September 2020

Knox Hails Nairn Dunbar Improvements as 80 New Members Join

Russell Knox, the three-time Tour winner, has hailed the course improvements at Nairn Dunbar as the club celebrates the arrival of 80 new members since golf's return.

Over recent times, the renowned championship venue has undergone a series of adjustments to promote a true links experience at the Highland layout.

As the club looks forward to co-hosting The Amateur Championship in June next year, it has worked hard to improve and upgrade the course to keep pace with the expectations of members and visitors at great value for money.

After receiving consistent feedback that holes 9, 10 and 11 had a more parkland feel, the club put a restoration plan in place to unveil as much of the natural dune systems and undulations as possible.

Through sustainable management under the leadership of course manager Richard Johnstone, Nairn Dunbar have also worked hard on producing more firm and fast greens for links golf and undertaken a rough, gorse and tree management programme.

With the club promoting its assets and offering new membership offers, such as a Lifestyle category, it has welcomed 80 new members since May as golf continues to enjoy a feelgood factor post-lockdown during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

US-based Knox has watched on with pride, given the Scot is an honorary member at the club and developed his game on the links as a junior.

The 35-year-old said: "I've actually bumped into Richard a few times over the last few years as he has come over to the US to volunteer at some of the Majors. So I've got to chat to him a little bit and I follow him on facebook. I see the pictures posted and updates on the new holes - it looks amazing.

"I guess holes 9, 10 and 11 probably did stick out a little bit, they weren't really anything like the rest of the course, so if they are now a little more 'linksy' and more natural to the land there, that is only going to make the course better. Good on him for getting on with that. I would love to go back and play the course again."

Knox, a former junior captain at Nairn Dunbar and three-time club champion from 2002, last played the course in 2018 when he travelled over to compete in the Scottish Open at Gullane.

The 2018 Dubai Duty Free Irish Open winner, who also has a junior open at Inverness and Nairn Dunbar named in his honour, added: "It's been a long time since I've been back and obviously the changes to those holes weren't in place. By following and talking to Richard, he has done a lot to the golf course. It has totally changed since I played it all the time, with different bunkers and just the condition of the course looks phenomenal in pictures I've seen online. It's just a great course.

"Playing there in so many different conditions and tournaments was fantastic. I've played hundreds of rounds there. My upbringing, getting to play Nairn Dunbar, winning the junior tournaments, winning the club championship, the 5-Day Open; I mean those were the reasons why I'm here where I am now."

New members are now enjoying the experiences Knox previously enjoyed. With golf one of the first sports to emerge from lockdown and Nairn Dunbar offering excellent offers, the club have been delighted to welcome new faces - including 30 new Introductory members. 

Laura and Colin McChristie have recently joined, also enjoying coaching as part of their welcome to the club. All Introductory members receive two free lessons from Director of Golf, Robbie Stewart, including a group lesson to meet others in the same category and with similar abilities. 

Laura said: "It is a great and friendly course to play with stunning views and some challenging holes, with the wind making each hole different every time you play it.

"The coaching is fantastic with such a friendly approach and good visual tools to help explain the points and a follow up email to help you remember."

Dave Towersey, another new Introductory member, added: "I have found Nairn Dunbar to be a very friendly and welcoming club and have been able to play regularly since joining. The free lessons were very helpful and have increased my enjoyment immediately."

For more information on Nairn Dunbar and their membership offers, please contact Kieran Maclean, Club Manager, on email at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

June 2020

New Membership for your Lifestyle at Nairn Dunbar

Nairn Dunbar is continuing its drive to attract new members and encourage lapsed members to return to the club by launching an exciting new Lifestyle category.

With the easing of coronavirus restrictions allowing golf to return, the top-10 rated north of Scotland venue has been busy with members back enjoying their golf.

Over 20 members have taken up the club's offer of full membership for adults over the age of 30 - attractively priced at £60.38 per month - with Nairn Dunbar now promoting a new lifestyle option to further help boost membership numbers.

With membership on the decline across Great Britain and Ireland in the last decade due to a variety of factors, the club believe their new category will help meet modern lifestyles and entice younger players.

It is particularly aimed at the occasional and fair-weather golfer, or golfers wishing a second course membership, and provides many of the benefits of traditional golf club membership.

While full membership will remain attractive to many, Lifestyle Membership can be purchased at Nairn Dunbar for £470 per year for those aged 24 and above, with the annual cost of £315 for those aged 21 to 24. 

Lifestyle members can gain an official CONGU handicap, play in the majority of club competitions, introduce 12 guests per annum at a rate of £25 per round and enjoy the members' bar and catering discount (currently 10%)

Lifestyle members can play at any time from 10am on weekdays and from 2pm at weekends during the summer months, and from 11am during weekdays and weekends in the winter period (1 November to 31 March).

