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Despite clear recommendations from Scottish Golf to “refrain from golfing until further notice” in line with Government guidance on the coronavirus pandemic, has discovered that some Glasgow golfers are flagrantly ignoring that advice.

Following claims made on social media in recent days that people continue to play on some of the city’s courses, we happened to drive past one of the facilities in question – the Glasgow City Council-owned Knightswood Golf Course – this afternoon. 

Compliant with social distancing guidelines, we observed three golfers playing on the nine-hole course, just four miles west of the city centre, shortly after lunchtime. 

The trio comprised a single and a two-ball, all men, and estimated to be aged between 40 and 60.

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Knightswood is one of six courses operated by Glasgow City Council and managed on the authority’s behalf by Glasgow Life. 

On March 17, Glasgow Life issued a statement advising that it had taken “the difficult decision to suspend its services”. 


In a statement, it said: “This will apply to all Glasgow Life venues across the city, which will shut from close of play on Tuesday 17 March. We expect the suspension to continue until the end of April.”

Neither that, nor the advice from the governing body for golf in Scotland, nor even the guidance from the government, has been keep people off its courses. 

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Across the city, another of the City Council’s courses – Linn Park – reportedly continues to attract golfers, despite being officially closed.

An eye-witness told us: “The course is busy every day with no-one stopping them or asking for payment. It’s a real shame and frustrating for other golfers to witness. Especially as it seems to be free.”

Responding to these incidents, Scottish Golf CEO Andrew McKinlay said: “Right now, the message to all of us is clear – we must stay home and play our part in containing the spread of COVID-19. 

“With this in mind, Scottish Golf continues to emphasise that all golfers in Scotland must refrain from golfing until further notice. We continue to monitor this most difficult situation daily and are liaising with the relevant Government departments to ensure we are providing the most up to date and we believe correct advice to both players and clubs. “

A spokesperson for Glasgow Life added: “Glasgow Life facilities, including Knightswood Golf Course, remain closed and should not be used.”

The future of Glasgow’s six council-run courses hangs in the balance following the approval of a new budget for the local authority, which was passed in February. 

Whilst no formal decision has as yet been disclosed, is believed that the council intends to retain Knightswood under its Glasgow Life operation, with the other five courses – Linn Park, Lethamhill, Littlehill, Ruchill and Alexandra Park – expected to close or be repurposed unless a buyer can be found. 

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Michael McEwan is the Deputy Editor of bunkered and has been part of the team since 2004. In that time, he has interviewed almost every major figure within the sport, from Jack Nicklaus, to Rory McIlroy, to Donald Trump. The host of the multi award-winning bunkered Podcast and a member of Balfron Golfing Society, Michael is the author of three books and is the 2023 PPA Scotland 'Writer of the Year' and 'Columnist of the Year'. Dislikes white belts, yellow balls and iron headcovers. Likes being drawn out of the media ballot to play Augusta National.

Deputy Editor

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