St Andrews Links The Castle Course

GEO Certified® 11/2011 GEO Re-Certified 12/2014
St Andrews,
Scotland, United Kingdom
Telephone: +44 (0) 1334 466676
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This report presents the results of the verification carried out under the terms of the Re-Certification procedure, which takes place every 3 years. The Re-Certification procedure conforms to the same comprehensive protocols as the original certification, but with a focus on changes over the period since original certification. It therefore has specific priorities, and applies explicit criteria which differ slightly from those used originally. In particular, the club’s progress in addressing any Continual Improvement Points is a key area of…

Mike Wood, GEOSA, Accredited Verifier Read verifier report.

GEO Certified® Report

GEO Certified® is the symbol of great golf environments worldwide – designating that a golf facility has met a credible standard in the areas of nature, water, energy, supply chain, pollution control, and community, and is committed to continually improve. GEO Certified® is widely trusted and endorsed by a growing number of organizations and people, both inside and outside golf.

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

Facility details

Golf Courses
The Castle Course (18 holes, 6759 yards, year opened 2008)
1 Clubhouse(s)
1 Maintenance Facility/Facilities
1 Pro Shop
1 Practice Facility/Facilities
1 Halfway House(s)
1 Other

Nature

The Castle Course is located in a clifftop setting just outside the east of St Andrews Medieval Citylooking out over the North Sea. The site was originally agricultural land. The clubhouse and car park sit near the site of what was Kinkell Castle – from which the course takes its name.

Wildlife interest is considerable for such a young course. Skylark (alauda arvensis) are prolific in the wider areas of the fescue rough and meadow pipit (anthus pratensis) can also be heard but less often seen. Lapwing (Vanellus vanellus) too benefit from the more sparce conditions of certain areas of the course. Brown hare (Lepus capensis) frequent the course - a Biodiversity Action Plan species. Various butterfly species have also been observed, including peacock (Inachis io) and meadow brown (Maniola jutina). The bird's-foot trefoil (Lotus corniculatus) will also encourage the common blue butterly (Polyommatus icarus)and possibly six spot burnet moth. Other plant species of interest include; hard head (Centaurea nigra), red campion (Silene dioica), tufted vetch (Vicia cracca), common vetch (Vicia sativa), Kidney-vetch (Anthyllis vulneraria), white clover and red clover (Trifolium pratense) and soft rush. Maiden pinks (Dianthus deltoides), were on the site prior to construction and were protected by fence to avoid damage with some being moved to a more appropriate site while cuttings were propogated to allow us to introduce more once the course was open.

Pre-construction Phase 1 and 2 habitat surveys were conducted. The course is linked to St Andrews via an SSSI site called Kinkell Braes (cliffs directly to the north of the site). It is renowned for its flora and geology. As many original drystone walls have been maintained as possible.

The two buildings (Clubhouse and Maitenance) were designed to be low level so they were partially hidden to fit better into the landscape with the clubhouse having a copper roof which will blend in perfectly colourwise as it ages.
Part of the philosophy of the design of the golf course was to have it appear as if it was part of the rugged landscape you would have found adjacent the sea. Both greens and tees have been \"built into\" the landscape with the tees in particular shaped in a manner thats disguises them. They are small and many with the shape non comforming rather than large, flat platforms. Following agreement with the neighbouring landowner, part of the boundary fence has been moved down off the clifftop in places to improve the views for visitors to the course and those walking the coastal path.

Consultation & Surveys

This golf facility does not consult any organizations regarding landscape heritage conservation.

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

Title Author Date View document
Landscape & visual impact assessment Veronica Ross 2003/07/18
Landscape management plan Bob Taylor 2008/08/01

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

  • The Sports Turf Research Institute (Ecology Unit)

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

Title Author Date View document
Ecological survey Melanie Findlay 2003/07/21 Download
Ecological plan Bob Taylor 2008/08/01
Biology research on invertebrates Freda Humpheries, student, st andrews uni 2014/04/18
report on new wetland formed Trevor Harris, Dep Course Manager, Castle Course 2014/02/24 Download

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

Local name Scientific name
Skylark alauda arvensis
Brown Hare Lepus capensis
Lapwing Vanellus vanellus
Maiden Pinks Dianthus deltoides
Meadow Pipit Anthus pratensis
Grey Patridge Perdix perdix
Peacock butterfly Inachis io
Meadow brown butterfly Maniaola jurtina

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

Local name Scientific name
Brown Hare Lepus capensis
Maiden Pinks Dianthus deltoides

Habitats & Designations

This golf facility features the following landscape designations:

Description Designating Authority
The land between the course and the sea is designated a SSSI SNH

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

Title Estimated Area (Hectares) Designation
Rough 'ecological' grassland 45 None
Scrub Vegetation 0.5 None
Wetlands 0.5 None
Open Water Features 0.25 None

Turfgrass

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

Estimated Area (Hectares) Turfgrass Species Sward Composition (%)
Greens 2.0 Hectares Festuca rubra 60%
Agrostis tenuis / capillaris 40%
Tees 1.8 Hectares Festuca rubra 50%
Agrostis tenuis / capillaris 50%
Fairways 15.0 Hectares Festuca rubra 20%
Agrostis tenuis / capillaris 80%
Semi Rough 22.0 Hectares Festuca rubra 60%
Agrostis tenuis / capillaris 40%

These turfgrasses are optimal for the circumstances at this club because:
Fine fescues and colonial browntop bent grasses are the most suitable species for golf to be played on in a seaside environment with the strong winds and salt air that the site is exposed to. In these conditions, the game is best played on the ground as much as through the air and these grasses provide the fastest and firmest surfaces with their deep rooting systems the most suitable to survive the drying winds experienced in the prevailing climate. Requiring little in the way of nutrient input or irrigation and low producers of thatch also helps them suit the climate and conditions. The management programme leads to little likelyhood of disease occurence.