Kieran Maclean, Club Manager at Nairn Dunbar GC, said: "Lifestyle Membership is an excellent alternative membership option that has been created for golfers who want a lot of the benefits of being a full member of the golf club, but whose busy lives mean that they are unable to play enough golf to justify a traditional full membership subscription.

"Those giving up traditional golf club membership tend to say that they simply don't play often enough to justify the cost of membership, and this particularly applies to the 25 to 40 age group.

"The introduction of our Lifestyle Membership will encourage the less frequent player to become a member of the club and, in addition, encourage a current member who may be considering giving up their membership to remain. We also believe it will be attractive to past members who considered the number of times they played did not justify a full membership."

Lifestyle members at Nairn Dunbar may not enter the club championship, knockout competitions or represent the club in any inter-club matches.

For full details of the new Lifestyle Membership at Nairn Dunbar, please contact Kieran on email at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

June 2020

Join the Club at Nairn Dunbar as Golf Returns

Nairn Dunbar is highlighting the benefits of 'joining the club' by enjoying unlimited golf as a member following the lifting of coronavirus restrictions.

With golf one of the few sports now allowed to be played safely in Scotland, provided social distancing and safety measures are adhered to, Nairn Dunbar is delighted to have re-opened.

While the clubhouse remains closed and visitors unable to tee up initially, only members can play the renowned links in small groups - meaning there has perhaps never been a better time to take up the club's fantastic membership offers.

With full membership attractively priced at only £60.38 per month for adults over the age of 30, new members are welcome to join immediately and play by booking online tee times.

This represents incredibly value, while juniors under the age of 16 can also join for an annual fee of only £40.

After over two months of "stay at home" messaging given the global Covid-19 pandemic, golf is one of the best sports to boost both your physical and mental health and safely social distance in the great outdoors.

Nairn Dunbar - which will co-host The Amateur Championship with neighbouring The Nairn Golf Club next year and boasts an improved links test following course improvements - is heavily reliant on the local populace to purchase memberships and is now calling for more support given their finances have been hit hard in recent months due to closure.

Kieran Maclean, Club Manager at Nairn Dunbar, said: "It's been a difficult and sad time for everyone in society, but we are now delighted to have re-opened our doors to members of the golf club. We know how much our members have missed their golf and it is a credit to our Course Manager, Richard Johnstone, that he has managed to keep the links in great condition during the period of lockdown. 
"Given only members can currently play at the course, there really has never been a better time to be a member here and enjoy unlimited golf with our fantastic membership offers which are available from now and represent great value for money."

Recent restorations to Nairn Dunbar, including holes 9, 10 and 11 offering a more links feel, have been well praised. Through sustainable management, the club have also worked hard on producing more firm and fast greens and undertaken a rough, gorse and tree management programme. 

Maclean added: "We thank everyone who has supported the club during this period and look forward to our members enjoying the course over the coming weeks in a safe manner, before we can encourage visitor play when we are safely allowed to do so."

Initially a 9-hole course from its founding in 1899 before its extension to 18 holes in 1924, the course offers views across the Moray Firth to the Black Isle and beyond to the mountains of Sutherland, as well as inland to the neighbouring Cawdor Hills. The par-72 layout offers a fun and enjoyable test, characterised by holes such as the picturesque par-3 8th. 

For membership information at Nairn Dunbar Golf Club and all other enquiries, please contact Kieran on email at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

 

 

November 2019

Nairn Dunbar Delight at Amateur Staging

Nairn Dunbar Golf Club is further celebrating its 120th anniversary this year following the announcement it will welcome one of the biggest amateur events in the world. Along with neighbouring The Nairn Golf Club, it will stage qualifying rounds for The Amateur Championship in 2021, one of the most coveted prizes in men's amateur golf. 

The accolade builds on Nairn Dunbar's reputation as a host to leading amateur and professional events, including The R&A Boys Amateur Championship in 2017 and The PGA Northern Open in 2018.

From 14 - 19 June 2021, Nairn will host The Amateur Championship for the second time following the first occasion in 1994 when Englishman Lee James triumphed over Scotland's Gordon Sherry.

It will be the 126th staging of The Amateur Championship which features a field of 288 world-ranked players with the winner earning a place in The Open and the following years US Open. Traditionally, the winner also receives an invitation to the Masters Tournament. 

Robbie Stewart, who took over as new PGA Director of Golf at Nairn Dunbar just over a year ago, said: "We are delighted to be hosting qualifying rounds for The Amateur Championship in 2021, along with The Nairn Golf Club. This is one of the biggest events in amateur golf and we look forward to welcoming talented players from all over the world to our venue, together with working closely with The R&A."

