Update from the Chairman

General

10 days into the golfing ‘new normal’, a phrase I am sure we will get to hate as much as Brexit, and time therefore to share some important information with you all.

Our return to golf has seen the expected rush to play from the membership, and, almost without incident, a new mutual respect for the COVID19 rules that were introduced to protect the health and safety of our membership.

As a Board of Management we have met regularly (whilst obeying all the Social Distancing rules), to ensure that your return to golf was both fully inclusive for all members and as painless as possible given the circumstances.

Annual General Meeting (AGM)

With Government’s regulations limiting public gatherings to just six persons, and those gatherings having to respect social distancing rules, it has proved impossible to hold an AGM this month. We have therefore decided to hold the AGM when it is legally possible to do so. There are of course a couple of items from the AGM’s agenda that do need attending to, and we have decided these as follows:-

Election of Captain. We have approved a bye law that allows the new Captain to take office, subject to ratification at the next General Meeting of the club. We have, in the same bye law, made a similar provision for the Captain of the Ladies Section. Details of the bye law are available here https://royalmaltagolfclub.com/app/uploads/2020/05/200519-Bye-Law-7.pdf

Likewise, we have had to postpone elections for the two Board of Management seats until the next General Meeting.

All change at the whelm

Today we see Richard Waterhouse take over from Thomas Jacobsen as Captain of the RMGC. Thomas ends a ‘double shift’ and has worked tirelessly over the past 24 months to serve the club he loves. Thank you Thomas for your service.

Richard’s term begins at a unique time in the club’s history in that although there are currently no club competitions to steward, no sub-committees to chair, he takes his seat on the Board of Management at perhaps the most challenging time the club has faced, fiscally, for many decades.

We also welcome Rebecca Howes, who also takes office as the Captain of the Ladies Section. Rebecca succeeds Maryanne Waterhouse who has done an excellent job in a season where there has been considerable disruption. She has done this always with a smile and a kind word and has not let adversity dampen her spirits. Well done Maryanne, and, with Richard now in the hot seat, you get another year too……

Both outgoing Captains will of course make their farewell addresses at their respective General Meetings when regulations permit that we hold them.

Finances

As you will appreciate the closure of any business is a significant blow. But, closing a golf club is much worse ! Not only did our business lose significant revenue streams but it also had to keep a golf course alive. And, with the recent pre COVID staffing changes that happened we were left with just two green keepers and three labourers – in hindsight a blessing more than a curse. The RMGC relies on sports tourism for around a third of its income. So, with the airport and ports closed, the club must survive on its membership subscriptions alone. The implications of the above are simple. We will have to operate with the HR and the materials we have until tourism resumes in such quantities that we can move forward again.

Looking ahead

How golf develops for us this summer very much depends on how and when Government ease restrictions.

Rest assured that your Board wishes to resume as many legacy golfing activities as we are able; always with the health and safety of the membership as its primary concern.

Enjoy your golf and be careful out there.

Paul Stoner

Chairman

Royal Malta Golf Club

1st June 2020