency on the golf courses & estate. Composite fuel use is evaluated when selecting combined or multiple machinery options.

In 2007, a woodchip powered biomass boiler was installed in the hotel for heating & hot water. Future ideas on renewables include electricity generation from on-site in-vessel food composting & windpower for the resort’s sewage treatment plant.

To date no formal energy or carbon evaluation has been done for the Golf Courses & Estate, which it is hoped to remedy in the near future. The resort keeps monthly energy consumption records but Golf Courses & Estates is introducing new recording & monitoring Worksheets to help improve departmental awareness & progress.

Sources & Consumption

The following energy surveys have been undertaken at this golf facility:

Title Author Date View document
Carbon Trust – further support information (2008) Carbon Trust 2008/05/10
Carbon Trust Assessment - Specific Energy Saving Opportunities (2005) Carbon Trust 2005/06/11
Carbon Trust Action Energy Survey (2003) Carbon Trust 2003/04/18
Gleneagles Golf Courses and Estate Energy Uses (in-house audit of different uses of different fuels for Environmental Management Plan 2009-2013) Scott Fenwick 2008/12/31

Consumption of renewable energy and resources at this golf facility:

2012 2011 2010
Biomass 4952600 4388952 5125003

Consumption of non-renewable energy and resources at this golf facility:

2012 2011 2010
Diesel (Litres) 39032 40679 41175
Hydraulic Oil (Litres) 300 350 300
Natural Gas (Litres) 22656 27497 25379
Non-renewable Grid (kWh) 697624 715589 706606
Petrol (Litres) 18499 17107 15052

Energy Efficiency

This golf facility is undertaking the following activities to diversify energy and fuel supply:

Activity Description
Biodegradable hydraulic oil Currently using biodegradable hydraulic in all machinery.
Trialled electric mowers Tried electric mowers from 1990s to 2005 but performance not efficient for whole site with available technology.
Gleneagles would be keen to take advantage of any technological advances which may allow further trials in the future.

This golf facility is undertaking the following activities to reduce energy consumption:

Activity Description
Investment in low-energy heating and air conditioning systems Installation of biomass boiler in hotel.
Optimizing thermostat levels for heating and refrigeration Turning down thermostats in Golf Courses and Estate Office, Greenkeeping Compounds and Gardeners Compound.
Upgrading of building insulation Double glazing installed in greenkeeping compounds.
Use of natural light (e.g. sunlight pipes) PGA Greenkeeping compound was constructed with sections of clear roof panels to allow natural light to filter into workspaces.
Installation of low-energy lighting Low energy lighting has been installed in toilet areas of greenkeeping compounds.
Use of motion sensor lighting Motion sensors have been installed in toilet areas of greenkeeping compounds
Transition to energy efficient appliances Upgrade of hot water tanks and inefficient boilers to combi boilers in greenkeeping compounds.
Educating staff and customers Golf Courses & Estates is introducing new recording & monitoring worksheets to help improve departmental awareness & progress.
Energy efficient equipment Before purchasing a new piece of equipment the energy efficiency is
investigated. This has to be carried out as part of the Capital
Expenditure Proposal submitted to the hotel.

Vehicles & Transport

The maintenance fleet at this golf facility uses the following fuel sources:

Ride-on Mowers Walking Mowers Utility Vehicles
Petrol 100% 41%
Diesel 100% 59%

Additional vehicles operated by this golf facility use the following fuel sources:

Golf Carts Cars Buses
Petrol 11%
Grid Electric 89%

This golf facility has established the following schemes to encourage reductions in staff and customer transport emissions:

Activity Description
Car sharing incentives Work rota is formulated to coincide with the rest days of car-sharing staff.
Group transportation (e.g. buses) Guests arriving at the local train station are collected by Gleneagles own minibus.
Secure cycle parking A 'cycle to work' scheme allows staff to hire a bike for travelling to and from work with the option of purchasing their bike at a significant discount
Promoting public transport routes and timetables Co-operated in development of publicised walking routes in local “Take the Bus for a Walk” initiative.
Staff showers Staff showers are available to staff taking part in the 'cycle to work' scheme.
Tax breaking incentives for cycling Diageo Cyle to work scheme gives opportunity for tax relief for those taking part.
Encouraging bicycle use and walking Free bikes are available for guests.
Produced “Getting Around” pocket brochure with map of walking,
cycling and jogging routes within the estate, cycling routes within the wider countryside plus floor plan of hotel.

