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NEWS UPDATE

Course The planned annual maintenance of the greens has been completed successfully without causing too much disruption. The greens have been micro-tined and scarified (twice). The microtining allows aeration of the greens and provides some relief to the compaction which builds up over time. The surfaces will continue to recover very quickly, providing better greens in the longer term by removing some of the broader leaf, annual meadow grasses and encouraging the finer grass in its place. Following this process the greens will be treated with a slow release feed to encourage growth in the latter part of the season. Areas in need of repair will continue to be marked as GUR to aid fairness and playability of the course for members. Whilst it is never desirable to see white lined areas around the course, denoting such areas does provide a fairer alternative to playing shots from areas unfit for play. Action to reduce wear of specific areas will be taken and monitored throughout the winter. Members are requested to respect the guidance away from these areas to aid the protection and reparation of the course. Pros Shop Kevin Whale has been appointed as the new Club Professional. He is currently in the process of refitting the shop and installing an indoor teaching/custom fitting facility. This will result in a smaller retail side to the shop but provide Kevin with an all year round teaching facility. Normal service will resume shortly on completion of the refit and the benefits enjoyed by members over many years will be in place once again. The insolvency case involving Phipps Golf Ltd is ongoing. As soon as there is any progress regarding the completion of this legal process, members who had credit remaining with Phipps Golf Ltd will be contacted and informed of the final position. Centenary Plans continue to evolve for the pending Centenary year. Several events, golfing and otherwise, to commemorate the year will be organised by the Centenary committee and details will be made available once these are finalised. As we come to the end of the current supply of scorecards, members will note the request for the temporary use of the winter cards for casual play. A Centenary card will be in circulation shortly with a specific logo to mark the occasion. Merchandise such as sweaters and shirts, also bearing this logo will be available from the Pros Shop leading up to and throughout the Centenary year. Green fees Some members may be aware of the test case by Bridport and Dorset Golf Club (BDGC) against the current position whereby private member golf clubs must account for VAT on visitor green fees. The first tier VAT tribunal has decided that HMRC has been wrong to insist that VAT be charged on visitors green fees. HMRC have however appealed this initial decision. In brief, it was argued on behalf of BDGC that the UK VAT regulation was incorrect in differentiating between golf club membership fees and visitors fees. European legislation establishes the scope to apply VAT exemption and in BDGCs view the UK, in limiting this exemption to members fees were more restrictive than the overriding European legislation. The case hinges on the fact that there should not be a distinction between the application of the exemption to membership fees income and that green fee income was not additional income for golf clubs, rather it was income intentionally generated to support the objectives of the club. Notwithstanding HMRCs decision to appeal the decision, Boldon Golf Club have made a protective claim for VAT overpaid on visitors green fees such claims can be made retrospectively and if successful may provide a small windfall for the Club in the future. 9 September 2011

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