Dec 8th, 2016
Another golf course has problems with picnickers
Long Ashton in Bristol takes measures
Words: James Greenwood
Long Ashton Golf Club in Bristol has become the latest venue to bring in measures to deal with people picnicking on its course.
In September North Berwick Golf Club in Scotland, put up signage around its course because families were picnicking on greens and building sandcastles in bunkers.
Long Ashton has said it has experienced an ‘alarming increase’ in the number of walkers roaming across its course while members are trying to play.
The Bristol Post says that one group of people decided to have a picnic on the course’s third hole while another family were spotted playing football on the fairway.
The 220–acre golf course is privately owned but there are a number of public rights of way, which run across it.
Many people use the footpaths but some have been straying, putting themselves at risk of being hit by golf balls.
The club has put in a series of measures to try and tackle the issue including installing new signs at entrances to the course, highlighting the footpaths and asking people to stick to them.
Club chairman Ken Trowbridge said: “Many villagers use the public rights of way across the course to gain access to places like Ashton Court as well as to exercise generally.
“Golfers are well aware of those rights of way and wait for path users before playing their shots.
“Unfortunately in recent times there has been an alarming trend for walkers to treat the golf course as common land and roam across the course, oblivious to the dangers that may face.
“However it is in fact private land owned by the golf club.
“Recently we have seen a group picnic on our third hole – a blind hole where golfers cannot see over the hill, a family playing football on the fairway and a family walking with a pushchair along our fifth hole.
“These are all places where there is no right of way for anyone other than golf club members.
“To ensure users follow the correct paths, the golf club has recently erected new signs showing the rights of way across the golf course. We will be adding more in the near future.
“This is not addressed to those walkers who regularly use the rights of way and who keep to them but to those people who regularly or periodically do not keep to the rights of way across and around edges of the golf course.
“I would urge everyone using the rights of way to keep to paths and not to put themselves in danger.”