This golf facility assesses mowing patterns every: 2 months

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

  • Paul Kimber, lead designer with DMK Design, main architect of The Castle Course
  • Richard Windows, Agronomist, STRI
  • Scotia Seeds, a company based in Scotland producing native varieties
  • Bob Taylor, Senior Ecologist STRI
  • James Hutchinson (BSc Hons) Enviromental Officer St Andrews Links Trust

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 Our irrigation policy is to keep greens dry as possible. We carry out a lot of hand watering and use a mositure meter to assess conditions. Green speed targets are between 8.5 & 9.5. With the high fescue content height of cut is kept up and we roll instead of cutting at times. Fertiliser targets are between 80-100kg/ha. We overseed using fescue/bent mixes. Colour is not an important matter.
Promoting the playing quality values of more naturalized turf, particularly fairways and semi-rough The fact that the course plays \"like a Links\" is often mentioned in advertising literature or magazine features as well as sometimes in our monthly newsletter.
Promoting the financial benefits of presenting sustainable surfaces This is a point we will mention when giving presentations to various groups/organisations such as at meeting with Local Golf Club representatives, charitable organisations such as Rotary or with peer groups in the greenkeeping industry. There might be a comment made in written articles we produce.
Improving customer understanding around greens maintenance Articles in our monthly newsletter, annual magazine and presentations to groups within the golf industry (worldwide) as well as to members of the local golf clubs. Also occasional presentations to groups such as Rotary Clubs, etc
Demonstrating the direct relationship between environmental best practice and year round high quality playing surfaces This comment is the type of thing we would speak about at Greens Committee meetings and when meeting with representatives of the Local Golf Clubs as there is often an attempt by golfers to persuade us to alter playingconditions to what they have seen on tv or experienced at other venues worldwide.
Objective performance measurements For the past few years we have worked with the STRI recording data such as soil moisture, firmness and organic matter to provide an objective measurement of how the greens preform and what management techniques we need to apply to improve year round playing conditions

Conservation & Enhancement

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

Activity Description
Allowing seasonal variation of course coloration and texture Fertiliser and irrigation polocies blend perfectly with the turf showing its seasonal variations of colour and texture. We do not carry out any practice which would prevent this.
Appropriately matching mowing lines to contours The fairways and roughs are cut in accordance with the grassing plan and wind the way around mounds in a natural manner. the fairways are cut in blocks of dark and light and not striped.
Protection and restoration of historic features The boundary wall was rebuilt and is repaired as required. A milestone at the entrance was fenced off during construction to prevent damage from the large volume of delivery lorries.
Discreet on-course signage and furniture We used large stones found on the site during construction on which to fit bronze tee distance plates.
Any furniture on the courses is made of either wood or recycled material and painted in a manner it fits with the surroundings.Replacement furniture is made from reclaimed hardwood.
directional signage is discreet and kept to a minimum.
Conservation of specimen trees There is only one tree, a sycamore, within the site which is not considered important from a visual, conservation or a golf aspect and therefore not subject to special protection or management.
Screening and softening unsightly man-made features The course was routed and designed to hide a large neighbouring hotel as much as possible. Within the site is the waste water treatment plant for St Andrews which has been completely screened by mounding and gorse plant from almost the entire site other than the highest points. An overflow car park is also well screened as are the maintenance buildings.

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 The Castle Course is built on a large site and over 50% of the site is left in rough grassland and gorse.
Increasing the size of habitat patches We planted gorse in out of play areas during construction and these have matured and spread significantly through natural processes over the past 4 years.
In 2013 these bushes have spread so much that they now require to be managed
Connection of internal habitat patches There are 3 man made wetland habitats on the course which flow into one another. The highest wetland is dominated by common reed and yellow flag iris to assist in phytoremidation. The water subsequently flows into the middle wetland then onto the lower wetland.
Connection of patches with external habitats Along the boundary between the golf course and the SSSI we have retained a 5m buffer strip which does not get treated with any pesticides or fertiliser. On some parts, the buffer strip extends much further than just the 5m.
Creation of habitat corridors Inherent design of the course gives strong corridor and network continuity of rough grassland habitats throughout the site.
Avoidance of habitat fragmentation The staff physically rake out non native Brooklime from the edge of any steams to assist the flow of water between the wetlands habitats.
Improving and diversifying habitat edges There is a significant section of northern march orchids adjacent to the main entrance. this area is no longer mown to increase the habitat edge. Also the semi rough is only mown to between 2m and 7m therefore leaving the eco roughs to flourish

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 We are currently discussing with Scotia Seeds what might be most appropriate for many out of play areas.
Ecologically informed management of scrub vegetation This is discussed in the management plan of Aug 2008 by Bob Taylor. Gorse was planted prior to the golf course opening for play and the management plan is to ensure that it does not become the over dominant species at the expense of the grasslands.
Promoting species and structurally diverse woodlands The course is situated on a clifftop location and as such there is only 1 tree on the site
Maintenance of an appropriate balance of open water and aquatic vegetation There are 2 main burns which run through the golf course and these required to be cleaned periodically through the areas within golf which is less than 10%. These burns move drainage water from the neighbouring fields and the main A91 road to the sea. As they cross the two fairways concerned the sides are cut back and clippings removed during the winter period. Mechanical cutting takes place during the summer months to control the invading Brooklime, Greater Willow Herb etc. In areas of heavy infestation chemical control may be considered using an approved aquatinc herbicide.
More ecological landuse The pre development Ecological Report produced for Castle Course by Melanie Findlay concluded that the new golf course would offer a net ecological gain compared to the existing intensive farming system through the creation of substantial amounts of semi-natural grassland, a pond and a marsh area, plus the permanent nature of a golf course over the ephemeral nature of arable farmland habitats.
Introduction of wild flower areas In 2012 we purchased indigenous wild flower seed from Scotia Seeds and sowed them in apporpriate areas away from play.

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 We are discussing with Scotia Seeds the possibility of introducing a wild flowers mix into certain areas of the roughs.
Control / management of alien species Tall weeds such as Docken, Thistle, Ragwort, Cocksfoot and Mare's tail are hand treated by spraying as soon as practical to prevent them from spreading.
Creation of micro-habitats (eg log and stone piles) Most of the stone removed from the internal walls prior to construction was re used in repairing the wall along the roadside (using mortar). The remaining stone is stockpiled in an area away from golf. Over time this should prove a valuable habitat for small mammals, amphibians and invertebrates although nothing of note has been seen in the past year.
New wetland introduced In the winter of 2012/13 while carrying out some alteration we had the opportunity to create a new wetland of approx 0.25Ha. We transplanted vegetation from elsewhere on the site to help establishment.

