In October 2017, the start of a major irrigation system renovation project began at The Worcestershire Golf Club, established in 1879 and one of the oldest clubs in England. Scheduled for completion in January 2018, irrigation design is by consultants Irritech, and the appointed contractor is North Staffs Irrigation.

The project involves the installation of a new pumping station, a Rain Bird IC System™ with Stratus™ II Central Control Version 8 Software and Rain Bird® 751 IC valve-in-head rotors on greens & aprons. Pipework for irrigating tees is being installed now, ready for the planned, phased rebuilding of tees over the next three years.

Steve Lloyd, Course Manager, explains, “When I joined in 2014, irrigation was one of the areas that the club had wanted to address for some time. Installed 28 years ago, the system had reached the end if its useful life. We were turning the irrigation system on and off manually, the PVC pipework and glued joints had gradually deteriorated and been damaged by tree roots, sprinklers were poorly spaced and there was no pressure regulation. We approached Irritech in 2016 to carry out an independent appraisal of the existing system and make recommendations for upgrading and future-proofing irrigation to the greens, surrounds and approaches.”

Roger Davey, Irrigation Consultant and Designer comments, “We always go to great lengths to make sure the system we design delivers the area coverage that’s needed and is easily capable of future expansion. There are some challenges with the elevation changes at The Worcestershire, but the specification and hydraulic design fully addresses these.”

Steve Lloyd, adds, “Rain Bird’s Timeless Compatibility aspect means we can easily add sprinklers as areas of the course are altered. Having a PC-based system that’s user-friendly and allows me control from my ‘phone will mean that instead of running around hand watering with hoses; we’ll have much more time for other priorities.”

North Staffs Irrigation Ltd, Andy Hinchliffe comments, “We’re looking forward to working with the club, on our first major renovation project on this scale with Rain Bird. The challenge will be the sloping site and addressing any wet patches. My focus will be keeping the project on time and on schedule.”

Jimmy Sandison, Rain Bird Golf Area Sales Manager for the UK, Ireland and Iceland adds, “This scale of investment only happens every 30 years so it’s essential that the irrigation system can accommodate changes to the course and offers the most cost effective route for upgrades in future years”.