A Groundsman’s Tales – Episode 3

In the run up to the new season our ground was looking at its brilliant best, thick green grass, empty bins and crisp, straight(ish) white lines. That is until we became home to the local Badger colony…

Every day we arrived for work to be greeted by pitches covered with more holes and divots than the local municipal golf course after hosting a year 11 recreational PE lesson!

A remedy was required and quickly if we were to have the quality pitches we were used to.

We were open to suggestions. A pole of members came up with the following.

1). Call for Kate Humble, the most popular idea but no one had her phone number.

2). A call to ‘Arms’. Next most popular but illegal in our part of the country.

3). Send for the local Mole catcher. He refused on the grounds of them being to big to carry.

4). Put up a Keep Off sign. Our local Badgers are obviously intelligent and law abiding.

5). Close the main gates. Our Badgers would surely not try to get in without paying.

6). An electric fence. Humane and effective.

Option 6 was selected.

Using enough electrical wire to connect a small city and a car battery, ‘borrowed’ from the club Chairman who after several beers at the weekend left his vehicle at the club for safety, much to his credit and surprise. Its still there….The work to repel our friendly friends began.

The idea that the Badgers would be put off by a small shock was quickly dashed. On day one the electric current would not have lit a candle on a child’s birthday cake and our furry friends would have struggled to raise a chuckle on contact. On day two a more powerful charge was set but rendered ineffective after the tractor driver cut through the cables while mowing the grass, lighting up his cab like Santa’s sleigh on Christmas Eve. On days three and four the operation appeared to be gaining some success until local residents complained of a power surge and night time blackouts, indeed one elderly local was convinced we were being invaded and was seen reading from his English/German dictionary.

Day five and no sign of Badgers. Even Badgers have a day off it seems.

Day six, on checking the power cables were still attached, our head grounds man was seen sporting a new hairstyle. Still short but very curly with a slight aroma of smoke. The sound of Badger laughter was reported to be heard behind the club house.

The good news is that the Badgers have not been around for a while. Did the fence work? Who really knows but the fact that the pre season ground treatment to get rid of insects and leather jackets might have curtailed a food supply is as good a reason as any.

Here’s to the next time.

 

Glenn Campbell

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