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Advisory team

Alistair Beggs

Alistair Beggs

Head of agronomy

Having graduated with a BSc Hons in Applied Biology, Alistair joined STRI as a trainee agronomist in 1991.

After advising clients across the world, he progressed to Area Manager for the North of England in 2006. Since 2013 he has been Head of Agronomy.

Alistair is a keen golfer and plays off a two handicap. He is a member of Royal Liverpool, Rye, The Atlanta Athletic Club and The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews. In 2014, as Captain of Royal Liverpool, he had the privilege of presenting the Claret Jug to Open Champion Rory McIlroy.

He is married to Emma and they have two children.

Bob Taylor

Bob Taylor

Senior consultant ecology & environment

Bob is an experienced ecological consultant, scientist and botanist with over 25 years' involvement in golf design planning and facility management.

He set up STRI's Ecology and Environment services in 1989 and leads a team of consultants involved in a wide range of environmental disciplines and ecological surveys.

Works regularly with the R&A and golf course architects on environmental impact assessments, planning and quality assurance.

Adam Newton

Adam Newton

Turfgrass agronomist

Adam joined STRI in 2012 following over 12 years’ experience in turf management in golf. He obtained a first class honours degree in Turfgrass Science and was awarded an R&A scholarship.

Adam mostly specialises in golf and spends much of his time advising golf clubs across the north of England and south east of Scotland, along with advisory work on behalf of the R&A. Adam has also provided pitch consultancy at the FIFA World Cup in Brazil and the 2013 Women’s Euro Championships in Sweden.

In his spare time, Adam is the proud father to his son Oscar and a very keen golfer. He is a member at Fulford GC in York, with a current playing handicap of 1.

Conor Nolan

Conor Nolan

Turfgrass agronomist

Conor joined the STRI in 2001 as a Sports Turf Agronomist from a background in golf design and construction. Living in the countryside, outside Dublin, he covers most of Ireland. In most recent years, his European golf portfolio has grown quite extensively. Regular trips to countries such as Belgium, Germany, Holland, Switzerland and Portugal have spiced up his story.

No longer an active sportsman (soccer and golf) he has switched his allegiance to the armchair and Leinster rugby. His early passion for sport though continues to drive his will to succeed and to raise standards. Having studied landscape horticulture at University College Dublin he has an interest in garden design with Dutch and French gardens of interest. Does his best with his young family to follow “hygge”, the latest lifestyle trend.

Emma Beggs

Emma Beggs

Turfgrass agronomist

Emma is based in the north west of England and carries out agronomy work for a variety of clients including The R&A, golf clubs, local authorities and schools. She has also completed work for the Commonwealth War Graves Commission and the American Battle Monuments Commission.

Emma graduated from Reading University with a degree in Soil Science before starting work for STRI in 1993. She enjoys playing golf and is a member of Royal Liverpool Golf Club and Wirral Golf Club.

Gary Walters

Gary Walters

Turfgrass agronomist

Gary began his career in 2006 as an assistant in training at the Vail Golf Club in Colorado. Upon returning to England in 2009 he joined the Belfry Golf Resort before studying full-time at Myerscough College. He graduated in 2014 with a BSc Hons in Sportsturf Science and Management and as member of the R&A’s Greenkeeping Scholarship Program.

Stints at Norwegian Golf Clubs Miklagard and Larvik were followed in 2015 by full-time work as a lecturer in Sportsturf at Myerscough College where he was fortunate enough to be involved with the Tournament Support Team for the Rio Olympics; before making the move in 2017 to STRI as a Regional Agronomist.

Happiest outdoors, Gary enjoys golfing and mountain biking during the summer and snowboarding during the winter, typically back in the Rocky Mountains where his involvement in the Turf Industry began just over a decade ago.

Michael Boyes

Michael Boyes

Turgrass agronomist

Michael began is sportsturf career in 2005 as a greenkeeper in Luton, before progressing to spray technician/senior greenkeeper at The Grove, near London. He then went on to work at a Jack Nicklaus design course in Spain, followed by a stint at Oaklands College as an assessor for the greenkeeper vocational qualifications.

For five years he worked at Loch Lomond GC before spending an exciting two years in the Middle East as assistant golf course superintendent at the Trump International GC in Dubai.

He's an R&A Scholar, with a BSc in Turfgrass Science, and is currently studying for an MA in Sustainable Golf Course Management. Outside of golf, he enjoys most sports, particularly football, and naturally coming from Luton he's a Manchester United fan!!

