News from Barbados Golf Club

John Jacobs was golf’s greatest ‘unsung hero’

John Jacobs, described as golf’s greatest ‘unsung hero’ passed away on January 13th 2017.

Mr Jacobs is remembered by Roddy Carr, one of our Directors here at BGC in an article which can be viewed by clicking here.

Below Denny Foster, our Club Professional recalls the time Mr Jacobs visited Barbados and more specifically Barbados Golf Club.

Remembering John Jacobs’ visit to Barbados Golf Club


Quite out of the blue one day, I received a phone call from John Jacobs’ daughter-in-law, Sheila. My name had been given to her by a mutual friend. Could I help her arrange a really special holiday in Barbados for her father-in-law, John Jacobs? She asked. Well, of course, I would certainly give it my best shot, but how could I possibly help? And so, she gave me his wish list. He would like to play a few rounds of golf at Royal Westmoreland, Sandy Lane and Barbados Golf Club. Easy enough, sure thing. Consider it done. Oh, and he would love to go deep sea fishing. Ok, I thought, not a problem. I knew just the man with just the fishing launch – Ralph Johnson whose son, James, was Barbados’ #1 golfer. Oh, and dad’s sporting hero of all time is Sir Garry Sobers. He would give anything to meet him. Done. As it turned out Sir Garry was more than pleased to meet the greatest teacher of golf of all time.

And that is how I met John Jacobs while he was on holiday in Barbados. But what I arranged for him did not compare to what he did for me.

At the time, I had completed the draft of a Learning manual. Mr. Jacobs, on hearing this, offered to edit it for me. I still havethe copy with his question marks and exclamation marks, corrections and comments – on every page. When he was finished with his editing he sat with me at the golf club and we chatted and discussed the manual in detail. I was completely flabbergasted. Here was arguably the most influential teacher of the modern era taking time out to help me improve my understanding of the golf swing and how to better teach it.

After our discussion, he asked me if there was any part of the game that I found difficult to get across to my students. Definitely, yes, I replied. The standard pitch shot is always the most troublesome. Why do you think that is? He asked. Because most students try to lift the ball in to the air by flicking their wrists. He suggested that we go out to the practice area and, right there and then, he shared with me the concept that I should concentrate on teaching the pitch shot being controlled from the core and its rotation and not by the arms or hands.

While on holiday, Mr. Jacobs insisted on conducting a clinic with my juniors. He was in his element, observing their swings and chatting with them, moving from one to the next, always with a word of encouragement, a witty comment and some little corrective action. “I enjoyed being with your juniors immensely,” he wrote me afterwards. “You must be very proud of them.”

Mr. Jacobs was much more than a knowledgeable professional. He was a most remarkable person. He was generous, sincere and kind; and he was gracious and witty. When in his company you knew you were in the presence of a wise and happy and good man. I still treasure every minute that I spent with Mr. Jacobs and I am sure that I am not alone.

Denny Foster


Local Rules

Barbados Golf ClubLocal Rules


Play is governed by the current Rules of Golf as approved by the USGA and the R&A and their Decisions, and where applicable, by the following Local Rules. Any changes or additions to these rules will be supplied on a supplementary rules sheet.

  1. Out of Bounds: Is defined by White Stakes, Poles, Walls and Property Fences.
  2. Driving Range: The entire area of the Driving Range inside the white lines marked on the poles and the Netting attached to those poles on holes #14 & #18 is out of bounds. Relief may be taken, one club length no nearer the hole, if your swing or stance is impeded by a support wire. Relief MAY NOT BE TAKEN if your swing or stance is impeded or hampered by either the support poles OR the netting.
  3. Lateral Water Hazards: Are defined by Red Lines or Stakes. The reservoir on the left of the 15th Hole is to be played as a Lateral Water Hazard.
  4. Water Hazard: Are defined by Yellow Lines or Yellow Stakes. A drop area is provided at the 16th Hole.
  5. A ball coming to rest on any cart path, concrete or marl, may be dropped free of penalty one club length from the nearest point of relief, not nearer the hole. This rule also applies if a players stance or swing is affected as stated above. There is no relief from areas designated as wastes areas, but you may ground your club.
  6. A ball coming to rest on exposed rock through the green which affects the player’s stance or swing, may be dropped free of penalty one club length from the nearest point of relief, not nearer the hole. This does NOT include rock walls or areas of rock that are used to support greens or banks.
  7. Stones may be removed from Bunkers.
  8. The area on the left side of the first fairway near to the first green with the tree in the centre, is to be played as a waste area.
  9. Under Rule 14-3/0.5 of the Decisions of The Rules of Golf by the USGA, the use of a GPS based system or distance-measuring device only, is permitted for all play at this course.
  10. Preferred Lies. Until further notice, a player’s ball may be lifted ON YOUR OWN FAIRWAY, cleaned, and replaced within six (6) inches of where it lay, not nearer the hole without penalty.

These rules supersede all previous Local Rules – June 2016

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