Tag Archives: Donnington Valley Golf Club

Tips and Tricks for Winter Golf

It has been incredibly mild recently, and ideal for value Winter golf practice as you benefit from the Winter Green Fee prices. Peter Smith our Golf Director has some additional tips to make the most this season.

Golf Course Nov 2015 cropped

Playing golf in the Winter is a completely different game, as the cold air means that the golf ball does not travel through the air as far and with wet fairways, when the ball lands it hardly runs, so you need to think about your club selection a lot more to compensate for the conditions. Here are my top considerations for golf in the winter months.

Because the ball does not travel as far as in the warmer Summer months, it may be necessary to club up by one or two, for example, if you normally hit an eight iron 130 yards in the Summer, you may need to hit a seven or even a six iron to cover the same distance as your eight iron in the Summer.

When chipping on to the greens again you may need to adopt a chip and run approach, as when you hit a high chip onto a green in Winter, the ball makes more of a pitch mark and will come to rest much quicker, leaving your ball much further from the hole than you wanted.

If you are playing golf when the course is frosty or frozen (which looks unlikely to ahppen at the moment!) and everything appears white, then it is often a good idea to play a ball with a different colour than white, to make it easier to find. Many people play with yellow or orange golf balls in these conditions.

and then there is the consideration of seaonal ‘rules’. During the Winter months most golf clubs bring in ‘Winter Rules’ for golf for two main reasons. Firstly, the ground conditions are much wetter either through rain or by dew. Secondly, the ground due to its softness, make the ball collect mud and dirt.

Therefore the ‘winter rules’ help a golfer rather than penalize a golfer, so that they can play their best golf when playing on a much wetter playing surface.

Check out our Green Fee tariffs and book today.

Play Golf To Relieve Stress

In this modern time, where people work longer hours and with tight deadlines plus longer commuting times, we all need some way to relieve the stress of our working lives and sometimes our personal time, so how does golf help? Our Golf Diretor Peter Smith tells us more.

Golf

Playing golf for stress relief is even suggested by some doctors. Many club golfers would argue that the four or so hours spent each weekend out on their favourite course is their way of putting themselves back together again for the week ahead. For some others golf causes stress!
If you don’t get too wound up with not always playing the perfect shot every time (even the golf professionals don’t play every shot perfectly) then golf is very good for you as a whole.
You are out in the fresh air, even though that fresh air may include some moisture here in England, for four and a bit hours once or twice a week, you are exercising by walking the course (even if you take a trolley and don’t carry your clubs) and by swinging the golf club while playing each shot. Some players however get more exercise as they play more shots, which is not the aim of golf, as less is more from a scoring point of view!
You are also surrounded by nature, there are different birds, insects and often deer to look at while you play the course and depending on the course you play, the views across the valleys or even from tee to green can be magnificent and enjoyable.
The interaction and communication between playing partners coupled with the banter and laughter is also excellent for relieving stress, though laughing at a colleagues bad shots may not help their stress levels.
So to keep you sane, improve your cardio vascular activity and to have a good laugh, get yourself out on the fairways and play some golf.

Christmas Golf Gifts!

Welcome to our 12 days of Christmas! Each day this Advent from 1st to 12th December we are bringing to you offers you won’t find anywhere else. These offers are on stock items and for One Day ONLY!

Christmas Golf

Tuesday 1st December – Ping Price Drop

G30 Drivers, Fairway Woods and Rescues all at a lower than ever before price

Wednesday 2nd December – Vokey Spectacular

Vokey wedges at an all time low price

Thursday 3rd December – The Gloves Are Off

Special Offer on Bundles of Gloves

Friday 4th December – Friday Is The New Shoes Day

Selected models of shoes, including Footjoy DryJoys, at crazy low prices

Saturday 5th December – Bag Phenomenon

Motocaddy Pro Series Bags at a price never seen before

Sunday 6th December – Gadget Day

SkyCaddie GPS Systems all at internet busting low

Monday 7th December – Ball of the Season

Srixon AD333 Tour Balls at shelf clearing prices

Tuesday 8th December – Iron Price Crunch

Sets of irons at eye watering prices

Wednesday 9th December – Ladies Day

Ladies Clothing at amazing prices

Thursday 10th December – Ecco Never To Be Repeated

Ecco Golf Shoes teasingly good price

Friday 11th December – Taylormade Price Crash

R15 Drivers, Fairway Woods and Rescues at Budget prices

Saturday 12th December – The Final Countdown

Lots of offers in store including clothing
Every day we will email the special Christmas offer to our loyalty members. This email will also state the stock levels/specs at the beginning of the day and where they are.

