HAPPY birthday to Sandburn Hall Golf Club.

The Flaxton course is celebrating its tenth anniversary this weekend with a special tournament - the 10th anniversary trophy - and a party for members, all of which will raise money for cancer charity Marie Curie.

Opened in 2005 with the ethos of a "different approach" to golf, the 6,700-yard track has thrived in the ensuing decade and currently has more than 400 playing members.

Popular with societies, managing director James Hogg said he was delighted with the way the course had progressed and developed since it first burst onto the York golf scene.

"I think the course has matured beautifully and a lot of credit goes out to the greenkeepers, who have worked really hard over the last 12 to 13 years," he said. "Year on year, we build and we try and construct new things and bring new things into play on the course to improve it.

"There are new tees and bunkers. We are planting new trees and moving mature trees around. Since we started, I think we have achieved our goal of creating a golf club with a more modern approach to the sport - with the clubhouse feel and the lack of stuffiness - but we still hold the traditional values of golf."

Sandburn Hall was the brainchild of Hogg's father, Mike, who, tragically, died before it was opened to the public.

"I think he would be really pleased with how it has all gone and how it has developed over the years," Hogg added of realising his dad's ambition. "He was a forward thinking man but had emphasis on quality. His ethos, with regards to the golf club and the facilities that we have got here, was that he wanted to build something that he would enjoy and that everybody else would come and enjoy as well.

"I think he would be pleased as well with the course and how it has developed - to expect the growth and the maturity it has had in ten years is great."

Having endured a battle with the greens over the winter and having taken that "on the chin", Hogg believes that the course is now "in its element" and added that development plans continue to try and make it "the best in York".

He said: "We have achieved a lot in the last ten years. We have built up our reputation from being one of the new kids on the block to being a good, all year round, quality course with lots of interesting holes.

"For the next ten years, we have got to continue to improve. We will be looking at improvements to the course - specifically looking at improving the design and construction of the bunkers.

"There will more tree planting. The course does have a reputation for being a bit open on some of the holes so we will be focusing on that. We are aiming to be the best course in the area, while acknowledging there is a lot of very good competition out there as well."