15-year legal battle over Scottish golf course ownership ends

Emma Williams
By Emma Williams May 18, 2018 12:22

An incredibly complicated legal battle that started more than 15 years ago surrounding the ownership of Letham Grange Golf Club in Scotland has finally come to an end, as reported by U.K. Club Golfer.

A settlement between the liquidator of Letham Grange Development Company (LGDC) and D.G. Liu – the owner of LGDC from 1994 to 2002 – has been reached.

Under the terms of the settlement negotiated by the liquidator, the current owner, PI Ltd, has agreed to transfer the legal title to the property at Letham Grange to a company controlled by Mr Liu.

Since April 2011, the golf club has maintained and operated the courses at Letham Grange under a Licence to Occupy issued by a company related to PI Ltd after the hotel closed its doors in January of that year.

The club’s honorary secretary, Bruce Currie, revealed his delight that the long-running saga was over.

“We welcome this latest development that removes the uncertainty regarding ownership that has hung over the resort for the past 15 years,” he said.

“We are exceedingly proud that we have managed for the last seven years to save these wonderful courses from being lost.”

The Licence to Occupy runs until February 28 next year and, while there has been no direct contact with Mr Liu regarding his future direction for the resort, a golf club is believed to be part of the plans.

Currie continued: “Mr Liu’s representative in Scotland has assured us he has no reason to believe his plans involve anything other than the continued operation of the club.

“Despite the protracted legal background, during which Mr Liu is quoted as claiming that the property was ‘stolen’ from him by the liquidator, he bears no ill will towards the golf club or its members.”

A source connected to the club told The Golf Business: “There is still an uncertain future for the club. Members of the club have been maintaining and operating these two lovely courses, The Old Course and the Glens Course since 2011. Although quietly optimistic, the members still face an uncertain future having no direct contact with the owner or entities connected to Mr Liu’s Canadian company.

“The hotel is in poor condition and is in stark contrast to the excellent condition of the two courses which would have been lost had it not been for the magnificent efforts of the club members.

“Letham Grange was purchased for about £2 million in 1994 by the LGDC, which was liquidated in 2003. Further court rulings and appeals ensued until it reached the Supreme Court in 2014. A security charge had been placed over the property and the liquidator was not in a position to sell to PI Ltd. That is until now when Mr Liu gains control through his network of companies.”

 

Emma Williams
By Emma Williams May 18, 2018 12:22
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