The R&A has secured approval for its plans to redevelop the existing public golf course at Lethamhill in Glasgow to create a brand new community golf facility in the north-east of the city.
Ownership of the site has now been transferred to The R&A by Glasgow City Council following agreement between the two organisations and preparations for the construction of the revamped venue will now begin this week.
The new development includes the creation of a nine-hole course, putting greens, short-game area, adventure golf and a floodlit driving range to allow visitors to enjoy a wide range of golf activities, including shorter forms of the sport.
Martin Slumbers, Chief Executive of The R&A, said, “This is a vital step towards realising our ambition of creating a new golf facility which presents the sport in a fun, affordable and accessible way for the enjoyment of families, young people and community groups living locally.
“We are hugely excited about the potential of this project and will be making a significant investment in transforming the existing course at Lethamhill into a first-class venue where everyone feels welcome, no matter their age or ability, in which they can have fun exploring golf’s many different formats and connect with nature, outdoors in the fresh air.
“We believe that golf can be and should be enjoyed by people of all backgrounds and so this is a real opportunity for us to break down some of the unhelpful perceptions and barriers that exist and revitalise the way in which the sport is offered so that everyone feels they have the freedom to play and enjoy its many health and social benefits.”
Golfers have been provided with alternative arrangements by Glasgow Life to continue playing golf at nearby Littlehill until construction is completed and it is hoped that the new facility will open in the summer of 2023.
Councillor David McDonald, Deputy Leader of Glasgow City Council and Chair of Glasgow Life, said, “Having worked closely with The R&A over the last year to understand and help develop their plans for the new facility at Lethamhill Golf Course, we are thrilled that construction is now set to get underway.
“The new offering will ensure the space at Lethamhill is used to its full capacity, offering activities for everyone from the individual golfer, through to families with young children. We’re looking forward to seeing the progression of the project, and continuing to work with The R&A to ensure the new facility provides key benefits to the local community.”
The agreement will also enable the Seven Lochs Partnership, which overseas the Seven Lochs Wetland Park that includes nearby Hogganfield Loch, to use the facility as its base and hub for the delivery of heritage learning and engagement activities, a free park events programme, volunteering and employability training linked to park management and maintenance.
Access to nearby Hogganfield Loch for leisure activities will be maintained for local users throughout the period of construction.
Councillor Maureen Burke, Chair of the Seven Lochs Partnership, said, “I am delighted to be part of this new partnership, which will bring much needed investment to the local area, creating new jobs and attracting visitors from across the city and beyond. As well as a fantastic new golf facility, the new centre will allow the Seven Lochs team to work with local schools to deliver outdoor learning, offer volunteering opportunities and employability training linked to park maintenance, and support a range of outdoor activities that help improve health and well-being in the local community.”