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Dundee golf club reveals plans for new driving range after Storm Arwen destruction

The damage to the driving range in the wake of Storm Arwen.
The damage to the driving range in the wake of Storm Arwen.

A Dundee driving range destroyed during Storm Arwen could be rebuilt as early as autumn.

The golf facility at Ballumbie Castle was among dozens of buildings in the city left damaged during the extreme weather in November.

Winds approaching 90mph caused the roof to collapse, leaving the range in tatters.

The club was halfway through a £125,000 upgrade when the storm hit, with bosses estimating the cost of rebuilding would be about £200,000.

No golf balls have been hit at the range since November.

Allan Bange, the club’s manager, says he feels “great” about plans to reinstate the structure – with a planning application now submitted to Dundee City Council.

He said: “The new one looks really good.

“The only hold-up is the insurance, we are just waiting for them and being left in limbo.

“I’m not sure what’s taking them so long but hopefully it’s sorted soon.

“(The mess) is needing cleared. It’s totally unsafe. We’d had new cladding put on but then it was destroyed by the storm. It isn’t repairable so needs completely rebuilt.

Allan Bange.
Allan Bange.

“I was hoping to get work started last week but hopefully something can begin by the end of the month.”

Allan hopes the new range will be completed by September.

He says the club is losing income due to the range being out of use.

‘Huge’ impact of driving range collapse

He said: “I still get a couple of calls every day asking about the driving range and if it is still open, and I have to tell them every time that it is still closed.

“It still being closed is losing us money, the driving range is a huge part of our income.

“It’s had a massive financial impact, and has also affected our pros and our lessons.

“It’s not nice to look at every day and see it flapping about. We’re needing it cleared as soon as possible.”

The structure is set to be cleared away.

The club’s plans, submitted to the council, show proposals for a range with 19 bays and two teaching bays.

There will also be facilities for greenkeepers, an office and toilets, replacing facilities that existed in the old building.

How the new driving range could look

The range will also include new technology to analyse golfers’ swings, allowing the venue to compete with other similar ranges elsewhere in the country.

Club chiefs also want to carry out further work to the course car park and clubhouse.

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