It looks likely that golf courses in England will close on Thursday, although England Golf are fighting hard to keep them open


England Golf Challenging Government To Keep Courses Open

England Golf CEO Jeremy Tomlinson says he is challenging the government’s rationale for closing golf courses amid the new national lockdown set to come in on Thursday 5th November.

The new nationwide lockdown closes all non-essential businesses and leisure facilities, with golf clubs and facilities set to close for a month as the government attempts to bring down Covid-19 hospital cases.

Golf has been played safely in England since May, under England Golf’s ‘Play Safe, Stay Safe, guidelines, where contact between players has been kept to an absolute minimum.

However, courses are set to close just like they are currently closed in both Wales and the Republic of Ireland.

The All Party Parliamentary Group for Golf will meet on Monday to discuss what the new lockdown means for golf, and MPs are set to vote on the entire lockdown rules on Wednesday.

It is looking very bleak for clubs and golfers although there is a slither of hope still remaining.

“Having digested the Prime Minister’s statement to the nation on Saturday night and read the guidance which followed, there is an element of confusion around the government’s stated intention to close down golf courses and facilities from Thursday 5 November,” England Golf CEO Jeremy Tomlinson said in a statement.

“As a result of this, and with the health of the nation very much at the heart of my thinking, I would like to make clear England Golf’s intention to respectfully challenge the government’s rationale for closing golf courses.

“We will do so utilising all in our network – MPs, colleagues, media and friends – to make sure we are heard by government.”

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he is actively encouraging outdoor exercise for households and up to two individuals from different households – it is this that England Golf thinks can apply to golf.

Golf, as we all know, is played out on a huge, open landscape where social distancing is done with ease.

The game is great for peoples’ mental and physical wellbeing, something that the Prime Minister must surely support.

“Listening to the Prime Minister, the news that he is actively encouraging safe and responsible outdoor exercise for households or two individuals pointed to our great game of golf being at the heart of this policy,” Jeremy Tomlinson said in his statement.

“The guidance which followed stating that golf courses were on a list of venues which should close, therefore, appeared contradictory and came out of the blue.

“At no point was England Golf – as the governing body for the amateur game of golf in this country – consulted about this decision.”

A petition to keep golf courses open has, at the time of writing, received more than 195,000 signatures.

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