You can come into the shop or pay for products over the phone and collect later. This will be done on a first come first served basis.Payments must be made that day for the product to be reserved for you.

If you spend £20 or more in our 12 days of Christmas promotion you will receive a little book of vouchers which you can use from 13th to 24th. (see vouchers for individual expiry dates).

Remember the offers are for their specific day only and for stock items only. Payments can be made over the phone or in-store. Payment must be made to reserve a product.

On Behalf of myself and the team We would like to wish you

A Merry Christmas & A Happy New Year

Baubles and Berries

Change Your Routine to Keep Seeing Results

You’ve set yourself a hard gym routine to help get you through the summer season, now it’s time to make a change to keep on seeing those results. Phoebe McCully, a Senior Fitness Instructor at our Health Club, gives us some top tips.

 Matrix gym cardio suite at Donnington Valley

Sticking to the same routine can be very easy and comfortable, but at some point, your routine may not give you the results you want, so you need to shake things up. Changing your workout routine can be a motivator and may make things more interesting for you.

You work hard in the gym trying to find the routine that suits you. You start the routine and you notice that it is helping you make the changes that you want, so you stick with it. However, after a few months you may notice that the changes you liked to see have stopped appearing. The reason this happens is because repetition means the body can adapt. It will know what to expect and will then use less energy.

So here aresome signs that you can look for when deciding if you should change up your routine.

Do you get bored in the gym? Are you noticing fewer results? You find the workout less challenging? If you have answered yes to any of these questions then you need to mix things up!

Instead of just spending your amount of time on the treadmill, or cross trainer at a constant speed, I recommend our clients try our new ‘Sprint 8’ software. It is designed to help improve fitness levels, and burn away fat. It will be hard and will kick-start your body into making those changes again.

Mix up your strength routine by adding in a super set, to challenge your muscles even more. Finish the reps on the exercise that you are doing and then go straight into another one for the same muscle group. Super sets will help improve your endurance and build muscle.

If you make changes you will keep seeing results, and you will stay motivated. Try to make a change every four to six weeks. To help you make the right changes, why not book in for a review with the Fitness team? We would be only too happy to help and you never know how it will change the way you feel about your routine fore the better.

Upcoming Events this September

With summer drawing to a close and early signs of the Autumn onset starting to show, Newbury continues to maintain its calendar of ever- buzzing activity to get us out in the Autumn sunshine!

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Royal Country of Berkshire Show

19th September – 20th September   

This annual family event is a highlight in Newbury’s social calendar. It’s a fun filled weekend for all the family to enjoy. Don the wellies and wrap up warm – it is sure to be a wonderful weekend with something to keep everyone happy. From furry farm animals to a selection of Britain’s finest foods, this is one for all the family.

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Newbury Real Ale Festival

12th September 

Live bands and beer… just what Saturday dreams are made of. With over 150 real ales, ciders and perrys for everyone to try and also a range of food options, including multiple hog roasts. Newbury’s annual Real Ale Festival is back and with a growing cult following, this year is bound to be better than before. Join and support local bands and breweries – and enjoy yourself very much! Opening Hours from 12 noon.

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Music in Victoria Park Bandstand

6th September      City of Oxford Silver Band

13th September    Hannington Silver Band

20th September    Cholsey Silver Band

27th September    Reading Spring Gardens Band

This September, take time for yourself and get lost in our local talent playing at the bandstand at Victoria Park in Newbury. Wrap up warm and join for a couple of hours of relaxation alongside the Kennet & Avon canal. Pack the picnic rugs and refreshments and pick from a selection of dates to suit you.

Playing between 15:00 – 17:00

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Burgundy Grand Cru Dinner

Wednesday 9th September

7pm arrival for 7.30pm

Grand Cru – The best of the best. There are 32 Grand Cru vineyards in Burgundy, accounting for less than 2 percent of all Burgundy wine production.  Esteemed by wine experts and cellar aficionados alike, this region also makes wines that match superbly with foods. Join our hosts for the night, including our wine expert James Hocking to learn more – and to enjoy imbibing! This is a unique event at The Vineyard; the first time that we have raided our cellar to show off some of our very best wines. Often referred to as “the holy grail” of wine producing regions, this is a dinner not to be missed!