Water

The Castle Course is situated towards the lowest point of the farmland catchment in which it sits. Water enters the site via two burns which exit down the cliff face to the sea. The source of the irrigation water for the golf course is a bore hole which is sunk to an aquifer below the site. Prior to begining construction in 2005 we had a hydrologist, Faber Maunsell, contracted to find if there was an adequate water source within the site as getting our own supply would be much cheaper than using mains water. The results came back very positive with adequate water available of a reasonable quality and no detrimental effect on neighbouring borehole useage. The water is pumped and stored in 2 x 150m3 below ground storage tanks. The water is amended in the tanks to lower the bicarbanate levels to improve water quality.
The design of the golf course is such that water is moved quickly from the playing surfaces (fairways and semi rough) into out of play areas where it is held in swales and hollows before slowly being released into the drainage system to prevent erosion and undue sediment discharge to the coastal zone.
All the water from the entrance road, the car parks and the roofs of the maintenance building and Clubhouse is collected in two tanks and punmped to an attenuation pond before a gradual, controlled, release into what was an existing drainage outlet. The course has USGA spec greens. The tees and aprons are sand capped with the same rootzone to a depth of 8\". Fairways are soil based, topdressed with sand to a depth of 1\". Sand capped areas are watered every 3/4 days if required. Deep and infrequent being the norm. The fairways are watered more light and frequent to minimize runoff. We hand water as much as possible during dry spells to maximize turf quality. The sand based areas are also on a wetting agent programme to enhance perculation and water retention in the profile.
The supply to the Clubhouse and the Maintenance facility is both Mains water.
The maintenance facility has a 'Waste 2 Water' closed loop wash down facility. The treated water then goes through the same SUDS system which filters the water from our buildings, carparks etc.

Sources & Consumption

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

Title Author Date View document
Pre construction hydrology report Faber Maunsell 2005/01/01

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

2013 Source(s) % of supply Total Consumption
Clubhouse(s) Public / Potable 100% 75,000 Litres
Golf Course Groundwater 100% 1,969,100 Litres
Maintenance Facility/Facilities Public / Potable 100% 37,500 Litres
Other Public / Potable 0 Litres
2012 Source(s) % of supply Total Consumption
Clubhouse(s) Public / Potable 100% 74,000 Litres
Golf Course Groundwater 100% 591,600 Litres
Maintenance Facility/Facilities Public / Potable 100% 34,500 Litres
Other Public / Potable 0 Litres
2011 Source(s) % of supply Total Consumption
Clubhouse(s) Public / Potable 100% 74,000 Litres
Golf Course Groundwater 100% 1,361,000 Litres
Maintenance Facility/Facilities Public / Potable 100% 34,500 Litres
Other Public / Potable 0 Litres

Irrigation & Efficiency

The following areas receive irrigation at this golf facility:

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

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

The irrigation system at this golf facility is:

Serviced every 12 months

Re-calibrated and checked for efficient application every 12 months

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

Activity Description
Selection of grass species The entire course was sown out with different blends of fine fescue and browntop bents, from an 80/20 mix on the greens to a 100% fescue in the roughs. Both species have good drought tolerance. Since opening we have introduced some new cultivars of dwarf ryegrass on walkways from tees to help with wear pressures.
Soil decompaction and thatch management Greens and tees are spiked on a regular basis through the summer with either 8mm solid tines, a Toro hydroject using high pressure jets of water or just sorrell rollers to help water penetrate the surface. Occasional verticutting and sanding keeps thatch levels to a minimum.
Timing and dose of water application Watering to the golf course is carried out overnight to reduce transevaporation and also the wind is generally much lighter through the night improving coverage. Minimum amounts are applied and slopes or high spots on greens are topped up by hand in the mornings. The programme can be split into more than one if run off is a concern at any time.
Analysis of soil moisture To minimise irrigation and improve turf quality moisture levels are taken at least twice/week through the irrigation period of April to September.
Incorporation of evapotranspiration rates and weather data The controller programme is set to estimate 3mm of loss by evantraspiration/day which is the local average through the time of year we irriigate. This is taken into consideration along with weather forecasts we obtain from different sources
Use of wetting agents A full wetting agent programme is used on greens, surrounds and tees, (all sand capped areas), from March through to Sept/Oct.
A lesser programme is applied to particular fairways or areas of fairway.
Targeting of sprinkler heads Each Green and surround sprinkler head can be individually controlled and set specifically and appropriatly for each location. Fairway sprinklers tend to be controlled in in blocks of two and each teeing area is controlled as one block.
Optimizing system pressure The system is set up in two separate loops, one supplying to the holes further on the hill and the other to the lower holes to reduce the pumping requirements. Jockey pumps kick in automatically to keep the pressure stable.
Adoption of cutting edge nozzle technology The sprinklers installed during construction from 2005 to 2007 were the most up to date on the market at that time.

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

Activity Description
Low-flow urinals and toilets Full or Half Flush cisterns in toilets.
Use of water efficient appliances Washing machines designed to use minimal amounts of water.
Use of efficient shower technology Restricted water flow in showers.
Repairing leaks We have our own plumber and leaks are repaired as detected.
On the irrigation system, the water flow is monitored and any leak is quickly detected as water can been seen to be leaving the system.

Energy

The design of the clubhouse encorporates the use of geothermal energy where 10 boreholes draw water and ground source heat pumps accurately control the heating & cooling needs of the building whilst using heat recovery technology to minimise the running costs to the Trust. The ventilation systems required for fresh air intake and exhaust air also use heat recovery technology that recovers over 80% of the heat in the exhaust air with a running current of only 2 Amps. The Heat Pump system supplies underfloor heating throughout the clubhouse and strategically positioned fan coils around the public and staff areas control a stable and comfortable environment for staff, visitors and golfers alike. Early figures suggest that with this syatem we can heat this Clubhouse at approx a 1/4 of the cost of our other clubhouses. The design and installation company from nearby Broughty Ferry, were shortlisted for an H&V News Award in the category “Renewables Project of the Year”
There is a lot of natural light to the clubhouse through the large windows in the main lounge/dining area and also the glass roof in the centre of the building over the shop. Becasue the building is open plan style these complement each other.
Light sensors have been used as much as practical in non-public areas with energy saving light bulbs installed throughout the building.
Solar lighting has been used on the entrance road to guide people at dusk or as they arrive in the morning.
There is also a lot of natural lighting in the maintenance facility to the mess room as well as the main machinery storage area which greatly assists when working on equipment.
All windows in both the Clubhouse and the Maintenance building are double glazed. The insulation is what was required when the buildings were built in 2008.
One of the planning conditions was the introduction of a green travel plan which we had propared prior to the opening of the course in June 2008.


Sources & Consumption

No energy surveys have been undertaken at this golf facility.

This golf facility does not consume any renewable energy or resources.

