New Rules for the New Year

Having previously published pointers on the new rules of golf, in ‘play’ from 1st January, 2019, a reminder of six significant changes are being highlighted here. While all rules are ‘live’ during any golf round, certain aspects are more common than others, and so our ‘Top 6’ are listed below. For a comprehensive list of the rule changes, visit the excellent R&A site with explanatory video, at However, for a taster of useful – maybe even essential – new rules from the first day of 2019, our 6 (in no particular order) are highlighted as follows:
From when the search for a lost ball commences, a maximum of 3 minutes is allowed.
A dropped ball must be released from knee height. Failure to do so, entails a re-drop without penalty.
Any type of damage anywhere on the green may be repaired.
The flag stick may be left in the hole while playing a hole, including on the putting green.
Your club may be grounded in a penalty area (previously referred to as a water hazard).
No penalty for a double hit.
In addition to the website, the complete rules of golf are of course presented in the official R&A Rules handbook, and golfers are expected to be familiar with rules, both old and new. Remember, higher scores on knowledge of the rules can mean lower scores on the golf course.
Best wishes from the Clubhouse team to all our readers for a happy and successful year ahead, both on and off the course!