Buggy Policy

Policy on the Use of Golf Buggies
(Buggy Use Policy) 


1. Introduction and General Policy Matters

1.1. Lamberhurst Golf Club (the “Club”) has a duty of care to all users of the golf courses. The topography of certain areas of the courses is such that caution and prudence must be shown by the user of a ride-on buggy.
1.2. It is therefore recognised that all buggies used at the Club must be properly maintained and regularly serviced, and must be adequately insured by the user/owner. This is the express responsibility of the user/owner.
1.3. It is also necessary for the Club to provide adequately safe means of access for all golfers including those given permission to use buggies. Moreover, the Club must ensure:
1.3.1. the safety of golfers who do not wish to use ride-on buggies but who might be at risk from a mechanically defective ride-on buggy or its careless use; or
1.3.2. the safety of members of the Club’s staff who might be called upon to attend incidents or problems, or recover defective buggies on the courses; and
1.3.3. members of the public using any of the public rights of way through the golf course.

2. Overriding Statement for Use

Although LGC will use its best endeavours to ensure safety of all buggy users and other golfers it is the responsibility of the operator to assess their safe use of the buggy whilst driving on the golf courses and surrounding areas. Conditions may change during a round of golf such that safety levels change
2.1. To assist the safe use of ride-on buggies all potential users (Members, visitors and guests) shall comply with the following conditions:
2.1.1. Ride-on buggies must be operated with the utmost courtesy, care and consideration for the safety and convenience of pedestrians. Pedestrians must be afforded the right-of-way at all times.
2.1.2. The signs and instructions employed on the course to warn buggy riders of potential danger areas or, areas forbidden to ride-on buggies because of concerns about danger or, the potential to cause unacceptable wear and tear to the course, must be followed at all times.
2.1.3. Ride-on buggies must be operated and parked in such a manner that they do not impede or interfere with normal pedestrian or vehicular flow on roadways, ramps or pavements. They must not be parked on tees or greens.
2.1.4. Ride-on buggy operators will be responsible for the security of ignition keys for the period that the buggy is on the property owned by the Club.
2.1.5. The Club has no responsibility for ensuring the safe operation of ride-on buggies on or beyond the confines of the course and the club car-parks other than those operated by their staff or agents. The Club will accept no responsibility for any loss or damage caused to any property other than that arising from the negligent use of a ride-on buggy by their staff or agents.
2.1.6. No ride-on buggy will be operated at a speed considered excessive.
2.1.7. Ride-on buggies shall be used only when the courses are open for play and when no essential buggy prohibition is in force.
2.1.8. Ride-on buggies must be operated in compliance with the common 'rules of the road' regardless of whether ride-on buggies are operated on pavements or roadways.
2.1.9. Operators must stop the buggy at blind intersections and proceed with caution.
2.1.10. The Secretary, Head Greenkeeper, Professional and Green Staff have the authority to immediately prohibit any individual from using or being carried on a ride–on buggy. Application for reinstatement of permission can only be made to the Secretary.
2.1.11. This policy is to be read in conjunction with appendices 1 to 4 being:

1. Buggy Use Acknowledgement Form

2. Golf Buggy (2 person and single seat ‘ride-on’ vehicle) Risk Assessment

3. Course plan showing buggy route and restricted ‘no-go’ areas

3. Safe Working Practice

3.1. Ride-on buggy operators must not be under the influence of alcoholic drinks or drugs
3.2. Children under the age of 18 are not allowed to drive the ride-on buggy.
3.3.1. All operators of ride-on buggies must sign a Buggy Safety Policy Form before they are allowed to drive the buggy
3.3.2. A ride-on buggy shall only be used for the number of occupants it was designed to carry and only by people who are authorised to use one.
3.3.3. In particular, standing on the back of a buggy is expressly forbidden.
3.4.1. Do not move off until the occupants are seated.
3.4.2. Always remain seated and hold on while the vehicle is in motion
3.4.3. Hands, feet and head must be kept inside the buggy at all times while the vehicle is in motion
3.4.4. Ride-on buggies must not be driven in prohibited areas
3.4.5. The vehicle must be used to progress the game and must not be driven up and down excessively, e.g., when looking for golf balls
3.4.6. The vehicle must absolutely not be used on tees, greens or the slopes leading up to them or greenside bunkers (minimum safe distance five metres)
3.4.7. The vehicle may not be driven into flower /garden areas
3.4.8. The vehicle must not be used within five metres of any bunkers, ditches or ponds or slopes leading to them except when using the designated buggy paths and bridges. Please pay special attention when near any water source.
3.4.9. Check the area behind the vehicle before reversing
3.4.10. Set the parking brake before leaving the vehicle
3.4.11. Always consider the terrain, existing vehicular and pedestrian traffic conditions as well as environmental factors that may affect your ability to operate the vehicle safely:
3.4.12. Drive the vehicle only as fast as the terrain and safety considerations allow
3.4.13. To avoid tipping over, drive the buggy straight up and down severe slopes
3.4.14. Slow down before corners
3.4.15. All turns must be executed at reduced speeds
3.4.16. Avoid sudden stops or changes of direction that may result in loss of control
3.4.17. Be extra careful when the course is wet and muddy
3.4.18. All buggies must be returned to the designated area behind The Professional Shop in the car park or where otherwise advised.
3.5.1. When returning the buggy, turn the operating key to the off position, engage the parking brake and return the key to The Professional Shop (or when closed, leave the keys with the bar).

4. Disability

4.1. Due to disability, some members, visitors and guests may not be able to play golf without the help provided by a motorised ride-on buggy. The purpose of the below policy is to establish a standard for the safe operation of all ride-on buggies operated at The Club. The policy also sets down the criteria to be applied and conditions to be met when the Club considers applications for buggy use:
4.2. Aim of Policy
4.2.1. LGC wishes to encourage the participation in golf of all players regardless of disabilities. This Policy is in accordance with the LGC’s obligations under the Equality Act October 2010.
4.3. Definitions
4.3.1. “Disability” shall have the same meaning as the Equality Act 2010. A person has a disability if he/she has a physical or mental impairment which has a substantial and long-term adverse effect on his/her ability to carry out normal day to day activities.
4.3.2. Any reference to “golf buggy” shall include any vehicle deemed to be a golf buggy by Lamberhurst Golf Club Committee.
4.3.3. Any reference to “Committee” shall refer to any one of the Secretary or a member of the organising committee for that specific competition which has responsibility for taking a decision on the use of a golf buggy and “member of the Committee” shall be construed accordingly.
4.3.4. “Valid medical confirmation of disability” shall mean a valid letter or other evidence from a registered general practitioner or consultant registered with the Health Professions Council that the player or caddie is suffering from a disability.
4.4. Persons who may use a golf buggy
4.4.1. It shall be a condition of any competition organised by the Club that players must walk at all times during a stipulated round, unless permitted to use a golf buggy by the Committee, in accordance with this policy.
4.4.2. A golf buggy may be used by a player or caddie who can provide a valid current medical certificate of disability in accordance with this policy and has requested permission to use a golf buggy by the closing date for any competition they seek to enter or in which they seek to caddie. Where the disability prevents the player from driving the buggy, he/she may nominate a third party to drive the buggy for them who must be approved by the Committee in the event that permission is granted.
4.4.3. Where a player is under the age of 18 years and has met the criteria in clause 3, above, a member of the Committee shall reserve the right to specify that the golf buggy is driven by another person of that Committee member’s choice, in the event that a person having parental responsibility for the player is unable or not competent or qualified to do so.
4.4.4. In cases where a member of the Committee refuses to permit the use of a golf buggy then they shall inform the player of the decision, the reasons for it, and the right to appeal this refusal to the Appeals Committee in accordance with this Policy.
4.5. Conditions in which use of a golf buggy may be permitted
4.5.1. Where a determination is made that the use of a buggy may be permitted by a player or where appropriate a caddie or third party to use a golf buggy, a member of the Committee shall have regard to the following additional health and safety considerations before granting approval:
(a) Any relevant weather conditions;
(b) The topography and ground conditions;
(c) The condition of and suitability of the golf buggy; and
(d) Any other relevant considerations which could impede the safe use of a golf buggy or impact on the safety of others.
4.5.2. In the event that a member of the Committee believes that for reasons of health and safety a golf buggy should not be used by players, caddies or third parties at a particular time he/they may:
(a) Refuse to grant permission for the use of a golf buggy, and shall inform the player, caddie or third party of this decision; or
(b) Revoke any such permission in the event of new health and safety considerations having come to light since the granting of the initial permission to use a golf buggy;
4.5.3. It will in any event be a requirement of any player, caddie or other third party granted permission to use a buggy to complete and sign a Buggy Use Acknowledgement Form in The Professional Shop prior to use.
4.6. Conditions for use of golf buggies
4.6.1. A player, caddie or other third party permitted to use a golf buggy must agree to the following terms and conditions of use:
(a) Any person operating a golf buggy must do so with the utmost courtesy, care and consideration for the safety and convenience of others and in accordance with any relevant golf buggy operating guidelines;
(b) The Committee may require that a golf buggy must not exceed walking pace;
(c) A golf buggy shall be for the sole use of the player and his/her equipment, unless a member of the Committee has deemed that for reason of age or disability a third party is required to drive the golf buggy;
(d) A golf buggy must not impede or interfere with normal pedestrians or vehicular traffic flow on roadways, ramps and pavements;
(e) A player who has been granted permission to use a golf buggy (or any caddie or other third party who has been permitted to drive the golf buggy) must remain seated in the golf buggy at all times while the vehicle is in motion;
(f) Drivers of golf buggies must comply with directional signs and the detailed map found in the buggy for access to the starting tees and not use prohibited areas including public highways and pavements;
(g) A player who has been granted permission to use a golf buggy (or any caddie or other third party who has been permitted to drive the golf buggy) must accept responsibility for any losses or injury sustained as a result of their own fault whilst using a golf buggy.
4.6.2. Failure to agree to the terms and conditions by not signing a Buggy Use Acknowledgement Form may result in the player, caddie or other third party being denied permission to use a golf buggy.
4.7. Appeals Procedure
4.7.1. Any decision by the Committee refusing a player or caddie permission to use a golf buggy may be appealed by the player or caddie to the Appeals Committee which shall comprise of three members of Lamberhurst Golf Club Committee.
4.7.2. An appeal shall be made in writing to the Appeals Committee within 5 working days of the date of the initial decision. Any written appeal request shall also include a statement by the player or caddie of the reasons why he/she is seeking to appeal the decision.
4.7.3. The Appeals Committee shall make a decision on an appeal and communicate it to the player or caddie within 10 working days of the initial appeal. 8
4.7.4 Decisions made in accordance with this procedure shall be final.


