Surrey, England, is home to The Richmond Golf Club. The club has been at this location in the southwestern area of London since 1898. As you can imagine, the place has a lot of history, including that time a German bomb was dropped onto one of the holes during the 1940 Battle of Britain.
If the sport itself isn’t enough to stop golfers from golfing and the Blitz wasn’t enough to stop Britons from going about their lives, then a few bombs on the course isn’t about to stop British golfers from going about their golf. The Richmond did, however, make some rules for members, should they come across any ordnance — exploded or not.
Of course, they also created rules for what to do if World War II should disrupt or affect the game in any significant way.
Rule 1: God save the mowing machines.
“Players are asked to collect bomb and shrapnel splinters to save these causing damage to the mowing machines.”
Rule 2: The game can wait.
“In competitions, during gunfire, or while bombs are falling, players may take cover without penalty for ceasing play.”
Rule 3: Look out for UXO.
“The positions of known delayed-action bombs are marked by red flags placed at reasonably, but not guaranteed safe distance therefrom.”
Rule 4: Move the shrapnel, not the ball…
“Shrapnel and/or bomb splinters on the fairways, or in bunkers within a club’s length of a ball may be moved without penalty, and no penalty shall be incurred if a ball is thereby caused to move accidentally.”
Rule 5: …Unless the enemy does it.
“A ball moved by enemy action may be replaced, or if lost or destroyed, a ball may be dropped not nearer the hole without penalty.”
Rule 6: Don’t hit from a bomb crater.
“A ball lying in a crater may be lifted and dropped not nearer the hole, preserving the line to the hole without penalty.”
Rule 7: World War II is not a mulligan.
“A player whose stroke is affected by the simultaneous explosion of a bomb may play another ball from the same place. Penalty, one stroke.”