Continue to Learn Conference 2022 - Wednesday

Main Auditorium & Queens Suite - Harrogate Convention Centre
9:00AM - 5:00PM, 23 Mar 2022

Day 3 of a 3 Day Continue to Learn Conference at BTME 2022

Programme for Day 3

What got me here, might not get me there… - 9:15am

What got me here, might not get me there…

Managers often head to Continue to Learn at BTME seeking to improve their technical knowledge but, more often than not, come away feeling that it was one of the management skills that they learned that gave them the best return on their time.

This session will discuss developing beyond “Level 3 leadership” skills, breaking the glass ceiling and understanding what the next level of leadership requires. Based on first hand experience, working with course managers, this session promises to be thought provoking and a must for anyone looking to develop their career.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Different levels of leadership we have all witnessed in our careers
  • Identify those at your club who demonstrate the different levels of leadership
  • The steps required to boldly climb the ladder to become the leader you want to be
  • Developing your skill set to fulfil your potential

Presented by: Kevin Fish, Owner, Contemporary Club Leadership

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Kevin Fish

Kevin has over 20 years of experience in the Club Industry.  A former Club Manager at the Glen Golf Club in North Berwick (1999-2008), Kevin was named the UK Golf Club Manager of the Year in 2004. He was in the first group of Europeans to be awarded the CCM (Certified Club Manager) qualification in 2008.  Kevin went on to work for the National Governing Body for golf in Scotland (SGU) for 7 years, leading a team providing support to hundreds of Scottish Golf clubs.

As the Chairman of the CMAE Education Policy Board Kevin was responsible for bringing Management Development Programme (MDP) education to club managers in Europe. He regularly tops the presenter charts at MDP events whilst sharing his knowledge of Club Governance, Business Planning, Committee Politics, Customer Service and Professional/Personal  Development, as well as addressing the annual CMAA World Conference of Club Management more than a dozen occasions.

In 2014 Kevin became the first European to be invited on to the CMAA Committee for Professional Development, the body that oversees the curriculum and qualifications for the club industry across the globe.

Taking on the business of golf – the Stanedge Golf Club story - 10:30am

Taking on the business of golf – the Stanedge Golf Club story

After suffering a shoulder injury and retiring from the Ladies European Tour, PGA Professional Fame Tate made the life changing decision to buy Stanedge Golf Club in Derbyshire in 2019, with the aim to transform the course and turn the club into a friendly venue at the heart of her local community.

Investing in a major course upgrade to improve playing conditions, a pandemic, lockdown and staffing challenges was certainly not in the plan. This session will take you on what became a journey into the unknown with everything at stake.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Golf course renovation
  • Changing perceptions
  • Strength and resilience

Presented by: Fame Tate, Director and Owner, Stanedge Golf Club

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Fame Tate
Fame is an experienced golf club owner and AA PGA Professional. With a history of working in the golf industry she is skilled in organizational leadership, golf management, customer engagement, golf instruction and customer service. An entrepreneur, Fame has a strong vision to break away from the “traditional” golf club model and change peoples perception of what a “typical” golf club is like.

Less is more when you talk about clip rate - 10:30am

Less is more when you talk about clip rate

This session will provide an understanding of cutting unit aggression, clip rate and ‘actual’ height of cut which, when set correctly, can have a dramatic improvement in the definition and trueness of your surfaces.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Awareness of simple procedures to improve definition
  • Suggestions for extending intervals between sharpening
  • Enhanced technician communication skills
  • Awareness of different cutting unit specification

Presented by: Tom Stidder, TCS Turf Equip LTD

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Tom Stidder
Tom has over 25 years’ experience in the technical support side of the golf machinery industry which started as a service technician and included working for two manufacturers.  His experience is utilised to improve machinery performance, longevity and develop economic service solutions bespoke to the client’s circumstances.  This service starts with delivering 'hands on' training.  This has recently expanded into compiling independent machinery condition reports, machinery replacement plans and enhancing technician to management communication.