Appendix I

Buggy Use Acknowledgement Form

Any person who uses a buggy in accordance with the Lamberhurst Golf Club (LGC) ‘Buggy Use Policy’ is deemed, by so doing, to have the knowledge, training and skill to safely operate the buggy and shall be fully accountable for their actions and consequences thereof.
The safe operation of buggies requires careful application and adherence to the minimum standard of care prescribed by this policy.

Full Name of User: …………………………………………………………………….

Address: ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

By signing below I acknowledge that:

 I understand the Terms and Conditions of the LGC ‘Buggy Use Policy’

 I am aware of the rules and regulation provided by LGC around the use of the buggy including any areas where I am unable ride

 (Tick when using your own buggy) I have ensured that the golf buggy is adequately maintained fit for purpose and that I have a valid personal and third-party insurance and can provide this to LGC on request.

 I possess and have produced a copy of certified evidence that I have a disability within the meaning of section 6 of the Equality Act 2010 which disables me from playing golf without the use of a buggy.

 I agree to indemnify LGC against all claims costs and demands arising out of or in connection with my use of a golf buggy.

Signature of User……………………………………………………………………. Date …………………………..


Appendix II

Risk Assessment

Single Seater & Two Person Buggy Access

This document assesses the risks associated with using a golf buggy on Lamberhurst Golf Club’s Course, in order that Lamberhurst Golf Club complies with its policy to protect its members, visitors, employees and the environment when using a buggy. This risk assessment does not cover the interior of the Clubhouse, and the other buildings on the site, nor the greenkeeping staff’s work duties.