Supply Chain

A business-wide purchasing policy has been tightened to increase sustainable sourcing. Suppliers and contractors are asked if they are accredited to any environmental initiatives or have their own environmental policy. Green purchasing policy communicated to suppliers by letter.

Before purchasing a new piece of equipment, a number of sustainability parameters have to be assessed as part of the Capital Expenditure Proposal submitted to the hotel, such as energy efficiency, durability and life expectancy, noise and vibration.

Worksheet has been set up for the Golf Courses and Estate to track sustainability credentials of departmental suppliers.

Waste management is highly advanced at Gleneagles. Waste management operates at resort level with a target of zero to landfill by 2010. A Waste Watchers’ Group drives, monitors & reports on progress. A Waste Audit in 2007 showed that of the 570 tonnes sent to landfill, 40% was recyclable, 35% food waste & 25% other waste types. (Total was later revised up by 100 tonnes.)

A recycling compound was built in to maximise waste separation for external & charitable recycling. Office recycling boxes & 300 segregating bins were widely distributed for staff, guest & visitor use. Food waste is now recycled off-site. The aim is on-site in-vessel composting, ideally incorporating electricity generation.

All grass clippings, horticultural & most other green waste is composted at a local commercial facility & the resultant product bought back for horticultural uses & groundworks round the estate. The ash waste from the hotel’s biomass boiler is mixed with the green compost for use in flowers beds & new garden developments.

Purchasing Policies

This golf facility undertakes the following ethical / environmental purchasing activities:

Activity Description
Measures to avoid waste at source Suppliers pressed to reduce &/or recover packaging.
Kitchen facility rather than dispensing machines avoids use of
individually wrapped portions & sachets.
Memory sticks instead of CDs.
Use of local suppliers The use of local suppliers are used when ever possible.
Use of local products Although not restricted to local produce, menus have a Scottish bias,
with cascading sourcing protocol of local, regional, Scottish, British, European, before global sources. Menus change quarterly and seek to use seasonal produce.
Selection of certified products All timber purchased is FSC accredited.
Use of recycled and recyclable products Hotel policy to use recycled paper.
Selection of products that feature minimal packaging Bulk purchasing is preferred to purchasing small quantities. For example, liquid fertiliser and conditioners (seaweed etc) is purchased in 1000 and 210 ltr containers rather than 5,10 or 20 ltr containers.
Reducing Deliveries and Re-using Bulk Packaging Currently investigating the possibility of receiving liquid fertiliser via tanker by filling IBC's on-site. Deliveries would be co-ordinated with other clubs to reduce delivery frequency and maximise the re-use of existing packaging (IBC's)

Supply Chain

An overview of the supplier network at this golf facility:

Total number of suppliers Total number of suppliers within 10 Miles Total number of suppliers within 100 Miles
Trade & Contractors 3 3
Maintenance Equipment 4 3
Course Supplies 8 2 4

Turfgrass Inputs

This golf facility undertakes the following IPM activities:

Activity Description
Encouraging drought and disease tolerant grasses Gleneagles has recently adopted a policy of reducing nutrient inputs with the aim of producing a healthier sward less susceptible to disease attack. In turn this has led to increased rooting and subsequent drought tolerance.
Managing stress and wear Daily movement of tee markers, hole changing every 3-4 days and redirecting foot traffic by roping off areas to spread wear all contribute to reducing turf stress levels.
Enhancement of soil structure Applications of sand on King's and Queen's greens have been applied via 'drill and fill' operations.
Large tine verti-draining followed by sand top-dressing / brushing was also completed on King's and Queen's greens
Optimization of the growing environment Product trials with the aim of increasing photosynthsesis (transition). Installation of Sub-Air system has increased soil temperatures by reducing water retention which has influenced nitrogen source thereby reducing leaching into watercourses.
Managing thatch levels Coring, Verti-draining, Verti-cutting, and using the Graden on a variety of turf surfaces at regular intervals and in conjunction with sand top-dressing during the growing season are all procedures aimed at reducing thatch levels.
Managing surface moisture Daily mowing or switching of greens and tees is undertaken to remove dew and reduce conditions likely to encourage outbreaks of disease.
Establishing thresholds for pests and disease Only spray when essential. Favour curative over preventative fungicide use. Careful selection of chemicals to ensure effective control when required. Spot/patch treatment when possible.
Scouting for pests and diseases Close monitoring for pests & diseases. Allow disease outbreaks to run its course dependent on severity & time of year. Manual weeding of daisies, plantains & speedwell on greens, fairways & bunker faces.
Monitoring / improvement of plant health Depth and general health of roots is checked during hole changing. Regular soil tests are completed to ensure existing fertiliser program is providing adequate nutrition for optimum turf health.
Routine use of alternatives to pesticide use in hotel grounds. Hoeing & handweeding shrub & flower beds/borders. Bark mulch on beds/borders; herbicide only on paths, hard standings, some fine turf & paddocks. Garden cultivars with improved disease resistance. Scarification & aeration (& FeSO4) v moss in lawns.

