Otakou Golf Course president Alex MacGillivray and club
member Kevin Charles stand on a swale of Carisbrook turf
built at the back of the new fifth hole green. Photo by
Carisbrook's demise was the end of an era for Otago.
Shawn McAvinue tracks down those lucky enough to secure a
memento of the stadium before it was demolished.
The Carisbrook pain continues as rescued turf is used to
undulate and lengthen the newly remodelled fifth hole at
Otakou Golf Course.
Club president Alex MacGillivray said the par-five hole on
the nine-hole course on Otago Peninsula used to be 487m long
with a flat green.
But after a recent remodel, the hole was now a ''fairly
narrow and undulating'' 500m, with a new green that sloped
The hole was remodelled because the old green flooded during
winter and was often unusable.
The sale of Carisbrook turf spurred the club to start the
hole remodelling project.
''We've been threatening to do it for three years. This year
we got stuck in and got it done.''
The club bought 200sq m of the turf for $400 to build a swale
at the back of the new green.
A swale is a wide, shallow and mowable valley to create
character in the golfing landscape, which diverts and
controls the flow of surface water.
The asking price for the Carisbrook turf was $3 a square
metre and the club negotiated with the Carisbrook Rotary
Project member to bring the price down to $2 a sq m.
The turf that remained after the swale was built was used
around the edging of the sixth-hole tee.
Project manager and club member Kevin Charles said the swale
took a 16-man team of volunteers about 75 hours, over two
weekends, to lay. Some vegetation had to be moved for the
remodelling, he said.
''I got a bucket-load of balls out of one of the flaxes I
The sandy Carisbrook turf was growing fast and was ideal for
the ''natural links''course.
A links course is typically characterised by dunes, an
undulating surface, and a sandy soil which readily supports
The hole remodelling would hopefully entice people to the
club, which was struggling with about 70 members.
The area between the back of the fifth hole green and the
sixth hole tee was called The Brook, Mr Charles said.