The proposed closure of the Victoria Park Golf Course would be a significant loss for golf in Queensland and Golf Australia is attempting to save this iconic course from closure.
CEO Stephen Pitt says Golf Australia wasn’t consulted in the lead up to Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner’s comments on Sunday but it would like to be included in discussions about Victoria Park moving forward and there has been liaison between the parties to meet to discuss the future of Victoria Park Golf Course.
Lord Mayor Schrinner announced on the weekend he hopes to close the 18-hole golf course permanently to make way for a ‘Central Park’ style 45-hectare public parkland.
“Public golf courses are so important to our game right across the country. They give Australians everywhere the opportunity to pick up a club and be active,” says Pitt.
“Golf is a game enjoyed by millions of Australians every year and every golfer at some stage in their life has made the most of a public facility in their local area.
“The decision to permanently close Victoria Park, a golf course that has been a popular recreation facility for 90 years, is highly alarming and we are desperate to ensure an alternative to this plan is reached.”
Victoria Park, located in the inner city suburb of Herston, is one of only two public golf courses currently owned by Brisbane City Council.
The other council-owned golf course is St Lucia Golf Links south-west of the CBD.
The Victoria Park facility is also home to a driving range, 18-hole putt putt course and numerous function venues.
Pitt says Golf Australia expects to be involved in any process relating to the future of Victoria Park.
“Golf Australia knows its number one priority is ensuring the game of golf continues to grow, with more people having more opportunities to enjoy our game,” says Pitt.
“The possibility of facilities like Victoria Park having their doors closed is something we take extremely seriously and we look forward to an open-minded discussion with the Brisbane City Council to find a solution that provides open space for golfers and all members of the public.”
Similar plans for the popular Albert Park Golf Course in Melbourne were thwarted last year after a strong response from the local community.
In 2017, Parks Victoria indicated its desire to halve Albert Park from an 18-hole layout to nine holes.
But a formal submission from Golf Australia opposing the plan was backed by the Melbourne golf community, with plans to downgrade Albert Park scrapped in late 2018.
A number of petitions protesting the council’s plans have already been set up by members of the public in a strong show of support for the Victoria Park golf course.
Those interested can add their name to the growing list here.