Fertilizer use at this golf facility in the last three years (kg):

2012 2011 2010
Fairways - K - Inorganic 11.5 58 52
Fairways - N - Inorganic 32 137 128
Fairways - P - Inorganic 0 23 20
Greens - K - Inorganic 109 268 273
Greens - N - Inorganic 50 200 238
Greens - N - Organic 60 53
Greens - P - Inorganic 16 57 58
Rough - K - Inorganic 0 0 0
Rough - N - Inorganic 0 0 0
Rough - P - Inorganic 0 0 0
Semi-Rough - K - Inorganic 0 10 10
Semi-Rough - N - Inorganic 0 20 20
Semi-Rough - P - Inorganic 0 0 0
Tees - K - Inorganic 49 51 84
Tees - N - Inorganic 47 73 90
Tees - P - Inorganic 0 18 36
Total Fertilizer Use - Inorganic 314 915 1009
Total Fertilizer Use - Organic 60 53 0

Pesticide use at this golf facility in the last three years (kg):

2012 2011 2010
Fairways - Fungicide - Active Ingredient 0 0 0
Fairways - Fungicide - Number of applications per year 0 0 0
Fairways - Herbicide - Active Ingredient 0 0 0
Fairways - Herbicide - Number of applications per year 1 2 2
Fairways - Insecticide - Active Ingredient 0 0 0
Fairways - Insecticide - Number of applications per year 1 1 1
Greens - Fungicide - Active Ingredient 14.5 63 83
Greens - Fungicide - Number of applications per year 2 7 11
Greens - Herbicide - Active Ingredient 0 0 0
Greens - Herbicide - Number of applications per year 0 0 1
Greens - Insecticide - Active Ingredient 0 0 0
Greens - Insecticide - Number of applications per year 1 1 1
Rough - Fungicide - Active Ingredient 0 0 0
Rough - Fungicide - Number of applications per year 0 0 0
Rough - Herbicide - Active Ingredient 0 0 0
Rough - Herbicide - Number of applications per year 0 0 0
Rough - Insecticide - Active Ingredient 0 0 0
Rough - Insecticide - Number of applications per year 0 0 0
Semi-Rough - Fungicide - Active Ingredient 0 0 0
Semi-Rough - Fungicide - Number of applications per year 0 0 0
Semi-Rough - Herbicide - Active Ingredient 0 0 0
Semi-Rough - Herbicide - Number of applications per year 0 1 2
Semi-Rough - Insecticide - Active Ingredient 0 0 0
Semi-Rough - Insecticide - Number of applications per year 0 0 0
Tees - Fungicide - Active Ingredient 0 0 0
Tees - Fungicide - Number of applications per year 0 0 1
Tees - Herbicide - Active Ingredient 0 0 0
Tees - Herbicide - Number of applications per year 1 1 1
Tees - Insecticide - Active Ingredient 0 0 0
Tees - Insecticide - Number of applications per year 0 1 1

This golf facility undertakes the following actions to optimize pesticide use:

Activity Description
Selection on the least toxic and lest persistent products The majority of products used are flowable and 'contact' with low soil persistence.
Selection of appropriate products for specific pests and diseases Careful selection of chemicals to ensure effective control when required.
Spot-treatment with handheld sprayers and wipers Asulox application for bracken control is undertaken with knapsacks to ensure optimum coverage and reduce applications to non-target species i.e heather
Calibration and testing of sprayers Calibration of sprayers is undertaken on a regular basis and every time new products are applied, application rates change or nozzle choice alters.
Non-chemical weed control Allow disease outbreaks to run their course dependent on severity & time of year. Manual weeding of daisies, plantains & speedwell on greens, fairways & bunker faces.
Use of organic and biological products to improve plant health and resistance. Use of liquid conditioners (cow slurry based) and seaweeds to manage stress and increase rooting. Also used to enourage benificial bacteria within the rootzone.
Routine use of alternatives to pesticide use in hotel grounds Hoeing & handweeding shrub & flower beds/borders. Bark mulch on beds/borders; herbicide only on paths, hard standings, some fine turf & paddocks. Garden cultivars with improved disease resistance. Scarification & aeration (& FeSO4) v moss in lawns.