The news is also rich reward for Nairn Dunbar given the series of course improvements in recent years at the renowned Highland layout, founded in 1899.

"We take great pride in our course and can't wait to see the best amateur players competing here in 2021," added Stewart. "It will be a great thrill for all associated with the club and it also helps raise our profile in Scotland and beyond."

Duncan Weir, Executive Director - Golf Development and Amateur Championships at The R&A, said: "We are delighted to be taking our 2021 championships to venues of the highest quality that will challenge the world's leading men and women amateurs. Our aim is to provide the opportunity for those players to compete with their international peers and to show how good they are. Selecting outstanding venues is key and we are delighted to have such a strong schedule for 2021."

 

September 2019

 

Course Improvements Restore Links Effect at Nairn Dunbar

Nairn Dunbar Golf Club, the renowned championship venue, has undergone a series of course improvements to restore the links effect at the Highland layout. 

As the club celebrates its 120th anniversary, it is reflecting on steps taken in recent years to promote a true links golf experience, improving and upgrading the course to keep pace with the ever-changing requirements and expectations of members and visitors.

After receiving consistent feedback that holes 9, 10 and 11 had a more parkland feel, the club put a restoration plan in place to unveil as much of the natural dune systems and undulations as possible. Through sustainable management, Nairn Dunbar have also worked hard on producing more firm and fast greens for links golf and undertaken a rough, gorse and tree management programme.

Under the leadership of course manager Richard Johnstone, who is continuing to engage in education to become one of the most qualified in the UK, the overall improvements have been reflected in recent performance data analysis through the STRI (Sports Turf Research Institute) programme which highlighted the consistent quality of the playing surfaces.

The club, host to leading amateur and professional events such as The R&A Boys Amateur Championship in 2017 and The PGA Northern Open in 2018, now boast an improved links test to challenge all abilities while providing great value for money.

Robbie Stewart, who took over as new PGA Director of Golf at Nairn Dunbar a year ago, said: "Going back to late 2015, the club had a vision to restore the links site here. The course has long possessed all the essential ingredients of a thoroughly absorbing links layout and Richard and his team have brought that to the fore in recent years.

"We are delighted with the quality of the course and continue to pride ourselves on product, condition and service for members and visitors at the club. With the autumn now here and winter approaching, we boast a superb all-year round links test at Nairn Dunbar."

The restoration plan at holes 9, 10 and 11 has helped achieve the overall links experience, as previously there was a band of larch trees, gorse and broom running down the right-hand side of the 10th hole that blocked the view of the Moray Firth and the natural dunes. With the addition of new teeing surfaces, the parkland feel has been lost.

Johnstone has also worked on the composition of the grass species on greens, introducing fine leaved grass into the surfaces and reducing the amount of meadow grass content, giving the perfect environment for fine links grasses to thrive.

Johnstone, who was one of the only three course managers selected from thousands across the UK to work at Le Golf National for the 2018 Ryder Cup, said: "We have also firmed up surfaces to achieve firm and fast links golf by regularly topdressing surfaces with dune sand to dilute organic matter with significant changes to firmness on greens and approaches."

The club also implemented a rough management plan to return the links roughs to their natural condition, allowing fescues to regenerate to a dominant position and leave a long, open and wispy rough. "This gives the course a better aesthetic effect but allows members and visitors to find their balls and help speed up play," added Johnstone. "We also introduced a gorse and tree management plan to return areas of the course back to its original dune landscape, with the removal of gorse, broom and other non-native species."

Part of a rich stretch of links golfing terrain in the north, along with the likes of Nairn, Castle Stuart and Moray, Nairn Dunbar is set in 135 acres of undulating links land. Initially a 9-hole course from its founding on 24 May 1899 before its extension to 18 holes in 1924, it lies to the east of the bustling coastal town of Nairn. With views across the Moray Firth to the Black Isle and beyond to the mountains of Sutherland, as well as inland to the neighbouring Cawdor Hills, it offers a fun and enjoyable test, characterised by holes such as the picturesque par-3 8th. 

Reached by excellent travel connections only 15 minutes from Inverness Airport and two hours from Aberdeen Airport, the par-72 course measures 6,765 yards from the championship tees to 6,290 off the yellow tees and 5,748 from the reds.

The club is currently offering two fantastic packages to encourage new members, including 15 months membership for the price of 12 and a winter ticket for only £175 from 1 November 2019 to 31 March 2020.

For more membership and visitor information at Nairn Dunbar GC, please contact:

Robbie Stewart

PGA Director of Golf

Tel: 01667 452741

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.