Five course dinner with matching wines £150 per person

Stay the night with breakfast from £173.50 per person*

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Wedding Tips at Donnington Valley

When planning for your wedding day, catering will be one of the biggest decisions you will make. The food is one of the main things your guests will remember from the day, what they had, was there enough, was there too little and how did the food reflect you as a couple? Here are our best tips.

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When it comes to deciding on catering for your big day there are a number of choices: a traditional three course wedding breakfast; a relaxed summer barbecue or even a Champagne afternoon tea. Try and be different – and think about the best bits from previous weddings you would have attended. Make it more about you and your partner.

Upon arrival following your ceremony, guests might be a little peckish; the perfect little appetiser would be individually handmade canapés. Time of year is key as to what this might entail – hot, cold, heavy or fresh. You might want the freedom to choose, some venues are more flexible here than others.

Drinks are also a very important part of the day and not everyone wants to drink, though some do! A range of beverages for your reception depending on the time of year including a Summer Pimms or hot winter cider toddy will go down well and don’t have to break the bank.

The main meal, often called the wedding breakfast, can come in a variety of guises – and our Head Chef, Kelvin Johnson, is happy to design a menu for our guests’ wedding day. Kelvin’s menus are influenced by the seasons, using the freshest ingredients from our local suppliers. Importantly for many, wines to compliment your menu sounds like a minefield but needn’t – our award winning wine sommelier, Chris Neeves would assist on selecting exactly what went with your chosen dish. Whatever you choose though, again consider what you and your partner like.

It is also nice to cater for others for example the vegetarians and children who might need something different to the rest. At Donnington we create ‘Little Meals’ – mini fish & chip cones or mini burgers and chips . If you have a large number of evening guests attending or have a family with a large appetite, a finger buffet is perfect, and we are able to customise to suit any dietary requirements. If you fancy something simple; a bacon, egg or sausage roll will go down a treat too and once the party starts can often be the saving grace!

And throughout the evening, something fun will keep everyone entertained and energy levels high! How about going for your favourite retro sweets, a popcorn machine or even candy floss! A great Summer treat is a slush machine which you can make alcoholic, adults only or even an ice cream stand- everyone loves ice cream!

It can be overwhelming trying to accommodate all of your family and friends’ needs. But most importantly remember the day is your day, and if you choose to have it at Donnington, we are here to make your day as special and memorable for you as possible.

Trim up for holiday, hit those target areas

The sunny weather and social season is upon us and in the back of your mind you will have that niggling wish you’d done those extra couple of minutes in the gym, attended that spin class or lifted a heavier weight. Phoebe McCully our Senior Fitness Instructor helps you make that change.

Trim up for holiday

If you always do the same routine in the gym, your body won’t make the changes you want to see. Yes you might have seen some positive developments in the beginning but as you go on, your body adapts to what you are doing and will plateau. So make a change and get the results you want.

Try a different cardio machine that will work you harder. For example if you always tend to use the treadmill switch to the Stair Climber, you’ll feel your heart rate pick up, helping to push those fitness levels higher. The Stair Climber will also help add some toning work to your legs.

Try a different exercise for the muscle you want to train. By changing your routine around, you will find that you will be bringing other muscles in to play that you wouldn’t have used before, helping you get that shape and toned look you have been fighting for. There are many different exercises you can use to tone and strengthen each body part. For example, if you always do squats to help train your lower body, why not try a walking lunge? It still trains your lower body as well as hitting different areas.

Try swimming; this is also a great form of all-round exercise. It’s ideal if you want to be more active and stay healthy, whatever your age or ability. Swimming can help tone muscles, correct posture and improve core stability. Try to vary your strokes to eliminate boredom and ensure every muscle group gets a workout.

Try a class

If the thought of pushing weights or different exercises bores you, then classes are surprisingly easy and addictive alternative – and prove results.

If your target area is to train and strengthen your core, then come along to one of our abs classes; you will come away with new ideas. Aimed at giving you an intense workout to strengthen the core abdominal and lower back muscles, it will help you get over that plateau. Or for better body tone and shape, Body Toning class will sculpt the entire body, helping you burn fat, gain strength and produce lean muscle.

This month why don’t you try and get yourself out of your comfort zone and make the changes, so you get to see the results you want?

Local Events this July

Summer is upon us and the British Social Season is here with plenty to do in West Berkshire: why not plan a couple of days out to enjoy the great British weather with the family.

July

Summer Street Party
Saturday 4th July
Kick start your Saturday shopping trip and join Parkway’s incredible summer street party. The Street Party will include a whole host of entertainment for all the family from Covent Garden performers, live music, and free face-painting. There are also some fantastic offers to be used in Parkway stores on the day.