Waste Management

The following waste audits have been undertaken at this golf facility:

Title Author Date View document
Waste Audit Summary Report Clare Wooton, Business Environment Partnership 2007/08/14
2010/02/15

This golf facility manages key waste streams as follows:

Re-use Recycle Landfill Incinerate
Glass false true false false
Plastic false true false false
Aluminium false true false false
Metal false true false false
Paper & Cardboard false true false false
Grass Clippings false true false false
Cores & Turf true false false false
Sand true false false false
Wood / Timber true false false false

This golf facility undertakes the following activities to continue the lifecycle of materials and resources:

Activity Description
Separation of recyclable materials A self-contained recycling compound built 2007/08 for a wide range of waste streams including paper, cardboard, glass, cans, equipment,
paint, residual courtesy toiletries amongst others.
Remnant candle wax melted and incorporated into new candles.
Establishment of recycling centers 300 bins around resort for segregation and collection system. Creation of storage bays at Central and Gardens Compounds to ensure products kept free from contamination and wastage reduced.
Returning clipping to fairways and walkways All grass clippings, horticultural & most other green waste is composted at a local commercial facility. Clippings usually left on fairways. Cores, turf, soil etc stockpiled & re-used for weak areas & construction work on golf courses & estate.
Education of staff and customer education Recycling posters located around the resort. Footer message on email to discourage unnecessary printing. Staff advised to send e-Christmas cards to colleagues. Suppliers pressed to reduce and/or recover packaging.
Waste awareness campaigns Waste Watchers Group monthly meetings. Clear strategy on handling, storage etc communicated to staff.
Office stationery efficiencies Use of scrap paper for notes.
Use of used envelopes for internal mail.
2nd hand items When refurbishing rooms second hand furniture from hotel is reused in offices or is sold to members of staff.

Pollution Control

Through the 5 Corner Stones of the Sustainability Policy - our guests, waste, energy & supplier management, & our team members - Gleneagles' longstanding principles of staff awareness, pollution prevention & continuous improvement have evolved into:
• Taking responsibility for our impact on the environment
• Raising awareness & motivating change in behaviour
• Promoting environmental best practices
• Improving financial results, without compromising guest satisfaction.

Gleneagles has a high profile, high quality & sensitive natural & cultural environment. In line with corporate policy, Golf Courses & Estate have adopted operational policies to avoid soil, water & air pollution, enhance the natural, working & leisure environment, nurture a knowledgeable & informed staff & exceed environmental legal compliance.

The quantity & quality of wetland habitats, free-draining soils over fluvioglacial sand & gravel deposits & an elevated position in the River Earn catchment illustrate both the consequences for the site itself & wider vulnerability to internal soil & water pollution events.

Whilst, due to its role as a professional tournament venue & some aspects of its American-style design, turfgrass management on The PGA Course is considerably more intensive than the King’s & Queen’s, Integrated Pest Management is key on all courses with a view to minimum inputs of fertiliser, water, fungicide, herbicide & insecticide for the circumstances.

Both Central & PGA Compounds have been upgraded in recent years & provide good workplace facilities for staff. Environmental improvements include petrol interceptors, double glazing, sonic bird-deterrent to avoid swallow droppings on stored equipment & materials, & upgrade of hot water tanks & inefficient boilers to combi-boilers. All staff & contractors are briefed on how their job may affect the environment. When working in environmentally sensitive areas they are given specific instructions on how to minimise their impact.

