Irrigation Committee Information

To all Copthorne golf club members,

In late May our chairman approached me to head up a committee to obtain quotations for a company or companies, to design a quality, appropriate, efficient, economical and sustainable irrigation system for Copthorne golf club.

I had been involved previously in obtaining a quotation and felt that this would be straight forward! But things have changed!

Firstly, I put together a committee of Amanda, Andy Dowdeswell, Mike Gould and David Smith. The thinking behind this was that a lot, if not all the involvement would take place during the day and all of these members could attend daytime meetings when required.

During our first meeting I was advised that WSCC and the Environment agency, along with the STRI group (our Agronomist Company) had already been involved with the club with relevance to local area flood protection in relation to Copthorne Village and water harvesting. This project work was going to affect our thinking on the system design and water supply.

We have held meetings with all the above agencies to try and understand the way forward for everyone and look for any possible funding opportunities that may help us. The discussions we have had with the above have all been very positive. At this stage we as a committee were struggling to identify our actual water supply for a sustainable irrigation system and spent many weeks trying to answer that question. During this period, we had been in touch with several golf clubs who had installed irrigation systems recently or were in the process of doing so. Most of the clubs either have a water borehole or have, or will be installing a water harvesting lake or lakes. What has become apparent is that all clubs are different!

During this period, we instructed the Consultancy company, Irritech to carry out an assessment of our current irrigation system. When we received the report, we were not surprised in as much as in their opinion the entire system is overdue for replacement. We were struggling as a committee on the water supply issue. I contacted Irritech to seek advice on the way forward. Their advice was to split the issue, plan and design the irrigation system, once you know what the expected consumption figures will be you can then work out how you are going to find/supply that requirement. Following their advice and after seeking alternative quotations for planning and design. We recommended to the board of directors to engage Irritech to plan and design the system for Copthorne, this was approved.

Irritech are currently putting together a specification, plan and design which we are hoping will be with us by January. Once we have agreed the design and possibly changed any requirements. It will be then that Irritech will go out for tender for several companies to quote, our expectation for these tenders is March 2023.

In the meantime, we have been pursuing the Water borehole option, at this point we have had a desktop assessment carried out, which has been very favourable,however, until we know our expected consumption figure we will have to wait to apply for our relevant licence. We shall be meeting with a representative from the Borehole company this week to see how they can advise or help us in this process.

My hope when I started the project was that we would have a quotation in time for the AGM however with the complications of our projected system and supply issues this is not going to be the case.

I understand that some members are frustrated with what seems like the lack of progress but would like to state that there have been many hours of research and site visiting put in by the committee and would like to take this opportunity to thank them for that.

We do have an opportunity to design and install a system that is right for all parties involved. We must be sure of what we eventually recommend to the board and of course the members are right for the club and the environment.

David Evans
Irrigation Sub Committee Chairman

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03.12.2023 07:06
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