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

2013 2012 2011
Diesel (Litres) 14000 12000 14000
Hydraulic Oil (Litres) 200 200 200
Non-renewable Grid (kWh) 396522 396522 396522
Petrol (Litres) 3000 3000 3000

Energy Efficiency

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

Activity Description
Installation of photovoltaic and / or solar panels In 2013 we installed solar panels on the roof of one of our maintenance facility buildings. At the Castle Course, there is only the maintenance building and the Clubhouse and the design of the Clubhouse makes it unsitable for solar panels. this was carried out too late in 2013 to get a meaningful figure but we will be able to record this in future. The energy is sold direct to the grid.
Use of geothermal and / or ground sources A major project was undertaken to run the clubhouse heating and cooling via a geothermal ground source heating system which was installed during the construction of the clubhouse. The system was upgraded and efficiency increased during the 2013-2014 winter months.
Use of electric hybrid vehicles All buggies used by Players assistants and hire buggies are electric. Some of the greenkeeping vehicles are also electric.
Machinery service intervals In 2013 we decided to move to a higher quality engine oil for our mowing equipm,ent and this has allowed us to increase the time between service intervals by 100% which means we will reduce the amount of oil used by approx 50%/year (unless we increase the size of our machinery fleet)

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

Activity Description
Investment in low-energy heating and air conditioning systems A geothermal, ground source heating/cooling system was installed when the building was being constructed in 2007. Since upgraded and now more efficient, winter 2013-2014.
Optimizing thermostat levels for heating and refrigeration Thermostats introduced on all heating loops in the ground source heat delivery system. 2014.
Enhancement of natural ventilation opportunities Upgrading of all flexi-pipes within the air conditioning system to improve efficiency.
Use of natural light (e.g. sunlight pipes) The six or seven main windows in the lounge are full size glass panels and in the central area of an open plan building there is a substantial glass roof which allows sunlight to stream into the building.
Installation of low-energy lighting Energy saving bulbs are installed throughout the clubhouse and maintenance buildings
Use of motion sensor lighting Non public areas such as corridors and staff canteens use motion sensor lighting to reduce energy costs.
Transition to energy efficient appliances The building has only been open since 2008 and all appliances have are 'A' rated ones. New washing machines are low energy and water minimal usage.
Use of timers with appliances, heating and lighting The majority of appliances are on timers if possible. All store rooms, toilet areas and staff areas now have sensors on all lights.
Educating staff and customers Staff are encouraged to turn off lights using signage
Monitor meters Meters have been installed that allow staff to view and monitor their energy consumption for different parts of the clubhouse.
Solar lighting The access driveway, opproximatily one kilometer long, is lit with solar bollard lights
Reducing Solar gain. Film to reduce solar gain was applied to large glass roof area, reducing the need to have air conditioning frequently running.

Vehicles & Transport

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

Ride-on Mowers Walking Mowers Utility Vehicles
Petrol 100% 20%
Diesel 100% 75%
Grid Electric 5%

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

Golf Carts Cars Buses
Diesel 100% 100%
Grid Electric 100%

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

Activity Description
Car sharing incentives There is no car sharing incentive but staff are encouaged to share as part of the green transport plan and a number of the greenstaff do share lifts.
Group transportation (e.g. buses) There is a diesel minibus which is used to take groups up from hotels or guest houses in town if requested. The bus is also used to take groups of staff to exhibitions, seminars, trade shows etc
Secure cycle parking There is a secure area for bicycles at both the Clubhouse and the maintenance facility.
Promoting public transport routes and timetables The entrance to the course is on a regular bus route but the entrance is over a kilometer from the Clubhouse. However a number of staff and Caddies (who are self employed) use the bus service to get to work provided they don't have to get there before the service begins in the morning or finish after it stops in the evening.
Increasing equipment storage (e.g. lockers) Both the Clubhouse and maintenance facility have good locker storage for staff to leave valuables and changes of clothing.
Staff showers Showers are provided at the maintenance facility for staff who often use them prior to going golfing after their work. The clubhouse staff are allowed to use the showers in the customers locker rooms.
Tax breaking incentives for cycling Cycling government run scheme is offered to staff.
Promotion of walk to work campaigns The golf course is too far from town to walk to on any kind of regular basis, especially if staff are on an early or late shift.
Electric or Hybrid Greenkeeping equipment We regularly assess new equipment as it comes onto the market, especially the new hybrid and all-electrical mowers and although we have not purchased any yet we would expect that in the near future this will change as these machines become more reliable and capable of performing to the standard we require.

Supply Chain

Being a world famous venue with high customer expectations we try to source high quality products for use across the board. Course furniture is minimal, benches are made from recycled material, bronze tee markers are fitted to stones found on site during construction and litter bins are from a Scottish supplier.
Fertiliser and pesticide usage is minimal and deliveries are requested to be made in bulk if possible of when the carrier is going to be in the area. Empty containers are stored and uplifted by the supplier when next delivering. Sand for topdressing has to be bought in and is from the closest location available that means the particle size and shape specification. it is bought in bulk rather than bags so there is no polythene to dispose of.
The best cultivars of seed are used to withstand the harsh climate the course is subject to and are suited to our management programme of minimal inputs.
Food is supplied mostly from the local market and is fresh. Where possible, packaging is kept to a minimal. Cardboard boxes and bubble wrap are reused to transport goods around our sites or to post online orders from our golf shops out to customers if fit for purpose and at the end they are stored for recycle. Empty bottles, plastic, glass or aluminium containers are seperated and recycled.
Our new website shop has allowed us to reduce our paper and printing usage by over 6000 sheets/year.
Printers are set by default to print black and white and staff are encouraged to print all internal documents in B/W and double sided.
Carpets in the clubhouses are hard wearing and made to withstand heavy traffic from golf shoes so they are expected to last longer.

Purchasing Policies

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

Activity Description
Measures to avoid waste at source In general, suppliers are asked to reduce packaging.
We tend not to carry a big stock of perishable goods to prevent them going off.
Printers are set by default to print B/W and double sided and people have to physically change them to print colour or single sided.
Use of local suppliers We use mostly local firms to carry out either repair work, contracts, or to order goods from.
Use of local products Fresh food in particular is sourced from local producers. We have a herb garden on site to supply the kitchens through the season.
we have our own greenhouses where we grow plants/flowers to display in the Clubhouse and also grow our own gorse plants for planting on the course.
Selection of certified products We are members of the scotch beef club and all beef we buy is accredited by them which is kept in a log book.
Tea, coffee, a range of wines and galaxy choclate bars are all fair trade products.
We have started using organic chicken for use in the supper menu in the LCH but supply prevents us expanding on this at the moment.
Use of recycled and recyclable products Much of our literature is printed on recycled paper. Benches on the golf course are made from recycled products. Old envelopes are used to post letters/ papers across our internal departments. Our divot mix (which is purchased) is a mixture of sand and green waste.
Selection of products that feature minimal packaging The golf shops reuse all the cardboard which goods come in to send out orders in and this prevents us buying any cardboard. These goods are mostly packed in shredded papers from other departments. Any bubble wrap that comes arrives with goods is also recycled in this manner.
Memorial benches We are often asked by people if they can site a commemorative bench somewhere on one of the courses. if we can agrre on a suitable site then St Andrews Links buy the bench so we can retain consistency. Over the past number of years we have been buying teak benches for this which require no ongoing maintenance.
Using bulk carriers If suitable we will look to use 1000litre IBC's when taking delivery of liquid fertilisers, seaweed based products or wetting agents.

