The COVID-19 technicality that’s closed our golf courses
GOLF: North Rockhampton Golf Club president Kevin Young is hoping common sense will prevail after courses across Queensland were closed in line with the national crackdown on licensed premises.
The Australian Government on Sunday night ordered that all licensed venues were to shut at noon on Monday in response to the growing COVID-19 crisis.
That impacts most golf clubs in Queensland, whose liquor licences extend to their courses.
Clubs across Central Queensland, including Rockhampton, Yeppoon and Capricorn Resort, have also closed.
Young was directed by Golf Australia to close the clubhouse and course on Monday.
Golf Australia is working with the government in a bid to have courses to be re-opened.
Young has his fingers crossed that will happen because if it does not his club faces an uncertain future.
“It’s terrible. It’s really bad,” a devastated Young said.
“If we’re going to be closed for any length of time there’s a lot of consequences for us.
“To start with, we will have no income to pay the bills that keep coming in and all the other golf clubs would be in the same boat.”
As an example, Young said North Rockhampton paid just under $4000 a month for the lease of its 20 golf carts.
“Our biggest concern is staying afloat, that we can come out the other side and still have a golf club here with members and that we don’t have a debt so big it takes us years to pay back,” he said.
Young said he just wanted the club’s 240 members to be able to play golf.
“It’s just common sense to keep golf courses open,” he said.
“We played at the weekend and observed all the guidelines in line with social distancing and personal hygiene.
“You’ve only got to look at the course to see how far players are away from each other.
“When you go to supermarkets you see people a lot closer together than they are on a golf course.
“Let’s hope this is resolved quickly. The sooner we can get back up and running the better.”