Brancepeth Castle Golf Club Code of Conduct Policy and Procedure

Brancepeth Castle Golf Club (The Club) treats all cases of unacceptable conduct very seriously and will investigate all suspected and reported incidents of possible unacceptable behaviour. The purpose of this Policy is to set out how allegations will be handled. The scope of the policy is to provide:

  • a definition of unacceptable conduct
  • examples of such conduct;
  • Possible sanctions that may be imposed after investigation.

1. Introduction

1.1. For the purpose of this document ‘unacceptable behaviour’ is defined as:

Any act, or failure to act, that threatens or compromises the integrity of the Golf Club and any misconduct; and/or actions that compromise the reputation or authority of Brancepeth Castle Golf Club and harmonious relationships between members, staff, guests & visitors.

Disruptive behaviour or unacceptable conduct, at the club or on the course, including aggressive or offensive language or behaviour, and/or any behaviour deemed as inappropriate to other members or staff.

Unacceptable behaviour in this Policy includes both bullying and harassment, whether inside or outside the Club where it involves or affects the Club in any way. Everyone should be treated with dignity and respect and as such the Club will not tolerate bullying or harassment, whether intentional or otherwise.

1.2. Any incident or suspected incident of unacceptable behaviour should be reported to the Chair, the current Captain or a Management Committee member to be dealt with in accordance with this policy.

1.3. The Club will keep a record of all reported incidents/reports together with relevant documents and decisions.

2. Unacceptable conduct by Members, Guests or Visitors.

Unacceptable behaviour is described below. These examples are not exhaustive and all incidents of suspected malpractice will be fully investigated,

2.1. Bullying is the repeated less favourable treatment of a person by another or others.

Bullying can take the form of physical, verbal and non-verbal conduct.
Spreading malicious rumours, or insulting someone;
Copying memos that are critical about someone to others who do not need to know;
Ridiculing or demeaning someone - picking on them or setting them up to fail;
Bullying does not include occasional differences of opinion, and non-aggressive conflicts and problems in relationships;

2.2. Harassment is unwanted conduct that has the purpose, or effect, of violating a person’s dignity or creating an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment for them. Harassment may be related to, age, disability, gender, re-assignment, marital or civil partner status, pregnancy or maternity, race, colour, nationality, ethnic or national origin, religion or belief, sex or sexual orientation.

Harassment also includes conduct of a sexual nature (sexual harassment) as well as treating someone less favourably because they have previously submitted or refused to submit to conduct of a sexual nature or conduct related to gender reassignment or sex. A single incident can amount to harassment. Even if harassment does not fall into any of the categories above it is still unacceptable. Harassment can take many forms and can be physical, verbal or non-verbal conduct.

2.3. Unacceptable conduct may also include, for example:

Racist, sexist, homophobic or ageist jokes or derogatory or stereotypical remarks about a particular ethnic group, religion, gender, sexual orientation or disability;
Offensive or intimidating comments or gestures;
Insensitive pranks or jokes;
Unwelcome sexual advances or suggestive behaviour (whether or not the person making the advance or exhibiting the behaviour perceives the conduct as harmless);
Unwanted physical conduct.
Producing, using or allowing the use of forged or falsified documentation, including but not limited to:

  • Personal Identification
  • Handicap Certificates
  • Score Cards.

Fraudulent claims for refund of fees
Theft of money either in Club funds, bar takings or members equipment

3. Possible sanctions

3.1. Following an investigation, if a case is upheld, the Club may impose sanctions or other penalties on the individual(s) concerned. Any sanctions imposed will reflect the seriousness of the situation that has occurred.

3.2. Listed below are examples of sanctions that may be applied to a Golf Club member or staff member who has had a case of malpractice upheld against them. Please note that this list is not exhaustive and other sanctions may be applied on a case-by-case basis:

a) A written warning about future conduct.
b) Removal from the Golf course.
c) Removal from the Club
d) Membership suspended and/or withdrawn with or without refund of subscription.
e) Access to the course or Clubhouse as a visitor/guests denied
f) Notification to the Police

Disciplinary Procedure

4. Reporting a suspected case of unacceptable conduct

4.1. This process applies to, members, guests, visitors and golf club staff, and to any reporting of incident by a third party or individual who wishes to remain anonymous.

4.2. Any case should be reported in the first instance to the Club Chairman, current Captain or Management Committee member as soon as is practicable but ideally within 2 working days of the incident

4.3. In such cases the report made to the person in 4.2 should include as much information as possible, including the following:

a) The date time and place the alleged malpractice took place, if known.
b) the name of the person(s) involved
c) a description of the suspected malpractice;
d) additional evidence to support the allegation

4.4. Wherever possible a person suspected of unacceptable conduct should be warned immediately that their actions are unacceptable and that a report will be made to the Golf Club. The Club will take all reasonable steps to authenticate the reported information and investigate the alleged offence.

5. Administering suspected cases of malpractice

5.1. The Golf Club Management Committee will appoint 2 members, excluding the Chairman & Captain in case of an appeal, to investigate each incident, to ascertain the full facts and circumstances. The investigation team will report their conclusions and recommendations to the Management Committee within 15 working days of their appointment. The Management Committee will also take all reasonable steps to prevent, mitigate and correct any adverse effect that may arise as a result of the offence, thereby to maintain the integrity and reputation of the golf club.

5.2. The Club Chair or Captain will acknowledge to all parties involved, within 5 working days of receiving a report, the following:

a) that an investigation of the incident is going to take place and who will be conducting the investigation.
b) details of all the relevant timescales, and dates, where known;
c) that the individual(s) will have a right to respond during the investigation;
d) that, if the incident is considered proven, sanctions may be imposed by the Club which reflect the seriousness of the case;
e) that, if they are found guilty, they have the right to appeal.
f) that this may also include informing the police if the law has been broken.

5.3. The Management Committee will then confirm their final decision to the individual(s) involved within 5 working days of their decision.


An appeal against a disciplinary decision can be lodged by informing the Club Chairman in writing within five working days of the decision.

The Management Committee will appoint 2 club members who have not been involved with the original investigation to conduct the Appeal.

All appeals must set out the grounds on which the appeal is based.

The appellant will be invited to an appeal meeting and has the right to be accompanied at this meeting. The appeal meeting will reconsider the original decision.

The appellant will have an opportunity to put forward, should they so wish:

  • New evidence which was not available during the first meeting; and/or
  • Complaints of a flaw in the original decision-making process, such as the failure to follow procedures or the failure to give you a fair hearing.

The outcome of any appeal will be confirmed in writing and will take one of three forms:

  • The original decision may be upheld, in which case the disciplinary sanction will be confirmed;
  • The original decision may be overruled, in which case the disciplinary sanction will be
  • The original decision may be substantially confirmed but a less severe sanction may be substituted for that originally imposed (usually in cases of appeals based on extenuating circumstances). The disciplinary sanction cannot be increased.

The decision of the Club Executive Committee is final, and there is no further right of appeal.

6.1. Where more than one individual is contacted regarding a case of an incident, for example in a case involving suspected collusion, individuals will be contacted separately, and will not reveal personal data to any third party unless necessary for the purpose of the investigation.

6.2. Records of all malpractice cases and their outcomes will be maintained by Brancepeth Castle Golf Club for a period of at least five years.