Paul Woodham

Paul Woodham

Agronomy services manager

Paul joined STRI in 2010 following a career in greenkeeping and golf course management. Golf has been in Paul's blood from an early age, and led to a brief spell on the amateur golf circuit, which he describes as "great experiences but frustrating results".

Although never achieving the ability of a professional golfer the adventure led to a career path in agronomy and interests in other natural turf sports. Paul is an avid Marvel and Comicon follower.

Richard Windows

Richard Windows

Agronomy services manager

Richard obtained a degree in Plant Science at University of Sheffield and moved north to Glasgow where he laid down roots in Scotland for STRI.

Working in the Home of Golf, the majority of time is spent visiting golf courses including all Open Championship venues on behalf of The R&A.

In his spare time, Richard plays taxi service for his two children Charlie & Daisy, cultivates his allotment to award winning standards and is fast becoming a master jam maker. Occasionally he gets time for a round of golf where he is a member at Whitecraigs.

Richard Wing

Richard Wing

Turfgrass agronomist

Richard started his sportsturf career in 2006, preparing winter sports and artificial surfaces for a Sheffield school. In 2008 he moved into golf and spent time greenkeeping in both Belgium and Ireland.

He studied a BSc in Sportsturf at Myerscough College and was selected as a scholar of the R&A. He is also currently studying for an MSc in Sustainable Golf Course Management at the same institution.

In his spare time, Richard loves playing and supporting most sports, including cricket, rugby and following the trials and tribulations of Sheffield Wednesday. In 2017 he'll be attempting to run his first marathon in Manchester.

Sophie Vukelic

Sophie Vukelic

Ecological consultant

After studying Ecology and Environmental Biology at the University of Leeds and the University of Newcastle (Australia), Sophie graduated with a BSc Hons and came straight to STRI to begin her career as an Ecological Consultant.

Since joining the team, Sophie has consulted numerous golf clubs throughout the UK, providing ecological surveys and writing management plans for a vast diversity of habitat types. At present, she is working towards gaining her bat licence and tree climbing certificate.

Outside of work, Sophie enjoys rambling in the Peak District and volunteering with the National Trust.

Stella Rixon

Stella Rixon

Turfgrass Agronomist

Having gained a degree in Biological Sciences, Stella developed her love of all things grass after joining the industry in 1997. She found her way to the STRI Agronomy team in 2002 and has enjoyed every minute, especially getting her hands dirty and the wind in her hair.

Outside of work she can be found on family pursuits, gardening, running or dancing to cheesy music.

Steve Gingell

Steve Gingell

Agronomy services manager

Steve has worked for STRI since 2000 and his role as combines providing advice to a wide range of sporting surfaces.

Whilst golf visits make up the greatest percentage of his work, Steve also spends time with equestrian surfaces such as horse racing at Cheltenham and Ascot, as well as eventing and polo. He is also heavily involved in amenity turf for the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, American Battle Monuments Commission, Stonehenge and Buckingham Palace. Rounding off his wide client base Steve provides agronomic services to schools and local authorities.

Steve lives in the West Country and enjoys sailing, gardening, walking and DIY on his 400 year-old cob house.

Stuart Ormondroyd

Stuart Ormondroyd

Senior agronomist

Stuart joined STRI in 1980, initially gaining two years practical experience on the experimental trials ground prior to moving to the agronomy team in 1982. He became a member of the specialist golf service from its inception in 1986, and advised at golf courses in the North of England, the Midlands, and Ireland.

Stuart was promoted to senior agronomist in in 1994, became an assistant director in 1996, and in 1997, he became head of agronomy. In 1998, Stuart was appointed as the official agronomist to The R&A Championship committee for England and Wales. In 2015, Stuart took semi-retirement, but he continues agronomic consultancy for all Championship venues.

Stuart is a keen follower of all sport, and enjoys badminton, gardening and walking the Yorkshire moors. Stuart is a lifelong supporter of Bradford City.

Teneille Barwick

Teneille Barwick

Ecology and environment consultant

Teneille joined STRI in May 2017 after moving to the UK from Melbourne, Australia.

She has a BSc (Hons) in Environmental Science and started her career at an environmental consultancy in the energy sector in Canada. She was a wetland specialist for two years and spent a lot of her time avoiding bears.

She has also worked as a project officer for Conservation Volunteers in New Zealand, running a community based conservation project at a RAMSAR listed wetland on the South Island. She spent the last two years working as an environmental consultant specialising in contaminated land.

Teneille is a huge sports fan and, with both her parents working in the golf industry, has been around and played golf from a very young age.

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