The countdown is now officially on for the 148th Open at Royal Portrush

In News by redback

The countdown is now officially on to The 148th Open which will be played at Royal Portrush from the 14th – 21st July 2019.

McKee Ltd have been involved in the preparation works for this prestigious event over the last four years.

Back in 2015, preparations for this event commenced with the alteration to the course. We supplied excavators equipped with tilt rotators and a vast array of other machinery. Our skilled operatives worked alongside the expertise of 1st Golf Ltd to complete these alterations within the constraints of an ‘in play’ Golf Course.

The main course alterations and construction of the two new playing holes were carried out to an extremely high standard set by the Architects, McKenzie & Ebert Ltd. Our work ethic, ability to adapt and attitude of “anything can be done” paid off with us being subsequently awarded contracts for infrastructure improvements to the course that would commence in 2016.

Over the following three years we provided our services to build Roadways, provide main water supply & sewerage lines, ducting, pumping chambers, reinforced earth retaining walls, Exposa concrete paths, a Players Tunnel and a number of other projects alongside 1st Golf Ltd.


Over the past three years we have constructed over 5km of new tarmac roadways throughout the Golf Course, constructed to standards able carry numerous truck loads of equipment and vehicles required for the championship. We were self-sufficient in our services from the setting out phase, engineering right through to the backtopping of these roads. Alongside these roadways the services required were installed. Approximately 5km of watermain, 5km of sewerage main, 15km of ducting and associated chambers etc were provided and completed with minimal disruption to the course. All grass areas were removed precisely and reinstated to the exact requirements of the course.

Reinforced Earth Walls

To increase spectator areas and flow approximately 750m2 of reinforced earth walls were required. This process involved bulk excavation, foundation, construction and macular reinforced earth, fencing and reinstatement. Again we carried out these works within the confinement of the Golf course saving and replacing as much of the original vegetation as possible to achieve the desired look when complete.

Players Tunnel

This tunnel was created to ease the flow of the game for the players. We took this element of the development through from drawing stage to the completion of the 70m, three way tunnel. This tunnel required approximately 2000 m3 of excavation, 250 m3 of reinforced concrete, construction of the Aco Tunnel sections, replacement and shaping, completed with tarmacking and rubber surfacing. This was all carried out in the centre of the course, with minimal disruption to the course or play.

Creation of Natural Pathways

Paths were created by removing and translocating the existing vegetation to create an instant and finished path with an aesthetical look. By using this technique there is no need to wait for grass to grow.

Natural Stream Bank Reinforcement

The banks of the natural stream that flows through the course needed to be reinforced to slow down the effects of natural erosion on the course. Again taking into account the constraints of the Golf Course and the need to provide as little disruption to the course as possible we used our Rubber Mats to track the area of ground to allow our machines to cross the Golf course to the stream providing as little damage to the undergrowth as possible. We placed Rock Armour along the banks of the stream to provide a natural erosion defence barrier.

With our willing to help attitude and positive outlook we have delivered all that has been requested of us to an exceptionally high standard. The final countdown in now on site we are still involved in supplying labour, plant and operators as required and any civil groundwork requirements to help achieve the end goal. A very successful 148th Open.