The Golf Course is bounded by a combination of residential housing, public and private roads, and woodland. The land is intersected by a private road, Ballards Lane, which accesses a private house. The Golf Course can be classed as having a lot of undulating terrain with a number of holes having steep slopes.
There are two public rights of way across the Golf Course; the path from the church to School Hill and the public footpath from 5th to 10th


Single seater and two-seater buggies are allowed on the Golf Courses when ground conditions permit.
Members who own a single seater buggy must complete the “Buggy Use Acknowledgement Form” and provide it with their insurance certificate as part of the annual renewals process.
Members and visitors who hire a two-seater buggy from the Club are required to sign a declaration when hiring the buggy to acknowledge they have read and understood the terms under which they are able to hire the buggy.


A protocol has been adopted covering situations such as poor visibility due to fog, mist, thunder & lightning, high winds and heavy rain. This protocol is displayed on various notice boards and is referenced on scorecards.


This risk assessment addresses the following whilst driving a single seater or two person golf buggy:
1. Generic risks whilst playing golf.
2. Moving about the golf club, including accessing the car parking facilities and practice ground.
3. Hole by hole risk analysis.
Risk is the likelihood (L) of an unwanted event occurring, and the severity (S) of it occurring.
Risks have been evaluated on the basis of probability and consequence – the consequence of the unwanted event happening – and have been assessed using a scoring system as follows:
Likelihood (L)
1 = Low
2 = Medium
3 = High
Severity (S)
1 = not severe
2 = severe
3 = very severe
Where a risk is assessed as either Medium or High a possible solution /recommendation to eradicate or reduce the risk may be suggested. Each of the risks are included in a Risk Register to allow regular assessment of the risk by the management. In terms of the likelihood figures, it is assumed that golfers adhere to the rules, etiquette and the requirements of the notices displayed, and act responsibly at all times. It is assumed that members of the public also adhere to the requirements of the notices and do not stray on to the golf courses, and act responsibly at all times.



Being struck by a golf ball being struck by a fellow competitor or partner(s) 1 3 3 The players not playing the shot themselves and/or the buggy such that the danger of being hit is minimised.
The player who has made the shot must shout ‘FORE’ to alert his fellow competitors or partner(s) of the danger of being struck by the errant ball.
Being struck by a golf ball hit by a golfer playing on another part of the golf course and hitting the ball offline 1 3 3 Player who has made the offline shot must shout ‘FORE’ to alert other players in the vicinity of the danger of being struck by the errant golf ball.
Being struck by another vehicle when moving around the car park 1 3 3 Notice in all buggies stating that all buggy users must;
Ensure the driver has clear visibility, remove any mist from windscreen.
Do not drive in the dark.
Follow normal road user safety protocol, eg drive on left, stop at junctions, follow one way routes, indicate change of direction by hand if necessary.
Drive slowly in order to react to pedestrian movements.
Striking pedestrian on paths. 1 2 2 Notice in all buggies stating that all buggy users must;
Ensure the driver has clear visibility, remove any mist from windscreen.
Do not drive in the dark.
Drive slowly in order to react to pedestrian movements.
Accessing practice are and overflow car park. Risk of collision with other road users and pedestrians. 2 3 6 Sign on car park entrance ‘NO EXIT FOR BUGGIES’ Explicitly forbidden in buggy users policy to be signed by all hirers and owners.
A plan of the course is attached to this policy and has been marked as follows:
- Areas (approximate) which are taken out of play are shaded out and cannot be accessed when restrictions apply.

Level 1 = access to all areas where 2 person buggies and single seat vehicles can be taken in good conditions (specifically excludes tees and all areas around the greens inside the ‘Blue Posts’ (trolley and buggy exclusion zone).
Level 2 = Single seat vehicles and 2 person buggies for golfers who are registered with the Club as having a disability will be allowed on the course.
Level 3 = A hole by hole risk assessment will take place to determine which holes can open for Single seat vehicles and 2 person buggies for golfers who are registered with the Club as having a disability.