New management and passionate staff with a firmly held view of sustainable golf practices has led to dramatic improvements at the course known by regulars simply as ‘The Frog’.

Here’s an interesting thing. If we were to consider designing a course to meet the needs of the future, we could do well to hark back to a course that opened almost 17 years ago.

Growling Frog is its name, and that’s a good start. Compelling and creative. That’s Marketing 101 right there. But it’s genuinely appropriate, too, named after the Growling Grass Frog, which is native to the Whittlesea area and in sore need of some support if he/she is to survive current endangered classification.

Sustainability in golf, both in greenkeeping and in environmental responsibility, is an issue stretching into the future – largely due to less than perfect practices of the past – and Growling Frog is ahead of the game on that score.

Then there’s the role that public courses play in both development of the game and in drawing a community together.

There’s the difference that an experienced, organised management approach can make to a club that is struggling.

There’s the enthusiasm and vision for the future that vibrant staff can add.

And, while it may seem at first a small point, there’s the use of tees that are based on ability rather than gender, a major influence in players of all standards having an equal opportunity to enjoy their game. Surely that’s the ultimate aim?

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Kristian Faul

Author Kristian Faul

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