Commissioning, building or designing ‑ running a safe project - 11:45am

Commissioning, building or designing ‑ running a safe project

In our industry, a largely misunderstood set of regulations, known as CDM15 exist. They run alongside other regulations and exist with a very clear purpose. This session will provide a good understanding of exactly what your role is in running a safe project.

Learning Outcomes:

  • The role of the client
  • The role of the designer or principle designer
  • The role of the contractor or principle contractor
  • The role of the HSE

Presented by: John Ross, Safety Consultant and Trainer, Compliant Grounds

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Safety Consultant and Trainer Compliant Grounds

John Ross CMIOSH MG is a chartered safety consultant and trainer with Compliant Grounds.

He is driven by the desire to raise awareness on safety matters within the turf maintenance industry and golf clubs. He understands that the words Health and Safety fill most with dread and works to raise awareness of the hazards that are faced in the greenkeeping industry.

John is a regular presenter on the Continue to Learn at BTME education programme.

Golf Course 2030 ‑ ITM for parkland greens - 11:45am

Golf Course 2030 ‑ ITM for parkland greens

Introducing the guide and how to produce better parkland greens whilst reducing your environmental footprint. Featuring performance measurement data.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Introduction to GC2030
  • Learn how to use the resource and support material
  • Information to support sustainable mangement
  • Latest research

Presented by: Paul Woodham, General Manager of Agronomy, STRI Group

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Paul Woodham

General Manager of Agronomy STRI Group Ltd

Paul joined STRI in 2010 following a career in greenkeeping and golf course management.
He was promoted to Head of Agronomy in 2019. Golf has been in Paul’s blood from an early age, and led to a brief spell on the amateur golf circuit, which he describes as “great experience but frustrating results”.
Although never progressing to the ranks of professional golf, the adventure led to a career path in agronomy and other interests in natural sports turf and environmental management. Paul is an avid Tampa Bay Buccaneers follower and Aston Villa supporter.

Leatherjacket management for the United Kingdom: what works and what is rubbish? - 12:55pm

Leatherjacket management for the United Kingdom: what works and what is rubbish?

Nematodes? Molasses? Sheeting? Acelepryn? Chemical restrictions in the United Kingdom have left many greenkeepers struggling to manage leatherjackets and seeking alternative management practices. This session will discuss the trials and research being conducted at Penn State University into cultural, biological and chemical control of the leatherjacket species Tipula paludosa and T. oleracea that are currently plaguing northern Europe.

Learning Outcomes:

  • An overview of leatherjacket species and lifecycles as they relate to damage progression and control options
  • How changing environmental conditions impact insect abundance and susceptibility to controls
  • Cultural management: the impact of moisture management on survival; topdressing and core cultivation and sheeting
  • Biological control: various biological control products (bacteria, fungi, entomopathogenic nematodes) available to turfgrass managers in the UK and strategies for improving successful implementation
  • Chemical control with Acelepryn: understand the mode of action, timing of the application, post‑application care, residual activity and efficacy by species
  • How to conduct your own monitoring and research trials

Presented by: Dr Ben McGraw, Associate Professor, Turfgrass Science, Penn State University

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Dr Ben McGraw Ph.D

Associate Professor, Turfgrass Science Penn State University

Dr. Ben McGraw is an associate professor of turfgrass science at Penn State University, and an authority on the ecology and management of turfgrass insect pests. He obtained his Master’s of Science degree in Entomology from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst and a doctorate in Entomology from Rutgers University where he specialised in the biological control of turfgrass insect pests. His research focuses on understanding insect ecology and behaviour to develop sustainable turf pest management practices.

Creating Ingrebourne Links Country Club - 12:55pm

Creating Ingrebourne Links Country Club

This session will tell the story of converting 370 acres of land overlooking Canary Wharf London and the QE2 Bridge in Kent to a links style golf course and country club.

Taking over 10 years to construct and shape significant tonnage of inert fill, the majority of which came from the Crossrail tunnelling project, Ingrebourne Links was a bold vision that turned relative wasteland on the outskirts of Rainham into a 27-hole course, health and fitness venue, 9 hole mini‑links par 3 and a 30-bay floodlit driving range.

