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Less than three weeks after the government relaxed lockdown rules to allow golfers to resume playing, Leighton Buzzard members are now able to play the complete 18-hole Plantation Road course in a move to what will be the “new normal.”
The club initially gave the green-light to members to play nine of the holes in two-ball pairings after finalising strict guidelines to comply with social distancing and other measures necessary to ensure the safety and well-being of staff and club members as part of the  ongoing campaign to curb the spread of the deadly COVID-19 virus.
Now, after a successful re-start trial after the nine-week lockdown, the club has reinstated all 18 holes for social golf, with members still having to comply with rules and guidance on social distancing and other measures imposed to avoid the risk of infection.
And in another major development, the club’s new state-of-the-art course irrigation system is undergoing commissioning trials and should be fully operational later this week.
Says Club Captain Simon Rossiter: “Completing the installation of the new irrigation system is a very welcome and timely development which will enable our greens staff to maintain our course to the highest standards.
“After the lengthy lockdown, our structured re-start programme has gone very well and we will continue to monitor the situation closely as we move forward.”
The club house, pro shop and practice area facilities at Leighton currently remain closed, with the club management team monitoring the situation on a regular basis to determine if,  what and when further action may be necessary.
Adds club Marketing Director Liz Bagshaw: “From the number of inquiries we have received from people wanting to join and play golf, it’s quite clear people want to get out and exercise in a safe environment – and golf is a perfect example of how that can be achieved by people of all ages, with or without previous golfing experience.”
The Leighton club, which will celebrate its centenary in 2025, offers a range of in-house courses for beginners or inexperienced golfers through its professional team headed by golf director Maurice Campbell.
The Leighton club has more than 90 female members. Pictured, Ladies Captain Christine Rimmer (centre) and club colleagues Norma Stevens-Hack and Oonagh Russell demonstrate their “social distancing.”