***Updated New Local Rule Effective Immediately***
Relief on Opposite Side of Red Penalty Area
When a player's ball is in or last crossed the edge of the red penalty area, as an extra relief option to those in Rule 17.1d, for one penalty stroke, the player may drop the original ball on the opposite side of the penalty area. This was an option in the rules pre-2019 but now it explicitly needs to be a local rule.
As recommended by the R & A therefore for all Londoner Golf Club events then the ruling as written…..
A player may obtain distance information by using a device that measures distance only.If, during a stipulated round a player uses a distance-measuring device that is designed to gauge or measure other conditions that might affect his play(e.g. gradient, windspeed, temperature etc.), the player is in breach of rule14-3 for which the penalty is disqualification, regardless of whether such additional function is actually used”
During play, it is the player’s responsibility to know the rules of golf, Londoner local rules and local rules of the course and apply them accordingly in a fair manner. If as a player you are unsure about a situation or are in a position where you need to invoke a rule of golf, such as drop after OB or hazard or one of the local rules, always inform the marker of your card of your intention before play to ensure there is no dispute.
Decisions are the responsibility of the player and the marker by following the rules of golf and local rules. No undue pressure should be placed on a marker or player and if any uncertainty arises, play two balls, one from where the player thinks and one from the other. Then, before signing cards, refer to the committee for a ruling. Both players then sign the card to confirm the correct procedure and score is entered. If there is still a dispute, the committee will make a final decision by application of the rules of golf and local rulings.
At the discretion of the organising committee, if conditions are considered too wet to be reasonable for normal play, they may announce the operation of:
A - Preferred lies on "closely mown areas only", meaning lift, clean and place within 6 inches and no nearer to the hole. This ruling is restricted to fairways and the first cut of rough only, including around the greens or
B – Preferred lies “through the green" - A description of the whole hole, excluding the teeing ground and putting green, and all hazards. This means you can mark, pick up and clean, replacing within 6 inches of the original mark, with no penalty, whether in fairway or rough.
Rules of golf state for a ball to be embedded on the fairway it must be in its own pitch-mark with part of the ball below the level of the ground. However, the ball does not necessarily have to touch the soil to be considered embedded, e.g. grass or loose impediments may intervene between the ball and the soil. Relief is allowed in the “general area”, meaning, both fairway and rough can take relief. A ball that is embedded in its own pitch-mark may be cleaned and dropped as near to the spot, within one club length, where the ball originally lay, but no nearer the hole.
Stones in Bunkers
Stones in bunkers are movable obstructions and may be removed without penalty as long as it does not change the lie of the ball.
It is not felt there as a rule there are any usual situations at our current home courses, but may be encountered as an exception or at other courses. A player's ball comes to rest in a situation dangerous to the player,
It is unreasonable to expect the player to play from a dangerous situation, such as near a live snake or a bees nest or Red Ants nest (i.e. not a single ant) and unfair to require the player to incur a penalty under Rule 26 (Water Hazards) or Rule 28 (Ball Unplayable). With respect to red ants, if in doubt if the situation qualifies, agree with your playing partner and proceed with the shot.
If the ball lies in a hazard, the player may drop a ball, without penalty, within one club-length of and not nearer the hole than the nearest spot not nearer the hole that is not dangerous. If possible, the ball must be dropped in the same hazard and, if not possible, in a similar nearby hazard, but in either case not nearer the hole. If it is not possible for the player to drop the ball in a hazard, he may drop it, under penalty of one stroke, outside the hazard, keeping the point where the original ball lay between the hole and the spot on which the ball is dropped.
If the ball lies on the putting green, the player may, without penalty, place a ball at the nearest spot not nearer the hole that is not dangerous and that is not in a hazard.
If interference by anything other than the dangerous situation makes the stroke clearly impracticable or if the situation would be dangerous only through the use of a clearly unreasonable stroke or an unnecessarily abnormal stance, swing, or direction of play, the player may not take relief as prescribed above, but he is not precluded from proceeding under Rule 26 or 28 if applicable.
If caddies err on one occasion do not penalise but WARN the caddy and a repeat infringement will incur a penalty.
Accidental Movement of Ball on Putting Green
Rules 18-2, 18-3 and 20-1 are modified as follows:
When a player’s ball lies on the putting green, there is no penalty if the ball or ball-marker is accidentally moved by the player, his partner, his opponent, or any of their caddies or equipment.
The moved ball or ball-marker must be replaced as provided in Rules 18-2, 18-3 and 20-1.
This Local Rule applies only when the player’s ball or ball-marker lies on the putting green and any movement is accidental.