You may not be familiar with Bailoy irrigation control systems. But, chances are, you will be familiar with some of the products and personalities behind the name. That’s because Bailoy pioneered decoder- based irrigation technology in the late 70s, with its first system “The SC3000” snapped up by golfing giant Toro just a few years after its humble inception. Hence Bailoy irrigation products were branded Toro from between 1984 and 2006 which as well as the SC3000, also included the CDS-DIU hardware and the current range of GTI PC controllers.
The early engineering brain behind the first products, was Myke Baigent. Now in his 70s, Myke was a larger than life character whose passion for model railways had, unbeknown to him, made him an incredibly well connected man – including, as it would turn out, in golf. Myke and fellow former director Peter Lovejoy established Bailoy in 1972 simply because they were fed up working for other people. Myke, with his engineering background and inventive drive, was ‘the brains’ of the operation; methodical Peter was ‘the business’.
Myke produced all sorts from his Aldershot workshop and via his contacts, he worked on Ministry of Defence weapon projects and held the worldwide patent as the inventor of the first “Baby in the womb” ultrasonic scanner.
Then, in the early 80s, came a call that was to change the company’s trajectory. An Isle of Wight golf course manager, tired of walking greens to irrigate, with the ‘tap on, tap off’ routine taking up a full day, asked Myke to think of a way to automate it.
Fast forward a year and Myke had incorporated new decoder technology into an irrigation controller and patented the SC3000 controller and three-wire decoder, the basis of which Bailoy still uses to this day. Within three years, the pair were selling to local golf clubs and once Toro stepped in, the company didn’t look back.
In 2006 Bailoy and Toro amicably parted ways with Bailoy continuing to support the Toro CDS hardware and now supporting Toro-branded GTI systems back in-house, as well as the GTI range under their own branding.
With Myke then 66 and Peter 70, they were ready to pass the baton on to Frank Beks. Hailing from the Netherlands, Frank originally joined Bailoy in 1997 and was wholly responsible for Bailoy’s GTI PC systems. He was responsible for the development of the GTI software and upgrading of Myke’s original hardware, making him the natural successor. After Peter Lovejoy fell ill in January 2007 and died just two months later, Peter’s son Adam Lovejoy joined the business and took over its general administration.
So today Adam and Frank mirror Peter and Myke’s roles, acting as managing director and product development director respectively. So while Frank works on new products, Adam is busy building the Bailoy name, and after a complete rebrand in 2007, the company is now on the brink of launching new products and spreading the word about a host of high-profile users around the world.
With the appointment in 2011 of Phil Chadwick as Technical Sales Manager, who joined from Toro and Lely UK and boasts 33 years’ industry experience, including 28 on GTI, we have the ability to design, administer, audit and support our range of products to the highest level.
With a network of distributors around the world Bailoy is able to supply and support its products and services to a range of sites both large and small and prides itself on its personal service.