Legal threat forces club to install £40k fence

Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir October 7, 2011 18:02

City of Belfast Golf Club is being forced to erect a £40,000 fence following legal action from a neighbouring resident concerned about the risk of flying golf balls.

Belfast County Council was asked to contribute £20,000, following the threat of a civil injunction by a neighbouring youth, which would have forced the closure of the club’s first hole.

A solicitor’s letter to the golf club mentioned incidents on May 11, and August 5, 2011, and stated that the activities at the golf course continued to present a risk to the youth as a result of golf balls ‘egressing’ from the course and landing in his garden.

The correspondence stated that as well as the risk of personal injury, golf balls landing in the child’s garden also constitute a ‘nuisance’ in respect to his ability to have a quiet and peaceful enjoyment at his family home.

It states the risk also interferes with the child’s Article 2 and 8 rights under the Human Rights Act. These govern the right to life and the right to respect for a person’s private and family life, home and correspondence.

The local authority heard that the golf club had initially agreed to cover the complete cost of the work but since that was money which had been set aside for a new clubhouse, the club asked the council to “make provision for 50 percent of the fencing within its estimates at a future date’’ and the council obliged.

The club expects the fence to be completed within the next two years and has said that it will ‘endure’ the injunction for a short time, but has proposed to have the first hole shortened.

Local councillor Jim Rodgers, said: “the council is spending so much money for putting the fence up.

“We were first alerted to this problem five years ago.”  He added that the town hall had discussed the issue of balls coming over into properties with local people and nobody had raised any concerns.

City of Belfast Golf Club is an 18 hole course situated eight miles from Belfast City Centre in adjacent Newtownabbey.



Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir October 7, 2011 18:02
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