Water Analysis

This golf facility monitors water quality with the following frequency:

Chemical Biological Visual
Inflow Yearly Yearly Weekly
On-Site Yearly Yearly Weekly
Outflow Yearly Yearly Weekly

Waste Water

Waste water from this golf facility is managed as follows:

Discharges to Formal Discharge Agreement
Golf Course On-Site Treatment Plant Yes
Clubhouse On-Site Treatment Plant Yes
Maintenance Facility On-Site Treatment Plant N/A
Wash Pad On-Site Treatment Plant Yes

Hazardous Materials

Hazardous materials at this golf facility are handled and disposed of as follows:

Secure Storage Registered Uplift
Detergents true true
Cooking Oils true true
Lubricants true true
Pesticide Containers true true
Fertiliser Bags true true
Oil Filters true true
Batteries true true

Pollution Prevention

This golf facility undertakes the following activities to prevent pollution from its maintenance facility and clubhouse:

Activity Description
Storage of equipment and hazardous products on covered, sealed impervious areas All non-enclosed machinery is stored under cover in a secure lean-to or in a maintenance facility. Chemical safes and fuel stores are bunded and locked when not in use.
Maintenance of equipment on covered, sealed impervious areas Maintenance and servicing of equipment is undertaken at a dedicated facility adjacent to Central Compound. Routine maintenance and machine re-setting are completed under cover in Greenkeeping Compounds. All buildings have concrete floors.
Mixing of pesticides and fertilizers over impervious surfaces All chemical & fuel stores have spill containment units fitted. Spill kits on site & in the event of a spillage registered contractor will remove any contamination from this site. Trialed oil spill response kits for hydraulic oil bursts on greens.
Installation of above-ground fuel tanks Installed new petrol and diesel tanks above ground to minimise pollution risk.
Underground storage tanks have had second internal skin installed

This golf facility undertakes the following activities to prevent pollution on its golf course:

Activity Description
Eliminating leachate and run-off through careful timing of turf inputs Practice further enhanced by informed selection of fertiliser type
and informed selection of pesticides (least toxic, least persistent).
Establishment of vegetative buffer strips around water bodies Maintain vegetative buffers round ponds, mires and burns.
Naturalisation of pond margins to improve oxygenation.

Establishment of emergency spillage response plan All chemical & fuel stores have spill containment units fitted. Spill kits on site & in the event of a spillage registered contractor will remove any contamination from this site. Trialed oil spill response kits for hydraulic oil bursts on greens.
Controlling erosion and sediment discharge Erosion is minimised through the establishment of un-mown buffer zones providing deep-rooting vegetation able to withstand rapid flows of water.
Establishment of pesticide-free zones Operation of No-spray and buffer zones maintained around all watercourses in accordance with LERAP.
Use of swales and bio-filters to slow and treat surface run-off Swale construction at drainage outfalls aids the removal of nutrients before entering watercourses.
Trialling of pollution control systems Trialed oil spill response kits for hydraulic oil bursts on greens.

Community

Gleneagles is one of the largest employers in the area and as such has a huge impact on the local economy. Employing local people plays a significant part in the success of the resort and visits to local secondary schools promoting careers at Gleneagles are a key factor in attracting prospective employees to the resort.
These presentations cover all aspects of the hotel and representatives from seven different departments are on hand to provide careers advice. These include
-golf maintenance (greenkeeping)
-golf academy (tuition)
-banqueting service (table set up/serving)
-housekeeping
-spa/phsio
-chefs
-bar
-salon

Employment & Education

Typical staffing levels at this golf facility are:

Full Time Part Time Seasonal
Club Management 5
Course Management 35 17
Food & Beverage 20 2 6
Golf Coaching 8
Retail & Leisure 8 4
Caddies 32 50

The sustainability working group at this golf facility is comprised of:

  • Course Manager
  • Technical Specialist
  • Department representatives

Employees at this golf facility receive the following formal and informal environmental education:

Activity Description
Storage, application and disposal of pesticides All employees applying chemicals hold relevant pesticide application certificates which covers safe storage, application and disposal.
Efficient water management Irrigation technician regularly attends off-site training seminars covering programming, repairs, arc adjustment, nozzle replacement, etc.
Regular visits from irrigation company representatives provide up to date technical expertise.
Management of accidents and emergencies Regular fire training and manual handling courses are completed by all company employees at 6 monthly intervals.
First aid courses are available for all staff with a minimum of 3 staff holding qualifications in each greenkeeping department.
Management of habitats and vegetation Site visits from environmental consultants provide guidance on management of specific areas.
Specific avifauna advice is provided by Tay Ringing Group.
Waste minimization, separation and recycling All departments are issued with clearly identifiable recycling receptacles to separate recyclable materials.
New employees are trained on waste management during company induction which is reinforced during departmental inductions.
Health & Safety Tests for hearing and hand/arm vibration are conducted by the occupational nurse.
Regular training courses are provided (safe lifting procedures) and departmental induction training covers all PPE requirements.
Energy Saving During departmental inductions staff are instructed to turn off lights, elecrical items, engines, etc to save energy and conserve fuel.
Posters also remind staff to turn off lights when leaving rooms.
Understanding of landscape and cultural heritage Details of landscape and cultural heritage are included in the Environmental Management Plan which is available to all staff.
Environmental management planning The Action Plan section of the Environmental Management Plan is attached to the staff notice board. Greenkeeping staff are made aware of proposed works via daily or weekly team meetings.