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
Food & Beverage 28 5 25
Catering Supplies 2 2
Retail 95 6 25
Trade & Contractors 17 5 10
Maintenance Equipment 72 34 27
Course Supplies 90 28 47

Turfgrass Inputs

This golf facility undertakes the following IPM activities:

Activity Description
Encouraging drought and disease tolerant grasses Our management programme is set up to favour drought and disease tolerant grasses. When over seeding, these are the types of grasses that are selected, usually choosing the ones from the top performers from the STRI trials. We undertake trial works to gauge which species are best suited to our site.
Managing stress and wear The use of turf rollers allow us to keep the height of cut higher while maintaining good green speeds. We moniter soil moisture to help determine irrigation needs, hand watering slopes/high spots to prevent overwatering of low areas. Posts and cord are used to direct traffic if required.
Enhancement of soil structure Seaweed in liquid form is used in the fertiliser programme. Greens, aprons, tees, fairways and semi-roughs / carries are all topdressed on a regular basis with sand. We divot repair with a sand/green waste mix material and sand slittlng of wet areas is ongoing to help keep them dry.
Optimization of the growing environment We topdress on a regular basis. We brush or verti cut regularly through the growing season. We ensure that we have a good air / water soil balance with regular aeration and hand watering. Rolling is done to allow us to keep the mowing heights at higher levels while maintaining surface performance.
Managing thatch levels Greens are tested for organic matter content anually and topdressed to suit. Clippings are collected from most in play areas and composted. We manage our fertility inputs to ensure we apply only enough for turf recovery so as not to overstimulate growth and produce an excess of organic matter.
Managing surface moisture Soil moisture readings are taken at least weekly on greens from March until October and occasionally tees.
Establishing thresholds for pests and disease The theshold for pest and disease problems are not a set formula. These problems are rare occurences and experience is used to determiine whether any action requires to be taken. For instance, we know that if there is an outbreak of fusariam and the weather forecast is to be dry then the disease will decrease on it's own accord and will not require treatment.
Scouting for pests and diseases Visual checks from staff while going about their daily tasks, cuting greens, moving holes, raking bunkers, setting up the golf course.
Monitoring / improvement of plant health Higher heights of cut, checking fertility levels, using wetting agents, growth regulators, seaweed and winter hardening products such as iron sulphate.
At least twice yearly inspections from a recognised agronomist
Fertilising aprons/Greens surrounds For recording purposes, fertiliser applied to Aprons/Greens surrounds has been added under the columns for "Tees" below as they are managed in a similar manner to tees

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

2013 2012 2011
Fairways - K - Inorganic 4 3.5 4
Fairways - K - Organic 0 0 0
Fairways - N - Inorganic 45 30 35
Fairways - N - Organic 0 0 0
Fairways - P - Inorganic 6.5 5.5 15
Fairways - P - Organic 0 0 0
Greens - K - Inorganic 110 148 172
Greens - K - Organic 0 0 0
Greens - N - Inorganic 53 68 82
Greens - N - Organic 0 0 0
Greens - P - Inorganic 11.5 18 25
Greens - P - Organic 0 0 0
Rough - K - Inorganic 0 0 0
Rough - K - Organic 0 0 0
Rough - N - Inorganic 0 0 0
Rough - N - Organic 0 0 0
Rough - P - Inorganic 0 0 0
Rough - P - Organic 0 0 0
Semi-Rough - K - Inorganic 4.25 3.5 4
Semi-Rough - K - Organic 0 0 0
Semi-Rough - N - Inorganic 53 30 37
Semi-Rough - N - Organic 0 0 0
Semi-Rough - P - Inorganic 11.5 5.5 6.5
Semi-Rough - P - Organic 0 0 0
Tees - K - Inorganic 103 135 113
Tees - K - Organic 0 0 0
Tees - N - Inorganic 104 119 93
Tees - N - Organic 0 0 0
Tees - P - Inorganic 44 54 21
Tees - P - Organic 0 0 0

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

2013 2012 2011
Fairways - Fungicide - Active Ingredient 0 0 0
Fairways - Fungicide - Total Weight 0 0 0
Fairways - Fungicide - Number of applications per year 0 0 0
Fairways - Herbicide - Active Ingredient 0.84 0.13 0.48
Fairways - Herbicide - Total Weight 1.9 0.29 1.09
Fairways - Herbicide - Number of applications per year 1 1 1
Fairways - Insecticide - Active Ingredient 0 0 0
Fairways - Insecticide - Total Weight 0 0 0
Fairways - Insecticide - Number of applications per year 0 0 0
Greens - Fungicide - Active Ingredient 0.568 0.31 0.31
Greens - Fungicide - Total Weight 1.195 1 1
Greens - Fungicide - Number of applications per year 2 1 1
Greens - Herbicide - Active Ingredient .531 0.375 0.375
Greens - Herbicide - Total Weight 2.325 1.5 1.5
Greens - Herbicide - Number of applications per year 4 3 3
Greens - Insecticide - Active Ingredient 0.74 0.78 0
Greens - Insecticide - Total Weight 1.6 1.75 0
Greens - Insecticide - Number of applications per year 1 1 0
Rough - Fungicide - Active Ingredient 0 0 0
Rough - Fungicide - Total Weight 0 0 0
Rough - Fungicide - Number of applications per year 0 0 0
Rough - Herbicide - Active Ingredient 0.15 0.093 0.08
Rough - Herbicide - Total Weight 0.28 0.21 0.18
Rough - Herbicide - Number of applications per year 1 1 1
Rough - Insecticide - Active Ingredient 0 0 0
Rough - Insecticide - Total Weight 0 0 0
Rough - Insecticide - Number of applications per year 0 0 0
Semi-Rough - Fungicide - Active Ingredient 0 0 0
Semi-Rough - Fungicide - Total Weight 0 0 0
Semi-Rough - Fungicide - Number of applications per year 0 0 0
Semi-Rough - Herbicide - Active Ingredient 0.136 1.39 0.68
Semi-Rough - Herbicide - Total Weight 0.309 3.04 1.54
Semi-Rough - Herbicide - Number of applications per year 1 1 1
Semi-Rough - Insecticide - Active Ingredient 0 0 0
Semi-Rough - Insecticide - Total Weight 0 0 0
Semi-Rough - Insecticide - Number of applications per year 0 0 0
Tees - Fungicide - Active Ingredient 0 0 0
Tees - Fungicide - Total Weight 0 0 0
Tees - Fungicide - Number of applications per year 0 0 0
Tees - Herbicide - Active Ingredient 0 0 0
Tees - Herbicide - Total Weight 0 0 0
Tees - Herbicide - Number of applications per year 0 0 0
Tees - Insecticide - Active Ingredient 0 0 0
Tees - Insecticide - Total Weight 0 0 0
Tees - Insecticide - Number of applications per year 0 0 0

