Pro Explains Why Some UK Golf Courses Are Still Closed

Dan Webster, the head pro at St Annes Old Links in Lytham St Annes, has explained why some courses are yet to reopen

A generic image of a sign saying Course Closed
(Image credit: Getty Images)

After a spell where the UK experienced sub-zero temperatures and snow, it was hardly surprising to find many of its golf courses temporarily shut. However, with temperatures having risen sharply, there is some confusion as to why many have yet to reopen.

One head pro has attempted to clear up that confusion by posting a video on Twitter explaining why his course, St Annes Old Links in Lytham St Annes, Lancashire, is still closed despite the warmer weather. He begins the video by saying: "The frost is gone, the frozen conditions have lifted, it is a balmy 11° today, so members will be asking, ‘why is the course not open just yet?’ Yes, we are still closed and there is a very, very important reason for that.”

Webster then takes a screwdriver and inserts it around 1½ inches into the putting green – the furthest it will go. He then explains that while the surface of the putting green has thawed, it is still frozen not far beneath it, meaning that playing on the course at present will cause root damage. Still, those keen on embarking on a pre-Christmas round need not despair, with good news around the corner. Webster says that while patience may be required for the next couple of days, courses should reopen very soon. 

In the meantime, he suggests those keen to play should consider visiting a driving range with Toptracer – a technology that allows players to take on simulations of some of the world’s most iconic courses from the driving range bay. Alternatively, he suggests simply offering support to the club by going down to your course and saying 'hello' to the pro.

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Mike Hall
News Writer

Mike has over 25 years of experience in journalism, including writing on a range of sports throughout that time, such as golf, football and cricket. Now a freelance staff writer for Golf Monthly, he is dedicated to covering the game's most newsworthy stories. 

He has written hundreds of articles on the game, from features offering insights into how members of the public can play some of the world's most revered courses, to breaking news stories affecting everything from the PGA Tour and LIV Golf to developmental Tours and the amateur game. 

Mike grew up in East Yorkshire and began his career in journalism in 1997. He then moved to London in 2003 as his career flourished, and nowadays resides in New Brunswick, Canada, where he and his wife raise their young family less than a mile from his local course. 

Kevin Cook’s acclaimed 2007 biography, Tommy’s Honour, about golf’s founding father and son, remains one of his all-time favourite sports books.