EIGCA golf course architect and PGA Master Professional Alan Walker, together with Ben Adams, former CM at The London Club and now Ingrebourne Links course manager tell the fascinating story of the construction journey and maintaining the finished course to a high standard.

Learning Outcomes:

  • The construction journey
  • Maintenance of the course
  • Achieving and maintaining high standards

Presented by: Ben Adams, Course Manager, Ingrebourne Links Country Club and Alan Walker, Golf Course Architect

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Ben Adams

Course Manager Ingrebourne Links Golf & Country Club

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Alan Walker

Golf Course Architect

Alan Walker comes to golf course design from a PGA Golf Professional background. Turning professional in 1974, becoming a Club Professional soon after and then a golf club owner, his passion for golf saw him at the forefront of the PGA becoming their Millennium Captain in 2000 and voted PGA's of Europe's coveted '5 Star Professional' award in 2016. His interest in golf course design goes back to the early 1990's when he designed Benton Hall GC in Essex and quickly followed on with Rivenhall Oaks GC, with 27 holes at Garon Park GC and similar at Heydon Grange GC in Cambridgeshire.

In recent years he designed the 27 hole Ingrebourne Links Country Club, one of the largest inert fill sites in the UK, taking over a decade to complete. He is currently assisting a number of clubs, with general design changes, safety issues, re-bunkering and other advice through his company Alan Walker Consultancy Limited. He offers a unique service with course design integrating with operational and financial advice learnt from his years owning and operating a busy golf club.

Conservation on the golf course - 2:10pm

Conservation on the golf course

This session will discuss conservation projects that have taken place at John O’Gaunt Golf Club and the wildlife that has been recorded. It will showcase some of the equipment that is used to record the wildlife and will look at the water features and the benefits they can bring for wildlife.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Conservation projects and habitat management
  • Data recording
  • Benefits of water features on the course
  • Communication to members and the local community

Presented by: Stephen Thompson, Greenkeeper, John O’Gaunt Golf Club

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Stephen Thompson

Greenkeeper John O'Gaunt Golf Club

I have been a Greenkeeper at John o Gaunt Golf Club for 30 years. I am passionate about conservation and wildlife on the golf course and beyond. My efforts have helped the club win recognition and awards for conservation and I won Conservation Greenkeeper of the year in 2018.

Life in the transition zone - 2:10pm

Life in the transition zone

With our climate changing markedly over the last 15 years, this session will present a synopsis on the challenges we will face, the agronomic consequences of those challenges and the strategies we need to implement for the future in order to meet those challenges.

Learning Outcomes:

  • How the current climate in the UK compares to the transition zone in the US
  • Why our climate is changing and the potential for increased heat and rainfall
  • Agronomic consequences of climate change for the UK & Irish turfgrass industry
  • Strategies to implement to mitigate the effects of climate extremes - what we can change and what our industry needs to change

Presented by: Mark Hunt

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Mark Hunt

Pythium patch: a newly discovered disease of Poa annua putting greens - 3:25pm

Pythium patch: a newly discovered disease of Poa annua putting greens

In 2005 a new disease of annual meadowgrass putting greens was first identified in the north‑eastern United States. Subsequent outbreaks in the USA led to a formal investigation and identification of the causal agents. Although the disease has not yet been reported outside the USA, susceptible species and climatic conditions exist in Europe that could ultimately lead to the spread of the disease.

This session will introduce the signs and symptoms of the disease as well as management options available for its control.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Signs and symptoms of the disease
  • Optimum conditions
  • Management options for control

Presented by: Dr John Kaminski, Professor & Associate Department Head of the Department of Plant Science, Penn State University

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Dr John Kaminski Ph.D

Professor & Associate Department Head of the Department of Plant Science Penn State University

John is a Professor and Associate Department Head of the Department of Plant Science at Penn State University. He is also Director of the Golf Course Turfgrass Management Program.

John has extensive experience in the area of golf course turfgrass management and specifically in the management of turfgrass diseases. He has been responsible for or associated with the discovery of four new turfgrass diseases on golf courses. His research focuses on the cultural and chemical management of turfgrass pests and also conducts agronomic research in the emerging hemp industry.

