Another two golf courses hit by vandals

Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir November 24, 2020 07:49

Two historic Scottish golf courses, one 155 years old and the other 130 years old, have become the latest venues to be targeted by vandals.

A vehicle drove onto Grantown-on-Spey Golf Club in the Highlands, causing damage to two areas, including one of the greens, destroying much of the work greenkeepers had carried out this year. As the ground was wet at the time, tyre damage was particularly significant.

In the last few days a golf club in Lancashire had a car drive at 80 miles per hours on its course and one in Gloucestershire reported significant tyre damage as well.

Police are investigating the incident at Grantown-on-Spey Golf Club.

Club captain Allan Thom said: “It is very disappointing to say the least.

“After all the hard work our greenkeepers do to keep our greens in pristine condition we get some mindless people deciding to drive a vehicle over the course, causing damage on the 11th green and the area between the 10th green and 11th tee?”

He added: “What can I say? I am very disappointed that in our community such a thing should happen.

“Like many businesses this year that have struggled to keep costs down with little income, golf clubs have been no different, which makes this sort of behaviour all the more disturbing.

“It is infuriating for our two greenkeepers who work hard all year round to keep our course in pristine condition for members and visitors alike.”

However, he said: “The response to this incident has been heartening both from social media and the wider golfing fraternity.”

A police spokesman said: “The incident happened between 4.30am and 11am on Saturday (November 21). Local officers have an appointment to speak with the complainer to gather more details.”

During Grantown-on-Spey Golf Club’s centenary celebrations in 1990, Arnold Palmer accepted an invitation to become an honorary member. Bobby Cruickshank, who came second in the 1923 US Open, was also a member.

Meanwhile, the course at the 155-year-old Haddington Golf Club has been damaged by an off-road bike and quad bike.

Greens and fairways on holes 6, 10 and 15 have all been damaged, with tyre marks being left on the playing surface.

Drew Ramsay, captain of the golf club, which is among the 20 oldest in the world, said the incidents had all been reported to the police.

Speaking to the Courier, he said: “You can quite clearly see the marks of the tyres: two big circles on the green. It is really heart-breaking.

“The club has never been in a better condition – we are up 120 members since lockdown.

“The club is going like a fair, everybody is raving about it and things are going good, with a lot of hard work being put in and you get clowns like that coming in and vandalising the place.”

Police Constable Colin Boyd, Haddington and Lammermuir community officer, said: “Hole 10 was vandalised by what looks like an off-road bike and quad bike. This links to previous incidents at the golf club where the same or similar bikes have damaged a further green and fairway.

“There are also a number of reports that the same red and white off-road bike and blue quad have been riding around the Haddington area.

“We are following a positive line of inquiry.”

Anyone with information should contact police on 101.

A course in the USA has also reported a similar incident.

Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir November 24, 2020 07:49
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  1. Tones November 25, 14:03

    Mindless acts of vandalism

    Reply to this comment
  2. Pringle November 24, 10:35

    What’s up with people nowadays

    Reply to this comment
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