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

Activity Description
Selection on the least toxic and lest persistent products We always study the pesticides we purchase to look for the least toxic product.
Selection of appropriate products for specific pests and diseases We would only use products on pests or diseases as recommended by the label and at the recommended amounts and water volume.
Spot-treatment with handheld sprayers and wipers Handheld applicators are used in roughs to control plants such as ragwort or docken. They are also used on bankings too steep for boom sprayers if appropriate and occasionally on greens, tees and fairways to reduce the amount of pesticide required if the pest or weed is at a relatively low level.
Calibration and testing of sprayers All sprayers are serviced and MOT'd annually amd calibrated at least annually, more often if required or appropriate.
Use of shrouded sprayer and anti-drip nozzles Boom sprayers are fitted with anti drip and bubble jet nozzles to reduce drift. we do still have some covered booms but most spraying is done early in the morning before any wind gets up or golfers are on the course.
Non-chemical weed control Broad leaved weeds are hand picked from greens.
We are considering introducing yellow rattle into some areas of rough to keep the ground cover more sparse.
Use of organic and biological products to improve plant health and resistance. We use seaweed on a regular basis throughout the year as it contains good levels of beneficial plant hormones. We also use composted green waste in our divot mix to aid seed germination and establishment.

Waste Management

No waste audits have been undertaken at this golf facility.

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 true false true

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

Activity Description
Separation of recyclable materials Plastic and glass bottles and cans are seperated when emptying litter bins on the course. In the maintainance facilities there are containers for same for the staff to use. Cardboard from deliveries is stored for uplift. Chemical containers, plastic bags, are stored for uplift by suppliers.
Establishment of recycling centers We have skips located and each of our larger bases for glass, plastic, cans, paper and cardboard.Scrap metel is stored at maintenace facility for sale. Wood is stored and can be chipped or used for other tasks, including staff using it away from work. All our printer toner cartridges are sent to a company called Recycling Appeal UK and all monies related to the returned cartridges is donated to the CHAS charity.
Returning clipping to fairways and walkways Clippings are seldom returned to fairways etc as we collect them for composting and we try to keep organic matter low to reduce worm casting.
Education of staff and customer education Staff are made aware of our recycling policies at departmental briefings and staff inductions..
Waste awareness campaigns Periodically, emails are sent out to staff about saving energy and recycling products. Lists of all recyclable materials are on company intranet. All litter bins are also recycling stations.
Practice range balls When replacing the balls on our practice range, the old golf balls are boxed and donated through a scheme with the R & A Golf Club to developing coutries in Africa or such like.
old golf trollies When replacing our fleet of hire trollies, the old ones which were still servicable were donated to the Fife Golf Trust to use on their public courses. Those in poor condition were sent to a scrap metal dealer.
We also sell our off our fleet of power trollies to staff at the end of each year.
Waste management changes January 2014 With the change in legislation in January 2014 we changed the way in which we manage our waste. A new contractor now takes all our waste for recycling with the exception of food waste which we compost ourselves. Glass and what is classed as "residual waste" are seperated with most of the latter being incinerated and all other waste, classed as dry recyclates, is collected and seperated by the contractor off site.
old golf course signage when rebranding our signage and logo, any old signs still in good condition and that didn't have our logo on them were donated to some of the smaller neighbouring golf courses such as Cupar, St Michaels, Scotscraig, Piperdam and those of the fife golf trust. the signs in poor condition were sold as scrap

Pollution Control

At The Castle Course we installed a closed loop washdown system as the maintenance facility is fairly close to the edge of a SSSI (250m) and the soil type at there is unsuatable for a soakaway. All the rainfall from the entrance road, car parks and roofs is collected in storage tanks and pumped to an attenuation pond so the outfall is controlled. Spray equipment is kept well maintained and physical controls such as bubblejet nozzes are fitted to eliminate spray drift.
Banks of streams are left mostly uncut and when cutting does take place during the winter through the two golf areas (10% of the total length) the clippings are removed.

The maintenance facility was build in 2008 and interceptor tanks are in place to contain any chemical spillage. Only small quantities of pesticides are kept on site to avoid products going out of date or damaged by weather

The drainage system to the golf course was designed to cope with a 1 in 200 year flood. the fairways are shaped in such as manner as to get the water off the surface as much as possible and move it into out of play areas where it is held for a period therefore the flow from the existing field drains that were tapped into during construction is controlled and measured to prevent soil erosion. The prevention of increasing both the amount of drains leaving the site and also the diameter size of the existing pipes was a planning requirement.

The use of glass in the designs of the Clubhouse and the maintenance facility has reduced the need for lighting thereby reducing energy requirements. Likewise the geothermal ground source heat pumps mean that less energy is required to heat and cool the clubhouse with the airconditioning unit leading to less emissions.

In 2008, the golf course won the new Sporturf project of the year from the industry magazine Turf Professianals and were presented with the award at the IOG show at SALTEX.

Water Analysis

This golf facility monitors water quality with the following frequency:

Chemical Biological Visual
Inflow Never Never Never
On-Site Never Never Never
Outflow Never Never Never

Waste Water

Waste water from this golf facility is managed as follows:

Discharges to Formal Discharge Agreement
Golf Course Stormwater Drain N/A
Clubhouse Mains Sewer N/A
Maintenance Facility Mains Sewer N/A
Wash Pad Closed Loop Recycling N/A

Hazardous Materials

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

Secure Storage Registered Uplift
Detergents false true
Cooking Oils false true
Lubricants false true
Pesticide Containers false true
Fertiliser Bags false true
Oil Filters false true
Batteries false 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 equipment or hazardous products are stored indoors on sealed impervious areas. Items are stored in locked buildings and there are interceptor tanks to deal with any spillages which may occur.
Maintenance of equipment on covered, sealed impervious areas Any spillage from eqipment being maintained would be contained within the area of the workshop.
Mixing of pesticides and fertilizers in covered areas If mixing of pesticides and fertilisers take place within the maintenance facility area then they are done over an interceptor tank. When they are done on the golf course then they would be in areas where a spillage would not find its way into a water course
Mixing of pesticides and fertilizers over impervious surfaces As above.
Installation of above-ground fuel tanks Diesel tanks are stored inside and bunded as per the regulations
Installation of sufficient secondary containment for fuel The tanks are double skinned and they are within a bund large enough to contain all the fuel stored if there was to be a problem, burst or leak.
Provision of containment booms and absorbent materials we keep a supply of materials to mop up any spillage if required
Boiler servicing The boilers in the Clubhouse are serviced annually by a qualified contractor.
reduced aerosol cannisters We have changed our Washroom Services provider from PHS to Grahams’ Environmental Services. Because of this decision, one of the benefits has been the removal of 41 aerosol air-freshener units. These have now been replaced with fan assisted gel units so have a positive impact on the environment.