In his role as Director of the Golf Course Turfgrass Management Program, John is responsible for mentoring future golf course superintendents in and out of the classroom. He also serves as Co-Advisor for the Penn State Turf Club.

Golf Course 2030 ‑ Water management - 3:25pm

Golf Course 2030 ‑ Water management

The R&A Golf Course 2030 Water Security project was commissioned by The R&A to assess and advise on the future of water management for the UK golf sector. The project aimed to offer practical advice for those in the greenkeeping sector. This ranges from short term advice on water reduction and best practice, through to long term water sourcing strategies. This will include large scale water harvesting, use of greywater, treated sewage effluent and sustainable borehole use. This session will summarise the main conclusions of the project, offer a number of potential water strategies for practitioners and present key influential case studies to inspire future change in the industry.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Sustainable water management
  • Future golf irrigation strategies
  • R&A GC2030 Water Security Project Update
  • Case studies of sustainable water management
  • Tips for water reduction

Presented by: Dr Tom Young, Environment Systems Manager, STRI Group

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Dr Tom Young
Tom arrived at STRI in 2014 with a PhD in Biological Sciences, specialising in the optimisation of green roof substrate for sustainable plant growth and specific service provision.
His first role was as a research manager overseeing the day to day running of research projects involving collection, analysis and reporting of data. Tom was promoted to Technology Manager in 2018, taking the lead in co-ordinating development of innovative services and products for new and existing markets. Since 2020, Tom has been the Environment Systems Manager for STRI Group, specialising in the sustainable sourcing and management of water across landscapes and golf courses.

Championship agronomy 2021 ‑ our learnings - 4:20pm

Championship agronomy 2021 ‑ our learnings

The Continue to Learn Conference will conclude with a relaxed and interesting chat show style session discussing The Open, held at Royal St Georges in 2021. Hosted by The R&A Agronomy team and joined by Course Manager Paul Larsen this session promises to give you an inside look at one of the world’s greatest golf tournaments. Offering an insight into the challenges presented by COVID-19 and the modern emphasis on sustainable greenkeeping,

The R&A Agronomy team will reveal how they work, the preparation and data collection processes involved with championship preparation, the interactions with the host greenkeeping team and an idea of modern requirements for the delivery of golf’s greatest championship.

Presented by: Alistair Beggs, Head of Agronomy; Richard Windows, Agronomy Manager; Adam Newton, Senior Agronomist, R&A and Paul Larsen, Course Manager, Royal St Georges Golf Club

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Alistair Beggs

Head of Agronomy R&A

Alistair Beggs joined the R&A in January 2019 having previously worked as Head of Agronomy at STRI. In his time at STRI Alistair has advised on many different types of turf throughout the world. He gained warm season experience in Asia and has provided advice to clients throughout Western and Southern Europe and throughout the UK. He has gained a wealth of knowledge on the management and upkeep of many different types of golf course. Alistair's qualifications include a Biology degree and a diploma in Golf Course Architecture and he a member of the BASIS professional register. He is a regular contributor to industry publications and presenter at turf conferences. Alistair is a keen golfer and member at Royal Liverpool, and Rye. Alistair was Captain of Royal Liverpool in 2014.
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Richard Windows
Richard has been an Agronomist for 20 years and has been Championship Agronomist to the R&A for several Open Championships, The AIG Women's Open, The Amateur Championship and The Walker Cup. He has a passion for links golf and delivering sustainable turf surfaces to the highest standard for championship golf. He is a member of Royal Troon Golf Club playing off a handicap of 10.
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Adam Newton
Adam joined The R&A in January 2019 after working previously as Senior Agronomist at STRI. He has worked at five Open Championships, two Women's British Opens and the Walker Cup. Adam gained a first class honours degree in Turfgrass Science and received an R&A scholarship as well as both the Barenburg Turf Science Award and Martin Jones Award whilst studying. He is also a member of the BASIS Amenity Register and is a FACTS qualified advisor. Adam is a very keen golfer and a member of Fulford Golf Club with a handicap of 3.
Paul Larson

Course Manager Royal St Georges Golf Club




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