Added on February 23rd, 2017 by Lorne Smith
Posted in Greenkeeping
There are Halls of Fame for the great and good golfers and personalities of the game but nobody to our knowledge has organised a pantheon of the finest greenkeepers, who arguably have been more important than any other profession in the creation of our golfing enjoyment.
Why is this so?  Perhaps because it has been made such a controversial list to create. The difference between ‘chemical’ managing for weed grasses and ‘natural’ managing for fine grasses defines the dichotomy in the two types of greenkeeping. Few in the golf industry would wish to be seen making choices when some ‘vested interests’ prefer to ignore the dichotomy and just call it ‘grass’.
Nevertheless, as a help in raising further the respect for greenkeepers in golfer’s minds, in FineGolf’s view it is well worthwhile promoting such a Pantheon if this list is based on those greenkeepers who have

“successfully managed fine grasses over a decent period of time and who have had the courage to create an environment for running-golf “.

The list obviously should include: Walter Woods B.E.M. (Notts(Hollinwell)/St Andrews), John Philp M.B.E. (Newmarket/St Andrews/ Carnoustie), Billy Mitchell (Perranporth),  James King (Luffness New), George Thompson (Goswick), Frank Arnold (Rye), Mark Broughton (Aldeburgh), Chris Whittle (St Annes Old Links/Muirfield/Royal Birkdale), John Muir (West Lancashire), James” Shaig” Logan B.E.M.(Muirfield)  and of course Old Tom Morris (Prestwick/St Andrews) to name just an initial few. Some have had big budgets, some small, and they all should be recognised for their professionalism in creating an environment for our enjoyment of  the running game. There are also some very fine younger greenkeepers who are successfully managing fine grasses.
FineGolf would welcome, on a completely confidential basis, further suggestions and additions so a full Pantheon of the Finest Greenkeepers can be assembled and announced later in the year.
Please do get in touch at lorne@finegolf.co.uk