Community Relations

This golf facility engages with local community groups in the following manner:

Activity Description
Neighbours A community liason officer has recently been appointed to enable the immediate local community to be kept updated on issues affecting them in the build-up to the Ryder Cup.
Local Government Gleneagles has developed a close relationship with the Perthshire Big Tree Country Program which is run in association with Perth and Kinross Council. Gleneagles provides some funding for the program and promotes guest visits.
Local Community Groups Local community groups will be able to liase directly with the community liason officer who will attend community council meetings.
Media Newspaper and television media are invited to attend organised events normally associated with key announcements (Ryder Cup/Johnnie Walker).
Schools & Colleges Both local (Elmwood College) and international (Finnish) students have undertaken course visits as part of their greenkeeping studies with their main focus on comparing the different styles of course (King's /Queen's vs PGA Centenary)

Land Use & Cultural Heritage

This golf facility provides access and diversified land use for others through:

Activity Description
Maintenance of existing public paths Rights-of-ways, cart paths and internal roads are maintained for public use. Pedestrians and cyclists are encouraged to use all paths through the production of maps available to all guests.
Creation of new paths and nature trails A 'Welly Walk' for younger hotel guests was created to enable easier viewing of squirrel feeding stations.
Installation of effective and welcoming signage Finger posts at right-of-way junctions indicate direction and distance to next location.
Signs and marker posts located alongside the internal road and cart path direct walkers and cyclists away from areas of play.
Providing opportunities for other recreation (e.g. fishing) As well as encouraging members of the public to participate in cycling and walking, hotel guests have the opportunity to fish in some of the lochs as well as undertaking off-site activities such as shooting and 4-wheel driving.
Partnership conservation and access projects (e.g. community woodland) As part of the promotion of the Perthsire Big Tree Country Project a number of labelled trees have been planted in the grounds of the Hotel replicating the mature specimens visited as part of the Big Tree Project Tour.

The following archaeological and heritage surveys have been carried out at this golf facility:

Title Author Date View document
Various archaeological records, Canmore database Royal Commission on Ancient and Historic Monuments of Scotland

This golf facility consults the following organizations regarding the conservation of cultural heritage:

  • Historic Scotland

This golf facility undertakes the following activities to conserve cultural heritage features:

Activity Description
Buildings (Listed Buildings / Ancient Monuments etc) Stabilisation work at Wester Greenwells ruined croft by dry stone dyker was completed to prevent further deterioration.

Communications

This golf facility undertakes the following internal environmental communications:

Activity Description
Provision of newsletters, notice boards & poster display Information bulletins posted on Members section of Gleneagles website (under agronomy) provide members with information specifically related to the mangement of the golf course i.e.long rough management. This section is updated monthly.
Members evenings and course walks Golf Courses and Estates Manager attends regular meetings with members to explain various aspects of environmental management and to raise awareness of the implications of undertaking environmental practices (mowing and collection of unmown roughs)
Course guides / brochures Proposed inclusion of environmental information in course guide as part of Ryder Cup Program.
Interpretation panels & course signage Proposed placement of interpretation boards in high profile public areas. Possible locations include Halfway House and Dormy Clubhouse. Proposal may be part of Ryder Cup preparations.
Establishment of a nature trail A 'Welly Walk' for younger hotel guests was created to enable easier viewing of squirrel feeding stations.

This golf facility undertakes the following social and environmental advocacy activities:

Activity Description
Website, press releases & brochures Information bulletins posted on Members section of Gleneagles website (under agronomy) provide members with information specifically related to the mangement of the golf course i.e.long rough management. This section is updated monthly.
Supporting campaigns Each year all staff vote to decide which charitable organisation they wish to support. All money raised during raffles at staff functions throughout the year is then donated to this worthwhile cause.
Attending community meetings The recently appointed community engagement officer will provide a link between the community and the event planning process for the Ryder Cup thereby providing accurate information on any issues affecting the local community.