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Green for GO at Kingsfield

Linlithgow golf facility installs set of traffic lights

A WEST Lothian club is telling golfers not to drive through red - after installing a unique set of traffic lights on their first hole to help with both pace of play and general safety.

Kingsfield Golf Centre, situated on the outskirts of Linlithgow and the attachment of European Tour star Stephen Gallacher, is believed to be the first golf club in Scotland to have installed the lights on their course.

The story has caught the imagination of the media, too, achieving national coverage in the news pages of the Daily Record and the Scottish Sun, and it also featured on Sky Sports News.

Vacate

The opening hole of the USGA specification nine-holer is a semi-blind short par-4, meaning golfers on the tee have to be sure the green is clear before teeing off.

To help speed up play this season, Kingsfield looked at a number of options, including the traditional bell behind the green, but felt the traffic-like system worked better.

Now when golfers vacate the first green, they press a button to ensure the light turns from red to green at the first tee, allowing play to commence. The same applies at the first tee, with players teeing off and then hitting the button so it turns to red.

The system was designed and built by a Kingsfield member, Stephen Gillespie from Polmont. If a player forgets to hit the button coming off the first green, the system has a 14-minute default so it turns back to green at the first tee.

Options

Robert Arkley, owner of family-friendly Kingsfield Golf Centre, said: “We’re delighted with the traffic lights on the first hole and have received excellent feedback from members and visitors.

“We looked at various options such as a bell, steps behind the first tee and a periscope, but, for minimal cost, the traffic lights were our preferred choice.

A bell, for example, can be noisy and players may not hear it if it’s windy. “The traffic lights are working well in terms of pace of play and improving our overall health and safety.” For further information, please contact Robert at

Photo ©  Kenny Smith

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