Use golf courses as parks
During Covid, private golf courses were opened up to the public as few or no golfers were playing. It was fantastic to be able to enjoy these open spaces and they were enjoyed by a lot of people, although not to the extent that they felt crowded or were damaged or littered.
What better way to provide much needed public open space than for the Council or community groups (through Community Right to Buy and with help from the Council) to acquire these and open them permanently to the public.
Our community leases land from the council and manages it for public greenspace. We also do non-park activities like growing fruit trees and improving wildlife habitats, so it produces multiple benefits. This could happen if community groups took on management of former golf courses. Alternatively, the council could manage them as parks.
Why the contribution is important
We're told that many private golf courses are in financial difficulties because interest in golf is declining. The preferred option seems to be to sell to developers. Once they're in the hands of developers then they'll be lost to the public for good.
During the lockdown, there was a huge increase in numbers of people using greenspaces, including parks and golf courses, and numbers have continued to be high, showing that there is a requirement for more greenspace than is provided by existing parks. Indeed some parks are showing signs of overuse.
Developers are already acquiring several golf courses so we have a short time or the option for making this land potential public open space and/or community land will soon be lost.
by nickm on August 15, 2020 at 11:25PM