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 Only a small percentage of the golf course is highly maintained and fertiliser and pesticide inputs are minimal even to these areas.
We do not apply products when the ground is saturated or when the plant is unable to absorb it.
Establishment of vegetative buffer strips around water bodies we have 2 streams running through the property and have no spray zones alongside both of these.
Establishment of emergency spillage response plan All spray operators are certificated and also go through refresher training annually. Spillages are covered in the pesticide code of practice, the section covering spillages is posted on notice boards. There is also an emergency action plan sheet where all the relevant phone numbers can be added. Fire, doctors, SEPA, HSE etc.
Controlling erosion and sediment discharge For construction, all drainage had to link into existing outlets which could not be increased in diameter. We have numerous places within the roughs where the water is held back to slow and settle before leaving the site.
Establishment of pesticide-free zones We do not spray pesticides in unmanaged roughs (60% of the site)other than the spot spraying/treating of weeds such as ragwort, thistle and docken.
Use of swales and bio-filters to slow and treat surface run-off there were a number of swales build around the course to hold water back during periods of heavy rain and have the flow off site controlled.
change of land use Given that the land was previously used for agriculture and grew, cereals, potatoes and such like as well as grazing for cattle, it is reasonable to assume that fertiliser and chemical usage has decreased since less than 15Ha of the 90Ha is \"intesively\" managed and even these are low maintenance in comparison to farming as mentioned in the ecology report by M Findlay (see landscape and Ecosystems section)

Community

The Castle Course is the latest in the St Andrews Links portfolio having opened in June 2008 following six years of detailed planning and 3 years of construction. Set up as a limited company, it is managed by the Links Trust and any trading profit at the end of each finacial year is given back to the Trust by ded of covenant.
The addition of this course has enabled us to make more tee times available at peak times to our customers, both local and visitors, to ensure they can enjoy golf in St Andrews, whether on the Castle Course or our existing courses on the Links. Being completely different from our other courses, it also gives them the opportunity to have a completely new experience.
Since its opening it has directly brought a signioficant number of new jobs to the area (as well as providing a lot of jobs during the construction) and an increase in tourism to St Andrews.

In the greenkeeping department we get huge interest from people around the world wanting to know what methods we use to maintain the courses, grass types, fertiliser quantities etc and often have groups or individuals visiting to see our facilities, practies and how the course was built. We also give presentations to turfgrass groups around the world at trade shows/exhibitions on the construction of The Castle Course.
In 2008, the golf course won the new Sporturf project of the year from the industry magazine Turf Professianals and were presented with the award at the IOG show at SALTEX.
There is a large interest in turf students from around the world wanting to come and work here for a season to learn our methods.

We continually promote best environmental practice to our staff, both full time and seasonal with on going reminders of recyclying as many things as we can, from food waste and paper to oils and soils. Notices encouage staff to turn electrical equipment off when not in use while bins and boxes areprovided for bottles, cans, and paper. Full time staff have the opportunity to attend seminars where it is common to find at least one speaker presenting on an environmental matter while we have regular inhouse presentations to staff which would include best practices.

Employment & Education

Typical staffing levels at this golf facility are:

Full Time Part Time Seasonal
Club Management 8 8
Course Management 10 1 6
Food & Beverage 9 8
Retail & Leisure 3 1
Caddies 20 25
Other 1 1

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

  • Course Manager
  • Technical Specialist
  • The Operations Manager at the Castle Course

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

Activity Description
Storage, application and disposal of pesticides Only certificated employees are allowed to use pesticides. Training includes application and disposal of both the product and containers. They attend an annual review with our H & S consultant. Magazines containing articles are available in mess rooms.
Efficient water management The Course manager or his deputy are responsible for irrigation inputs. Staff are trained and help out with system checks on an ongoing basis through the summer. Training on system repairs is provided to full time staff.
Management of accidents and emergencies All staff are trained in fire awareness and how to react in the event of a fire. Individual staff are trained in managing fires.
Rangers and a number of greenkeepers carry radios to request assistance a short notice. Players Assistants are all first aid trained and trained in defibrilator use. All other departments have a % of first aiders within the staff.
Management of habitats and vegetation We have regular staff training events delivered by the STRI Ecology Team, and also with the Scottish Golf Environment Group. Staff have also received presentations from the local college and countryside ranger service.
Waste minimization, separation and recycling Staff are asked or expected to seperate items such as plastic bottles, cans and glass bottles as much as we can when collecting litter from the courses. In buildings, bins are provided for same. IT collect print cartridges etc. Photocopiers are set to double side copy in black/white as default.Points such as these are mentioned at inductions and at team meetings.
Health & Safety All greenstaff attend a H & S review annually, inc seasonal staff. Specific courses are held for things such as first aid, manual handling etc. All greenstaff are trained and signed off to say they are competent on equipment before left on their own.
Energy Saving Notices ask staff to turn of lights/equipment when not in use.
Understanding of landscape and cultural heritage We have regular staff training events delivered by the STRI Ecology Team, and also with the Scottish Golf Environment Group. Staff have also received presentations from the local college and countryside ranger service.
Environmental management planning We have regular staff training events delivered by the STRI Ecology Team, and also with the Scottish Golf Environment Group. Staff have also received presentations from the local college and countryside ranger service.
External Training Many staff have the opportunity to recieve external training at seminars/exhibitions such as BTME etc. Some members of staff record their CPD qualifications via BIGGA and external training is encouraged.
Waste management With legislation changing in Scotland in Jan 2014 we changed how our waste is disposed of. Using a specialist company, we now recycle over 95% of our waste. All food waste is now treated in our own food composter. All changes and how staff were having to change their habits and practices were explained in person to them as well as the informatiion being available on our Intranet.
Environmental Officer In 2014 SALT created the role of an Environbmental Officer. He starts his post in August 2014 and will be operate with the staff at the Castle Course as well as with those on the Links, providing knowledge, assistance, support and explaining best practice both by helping with planning and practically assisting with projects.

