A Perthshire golf club had its membership temporarily revoked this weekend over plans to stage an open contest, despite fears it would breach strict lockdown travel rules.
The Strathmore Golf Centre, near Blairgowrie, was suspended by Scottish Golf for its proposed Men’s Open event on Sunday.
But the club was reinstated just hours later, after the competition was cancelled and rescheduled to later this summer.
The competition had been publicly advertised on the club’s website, and said it was open to “all Gentleman Golfers”.
However, a statement issued by governing body Scottish Golf after the First Minister’s announcement on phase two of lockdown easing stated: “There should be no open events run at this time. This is based on the travel restrictions that remain in force and which are very clear in terms of staying local for exercise.”
A Scottish Golf spokesman said: “Following concerns reported to Scottish Golf relating to a breach of phase two guidance on the safe return to golf in Scotland, early discussions with the club did not conclude to our satisfaction.
“As a result, the member club was suspended pending further investigation.”
He said: “Following further correspondence on Friday evening, the suspension was lifted with immediate effect.
“It remains important to remember that golf continues to benefit from extension to exercise guidelines and we would again encourage all clubs familiarise themselves with the discretionary aspects and the mandatory elements in relation to physical distancing, hygiene and travel.
“It is important that clubs update their own guidance and continue to ensure that golfers understand their obligations in phase two.”
Strathmore Golf Centre declined to comment yesterday, but a statement posted on social media announced a new date for the gents’ open.
“It is with deepest regret and bitter disappointment that we have to inform you that we have been forced to cancel the Gents Open on Sunday,” the club stated. “This late decision was totally outwith our control and was forced upon us.”
The post said the contest had been rescheduled to Sunday, August 9. “Hopefully, the restrictions on travel will be sufficiently relaxed for the Open to proceed unchallenged,” the club said.
The statement continued: “We are terribly sorry for the late notice and we look forward to seeing you at Strathmore in the non-too-distant future.”
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