Hawick Golf Club meets to discuss headache of £20,000 shortfall

Hawick Golf Club captain Ryan Lyall
Hawick Golf Club captain Ryan Lyall
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HAWICK Golf Club is holding an Extraordinary General Meeting in a bid to stave off financial difficulties.

Club captain Ryan Lyall revealed this week that the local club is faced with a £20,000 deficit this season as a result of a loss in membership.

And the emergency summit has been arranged to tackle the problem.

Mr Lyall told the Hawick News: “This year we’ve lost something like 28 full members and a range of other members not renewing, that’s nearly £20,000.

“Membership subs are the main part of our income, followed by the bar. To be £20,000 down from the start of the new season is a challenge and we need to look at ways of making this up.

“We feel we need to address it now to avoid a worst case scenario.”

Mr Lyall said they had abandoned plans to take on a third man for the course, while casual bar hours are being covered by committee members, the cleaners’ hours have been cut and all council members have agreed vastly reduced honorarium fees.

The club has over 400 members, but just 114 are full paying members. This is compared to just over 300 full paying members back in 2003.

It has a monthly expenditure of £11,000, with costs such as 
machine repairs, fertilisers and clubhouse repairs over and above that are also budgeted.

The annual rent is £5,200 which is a reduced figure after agreement was struck with Hawick Common Good, who own the land.

“The Common Good have been a great help,” said Mr Lyall. “We went to them a couple of years ago and they agreed to reduce the rent and increase it marginally over the years and that was greatly appreciated.”

The typical golf season runs from April to September, although a winter league, run at Hawick by Colin Easton and Billy Hush, proved very popular last year.

However, Mr Lyall conceded that the poor weather and current financial climate were taking their toll.

He said: “We introduced a new club membership of £200 and that saw an influx of members but the last two years of bad weather have had a serious impact. People are not being able to play golf and so they are choosing to stop their membership.”

The meeting will be held in the clubrooms on Wednesday at 7pm.