Community Relations

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

Activity Description
Neighbours The Castle Course neighbours two farms, both farmers having sold us land for the course to be built. One farmer continues to rear cattle for which he has to cros the golf course regularly. We keep in regular contact with both farmers.
Local Government The St Andrews Links Trust is a partnership of public bodies and private golf clubs. As such the public agencies have a strong influence over management decisions affecting the Castle Course - its operations and land management decisions. (TCC is a limited company managed by the Links Trust)
Local Environmental Groups SALT works regularly with the Fife Countryside Ranger Service, and regional offices of Scottish Natural Heritage and the Scottish Environment Protection Agency.
We are represented on the west sands liason group and are partners in the group that is writing a management plan for the west sands.
Local Community Groups The planning proces was very rigourous and we had to employ a number of specialists to produce an EIA. Many of these specialists consulted with the Local Community Council during the process.
Media Hosted many journalists from the UK and abroad to visit and play. BBC filmed an article on the neighbouring farmer using the edge of the course to overwinter his cattle (Countryfile April 2011). The Course Manager and Director of Greenkeepinghave given numerous presentations on the construction and a number of articles have been written on same.
Local Businesses We are members of the ST Andrews Partnership, the green belt forum and the golf development group which includes our neighbouring golf courses.
We are account managed by Scottish Enterprise.
we are a 4 star rated attraction by visit Scotland and are members of Golf Tourism Scotland
Schools & Colleges We have have not so far engaged with any of the local schools although we have have frequent visits from students from the Local College at Elmwood, both greenkeeping and environmental studies classes.
Recycling golf trollies At the beginning of the 2014 golf season we replaced our hire trolly fleet and donated over 50 of our old trolleys which were still in good working order to the Fife Golf Trust, the organisation which runs the 7 public golf courses in Fife.
University research We assist, where possible, with students from St Andrews Uni who wish to carry out research on the course. In 2014, Freda Humpries carried our some biology research on insects, particularly spiders, which live within the gorse areas.

Land Use & Cultural Heritage

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

Activity Description
Maintenance of existing public paths A small number of permissive paths were on the site prior to construction, and these have been either carefully managed and maintained to safely allow for golfers and walkers or following consultation moved to the perimeter of the course to avoid putting walkers in danger.
Creation of new paths and nature trails The existing path along the main road( A91) which stopped at the begining of the course was extended some 1,000m to take it to the farthest point of the course from the town.
Installation of effective and welcoming signage A brown tourism sign was installed at the entrance to the course.
Providing opportunities for other recreation (e.g. fishing) There are no suitable areas for other types of recreation on the land occupied by the golf course other than walkers having access to get from the public road to the coastal path.
Partnership conservation and access projects (e.g. community woodland) We are currently discussing with the Fife Coastal Path group and SNH the possibility of using sheep to graze the part of "The Braes" known as Craig Hartle and which runs adjacent to the 7th and 8th holes. as a result we have strengthened our fenceline along that stretch.
Continuation of traditional agricultural activities One of the neighbouring farmers still owns \"the Braes\", a SSSI which is at the other side of the course from his farm. He has access to cross the course to feed his cattle where they are overwintered on \"the Braes\". This follows an agreement he has with SNH.
Fife Coastal Path The golf course runs adjacent to a part of the Fife Coastal Path, at some points it is only 3 yard away. There are also a couple of areas where walkers can leave the Coastal Path and cross the golf course to get to other walking routes if required.
Fife Coastal Path Fife Coast and Countryside Trust have "bracken bashing" days on the area known as Craig Hartle which borders the course. We advertised this internally asking for staff to volunteer and assist.

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

Title Author Date View document
Archaeological assessment (hard copy only) Neil Cunningham Dobson 2003/07/16

This golf facility does not consult any organizations regarding the conservation of cultural heritage.

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

Activity Description
Buildings (Listed Buildings / Ancient Monuments etc) There are no listed buildings or ancient monuments on the site. adjacent the 18th hole there is a rock formation known lacally as the Rock and Spindle but it is not on our land and is accessed via the coastal path.
Archaeology (Settlements / Agricultural System etc) The site of the former Kinkell Castle is an area of archeological interest. Only the general site of the castle is known and there are no recognisable traces of it above ground.
Historic Features (Hedgerows / Dykes / Moats / Cairns etc) A milestone at the course entrance required protection during course construction. It was recommended by Historic Scotland that care be taken not to disturb the milestone located on the roadside verge out with the golf course.
hole names We held an internal competition amongst all the people who were involved in the constaruction of the golf course to name the individual names. Many of the names selected have either local, historical, geographical or environment connotations.
naming the golf course We held an international competition to name the golf course prior to opening through our website and by advertising in golf magazines. The competition recieved a huge amount of publicity worldwide with the winner (from Florida) being invited to the official opening of the course by HRH The Duke of York.
Geographical map Outside the Clubhose we have placed a map showing the features and places of the land acoss St Andrews Bay to Dundee, Tensmuir and beyond

Communications

This golf facility undertakes the following internal environmental communications:

Activity Description
Provision of newsletters, notice boards & poster display We provide a year book and monthly newlatters which cover anything significant as well as posting unusual matters on either our website, facebook or twitter.
Members evenings and course walks We give a couple of presentations/year to local golf club representatives and invited other parties which mostly featutes any work or aklterations we plan for the golf course but where we take the opportunity to mention our environmental work.
Course guides / brochures The course guide focus is on the playing of the golf course.
Interpretation panels & course signage Signage is kept discreet and is consisant with our brand.
Website and intranet Articles of interesting, important or unusual matters are posted either on our website, facebook or twitter.

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

Activity Description
Website, press releases & brochures All press releases are done by email. The website carries a lot of information about how to book, cost, availability etc rather than paper copies being sent out and there is room to develop this further. After an internal audit of the brochures we produced we have reduced paper comsumption and postage by 50%
Course walks / open days We have had a number of visits by college groups and members of different greenkeeping associations from various countries visit the course to learn about the construction and our management programme.
Joint practical projects with community We regularly converse with the Fife Coastal Path group and assist where necessary or when practical. they had a "Bracken bashing" day in July 2014 where volunteers assisted in helping control the bracken on land between the golf course and the sea.
public presentations The Director of Greenkeeping, the Course Manager, the architect and the CEO have all given presentations to groups around the world (and locally) about the contruction of the course and clubhouse and management of the course.
Social Media The Trust are much more active on social media than previously and what is happening on the course, from a greenkeeping or environmental aspect is often posted on our facebook or twitter accounts. we also have a regular Blog on our website and when updated people are notified by facebook/twitter.