Newbury Balloon Festival
Friday 17th July – Saturday 19th July
Although balloon weather is not always guaranteed, this event is a weekend packed with activities and entertainment for everyone. Enjoy live music every day from local bands and performers, a giant funfair and various ‘have-a-go’ activities. There is plenty to see and do for all ages.


Champagne Summer Jazz lunch
Sunday 19 July
Our sister hotel The Vineyard at Stockcross offers the perfect Summer Sunday; live jazz, great food and unlimited Champagne! Sit back, relax and listen to the soulful sounds of jazz whilst enjoying a three course lunch and unlimited Champagne with friends and family.


Donnington Valley Hotel Wedding Open Evening
Monday 20th July
Needing a bit of inspiration for the big day, come along and join Donnington Valley Hotel for our wedding open evening. Discuss your plans for your special day and book a guided tour with our dedicated wedding coordinator. We’d love to show you around and spend time with you to completely understand your wedding day wishes.
Whether you prefer a small and intimate gathering or a larger event, the flexible design of our elegant spaces offers you a wide choice of size, layout and entertainment. To make sure that everything goes exactly to plan.


West Berkshire Brewery Tours
Saturday 25th July
Why not support a local brewery come on a tour and gain first hand insight into all parts of the brewing process from the arrival of the raw ingredients to the finished article and, of course, there’s always plenty to sample. Get your friends together to join for a guided tour a few pints of beer and take a glass home for the goodies you can purchase in the shop open on the day.


The start of the main golfing season at Donnington Valley Golf Club

Donnington Valley Golf ClubGolf really only gets underway for many players from the start of April after the first major of the year, The US Masters from Augusta. Augusta National is closed for several months to ensure the course is in the best possible condition, unfortunately we do not have that luxury, but we do work on the course in more depth on certain weeks to ensure Donnington Valley is in great condition.

Course maintenance weeks take place on all golf courses generally in the early and late part of the year, where the greens are given even more attention than normal.

This April’s course maintenance work this year at Donnington Valley will involve scarifying the greens. This process removes the thatch layer and any build up of material within the sward of the grass on the greens, which may have built up over the normally wet winter period. This removal of the unwanted materials allows the main grasses to grow better and to ensure they are strong as we move in to the busier playing season.

Prior to the greens being scarified, they will be cut and after blown to remove any of the unwanted items which may not have been fully collected by the scarifying machine and collector, then a light sand dressing is applied which is dragged into the surface. The sand helps the greens in two main ways; firstly it levels out any odd surfaces to produce a truer putting surface and secondly the sand helps with the drainage of the greens and allows the roots of the grasses to grow.

Without carrying out this work to the greens, they would become weaker and could struggle with all the golf traffic throughout the year.

Within a week, the greens will have returned to return to normal and will be putting beautifully again.

You don’t need to be a member to play at Donnington Valley Golf Club. You can view our green fees and even request a tee time via our website.

If you are new to golf and are unsure about the membership level best suited to you why not take a look at our BeFORE memberships. Affording you the benefits of a full membership without the same level of financial commitment.

Here’s to a great summer of great golf.

Peter Smith
Director of Golf

Junior Golf Members

We’re really keen to get more junior golf members to join Donnington Valley Golf Club to help strengthen our team here. Donnington Valley Golf Club is an excellent club for juniors with great facilities, and known by many as the friendliest club in the area.

The short game practice area is ideal for golfers of all abilities to perfect their short game skills. We also have a 150 yard range, which is great for lessons and for all abilities to come and practice.

The golf professionals here are also really friendly and will willingly hand out advice and ideas to try and improve your game. If you are interested in a lesson either on the practice areas or on the course itself, give the Pro shop a call on 01635 568 142.

Weekly medal competitions take place every week (on weekdays), and a larger monthly medal competition happens each month. If you know of any juniors that would be interested in coming along for a practice, to see the facilities and meet fellow junior members, we’d love to hear from them, please just ask them to get in touch – a full junior 7 day annual membership is £225.

As a junior member, I have first hand experience of how brilliant it is to be a junior member here at ‘valley’, as we call it, and I would recommend it to any young golfer in the area.

Follow the golf club on twitter @DVGOLF and also follow the Pro Shop @mbgolfshop to keep up to date with any updates and deals the club has to offer.

Will Wright
Junior Captain 2010 – 2012