Ultimatum for golf club

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THE financial situation at Newton Stewart Golf Club continues to raise concerns with the news that Dumfries and Galloway Council is to prop the club up with a substantial grant of more than £20,000.

Wigtown Area Committee attached conditions to the funds given and will now work closely with the club’s committee to ensure its survival.

A spokesman for Dumfries and Galloway Council said: “The golf industry nationally is facing challenging financial times in light of the recession and this is replicated across Dumfries and Galloway. Coun-
cil officers have been working closely with Newton Stewart Golf Club over the past 18 months to help look at its business model. The Wig­town Area Committee recently 
granted the club an award of 
£20,600 from its discretionary budget. Officers met with the club committee last month to agree joint targets, and a Service Level Agreement with our council has now been finalised. This agreement requires the club to work towards a sustainable business position within the next two years. Officers will continue to work closely with the club over this period which will include monitoring through the Wigtown Area Committee.”

Lifelong member Baird Matthews told the Gazette two weeks ago that the club’s financial problems were dire. This was done, he said, with the backing of club officials.

Yesterday he added: “The £20,600 grant was known about before the financial situ-
ation was made public. Never­theless, even taking this into consideration, our situation is precarious as has been previously stated.

“The club’s expenditure has 
substantially exceeded its income for the past year. The treasurer’s statement clearly showed that excess over income would reoccur this incoming year and clearly stated that the club cannot be guaranteed beyond 2014.

“That surely shows how serious the financial situation is.”

At a golf club meeting on Monday night, a motion was passed that no members would speak to the Gazette until closer to the D&G Council planning meeting scheduled for November 29.